Bow Valley (hwy 1 & hwy40)
Hwy 40 (Kananaskis Trail)
Longview
Black Diamond
Bow Valley (hwy 1 & hwy 40)
Hwy 40 (Kananaskis Trail)
Longview
Black Diamond
 
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Did you know?

The Fonz (aka Henry Winkler) couldn't actually ride a motorcycle. Steve McQueen's motorcycle from the scene at the end of the movie "The Great Escape" (1963), was the same motorcycle that The Fonz rode on in "Happy Days" (1974). When he "rode" the motorcycle in the show, it was actually mounted on a piece of wood on wheels. For the action shots during the show, they would simply wheel the motorcycle to give the effect that he was riding it. The reason Henry Winkler wasn't able to ride the notorious Harley Davidson in the show was because of poor co-ordination which is a symptom from his dyslexia.

One of my favorite Sunday rides is the Kananaskis Country run. Its 348 km/215 mi in length and takes you through some of the most beautiful mountains in the world. Passing shimmering lakes and winding through snowcapped mountains you cross the Highwood pass at an elevation of 2,206 m/7,238 ft before heading down to the foothills and the western town of Longview. The road is teaming with wildlife from bighorn sheep to elk and grizzly bears so keep your camera ready.

From Calgary head out on hwy 1A through Cochrane and on pass Ghost Lake to hwy 1X which takes you to hwy 1 (TransCanada hwy). Go east on hwy 1 for about a kilometer to hwy 40 (Kananaskis Trail), turning right (south) to Kananaskis Country. The Stoney Nakoda Resort and Casino is situated at this junction and is a great rest stop – especially if you like to gamble.

From the Stoney Nakoda Resort it is 150 km/92 mi of mountain driving to Longview. About 40 km/25 mi into your ride is Fortress Junction Gas Plus which has picnic tables to sit at and enjoy a rest. It is also the only gas station on hwy 40 so make sure you fill up here. 26 km/16 mi further down the road is Highwood Pass. It is the highest

paved road in Canada at an elevation of 2,206 m/7,238 ft and usually has snow until late July. On each side of the pass you have about an 80% chance to come across Bighorn Mountain Sheep as they like to hang out along the highway and lick the sale off the road left by passing vehicles. While they seem almost tame, I heard of bikers getting “butted” off their rides when they get too close.

From Highwood pass it is about 80 km/50 mi to Longview where the Twin Lakes Hotel welcomes bikers to stop and rest and enjoy a burger and soda. Leaving Longwood you travel north on hwy 22 approximately 16 km/ 10 mi before you come into Black Diamond. The town took its name from the large coal deposits in the area and while the coal has long since been depleted, the Black Diamond Hotel, built in 1929, still stands and is a major gathering place for bikers. It is common to see 40 or 50 bikes parked in front of the hotel on a Sunday afternoon and the hotel keeps the bikers coming back by serving great food and beverages.

At the stop sign in front of the hotel, turn right on hwy 7, which takes you to Okatoks where you pick up hwy 2 north back to Calgary and the end of your ride.

The Ride
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The other day I had to initiate emergency braking when the car in front of me slammed his brakes on to let a duck and her ducklings cross the road. While I was able to stop without incident, it made me think about emergency braking techniques and I found this very informative article to share.

 

motoDNA: Emergency Braking Techniques

05/19/2014 @ 6:10 PM, BY MARK MCVEIGH

Nothing causes as much confusion or trepidation in riders as emergency braking. How hard can I brake? Will the front wheel lock? Will I go over the handlebars? How far can I lean over on the brakes?

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