by Rebecca Slaven | Central Valley Greenway is the perfect ride to the start of cycling season. It’s the most approachable of the long-distance rides, with a flat route that goes all the way to New Westminster. The myriad of construction sites, all of which have their own individual charms, eventually turn into picturesque park scenery.
The route starts on the seawall by Science World but I like to join it at 10th and Victoria to avoid the wicked hill on Great Northern Way. Signage is good throughout. I find the only area of confusion is at Gilmore street but I think that’s because I always get distracted by the giant Dick’s Lumber sign and miss the CVG directional sign.
If riding in the Willingdon area at night in the spring, beware the intense murders of crows. They’re generally harmless but will provoke a series of involuntary shudders long after you’ve ridden past.
Stops & Eats | Burnaby Lake Regional Nature Park is a gorgeous wildlife sanctuary known for bird watching and clamours of hungry ducks. It’s illegal to feed birds in Burnaby but I highly doubt that this is enforced, especially when the majority of by-law-breakers are adorable children. Those with a fear of geese may want to keep riding past.
If feeling hungry in New Westminster, pop by Re-Up BBQ for some pulled pork and sweet tea. You can either eat in the cafeteria set-up or find a sunny bench on the Quay Boardwalk.
If you’d rather hold out until the end of your ride, take a meal break at Bandidas on The Drive, which has my favourite breakfast in the city (specifically, The Breakfast). The vegetarian Mexican-inspired fare is the ideal balance of substance and health after a long bike ride. Not counting the margarita you should pair it with.
Rebecca Slaven is a librarian, writer, and cyclist. Her subject specialities include law, beauty, and croquet. Her format specialty is the how-to guide. She mostly rides her bike to work but has cycled as far as San Francisco. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter.