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Bill and Brenda Gosse with cycle buddies Judy Geraghty and her husband Bob Weber
Bill and Brenda Gosse with cycle buddies Judy Geraghty and her husband Bob Weber

Cycling Ontario's Waterfront Trail: good friends, good times

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Leaving Cornwall last Friday, Lucy Martin stopped for gas on Highway 2 just past Ingleside, overlooking the St. Lawrence River. She was about to leave when four heavily-laden cyclists pulled in for a rest.

The two couples are enjoying a 400-mile journey of exploration along Ontario's Waterfront Trail and setting a terrific example of fitness at any age.

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Reported by

Lucy Martin
Ottawa Correspondent

Bill and Brenda Gosse are biking from Kitchener, where they live, to Montréal on what they expect will be a two-week trip.

Bill said, “It's a touring holiday, so we've been stopping here and there and taking in the river sights and the little towns and that. And it's just been really awesome. And we've been following a magnificent trail called the Waterfront Trail, which runs all the way from Niagara Falls to the Quebec border, and I'd highly recommend it, for everybody should try it!"

The two are serious bicyclists, and cover about 60 miles a day. Bill said, “Yes, we do cycle a reasonable amount, yeah! Yeah, you do have to train for it. We've been averaging about 95 kilometers a day with the full packs, and whatnot, and they slow you down considerably.”

The Gosses are staying in lodgings as they travel, and this is simpler than camping according to Bill. He said, "Yeah, it does make it a little easier: nice hot showers and good beds! They're very welcomed!” Brenda agreed, saying, “Comfort after a hard day on the bike. You're just out like a light!”

Bob Weber, a friend of the Gosses, originally had the idea to make this bike trip. Bill said, “Bob and I play hockey together in the winter time. And he was saying: 'I'd really like to bike from Kitchener to Montréal' and I said, 'I'm in!' So, we got the ladies on board and away we went.”

Weber said, “This is my closing track to going across Canada. Kitchener to Montréal, I had to finish it!” Weber crossed Canada on a bicycle starting in 2000. "We started planning in 1999," he said. "Yeah, it was four different years. Jud (Judy) and I took a year in Australia, too. It's just fun! It's a nice way to see a country!”

Brenda said the heat hasn't been an issue so far. “The wind has been behind us, at times, pushing us. And in the last couple days it's been in our face, but that's OK, it helps to cool us down.”

“If we weren't fit when we started we're fit now!” said Weber. Bill added, “And I always like to brag about Bobby, here, because he's seventy-one years old! He's an example of how fit people can be.”

Brenda explained that Weber's wife, Judy Geraghty is a cancer survivor. “First trip back, after recovery,” said Geraghty. Her treatment period was 2009, and she's been cancer-free for two years. “It feels amazing to be back on the bike!” she said.

“I was reasonably athletic, yeah. You know, we have been fairly avid cyclists, for a number of years. So I think that helped me get through some of the treatment, and such. So, yeah! We're good to go here!” said Geraghty. “There's a piece of me that feels somewhat robbed, because I don't have that same power and strength that I used to have. But – I am here. You know? So, you just gotta go with that.”

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