Freewheel offers both Road and MTB social rides during the cycling season. All Freewheel club rides are Free! However, you must fill in a Freewheel/IMBA Club Waiver or have a guardian do so for you if you are a minor. In addition, some of the trails we ride are pay-for-use (eg. Kelso & Hilton Falls) and riders are expected to have some pocket money to cover incidental expenses like this.
Women (beginner-intermediate) mountain bike rides are on Tuesday evenings. We leave at 6pm sharp.
Social Road Rides
Road Rides (on road racing bikes) are Wednesday evenings at 6pm weather permitting. One of Freewheel’s resident roadies, is the regular ride leader. We meet at the front of the store and roll out by 6:00pm. Rides are 1.5 to 2.5 hours long, depending on the available daylight, and cover from 40 to 70 kms. The target riding speed is 30 kph.
This ride is intended for a range of riders from those that are new to road riding and have a good fitness base to experienced riders looking for a relaxed, well-controlled group ride. Emphasis will be on good road-riding form, drafting, safe paceline and echelon riding etc. Speed demons may need to look elsewhere. Routes change weekly to keep things interesting. For route info, cancellation due to weather and other questions please have a look at (and join) our Facebook page. And finally, you are expected to have a road bike in good working condition, a cycle computer, a helmet and sufficient supplies to fix a flat tire (ie spare tube, tire levers and pump).
We also do Social Townie Rides every Wednesday, again starting at 6pm sharp.
Social MTB Rides
Cross country MTB rides are held on Thursday (intermediate) evenings, weather permitting. If the local trail system is dry there will be a ride. Evening rides are ability specific. Join our Facebook page for details. We gather and organize at the Freewheel back lot at 5:45pm and are rolling by 6:00 pm. It is definitely uncool to hold the rest of the riders up waiting for you. Late riders buy the first round of post ride snacks.
Rides are typically 2 to 2.5 hours in duration. If you are tired you need to cut out early on a local ride, just let the rest of your group know. Weather permitting, rides continue through Fall and Winter but riders require a proper set of lights to participate on evenings. Call the shop to check. In the summer months when daylight permits, we often carpool to our local favourites, listed below:
Dundas Valley Conservation Area
Our home trails; we ride from the shop. Option one is to go north and climb up the Dundas Peak. A good mix of technical and singletrack / doubletrack awaits at the top. Option two is to head straight into the Valley trails via Warren Park. Mostly fast doubletrack with some short but sweet singletrack sections. If we’re feeling really zesty we hit both option one and two in the same ride!
Another classic, Waterdown has a deceiving amount of climbing due to its many ravines. This network is filled with loads of rooty singletrack. Head further east for less ups and downs and more rocks. Occasionally, if daylight permits, the ride will make its way back to Freewheel via a mix of road and trail.
Hilton Falls Conservation Area
A perennial favourite for the Freewheel Crew. Rocks, rocks, and more…. rocks! Very technical riding with little elevation gain. Between Hilton Falls and the Halton Agreement Forest skirting it, one can ride singletrack for hours on end. Bring a GPS or someone that knows their way around. Some of our staff ride there weekly and still get lost! Note: Due to the sheer amount of escarpment rockiness, the trails here drain extremely well and are our go-to destination for wet weather riding.
Kelso Conservation Area
A great network of XC trails with a bit of tech thrown in for good measure. Kelso hosts an Ontario Cup race yearly, so you can be sure the trails are fast and well maintained! Those interested in gaining elevation can session the ski hill climbs over and over to their hearts content! Parking off Steeles Ave. at the Kelso Summit.
One has to wonder how they crammed so much singletrack into such a small parcel of land! a 50/50 mix of tight twisty hardwood and fast flowy pines make for a great ride every time. Loop can be done clockwise or counter-clockwise to mix things up. Decent drainage also makes this destination a good bet the day after rain falls.
Waterloo Hydro Cut
A fantastic one-way loop. Meticulously crafted by Igor and his crew, it provides a good two hours of fun fast and flowy singletrack. Go for a second lap if you still have fuel in the tanks.