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  • Sean Davidson

10 ‘Must Have’ Essentials for Cycle Touring in Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia Cycling Event

So you’re finally considering signing up for the cycling adventure of a lifetime. Experiencing Nova Scotia via cycle touring has its ups and downs (pun intended - there’s going to be hills!) but in all seriousness, the panoramic ocean views, immense local culture and the opportunity to enjoy the journey alongside like-minded people makes all the sweaty days on the bike worth it.

If you’re tackling the Great Annapolis Ride, most folks will agree that simply signing up for the event is the easiest part. While the actual cycling can be a bit of a grind at certain moments, the good times shared on the way will make it a breeze. As a result, packing for the adventure might be the most difficult part of the entire journey!

The best way to know the 10 essentials needed for a cycling tour in Nova Scotia is to learn more about what exactly each day looks like on the Great Annapolis Ride.

The Great Annapolis Ride

Spend the weekend exploring the Annapolis Valley wine region on two wheels. National historic sites, the world’s highest tides and of course relaxing with some of Canada’s finest wines await!

Day 1

Taking off from the Grand-Pre historic site, cyclists can choose between a 107 km (Grande) and 83 km (Classic) day. The Classic begins with a relaxed pedal down the Harvest Moon trail past the picturesque towns of Wolfville and Port Williams. While riders looking for a bit more of a challenge will head south towards the panoramic views featured on the hills of Gaspereau Valley. The classic route and Grande come together at Port Williams and continue towards the magnificent coastline of the Minas Basin. Gravity will do much of the work after the lunch break, allowing for an easy ride before the final climb up North Mountain and descent to the day’s destination on the shores of the Bay of Fundy.

Day 2

After a hearty breakfast, all cyclists will prepare for the 49.5 km journey through the fields and farmlands of western Nova Scotia. Cross the Cornwallis River before pedalling the final stretch towards the final destination at Mercator Vineyards. With so much to experience in the area, the shorter ride will allow participants plenty of time to visit the area’s wineries, distilleries and breweries.

10 Essentials for Cycle Touring

With a better understanding of what the Great Annapolis cycling tour entails, it’s time to focus on what is needed to comfortably complete the journey. While the tour offered by Kohkos Events is fully supportive, participants are responsible for carrying their own luggage on their bikes so space will be at a premium! No need to fret however, as this checklist of essentials will help kickstart what to stuff inside your saddlebags!

  • Tent: Lightweight is essential as you’ll be carrying it with you along the way. Maximum 2 person tent.

  • Sleeping Bag and Pad: Weight and pack down size should be considered as they have to fit on the bicycle.

  • Torch or headlamp: Great for stumbling to and from the campsite bathrooms during the night.

  • Flip flops: Let your feet breathe and fully relax after a long day in cycling shoes.

  • Bidon: This is cyclist jargon for “water bottle”. Make sure it fits in your bike's holder. The lighter the better!

  • Towel: Pack towels designed for backpacking or trekking are your best bet.

  • Sunscreen: Pick up a “sport” brand if possible as you will certainly be sweating. Your future self will thank you.

  • Sunglasses or Clear Lenses: Getting a random bug in the eye while highway riding can be dangerous.

  • Basic First Aid: Think blister care, tensor bandages or tape, bug spray as well.

  • Small Tire Pump and Patches: While there are mechanics on the road, if you can fix your own tires you’ll be back on the tour much faster.

Of course, these items are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what exactly each person will want to have on them for this once in a lifetime adventure. For more information regarding what is suggested for the Great Annapolis Ride, visit Kohkos Events.

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