Looking for approx ride times TB to Calgary - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 7 Old Jun 4th, 2011, 8:43 pm Thread Starter
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Looking for approx ride times TB to Calgary

I'm planning to go to CCR via Canada #1 and #2 and I would like to understand travel times from somebody that is relatively familiar with traveling from Thunder Bay to Calgary. My mapping software says it is approx 1300 miles from Thunder Bay to Calgary.

The software says it will take 25 hours giving me about 52 MPH average. That seems reasonable for a leisurely pace for 3 LTs, all 1 up and one with trailer. In the western US the speed limits pick up and you can pretty much cover more ground. I don't know what the speed limits are on #1.

What I'm looking for is what is the average speed on Canada #1 between Thunder Bay and Calgary. Is it reasonable for a 2 day - 12 hour run at 70 MPH averaging approx 60 MPH or is this really too fast for conditions or will we be looking at radar guns or weaving around very slow traffic all day? Doing average 52 MPH makes it a very easy 3 day run. If we run till we get tired what is the hotel/motel situation. Looks like unless we are near a big city there is very slim pickings.. On the same note what about fuel between that major cities?

Jack D. (Southern Connecticut)
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post #2 of 7 Old Jun 4th, 2011, 9:36 pm
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Re: Looking for approx ride times TB to Calgary

I made the trip about 3 maybe 4 years ago. Thunder Bay to Brandon, MB took a day and then Brandon to Calgary the second day. I found Thunder Bay to the MB border the slowest part of the trip. Watch for wild life on the road around Dryden. I've ridden through there four times and each time saw bears on or near the road. I took the ring road around Winnipeg and it was good traveling after that. I tend to ride about 120Kph which is about 74 mph. Did not see any radar and only a couple of police on the whole trip.
Cheers
Peter
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post #3 of 7 Old Jun 5th, 2011, 1:44 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Looking for approx ride times TB to Calgary

Peter, Thank you for responding so quickly.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by TWheels
Thunder Bay to Brandon, MB took a day and then Brandon to Calgary the second day. I found Thunder Bay to the MB border the slowest part of the trip.
MB = ?


Quote:
Originally Posted by TWheels
I tend to ride about 120Kph which is about 74 mph.
Speed limit is?


As an alternate I was looking at going north from Winnipeg taking #16 thorough Saskatoon to Jasper and heading south on Icefields Parkway (#93) from there? Been there? any words of wisdom?

Jack D. (Southern Connecticut)
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post #4 of 7 Old Jun 5th, 2011, 7:29 pm
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Smile Re: Looking for approx ride times TB to Calgary

I've done these roads many times and your mapping software is fairly accurate. You will have no issues with fuel and hotels along the way. Most of Highway #1 in MB, SK, and AB is now four lane but with level intersection crossings and slow downs through urban areas. There are just a few short distances under construction. Speed limits vary between 100 and 110. An occasional radar can pop up. Be especially alert for it when you enter towns.

Wildlife is also present - bear in western Ontario, deer and maybe a moose throughout the prairies, and back to bear and many other species again in the Rockies. I highly recommend keeping your riding to daylight and be very alert in the early mornings and evenings for wildlife.

The Yellowhead (hwy #16) is a good option but is primarily two lane and will add a few hours.

Traffic is very light by CT standards until you get to Jasper and Banff where its follow the slowest guy in the RV for the duration.

I can give you lots of route suggestions through BC and Alberta going south down to the rally as we live here and camp/ride these areas every summer.

If you like, send me a PM with an idea of your group's specific areas of interest and I'll try to point you in the right direction.

Have a great rally - just wish I could get away.

Yiet

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post #5 of 7 Old Jun 5th, 2011, 9:28 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Looking for approx ride times TB to Calgary

Yiet, Thank you for the info.

My mapping software, Garmin BaseCamp, says going west on #16 - (Yellowtail) through Dryden will be a wash on time and miles.. within 50 miles and 1 hour travel time.. Pretty good for 4100 miles (for me) and my riding partners will be more and less that figure.

Are my travel times going to be really up there and Garmin is wrong?

What would be the speed limits on Yellowtail route?

I looked at my routes at first and thought that #16 would be a real rural Canada experience and #1 and #2 would be sort of a US Interstate experience from the northern Dakotas and Montana. I have traveled them and it really gets tough to keep on point on those roads.

Jack D. (Southern Connecticut)
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post #6 of 7 Old Jun 5th, 2011, 10:05 pm
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Re: Looking for approx ride times TB to Calgary

Sorry about the abbreviations. They're Canadian Provinces
MB - Manitoba; SK - Saskatchewan; AB - Alberta; BC - British Columbia.

I have traveled both the Trans Canada (#1) and the Yellowhead. If you want to make good time then #1 is the best route. The Yellowhead is slow from Portage for about an hour. Then I found the traffic so light I could travel almost any speed. But ..... It's a great ride if you have never ridden through the prairies. At some points, the road is so straight with fields on both sides and few landmarks, you feel like your riding on a treadmill and going nowhere.

If time is an issue, I suggest #1 to Calgary, north to Edmonton, and then Jasper (tourist town) and down the parkways for amazing scenery. It can be slow traveling. Watch your fuel levels. I arrived at the south end of the parkway at Field with an almost empty tank. THE gas station closes early and I didn't find fuel until Golden.

Hope this helps
Wish I could join you
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post #7 of 7 Old Jun 5th, 2011, 10:45 pm
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Smile Re: Looking for approx ride times TB to Calgary

TWheels has it right. Yellowhead is a nice route and I would pick it. But it will be a little slower. More towns to go through and lower speed limits. I love those little towns. The locals can give you a real insight into the local rural life and they are salt of the earth. But if time is a priority its probably not your best bet. If you can stop at the local farmer's coffee shop for a visit, its a gold mine of friendly conversation from folks who live off the land. But if you get tired of conversations about too much rain, not enough rain, too many grasshoppers, too much hail, etc., you are better off making a straight line to the Rockies and then enjoying the view from there.

Either way, with a traveller in the right frame of mind, there are great experiences to be had.

There are other options like an excursion through the Qu'Appelle valley for example. But it all depends on your schedule and your interests....

Yiet

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