Thursday, September 8, 2011

Matlock to Gimli by Bike

Last Sunday, I had the good fortune to go up to Gimli for another nice travel adventure, this time on two wheels. A friend and I drove up to Gimli and made the nearly 30-mile trek to Matlock and back.

For those so inclined and not familiar with the area we took a scenic path through Gimli and ended up at PTH 9 at South Colonization Road. From there, we followed PTH 9 south through Sandy Hook.

Between Winnipeg Beach and Gimli, PTH 9 has a full paved shoulder and speeds are reduced to 50 km/h through both Sandy Hook and Winnipeg Beach.

I passed on the fresh “pickeral”.

Near Salty’s Drive Inn, we turned to take a tour of Winnipeg Beach before heading for PR 232, the highway that runs through the cottage communities of Ponemah, Whytewold, and Matlock, collectively known as the Village of Dunnottar.

The caboose in Winnipeg Beach.

The sign for Dunnottar. Apparently, the operation of off-road vehicles is prohibited in “Dunnotter” that is presumably somewhere near Dunnottar.

A block off the highway is the historic Dunnottar train station that has been turned into a museum. I didn’t go in, but I would like to check it out on a return trip.

Approaching Ponemah Road.

As you can see, PR 232 has a narrow shoulder, but speeds are reduced and traffic is relatively light, consisting mostly of weekend tourists.

The view from one of the many scenic rest stops along the route.

An apple tree.

Farther along, in Whytewold, there’s another rest stop with a pier.

I had the urge to yell “shark”, but I resisted the temptation.

An Olympic rower, Colleen Miller, apparently competed in “Indianapalis” and “Tazmania”.

The Whytewold Emporium is quite popular, though I can’t personally vouch for the reasons why.

The pier in Matlock.

Looking at the northern tip of Netley Marsh from the end of the pier.

On the way back, we stopped at the RM of Gimli Centennial Marker on the shore of Willow Creek.

One of the many cottages nearby:

A sign from Peter Bjornson, the MLA for Gimli, one of Carli Ward’s former teachers at Gimli High School, and perhaps soon to be returning to his old job after the October election:

I made a slight detour to Moonlight Bay, where I noticed the high water level. Normally, these rocks aren’t covered by water.

For those so inclined, there’s a new Robins Donuts location in Gimli, in the main floor of the Lakeview at Centre Street and First Avenue.

This is the webcam that shows the Gimli Harbor to the world:

A look at Loni Beach from the harbor:

And a look at Willow Island from the harbor:

Having covered this route as a passenger in both a car and a bus, I knew this was a scenic route, but even I did not fully appreciate it until I covered it on two wheels. For anyone looking for a bike journey out of the ordinary, this is a destination I can highly recommend. Public parking is available in Gimli just off First Avenue, south of the Lakeview, where you can bring your alternative transportation and explore the eastern Interlake region at your leisure.

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