Day 43: Camping Municipal Brownsburg-Chatham to Montréal’s Parque LaFontaine

Fleur-de-lyis

The Fleur-de-lyis adorns the Québec national flag. The flag takes its white cross from the ancient royal flags of France. The white fleurs-de-lyis are taken from a banner honouring the Virgin Mary that was carried by General Louis-Joseph de Montcalm when he and his troops arrived at present day New York.

The act regarding the flag and emblems of Québec dictates that the Québec flag take precedence over any other flag or emblem. To avoid confusion, the flag is often flown alone without the Canadian Flag.

In 1995, the government of Québec announced a partnership with Vélo Québec in which they constructed La Route Verte, a 4 000-kilometre bike trail linking all parts of Québec. Québecers claim it as the best bike route in the world, and it may very well be. During your trip through Québec you will see signs indicating La Route Verte, however, you will not cycle on this path exclusively as it often zigs and zags, making it inefficient to follow all of the time. If you are staying at a hotel or campground and see a sticker that reads “Bienvenue Cyclists,” they will have a pump and tools on location as well as information about repair centres and tourist information offices.

Montréal, population 1 620 593, sits on an island in the middle of the St. Lawrence River and takes its name from Mont-Royal, the triple-peaked hill in the heart of the city. Montréal is the second largest French-speaking city in the world, next to Paris, France.

Archaeological evidence indicates that aboriginal people had occupied the area for 2 000 years before French explorer Jacques Cartier claimed the area for France in 1535.

Montréal is Canada’s cultural capital, as it lays at the confluence of French and English traditions. During summer months, downtown Montréal is a beehive of activity while Montréalers celebrate the many festivals including the Just for Laughs Comedy Festival, Montréal International Jazz Festival and the Montréal World Film Festival.

Bleue

Montréal is a good place to be a cyclist. Over 500 kilometres of trails snake through the city. In 1999, Bicycling Magazine named Montréal as the most bike friendly city in North America. There is an abundance of bike shops in Montréal to get your steed ready to hit the road. Mile-End Bike Garage is a cooperative bike shop that aims to put bike repair within everyone’s reach.

Mark Twain commented on Montréal by saying, “This is the first time I was ever in a city where you couldn’t throw a brick without breaking a church window.” The city boasts four stunning Catholic basilicas including Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral, Notre-Dame Basilica, St. Patrick’s Basilica and Saint Joseph’s Oratory, which is Canada’s largest church.

The closest campground to downtown Montréal is Montréal South KOA, but it is far away from the action of Montréal. I will lead you to Parque Lafontaine and you can find a place to stay from there. Hostelling International Montréal or the Alternative Hostel of Old Montréal is a good choice.

Kilometre Log
0.0Leave Brownsburg-Chatham cycling east on HWY 344 / Route Des Outaouais.
0.4Turn left onto Montée Saint-Phillippe.
4.6Montêe Saint-Phillippe intersects with HWY 148 Route Du Canton. Turn right.
6.7HWY 148 curves to the left.
7.5Exit right off of HWY 148 onto HWY 50 / Autoroute Maurice-Richard.
9.2Pass over Rivière du Nord.
12.8Exit right off of HWY 50 / Autoroute Maurice-Richard onto HWY 148.
24.8Enter Saint-Hermas. Take a left turn to remain on HWY 148.
31.1Turn right onto Route Arthur-Sauvé / HWY 148.
51.5Enter Saint-Eustache on Boulevard Arthur-Sauvé and cross HWY 640. Stay on HWY 148 / Boulevard Arthur-Sauvé.
53.8Cross over Rivière des Mille Îles. Remain on Boulevard Arthur-Sauvé.
55.9Turn left off of Boulevard Arthur-Sauvé / HWY 148 onto Boulevard Dagenais O.
59.8Cross HWY 13 / Autoroute Chomedey.
63.1Turn right off of Boulevard Dagenais O onto Boulevard Curé-Labelle / HWY 117.
65.1Cross over HWY 440 / Autoroute Laval.
70.3After Boulevard Curé-Labelle turns to the left, turn right onto Boulevard Chomedey / HWY 117.
70.5Cross over Rivière des Prairies. Boulevard Chomedey / HWY 117 becomes Boulevard Laurentien / HWY 117.
73.1Turn left onto Boulevard Henri-Bourassa O.
75.4Boulevard Henri-Bourassa O crosses Autoroute des Laurentides / HWY 15.
80.3Turn right off of Boulevard Henri-Bourassa onto Avenue Papineau.
83.0Cross HWY 40 on Avenue Papineau.
88.8Parque LaFontaine



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