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 Trans Canada Trail?

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Tembo
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PostSubject: Trans Canada Trail?   Mon Jul 31, 2017 5:10 pm

I was reading the latest edition of a LR magazine when I saw a reference to a Trans-Canada Trail. The article was from someone who had just driven up into the Arctic in a Defender along with a buddy in a soft top Jeep JK...at temps between -20c and -40c. He mentions in the article he was considering the Trans-Canada Trail as a next trip.

Now, as a Canadian, I have never heard of such a trail. There is a trans-Canada hiking rail but I doubt anyone has ever done the whole thing as we are talking 15,000 Km or so. But the idea of a 4x4 trail that links old logging roads, some northern gravel roads (of which Canada has tens of thousands of miles of) running from the maritimes to B.C. sounds pretty interesting.

I did a bit of research and all I can find is information for the MC crowd. So off to Canada for holidays soon and may have to see if I can dig up some more info. Might just have to add that to my list of potential overland adventures!

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PostSubject: Re: Trans Canada Trail?   Tue Aug 01, 2017 10:04 am

We're on the road to nowhere ...

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PostSubject: Re: Trans Canada Trail?   Sat Aug 19, 2017 9:18 pm

Just back from a couple of weeks holidays in Canada...and I have to say, after the latest UK summer(?) Canada is looking pretty good. Started in in Vancouver walking the seawall and eating seafood. Then the B.C. interior where the temps were in the mid-30s and never a cloud to be seen. Then on to Ontario cottage country where we did have rain twice, but magnificent thunder showers with lightening watched with beer in hand and bbq burning in a large screened in porch overlooking a remote, northern lake.

So we are seriously considering a cross-Canada trip in 2019, searching for the mythical trans-Canada 4x4 trail or perhaps charting our own version. The tentative plan is to ship Tembo across to Halifax and then starting to move westwards. The whole trip would probably take several years...done in 1-2 month sections, so Tembo would have to be stored between sections. Ultimately ending up in B.C. which has a lifetime of 4x4 trails to explore.

Of course, that would leave a gap in my current Land Rover compliment here in the UK, so that Lightweight project I have been pondering for a couple of years might just have to get moved from the 'I wish' file to the 'Lets get started' column....

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PostSubject: Re: Trans Canada Trail?   Sun Aug 20, 2017 10:00 am

A IIA Lightweight is the second best 4x4 I've ever owned, naturally a Range Rover being the best. For a 2.25 petrol lump, it could be pretty nippy - talking about the Landy's engine of course, not the RR!

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Last edited by Tom Mc on Wed Aug 30, 2017 11:02 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Trans Canada Trail?   Sun Aug 20, 2017 5:47 pm

Glad you enjoyed your self's in Canada, sounds like you have some great trips planed, wish we were in better health (don't like this getting old bit)  then we would be doing more, still planning something for next year I will be 70, so thinking about what to do.
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PostSubject: Re: Trans Canada Trail?   Sun Aug 20, 2017 7:21 pm

As Indiana Jones said: "It's not the years...it's the mileage!"

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PostSubject: Re: Trans Canada Trail?   Sat Aug 26, 2017 9:13 pm

We looked at the TCT a couple of years ago as a follow up trip after route 66 in the US as we wanted to add some off road riding to our mainly tarmac trips.

It starts in Halifax Nova Scotia in the East and finishes in Truili in the Yukon the entire route is about 24,000k but a large part of it is for horses, hiking and mountain bikes (Quebec and Ontario) especially. The route splits into north and south routes in Alberta south to Vancouver and north to Truilli.

I can't find any of my notes to give more details but am meeting up with the rest of the Livid Pigs on Tuesday and will ask if anybody else has kept any details. We decided against even trying it as it seemed a little involved accommodation wise as one of our number is an invalid after a particularly nasty bike accident about ten years ago and can't camp that's the reason I did most of route 66 in a Mustang so he could come along.

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PostSubject: Re: Trans Canada Trail?   Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:00 pm

Having done some online searches, I cannot find anything that is aimed at the 4x4 crowd. The Trans Canada Trail (TCT) is definitely aimed at hikers, cyclists and the occasional dirt bikes.

So, going to start buying some decent scale maps and a couple of map books called 'Back Roads of Canada.' I am going to see if it is possible to do a cross Canada journey, sticking primarily to the northern forests. The goal is to keep travel on tar roads to under 10%. The north is crisscrossed in logging and mining roads, as well as long gravel roads that are some times seasonal. The challenge is that they mostly go north/south, so people can get into remote northern areas. Few go east/west because if you want to get across Canada you stay to the south and follow the Trans Canada Highway or other secondary highways.

If the research looks feasible, I would follow on by contacted the 4x4 clubs in each province and asking for their advice. It would definitely be a challenge, as the decent weather months are really June-September. But would be an accomplishment to chart the first trans Canada 4x4 trail.

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PostSubject: Re: Trans Canada Trail?   Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:28 pm

Sounds good.

When we researched this trip we were looking at doing it on dirt or dual sports bikes with a back up vehicle keeping to the tar with us wild camping and rendezvousing at towns along the way.

But like I said it was becoming very difficult to try and organize a trip like this with no background knowledge of the area and terrain.
Unlike route 66 it was becoming a nightmare hence we binned the idea especially as for a massive part of the middle part of the trail it was hiking and mountain biking only from what we could find, these could have been passable on dirt bikes but it was a massive detour if we were unable to get through.

If anybody can work out a route I would think it's definitely you James, I would be interested to see what you come up with as the rest of our group are still quite keen but with our lack of experience at the moment we are doing either organized tours (one guy has just done the top of the world trek on the Royal Enfield bikes in the Himalayas) and I'm considering the possibility of signing on with Ed March and doing one of his C90 trips in the Philippines we are there in November so will be looking at doing something ourselves and depending on the results may cross Ed's palm with silver.

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