In our case, our shakedown cruise is an opportunity to test out all our gear and processes to ensure that it all works out. It will also give us a sense of how far we travel over a longer span of time. We will be riding for 2-3 weeks in June, which at the time will be our longest self-supported cycling tour.
The route we are currently thinking of is relatively familiar to us, as we have driven most of it (although that was on major highways which we will not be using). The route has us leaving from Ottawa and circumnavigating Lake Ontario. The Canadian portion of the trip has a trail, the Waterfront Trail, which certainly makes the riding easier. It will be interesting to see how different our times are between minor roads and trails.
We met some people from the First Unitarian Church of Rochester at a conference last month, so we’re planning to stop in Rochester to see them. With luck, we’ll time it right so we’re there on a Sunday.
There’s a new edition of ‘Round Lake Ontario: A Bicyclist’s Tour Guide, coming out, which we could get, although I saw an interesting third-hand comment against it in a crazy-guy journal post. I think experimenting without a guidebook will force us to ask more questions and interact with more people, which is part of what this trip is about for me. (Yes, I am that stereotypical male who hates asking for directions).