The Mill Towns Trail between Northfield and Dundas is navigable, if you’re not a pussy

Armstrong Road between Northfield and Dundas is still closed from the July 13 flooding (Flooding wipes out Mill Towns Trail bridge, slices Armstrong Road, undermines railroad bed) and it could be months before it reopens.  Likewise, the Mill Towns Trail.

But there’s a way around, as I discovered last night. From Northfield, just ride your bike through the compost facility

all the way to the back till you arrive at the big rocks by the reconstructed railroad tracks. Then…

20130723_205831 copy20130723_210351 Danny Macaskill - Industrial Revolutions video
you can ride on the tracks a few yards till you get past Spring Creek. The small rocks in between the rails make it pretty level. Alternately, if you’ve got good balance like Danny MacAskill, you can just ride on one of the rails like he does here. Smooooooooth. Then…


ride down the larger rocks (pick your line carefully) and you’ll see the trail a few yards away. Piece ‘o cake.

[Footnote: Does my blog title offend you?  It shouldn’t. Remember when the word ‘sucks’ was offensive? If not, read this. Then see this Atlantic Wire article: Free Pussy Riot: When ‘Vulgar’ Words Become Acceptable.]


  1. Nick Benson said:

    Your non-pussy readers should note that trespassing on railroad tracks, as shown there, is both dangerous and illegal; trains can be surprisingly quiet when approaching on smooth welded rail like that, which doesn’t clickity-clack.

    See: Operation Lifesaver

    July 24, 2013
  2. Griff Wigley said:

    Nick, I’ve heard from another Northfielder on this who wrote via email:

    The part where you suggest that riders go on to the active rail line does not make good common sense to me. I have worked on the railroad as a head brakeman riding in the engine and there is nothing more scary than seeing people on the tracks for any reason. I’d suggest that riders stay off of the tracks.

    I probably should have a Category called Faux Advice like I do for Faux News. If anyone goes out there and investigates my suggested re-route, you’ll see that it’s not really rideable, unless you’re on a full suspension mountain bike with a full-face helmet, protective gear all over your body and the skills to match.

    So to clear things up: Avoid the Mill Towns Trail until it and/or Armstrong Road are repaired. And don’t search for the DJJD Horseshoe at the bottom of the Ames Mill Dam.

    July 30, 2013
  3. Jan Hill said:

    I knew this was a send-up, Griff, having investigated possible routes ourselves (and knowing you!) But I thought for sure the cyclist on the rail was a fake–until I watched the video. Now that’s scary.

    July 30, 2013
  4. Doug Peterson said:

    Hi Griff,
    After reading Jan Hill’s reply, I realize my mis-understanding on “riding the rails”.
    You got me. Can I blame that on getting old?

    July 30, 2013

Comments are closed.