North of Superior
North Shore of Superior
In 2006, the National Post said that one of the “100 things to do in Canada before you die” was to ride a motorcycle across the North Shore of Lake Superior. Highway 17 from Sault Ste. Marie to Thunder Bay in Ontario has long been known as one of Canada's greatest rides. The twists and turns and ups and downs as this section of the Trans-Canada Highway reveal the shores of Lake Superior and make for a holy grail of motorcycle touring. Great riding and great views. Carved rock face, wild windswept forests and a lake so large it's often described as an inland sea all make up this diverse terrain, and the roads offer enough of a challenge to keep even the most seasoned rider interested.
This route can be approached from either Sault Ste. Marie or Thunder Bay. With plenty of bike shops in the city, Thunder Bay is a great place to start your tour. If you're looking for a part that needs replacing, want to invest in some heated gear, or want to buy a GPS or mount before heading off into the wilds, either Excalibur Motorcycle Works or North Country Cycle and Sports are both happy to help.
There are myriad festivals and events in the summer and fall when the landscapes explode with colour and dozens of great places to stay, whatever your taste. The Soo, is an easy access point for many tourers coming from the US.
View Highway 17 along Lake Superior in a larger map
Detour to Sleeping Giant
South of Highway 17, just out of Thunder Bay, is a detour down to the tip of Sleeping Giant Provincial Park. The Park is named after a rock formation that looks like an enormous man made of stone lying down with his arms crossed, which is best viewed from Thunder Bay. The park itself offers an array of activities, from photography workshops, to nature hikes, to a lovely lazy road that goes right to the shores of Lake Superior.
Keep on Truckin'
If you can't get enough, consider the Ride Lake Superior Circle Tour that takes you through Ontario as well as four US states on your way around the entire 2000 mile route around the lake. But you don't have to take our word for it - check out this testimonial from an impressed tourer.
Check out the Interactive Motorcycle Tour Planner: