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Top Five Motorcycle Events in Ontario for 2016

Ride Manitoulin • Credit: Alexe Sawicki
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Top Five Motorcycle Events in Ontario for 2016

Our picks for what not to miss this summer

With so much going on for 2016, it wasn't easy making our choices for the best events to go to this year, but we're sure you'll enjoy any or all of them. Kickstands up!

Ontario is home to literally hundred of motorcycle events throughout the year  from the venerable charity poker run, to the off-road trail rides, to motorcycle races of all kinds. If you're a rider, there's something for you. But we're all about the touring ride, the epic road trip, the long-distance flight on two-wheels to the middle of nowhere and back. So here are our picks for the Top Five Events in Ontario for touring riders. For each we've also included a link to the best route to get there (and back). Read on.

1. Ride Manitoulin - Providence Bay - July 15 & 16, 2016

Friends at Ride Manitoulin

I had the great fortune to spend five days at the Mindemoya Court Cottages and Campground on Manitoulin last year for Ride Manitoulin, and I can't remember a better time. Aside from the persistent and pleasant light summer breeze, the banked corners on quiet country roads, and the peace and relaxation that pervades everything on the island, the event includes both an on-road cruise, poker run and an adventure ride for those that like a bit of dust in their hair. Best route to get there? The Georgian Bay Coastal Route (although you may need to check and see if the ferry is running.) Check out our coverage of the event from last year's Ultimate Road Trip in the video below.

2. Ride for Sight - Northern Ontario Edition - Searchmont - July 8-10, 2016

Ride for Sight Northern Ontario

Last year's Ride for Sight in Sault Ste. Marie wasn't everything I'd hoped it would be. Of course, I missed the opening, the group ride and the evening activities. But this year's Northern Ontario Ride for Sight promises to be truly great. Why do I think it will be different? This year the event is in Searchmont, a quiet ski town on the side of some the most scenic mountains in Ontario. Mountains which frame a hidden gem of a riding road, Highway 556, with plenty of winding curves that frame the road with cliffs and rivers. The route I recommend is my favourite in Ontario (right now)  the Grand Algoma Tour

3. Bikers Reunion - New Liskeard - July 1-3, 2016


The Bikers Reunion. I've attended this event for years, and see it get incrementally better each year. Last year riders raised $128,000 dollars for the local cancer ward, and had a ton of fun doing it. The Freedom Ride is probably the most well-known activity, with hundred of bikers riding through town to the cheers of the locals. Right at the tip of the Temiskaming Loop Tour, New Liskeard makes itself the perfect destination for a road trip and event vacation. 

4. Wasaga Beach Motorcycle Rally - Wasaga Beach - July 15-17, 2016

Last summer, thousands of bikers headed to Simcoe County to converge on the longest freshwater beach in the world for the Wasaga Beach Motorcycle Rally. This year is looking to be even better with rides for all levels of ability, vendors and all sort of things to keep a biker happy. There will be free live music and BBQ will fill the air throughout the weekend. This year there will be camping available at the nearby Great Northern Exhibition. This is a great excuse to travel some of the classic Georgian Bay Coastal Route

5. Ride for Dad - North Bay - June 18, 2016

Ride for Dad in North Bay

Of all the motorcycle events I've attended over the years, the Ride for Dad in North Bay is easily the most friendly and welcoming of them all. North Bay is just far enough from the city to really get the feeling that you're on a proper road trip, but close enough that you can still find a good coffee in town. The city is also poised at the start of six killer routes in Northeastern Ontario

Notable Mentions

These events are strictly touring events, but are every bit as fun for the two-wheel crowd. For a complete list on events in Ontario visit Events.OntarioRides.ca

  • Lawrence Hacking's Overland Adventure Rally - A newcomer to the field, we feels it's about time someone grabbed the potential for ADV riding in Ontario by the horns.
  • VRRA Summer Race Series - What's better than watching a bunch of 30+ year-old motorcycles duke it out for first place? Maybe riding your own in one of the parade laps...
  • Walton TransCan - Canada's largest competative off-road event. Need we say more?

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