Canadian Possibilities

This is probably a long shot, but there seams to be a broad group of travelers here. Long story short, I have been offered a job in the NWT, Canada. Possibly living in Edmonton AB and flying between Yellowknife and Diavik Mine on Lac De Gras. My question is, has anyone been to Edmonton? What was the weather like? How is the city? & most importantly, Is there much of a cycling community? I have read all Wikipedia pages on the citys and surroundings of AB & NWT, I’m after some personal opinions!


Ever watch “Ice Road Truckers”? They travel to Yellow Knife and Diavik mines, I always thought the ice roads would be brilliant on a Pugsly. I was born in Minnesota, the winter is long, and very very cold. Edmonton is even further north than MN, and even colder. But with that being said, Kanaduh (America’s Hat) is a wonderful place, I wouldn’t hesitate on the move if you can stomach the winters.

Google maps, Yellowknife summer v winter. don’t know about Edmonton, but I expect there would be plenty of great MTB… plenty of world class MTB riding a few hours away in BC.

edmonton sucks. trust me.

Thanks rearview, I’m still quite intrigued. Although all I can picture is a town full of lumberjacks shooting deer while dog sledding on their way to some big bass fishing. Wouldn’t mind the sea change but I do the weather, not sure if I’m down with the odd 70 hours of daylight throughout December! I know there is an abundance of MTB throughout BC/Yukon, but MTB just seems too nerdy to me. And Brendan, how so?

all suburb, no city.

Very true, It’ll probably feel as if I hadn’t even left Perth and everyone just started talking funny.

You think MTBers are nerdier than fixie riders?

Fixie riders are opportunistic nerds, where as MTBers are nerds for lyfe.

not true… edmon-chuk (tonnes of polish heritage there) has a thriving arts and music scene and is a way better city than calgary (which is deep in jock/urban cowboy-dom). its a lot more of a city than calgary (which developed quickly on oil money and becomes generic suburbia very quickly outside of the CBD).

rent is super cheap and once winter fades, its a lot better to hang out in due to missing the worst of the chinooks. has some rad old-school houses.

lots of the rig-pigs do come down for their breaks which makes it shitty in places, but those arent the places you will be i suspect.

it has a better cross scene than the rest of alberta and has an outdoor velodrome, but the hills are closer to calgary. cant remember what the road scene is like but i suspect calgary has better bike shops since it has more money flowing though the town.

winter is coooollllld there and it will be brutal up in the oil sands… but then thats why they pay you the $$ to go there. im not sure how it is in WA, but theres a lot of drug issues up there. meth and coke can run rampant (on the breaks).

blah blah. when your main tourist attraction is a mall, you got worries.

winnipeg, on the other hand, rules.

Back when Mrs Commuter used to work for BHP one of their Geos was killed and half eaten by a bear, somewhere near Yellowknife.

Albertans think it’s funny when we say the weather is “fine”.

the main tourist attraction yes, but thats like saying the main attraction about melbourne is the yarra/crown, id have thought your friends would have pointed out the more interesting places :wink: i didnt think much of it until i had a few people school me on what i was missing.

winnipeg is rad, but the combination of mosquitos/heat and freezing winter makes it a bit of a bummer (hence why people tend to flee there).

The kid has obviously never ridden MTB before. MTB is the best cycling you can do. End of story.

If you do head over there, get an MTB, XC, all mountain, freeride, DH, whatever. US/Canada is THE place for MTB. Cheap, accessible, fucking great.

Thanks for the insight nikc! Made it look a lot more attractive to me. Didn’t know about the Polish heritage, intrigues me a bit as my parents moved to Australia from Poland to escape communism. I’d be keen if the offer came 4 months from now, too much shit to sort out here first. I started my cycling journey on MTB. First started with XC on a Kona Cinder Cone, followed by some duallie action on a Giant Glory 8, found the love of tarmac and gave it the boot.

I lived in Canada for a year in BC and loved it. I’d say go for it even if it’s a bit redneck in parts enjoy it. I will never forget “nightclubing” in prince george and watching guys in cowboy hats dance to metallica after watching the peelers.

this is true. i’ll refine my statement: winnipeg is rad in the transition seasons.

i do, however, stand by my earlier statement. i can only suggest that one man’s new york city is another man’s moe.

edit: to clarify, in this example, edmonton is moe.

So everyone wears moccasins in Edmonton?

yes, but they are called mukluks

ive got this teacher behind me, shes canadian. She moved here 6 months ago. she didnt live in edmonton, but she said its a shit hole. its cold ninemonths of the year, its in the middle on nowhere, the whole place is bassed around a shopping mall.