Fredericton / Blog / 201906 / B is for Biking & Beer in Fredericton!

B is for Biking & Beer in Fredericton!

B is for Biking & Beer in Fredericton!

It wasn’t yet 7 am and it was almost 30 degrees of humid heat. Despite having excellent air conditioning in our downtown Fredericton hotel, we couldn’t resist the stunning sunrise outside and decided to go for a paddle on the Saint John River (Wolastoq​). The still water glowed with every colour of the rainbow and in the distance, I could hear a chorus of singing from a group of party-goers that refused to let the night end. Such a scene is common this time of year because, in summer, Fredericton comes alive. 

SUP Saint John River

Ask anyone why they live in a place like Fredericton and they’ll gladly tell you it’s all about the amazing people and the incredible quality of life that residents enjoy. The momentum led by so many exciting new initiatives and region-leading events like the Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival makes any trip to Fredericton a stand-out experience. 

Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival – the best international festival on the east coast!

The festival began in 1991 and since then has grown to become one of the most recognized and celebrated music festivals in the region. Each year it has added more to the line-up, now welcoming world-class and legendary acts like ​Robert Plant, Nathaniel Rateliff, Steve Earl & Dukes, Alan Doyle, and The Record Company​ alongside hometown heroes like the music force of nature that is ​Matt Anderson​. Massive event tents dominate the waterfront and every possible venue is packed to the rafters. The city core shuts down to car traffic, instead, leaving plenty of space for food vendors of every flavour and street performer of all kinds. I couldn’t help feeling that somehow I had left the streets of Fredericton and had been transported to a town in Europe. Get your tickets here!

Harvest Jazz and Blues

Explore by bike!

Everyone knows that New Brunswick is blessed with endless amounts of access to nature but in recent years the infrastructure that allows for people to delve into the hinterland has increased 10 fold! Given the many options for activities and the many VERY fine brewpubs that dominate the city, a daily adventure is a necessary part of your Fredericton experience. If you ask us (and probably lots of people who actually live in this riverside capital) the best way to get around is by bicycle.

Carleton Park

Over the years, the city has made active transport a priority and has built so many fantastic trails that it is hard to pick which ones to do! In addition to the trails, Fredericton is surrounded by road biking opportunities all along the Saint John River. Day trips to Gagetown or Nackawic are a must!

In the interest of pairing two things we love, here’s a break down of our top 5 beer/bike combos:

 1. Odell Park & Graystone Brewing Single Track Pale Ale​ ​- American

With over 400 hectares of forests, Odell Park boasts some of the finest examples of old growth trees (some over 400 years old!!). It’s no surprise this oasis in the middle of Fredericton has become a hot spot of the local bike scene. Single Track of all levels and ability exist so it only makes sense to pair this adventure with Graystone Brewing’s Single-Track Pale Ale.

Graystone Brewing

You try riding to the top of the hills in Odell Park and then tell me that this Pale Ale isn’t super tasty and refreshing! 

2. ​The Bill Thorpe Walking Bridge & Picaroons Brewery: ​YIPPEE IPA

Looking for the best view of downtown Fredericton? Look no further than the ​Bill Thorpe Walking Bridge (Yes, you can cycle on it too!)​. Fredericton deserves a HUGE high five for making active transport a priority for the city. This is in part why Fredericton is such a livable city, nearly every part of town is accessible by trail. The Waterfront trail (on both the North and South side) is an excellent ride AND just so happens to pass by some great brewpubs along the way too. The Picaroons Roundhouse is a MUST-STOP and we’d pair their Yippee Pale Ale with this ride because it’s hard not to yell “YIPPEE” when someone hands you a refreshing beer after such a sweet ride. 

Picaroons Traditional Ales

3. Nashwaak River Trail & the “DUNDER” by TrailWay Brewing

The Nashwaak River has been called the gateway to North-Eastern New Brunswick. For eons, the river was traversed by ​The Wolastoqiyik (or the Maliseet) on their way to and from the Wolastoq (The Saint John River). The trail that follows the river from Marysville is gorgeous. It’s a converted railbed, meaning that the trail is largely flat. It passes along some lovely vistas of the river and even a few spots to jump in for a quick dip to cool yourself down! We’re not trying to play favourites here, but the DUNDER by TrailWay brewing is definitely high on our list. I guess this only makes sense given that the brewery is called TrailWay and we do love Trails. 

trailway brewing

 4. The ride to BIG AXE Brewery & the ​STONE MAPLE AMBER

For the road cyclists reading this, the ride from Freddy to Nackawic is an area classic. The ride follows along the river revealing some amazing places along the way like the Mactaquac dam and Kings Landing. It’s a decent ride of nearly 50km one way so having some motivation for the ride is a must and if you’re in need of some then look no further than the STONE MAPLE AMBER beer from the hometown beer heroes at Big Axe Brewery. Tasty, refreshing, and with a uniquely Canadian twist of having a touch of maple syrup added. Yum!! PS You may want to have two to replenish your sugars if you’re planning the ride back too!

5.  LINCOLN TRAIL & The CHEVAL D’OR by Grimross Brewing

The river culture throughout New Brunswick is an amazing thing and it’s no surprise to hear that this region is often compared to the South of the United States. The ride along the river from Fredericton heading south along the LINCOLN TRAIL shows this in all its glory. As you ride you’ll pass by houseboats slowly making their way along the river, often seeking shade beneath the towering Willow Trees that line the river. Sometimes they’ll be tied up next to one another in rows of little boat neighbourhoods. The trail follows the river as it meanders south where it will eventually empty into the Bay of Fundy. On a calm clear morning, it is perfection. So why not make it even more perfect with a Cheval D’or from Grimross Brewing.

Grimross Brewing

This Belgium inspired beer makes a fair case that maybe the region should be compared more to the waterways of Europe than the deep south. Either way, it’s super delicious. 

Tell us, what are some of your favourite bike & beer combinations in Fredericton?

**While we love our craft breweries and enjoy their beer as much as anyone, Fredericton Tourism encourages you to drink responsibly, and to walk your bike or take alternate transportation back to your hotel if you have had too much to drink.

A for Adventure is all about inspiring people to get outdoors and be adventurous. Follow along with Jan LaPierre and Chris Surette as they share all the wonderful things to do in Canada’s great outdoors.