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Not all bike tours involve plunging down mountainsides at full tilt (although we've got the details on that kind of trip, too.) If you're in the mood to pedal this summer, Canada offers a range of organized adventures from a summer-long cross-country odyssey to a leisurely spin near Quebec City that doesn't skimp on gourmet food and luxury hotels.

Tour du Canada

If you have lots of time and saddlebags of grit, this is the acme of Canadian bike adventures. Started in 1987 by Bud Jorgensen, Tour du Canada is a non-profit corporation that offers the longest annual bike ride in the world -- from Vancouver to St. John's, beginning June 26 and ending Sept. 5.

It's a no-frills trip and fees cover food, a support vehicle with a driver, cooking equipment, accommodation (mostly camping), route maps and administrative support.

The best part is that the ride is not a race and participants don't need to be athletes. They just need to be reasonably fit and determined.

It costs $25 to join the Tour du Canada group and $3,600 to cover expenses on the cross-Canada ride.

For more information, call (705) 434-1100 or 1-800-214-7798, or

visit .

Around the Great Lakes

Cycle Canada, organizers of the Tour du Canada, above, also offers a 42-day, 4,700-kilometre bike tour around the Great Lakes, beginning and ending in Aliston, Ont.

Dates and fees for 2004 are yet to be announced.

For more information, call (705) 434-1100 or 1-800-214-7789, or

visit .

Fat-tire adventures

Fernie Fat-Tire Adventures offers a host of challenging mountain-bike adventures, but its Gravity-fed Downhill Tour, new for 2004, promises to be memorable. The first trip of its kind in North America, the six-day summer tour will feature lift-accessed riding down the slopes of major ski resorts in Alberta and B.C., as well as an afternoon of heli-biking.

This is strictly for advanced riders. Cost is $1,295 a person.

For more information, call 1-888-423-7849 or visit the website at


Vancouver Island odyssey

Winnipeg-based Canadian Trails Adventure Tours offers a wide range of bicycle tours across Canada, including two seven-day trips in May from Tofino to Victoria on Vancouver Island. Cost is $2,700 a person if you prefer to stay in inns along the way, or $1,390 if you're camping.

For more information, call 1-800-668-2453 or visit the website at


Kananaskis trails

Blue Moose Tours offer a three-day mountain bike tour of Alberta's Kananaskis Country from Calgary. For strong beginners and intermediate riders who don't mind camping at night, this is a great introduction to some of the best and most beautiful biking terrain in the country.

Cost is $390 a person and group size is kept to no more than six.

For more information, call (403) 275-2440 or 1-866-744-2440, or

visit .

Newfoundland adventure

One of the more rugged bike trips on offer is the 10-day July journey around Newfoundland's great northern peninsula organized by Halifax-based Atlantic Canada Cycling. A caution on the company's website says it all: "Best suited for people who understand that they will be exploring an area with frontier-like conditions and unpredictable climate."

Cost is $819 a person if reservations are made before June 1.

For more information, call (902) 423-2453 or visit the website at


Eastern townships

A gentler, six-day summer outing through Quebec's Eastern Townships is offered by Freewheeling Adventures. The landscape is rolling and undemanding, and accommodations are in charming inns.

Guided cost is $1,895 a person, double occupancy.

For more information, call 1-800-672-0775 or visit the website at


Prince Edward Island ramble

Prince Edward Island is ideal for tours by casual bikers or for family outings. The landscape is gentle and rolling and you're almost always close to a beach and a cooling dip. Atlantic Canada Cycling offers two seven-day camping/biking tours in August. Cost is $431 for adults and $200 for children if registering before July 8.

For more information, call (902) 423-2453 or visit the website at


Quebec in style

It's nothing but the best on three six-day bike tours in Quebec offered by luxury tour operator Butterfield & Robinson.

Beginning and ending in Quebec City, the tour passes through the rural charm of Charlevoix and promise a mix of gourmet cuisine, luxury hotels and pampering along the way.

Cost is $3,295 (U.S.) a person.

For more information, call 1-800-678-1147 or visit the website at


Niagara to Grand River

From the Niagara Peninsula to the historic towns along Ontario's Grand River, two six-day biking tours offered by Steve Bauer Bike Tours feature rolling, relatively undemanding terrain, upscale accommodation and meals at some of the region's best restaurants.

Cost is $2,999 a person, double occupancy.

For more information, call (905) 563-8687 or visit the website at .

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