Fitz & Follwell is the chicest bike touring company-slash-cycle shop in Montreal
«As cliché as it sounds, Montreal is an amazingly diverse city and so damn easy to share with visitors,» says Shea Mayer.
Mayer is the proud proprietor of Fitz & Follwell, the chicest little bike touring company-slash-cycle shop in town. F&F gives tours from a Montrealer’s point of view—something Mayer saw a real need for: «No other tour company was doing this! They were stuck in the ‘80s & ‘90s—Old Montreal, Ste. Catherine, the ‘Underground City’…It was as though they didn’t want visitors venturing out into the Plateau, Mile-End, Little Italy, or St-Henri. It was as if they didn’t understand where the true pulse of the city lies.»
Oh yes, that pulse. Boy, does it race upon entering F&F. I could go on and on about the cool décor (mama loves herself some repurposed shelving and a great stone wall), but let’s get straight to the goods, shall we? Gorgeous uprights by Linus, Creme, Bobbin and Pashley occupy prime shop real estate. A careful curation of Brooks saddles beckons you towards showroom right, while a well-hung collection of Basil panniers lures you down the middle. And that bevy of handsome leather ankle straps and frame-mounted wine racks? Hard to ignore.
Similarly difficult to overlook is F&F’s great selection of Berns and Nutcases: «My only bike fashion ‘do’ is to wear a helmet,» advises Mayer. «Even the smartest cyclist can have a car door open on them, or have a yahoo run a red light.» But wait! What about the city tours? Six customized routes are available, taking riders (on Linus cycles!) to some of our city’s most beloved sites. From the pathway along the Lachine canal to the sesame-scented doorway of St-Viateur Bagel, Fitz & Follwell has this town covered.
Shea’s Sunday ride for the «been there, done that» Montrealer
Meet at Chez José (173 Duluth) to dull that hangover with breakfast.
Ride over to the SAQ on Duluth/St. Denis for a bottle of wine (to stash in your wine rack!).
Bike to Parc Lafontaine, then follow the path up Brébeuf to Boulangerie Mr. Pinchot (4354 Brébeuf). Grab baked goods and sandwiches for your afternoon picnic.
From Parc Lafontaine, take Champlain Street to Logan and turn left. You’ll join the bike path leading to the Jacques- Cartier Bridge.
See the best view of Montreal from the bridge!
Make your way towards the Casino, passing the old Expo 67 buildings. Choose your picnic spot along the canals and gardens. Bring out the sandwiches and wine!
Head over to Île Ste Hélène, or make your way directly to Pont de la Concorde.
Stop in at the Habitat 67 site, and look for the cute surfers in behind the buildings, catching the waves!
Time for refreshments! Jump on the Lachine Canal path, and continue past the Atwater Market. You’ll soon see the St-Ambroise terrace (5080 St-Ambroise).
Time to head home. Outta steam? Wheel over to Lionel-Groulx metro. Energetic? Follow the path back to the Old Port. The path on Berri Street will send you back to the Plateau and beyond.
Fitz & Follwell Co.
115 Mont-Royal W.