Most of Alberta from Edmonton south is a grid work of county roads. The grid is a one mile (east/west) by two miles (north/south). Over the years, Strathcona County has benefited greatly from the Alberta oil industry. These two facts make for some of the best bicycle road riding anywhere. Almost every county road in Strathcona County is paved. Kilo after kilo of back roads with very little traffic. We do live on the prairies and there are no sustained climbs to test your moxie but what the area lacks in vertical variation it makes up for in the mere number of paved kilometers of road.
I live in the east end of Edmonton and in the summer I ride 4 days each week. 90% of those ride are in the county just to the east. To get out of town I encounter a few busy roads but once I clear the edge of town I am passed by a dozen or fewer vehicles in 60 km. Each weekend I ride with a group of friends and we ride upwards of 100 km. We have a few standard rides but for the most part we will ride the same route maybe twice per summer.
This area is probably the worst kept secret within the road riding community here. When we started to frequent these roads maybe 20 years ago, Debbie and I would cross paths with only one or two groups on a nice Sunday. Now, we will meet 10 groups of 2 to 20 riders plying the same roads. There are definitely more riders in general but I know a good lot of the folks will drive from the west end of Edmonton just to enjoy the serenity of OUR roads.
If you are coming to the Edmonton area bring your bike, drive to Ardrossan, park in the recreation centre parking lot and go for a ride. You can get a map at the Strathcona County Administration Building, or make a copy from the link above. It’ll be the best ride you will have in the Edmonton area.