Friday, July 16, 2010

Hottest Race in Revy!

For the second year, Skookum Cycle was hosting last Sunday a really fun mountain bike race in the MacPherson Trails in Revelstoke and for the second year, the race turned out to be on one of the hottest weekend of the summer! The racecourse took us through the Revelstoke Classic double and single tracks with really nowhere to rest so it made for a challenging race for sure! This year over 140 racers showed up for the event divided in different categories, the youth, Adult sports and Adults Elites. The elite course consisted of 2 loops of 17 kms. This year, we had the chance to race aside Catharine Pendrel, 4th at the last summer Olympics; which was quite inspiring. Catharine is now traveling around BC to go to the National this weekend in Canmore and then to other races around the globe. All the best to her for the rest of her racing season.

The race started just after 10 am, and god did it start fast. It did not take long for the pack to get spread out nicely in the ascent on the “Main Loop” and then on “Space Man” to TNT. Then connecting to “Break a Leg” there was already a few people here and there getting thrown off their bikes. Up to “Dusty Beaver” a new section of trail built last summer unto hydro hill, a really fast descent on double tracks logging road. Then back to good old tantrum. By this point, I was pretty much racing on my own. It was just like going on a casual weekend ride, except a little faster! It’s really fun to get the race at home in trails that you know well. And there’s something about not having to travel in order to race. I was really happy to see the end of that race since it was really demanding. I managed to finish 1st in the elite 19-29 category but the real star of the race is my friend Michael who came up from Whistler to race. He had a great consistent race and finished 1st of all categories and set a new course record. Great work Michael!

After the race, Skookum put together a great BBQ and had a lot of great prizes for everyone. Thx to all the volunteers and Skookum Staff who made this event a success!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Chilcotins Canada Day Adventure

After a busy spring with a few races and a lot of work what better then to escape to one of the best kept secret in BC; Bralorne. This small town is pretty much a paradise for mountain bikers who are not scared to be self-reliant. Bralorne has it’s own network of trail which we tackled a little bit… well let’s say one of the trail started pretty much from the front porch of the beautiful log cabin where we stayed (thanks to Andrew’s friends Charlie and Matt) so we had no choice but to go for a spin in the area around Mt Ferguson.

The main goal of our trip was to go on an overnight trip in preparation for longer exploratory missions later on this summer. Both Andrew and myself have dreamt for quite a long time now to ride the famous Spruce Lake area. This is a trip that can be done with floatplane access but we decided to use our legs and lungs

to climb the long Gun Creek Trail. The multi use path presents obvious sings of horses use but is really nice and easy to ride. We started the first day armed with our big packs and climbed slowly our way to Spruce Lake. To our surprise, the meadows were blooming which gave us breathtaking scenery… it was actually hard to keep the eyes on the single track ahead. We camped for the night at the main Spruce Lake Campground where to our surprise, we got snowed on! ….the white stuff milted by breakfast time and the sun came out to guaranty us an other day felled with amazing views. We first explored the trails on the Tyaughton Creek side, and climbed back up to Spruce to take the trail to Cowboy Campground and to Hummingbird Lake. Unfortunately, there was a fair amount of fallen trees in the trail to Hummingbird lake but it should be all clear by now since we met the magic chainsaw men on the way.

From Hummingbirds Lake we then charged back all the way down the valley… and god was it ever fun. The single track that we nicely climbed the previous days was now a flowy tunnel through high grass, flowery meadows, sandy berms and thick forest. You can get going so fast on that trail it’s pretty scarry… Euh.. I mean amazing.

After our 9 hour day, we got back to the car with scratched legs, a few bruises (well not Andrew, just me), soaking wet shoes from river crossings, squeaky bikes but most importantly large smile up on our faces. As images are worth a 1000 words, here they are!