19

Mar

Cross Country

westside

The cross country riding in Whistler Valley is simply unparalleled. You can easily pop out for an hour or two and ride anything from super smooth flowing singletrack, technical North Shore style features, charge or cruise around the myriad of trails in Lost Lake, or earn a variety of long descents after putting in the grunt work and climbing up any of the surrounding mountains.
You can also make a day of it by riding such epics as Comfortably numb, the Soo valley loop or by adding any number of shorter rides together. Lucky for you - we've ridden them all and are more than happy to show you the way!

Don't exclude taking a day to experience the XC riding in Whistler even if your focus is DH.
We often hear guests justifying tiem in the park because there's nothing like the bike park back home.. the thing is, there's nothing like Whistlers XC riding either!

 

Trail Network

green lake view

Where ever you look in Whistler you will find some sort of trail that has been forged out of the natural lay of the land to create some of the finest riding in the world.

The municipality (local council) invest a great deal of time and money into making the trails here to a fantastic standard. Wherever the signs of potential erosion show themselves, trail crews supported by the council and the local bike association (WORCA) head on out to create features that prevent any undue damage to the natural environment.

Whistler’s trail network is steadily growing with this time and money investment from local stake holders.

The trail network breaks down into fairly distinct zones. Each one has its own identity and lends itself towards different styles and abilities of rider.

Lost Lake:

Lost Lake’s trail development is spearheaded by the municipality. Its serving as a way to commercialise mountain biking to visitors who may never or have limited riding experience.
Amongst the buff swoopy green graded pea gravel trails however there is a superb interlinking set of progressive flow graded blue trails. These were developed initially for the 24hrs of Adrenaline race, but have been extended and improved over the years.
We use this area extensively for rider development, assessment and orientation.

West Side:

Whistler’s west side has been the zone of choice to the majority of rogue (but excellent) trail building. Home to Whistlers main artery for elevation gain, the Flank Trail. Riders can get up to 1100m an descend anything from the blue Yelp D’huez (27) switchbacks, or black technical rock or loam descents.

SouthSide:

For riders looking for a purer XC based experience, the South Side trails deliver.
We’ve the option for some stunning longer distance out and back rides with the ability to progress the technical element of the riding on the way back towards Whistler. It can be wound up as hard or kept as mellow as suits!

NorthSide:

Whistlers North Side trails are where we see the highest population of technical black trails. The infamous ‘no-flow’ zone can really frustrate or satisfy and one of our favourite out and backs, Kill me Thrill me is a must do for those of a technical nature.

 

19

Mar

The resort of Whisler has become synonimous with the sport of mountain biking. 

There are not many magazines that can go an issue without mentioning Whistler, it's for good reason! Not only is the DH bike park the best manicured and biggest mileage in the world, the XC/AM trails straight out of the village in all directions are endless and for every ability.
Don't be fooled by the hype, Whistler is set up for every level and type of rider, no matter what you want from your holiday, it will deliver. 

Whistler's media attention has typically been focussed on the Bike Park and Crankworx. 
Well before that, Whistler's residents were shaking off the snow, getting out their trail tools and building an incredible network of cross country trails. Its flown well under the radar with only a few journalists able to escape the significant draw of the lifts and venture out into the goodness.

 

Bike Park - Downhill

For years Whistler's bike park has been the talk of the freeride community, a truly cutting edge facility that encompasses all things bike. 

For those of you with an aversion to pedaling, this is what riding in Whistler is all about. 

Two express chairlifts whip you and your bike up to start what can only be described as an adrenaline fuelled blast.

Over 200kms of trail are served by the chairs. These trails range from training runs for novice riders through high speed cruisers, technical descending all the way up to 'balls in your mouth' stupidity!

New trails are constantly being built to take the park to yet another level. Expect A-Line style riding from top to bottom, twists, turns, gaps, drops, step-ups...it goes on!

There is a feature for everybody that enables the development of the skills needed for this riding style. 
You’ll be rubbing shoulders with the top pros almost all summer long in the lift lines.

The Boneyard is the freeride playground. Take a look at the crankworx video and see what they build each summer.
Huge boxes, Gaps, biker cross, dual slalom, huge tabletops, rhythms, 1/4 pipe, seesaws.....

So, a quick chairlift ride up to midstation, a buzz down A-Line or Dirt Merchant to get the juices flowing and you're at the top of the Boneyard. Unlimited lines through the feature packed damage zone await - express yourself!

 

Cross Country

The cross country riding in Whistler Valley is simply unparalleled. 
You can simply pop out for an hour or two and ride anything from super smooth flowing singletrack, technical North Shore style stunts, charge or cruise around the myriad of trails in Lost Lake, or earn a variety of long descents after putting in the grunt work and climbing up any of the surrounding mountains.

As the unwritten hero of the area, the trails are quiet but stunning. Theres little in the way of European high alpine style riding in Whistlers local area for now, but its on the way.

Whilst Whistler has its progressive trails for new comers and less confident riders, the trend of the trails here is the incorporation of natural trail features to create interesting and challenging terrain.

We can take you to the natural terrain areas, some of which may require a bit of grunt work as the trail heads aren't accessible any other way.
Industrial Disease, Foreplay, Anal Intruder, Shit Happens, Kill Me Thrill Me etc.

Or how about some of the more flamboyant man made trails like River Runs Through It. Whistlers original signature trail. Vast number of bridges, ladders, log rides, see-saws, wooden structures etc. Great fun for hours, or a perfect evening playground!

 

Heli Biking

Heli Biking over recent years has made a big impact in the media. Magazines, whilst still drawn to the park for its obviuos virtues, have been looking to feature even newer and more exciting riding trips in the Whistler area - Enter Heli Biking!

Trips are limited to help preserve the trail so book early if you're looking for an unforgettable riding experience!

An 8 minute scenic flight in an A-star speeds you to the top of an incredible 1200m descent!

19

Mar

Whistler BC Canada - A resort that enjoys tremendous media coverage thanks to the huge development of its freeride and lift assisted riding terrain. Intrawest the operators of the World renowned bike park have been pushing the progression of the sport forwards with their commitment to trail building and World class events allowing pro riders to showcase their playground.

What you don't see in the media however are the hundreds of 'little people' that make the resort what it is and those people who have founded the base from which Intrawest have managed to launch their commercial facility into the public domain.

Whilst the bike park at Whistler is an enormous cutting edge operation, it is merely a drop in the ocean in terms of Whistlers riding history and the scale of the riding available in the local area.

The resorts cross country and all mountain trails have been created, improved and adapted over the years and the local riding community set about establishing an association to help push forwards the 'green' development of the riding.

WORCA are the resulting body founded to represent all of those little people set on developing the local trail network and here to work hard on behalf of everyone who shares the towns passion for riding.

Well, we keep talking about WORCA and something called the weekly Loonie races, but what are they exactly? Read on and hopefully it will all become clear!


What exactly is WORCA?

WORCA, the Whistler Off Road Cycling Association was founded in 1989 in order to lobby against the pending closure of the bike trails in the Garibaldi Provincial Park . These early efforts were successful and the club has evolved over the years to become an integral part of Whistlers resort.

By working with the Government, landowners and developers, WORCA continues to ensure mountain bike trail access while providing a wide range of other services to the mountain bike community.

The club has in excess of 1000 members which represents over 10% of the town's permanent population. The club is in a word huge and the riding scene they create even bigger.

Whistler as a resort is unusual in that it embraces trails that are constructed illicitly rather than shutting them down. There is enormous significance behind a great number of trails in and around Whistler. 'A River Runs Through It' is a trail that would make most councils quake in fear of pending lawsuits. Rather than closing the trail down as many a council have been known to do, the resort municipality have recognised the significance of the trail and assisted in making things higher, wider and far more interesting.
Another example is the signature XC epic 'Comfortably Numb' a trail that was begun in secret by a man called Chris Markle and was an almost solo labour of love for years before being opened in memorial to a past Whistler Icon with some 300 riders turning up to cast flowers on the trail before riding it.

For more info on WORCA visit their site.


WORCA Loonie Races

Whistler Loonie RaceWeekly bike racesWORCA sanction a Loonie race series over the summer months which takes place weekly. Over 250 riders turn out to race a different XC course each week. These races end in a food and beer party hosted by one of Whistlers numerous food and service providers - all for £1!

What is a Loonie race I hear you ask: Loonie races are a weekly biking community meeting and a friendly competitive or non-competitive (as you choose) XC bike race through different sections of the Whistler trail network each week. The winning time is typically around the 45 minute mark with some riders taking a good couple of hours whilst still having great fun with their friends and family happily at the back.
The name Loonie comes from a few yeas ago when the race entry was just $1. A dollar coin in Canada is called a 'Loonie' due to the image of the Loon bird on the coin. Now the entry is $2 so it is really called a 'Twonie' race, but that just doesn't have the same ring to it!


What else do WORCA do?

Whistler Trail maintenance - WORCA are also focussed on the maintenance of Whistlers vast trail network. Huge amounts of man hours go into the trails every year to ensure that the winters snow cover hasn't caused damage or drainage problems that will ultimately lead to trail erosion and affect the natural environment.
All of WORCA's trail work is undertaken with great understanding of cause and effect of weather and trail riding. All trail maintenance is performed to the highest environmental standards, often in cooperation with local conservation groups like AWARE, the Whistler Fisheries Stewardship Group and the Whistler Naturalists.

This is accomplished with regular volunteer days and evenings throughout the season, and by hiring a contractor with member fees and grants. Special grants also enable large scale trail projects with a variety of different partners.

For the 2006 season, Whistler has already received a $34,000 Community Enrichment Grant from the Resort Municipality of Whistler for trail work and youth programs.


Why Join?

It should be obvious! We recommend all our guests join WORCA to support the riding community and put back into the trail network that we all com ehere to enjoy. If you are impressed by the trails, let someone know its appreciated.
A yearly membership (good for even just a one week holiday ;) ) is a mere $40! Due to the state of affairs, $28 of that goes to Cycling BC for rider insurance premiums to cover on trail rider liability and the weekly race events whilst the remaining $12 for each membership goes to the trail fund directly.

Perhaps donations are the way forwards if you are not looking to partake in either the Loonie race, Phat wednesdays, PHast Wednesdays, Skills clinics or Wild Willies rides.

Click here to join WORCA.


Whats Included?

To reflect our ongoing commitment to the local trail network, along with our ongoing trail maintenance and new trail development we are making a $20 WORCA trail fund donation for each and every guest.

Whilst it is not a requirement for your holiday, we strongly advise becoming members of WORCA. Memberships cost $40 and goes towards both event insurance and the superb trail maintenance fund. WORCA membersghip is required if you wish to ride/race any of the local evening events.

18

Mar

Epic Rides:

Comfortably Numb WhistlerEvery mountain bike destination worth its salt has to have a signature epic.

Whistler is proud to have 'Comfortably Numb'. Built almost single handedly by Chris Markle, its been a labour of love... and what a job he did!

Chris spend an enourmous amount of time picking his way from what is now the the Al Grey memorial bridge back towards Whistler village, seeming to make a winding detour to every natural feature he could find. This trail twists and teases for something like 25km, repeatedly giving you a great view over the valley then whisking you back into the coastal forest for another spell of technical riding.

Since completion, there have been a few edits and additions to the ComfoprtablyNumb trail set. The most notable of which is Yumby Numby, a technical climbing trail that takes you up almost to the highest part of CN. Choose either the stunning Foreplay descent, or CN in reverse gives so much more accessibility to this area..

Riding the Flank trail sections provides another great oportunity to enjoy the vistas over Whistler Valley. The four sections cover the whole west side of the valley and cover everything from the Callaghan to Cougar Mountain.

 

Want to see what riding in Whistler is like?