This update is long overdue, but here it is!
Blue River to Whistler
After leaving Blue River BC I headed to Whistler to meet up with Dave, Jody & Nik to do some more riding. Its pretty much a days drive between Blue River and Whistler but there is plenty to see! Nothing really stood out on the drive other than the scenery and I was tired from being “Last Man Standing” Sunday night. My new Canadian friends harassed me all weekend about not being able to party like they do. I can, I just prefer to be in good riding condition!
I arrived in Whistler around 5 PM and parked in front of the condo. Then, not even 30 seconds later the gang rolls up with huge smiles on their faces after a great day at the park. This was going to be a great week! We all got cleaned up and walked over the Splitz Burgers. Man, those are delicious. Everything is super fresh. We ended up eating here twice during the trip it was that good! The condo is a funny story in itself. We all thought it was going to be bigger than it was. But, hey, the price was right and we had a roof over our heads.
The North Shore
The plan Tuesday was to head down to Mt Seymour on the Vancouver North Shore and do some riding. I also had to head into Vancouver to drop off my rental so it worked out great! The North Shore is one of the mountainbike mecca’s in North America. The natural and man made features are outstanding! It was a completely different riding experience than any of us had ever had. On the way we stopped by the Cove bike shop. For some reason bike shops up there carry massive inventory in both bikes and accessories. It was like being in a candy store. Once we had directions on where go we parked my rental at the bottom and drove the van with all of us up to the top. It was maybe a 20 minute drive up for an awesome 2-3 hour down. My helmet cam was on its last legs but I did get some footage. I wish I had some of the later stuff we got to ride. Then you’d get to share the whole experience!!! We got some great pictures as well! Check out the photoalbum to see them all!
Just incredible riding. I highly recommend anyone going to Whistler to not miss this place. I think it was just as good if not better than the park. During the ride I had another SRAM failure. The Matchmaker that holds my shifter pod on the bars just snapped off. No damage, no crashing. Just snapped off. So, the last third of the ride I got to do single speed style! Still a good time none the less. Afterwards we stopped by the Cove Shop again to see if they had replacement parts, and they did. But they couldn’t cover it under warrantee since my bike was bought in the USA. Weird policy. I’ll send SRAM the bill.
Dropped off the rental car at the airport. The drive there was entertaining as Vancouver has no belief in highways. I think there is one. And half of it is on city streets. Then, we went on down into downtown Vancouver to see what we could see. Had some great Schawarma! Wandered around some. Interesting street performances. And even walked into the more seedy part of downtown. Good times.
I was really excited about the bike park. The rest of the gang had already been a few days prior. So, we started out easy on Crank it Up. Easy is relative. Haha! The first run down this trail my jumping muscles were tired! I had never hit so many consecutive jumps in one run in my entire life. I know there were more than 30 at least. By the end of the trip this was my favorite trail. We did some all mountain exploring. One run down Freight Train I tried to roll a drop I should have dropped and managed to fall/slide down about 16 feet of ladder ramp and dirt. Kinda shook me up and pretty much finished my day.
Thursday we took a day off and wandered around and did some window shopping. Everything up there is way more expensive. But, they have a ton of stuff in stock which just amazed me. Bought a few presents. Got a couple of things for me. Dinner, drinks etc. Then off to bed for another day in the park on Friday.
Friday it was spectacular out. I knew Luis and Gracie from JensonUSA were going to be up riding with Candace so I made plans to join them for a bit in the afternoon. Dave, Jody, Nik and I got to the park earlier today than we did on Wednesday. Did a few of our favorite runs and then we made our way to some of the tougher stuff. Dave picked Dirt Merchant. I don’t know if this was a black or double-black. I just know some of the stuff was way over my head. I got about halfway down and caught up with Dave and Jody and said “Hey guys, this is way over my skill level, I’m gonna find a bail out.” Apparently I wasn’t the only one. Nik was behind me and took a pretty bad spill. We got him down to the bottom but he was done for the day. Nik headed back to the condo to get some rest and I broke off to meet up with Candace, Luis, and Gracie.
Riding with these guys was much more mellow, at the start We did a few runs, then at the end we met up with Candace and then she broke off to ride with some friends. We later rendevouzed with Candace and her friend Jeff for one last run down the mountain. Jeff is a coach from another mountain bike camp. At one point they decided they were gonna school me and I was between them going down the trail pretty fast. Jeff saying “Follow me!” and Candace yelling “GET OFF THE BRAKES! ROLL THROUGH THE CORNER!” So, I did! What a blast! I said farewell to them and waited at the bottom of the lift for Dave and Jody to do one last run.
After we wrapped up the day we went to check on Nik. He was pretty stiff and it appeared that his neck took a brunt of the impact. Kept the evening low key. Saturday morning Nik headed over to the urgent care to make sure it wasn’t serious. Fortunately it wasn’t, but its not good either. (2 weeks later he’s still stiff). Since Nik was down we took the day off and packed up the bikes and gear. Did some more bike shop pass throughs and watched the UFC fight that night in a local bar. I had one last thing to accomplish this trip. I had to have a Caffrey’s. The finest Irish cream ale ever made. You can’t get it in the USA. So, I sought out the Irish pub and Dave and I shared an awesome beer to cap out and awesome trip.
The Journey Home
I’m not going to elaborate on this much other than to say read my post about the travel industry. Alison picked me up at the airport in her car, cause she used my truck to Monster Truck Dan’s Accord (Its actually pretty damn funny). Had a great steak at the Turf Club and got home safely.
Sum it up
I’m pretty glad I took the trip even though it was expensive as hell. But, already I remember how great the trip was rather than how much it cost me in surprise expenses. And, I got to practice my newly refreshed skills for nearly a whole week. Thanks for the good trip guys!