Since the ’90s, Squamish and the Sea to Sky corridor have been a mecca for mountain bikers from Canada and around the world. Squamish has a rich history of mountain bike racing, with long-standing events such as the grueling Test of Metal which sells out in a matter of minutes and the BC Bike Race which passes through Squamish each year. With countless trails for all abilities and an almost endless supply of singletrack, its not hard to see why Squamish is a mountain bike paradise for the locals and visitors alike.
When toonie races first started in Squamish way back in 1995, the riding style was a lot different than it is today. The premium was placed on the uphill, bikes were rigid and those early MTB pioneers rallied the descents with only cantilever brakes. No one had even dreamed of a dropper post (OK, maybe a Hite-Rite). Riding, like everything else in this world, has evolved and the bikes we ride have changed with it. Nowadays you can pedal a bike uphill that would also be at home on some of the most haywire descents around, and here in the Sea to Sky that’s the kind of bike that most people ride.
Enter the advent of enduro… You can’t open a magazine or read a bike website without hearing all about it. So what’s all the fuss about? Simply put, it’s the way most of us ride our bikes; pedal up at a moderate pace, pin it on the trail, repeat. Timing the singletrack trail sections makes it a race and the lowest cumulative overall time wins. Squamish and The Sea to Sky Corridor is the perfect setting for enduro, it’s how the trails are normally ridden on any given day.
So we at Squamish Enduro, along with the NSMBA (North Vancouver), WORCA (Whistler), and the PVTA (Pemberton) got together to start the Sea to Sky Enduro Series. The series will have a succinct overall points system (TBA) and rules, as well as categories for every age group and ability. The schedule is up at seatoskyenduro.com and Squamish is pleased to be hosting the first event of the series, The Gryphon on Saturday May 3rd, and the fifth event, The Mock Turtle on Saturday July 5th, 2014.
There will be five professionally timed segments in each race with every stage bringing its own variety; short technical descents, longer undulating stages, flowy and fast trails, short uphill sections, and full throttle high speed descents can be expected. You can also anticipate some ‘primes’ like cleaning a punchy climb or sending a super tech descent line, and some fun prize money challenges. If you consider yourself an intermediate rider you’ll be able to ride the course no problem, if you’re an advanced or expert rider this is the true test of your overall ability.
Stages will be connected by mainly uphill, but sometimes undulating trail, which will NOT be timed. In an effort to level the playing field for locals and visitors to the area, course details will only be announced shortly before each race. The event doesn’t end with the conclusion of the race. The Living Room in Squamish will be hosting the after party for the first race on May 3rd where we’ll have a full assortment of professionally catered appetizers, ice cold beverages, and entertainment.
The cost for all this is $80 for one race, or $75 each if you sign up for both The Gryphon & The Mock Turtle at the same time. Entries are limited to 200 riders for each event and are selling fast. Register now to guarantee your race entry. More info can be found at squamishenduro.com. We’re stoked to see all the Sea to Sky Enduro pioneers out there in 2014.
Roll call… who’s hitting up the Sea to Sky Enduro Series?