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The Chainsaw Massacre - Ten Years Later

June 11, 2009, 11:49 a.m.
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Joined: May 26, 2007

Can't remember which movie that filmed the fifth before it got torn down, maybe Shawn Johnson's Torque or maybe Ride to the Hills? Seems like as soon as people heard about it it was already torn down, didn't last long. I think everyone has to remember the kind of bikes we were riding back then (hardtails with bombers or some pretty poor full suspension designs, no-one knew how to set up a shock yet, V-brakes, discs were just about to come out/or had just come out if i remember correctly) and we were still wheely dropping everything, who needed transitions? Reaper and the like (gruvula, walk in the clouds, GMG, boogieman, etc.) sort of opened everyones eyes as to what was possible on a bike, and to look back now and call those stunts sh*t is an injustice. They were inovative and completely changed mountain biking and brought it to where we are now. Riding the log entrance into Reaper or the teeter-totter on the log on pre-reaper for the first time was such a rush, and they were alot more enviromentally sensitive then most of the mountain today without meaning to be (admitedly other parts not so much). It's pretty easy to slam those stunts and how they were built now, but no one knew what they were doing, and without them I don't think mountain biking would be where it is today. Just my 2 cents from someone that was lucky enough to ride it before it was torn down.

June 11, 2009, 5:10 p.m.
Posts: 218
Joined: Oct. 29, 2003

Len and I had lead the IMBA trail care crew down Pre-Reap only a month or so before the chainsaw massacre. It was the Trail Care crew's first visit to Vancouver (I think the NSMBA was working on Coiler) and they were - to put it mildly - simply shocked. They really couldn't believe what they were seeing and these trails broke every rule in the IMBA trail building handbook. But yet - these trails also helped to rewrite trail building on a much bigger level as stunts started popping up on trails outside of BC.

even I got to ride it. It was crazy on the HT with my sweet Club Roost riser bars.

Ya, I have to agree with you here exactly!

We'd been riding these trails for a few years before they were torn down, but I most clearly remember riding up the Cypress road with Dave K in the pouring rain, and then dropping into Pre-reaper in about 1997 or 1998. I had just put Magura HS33s on my bike but it was simply too wet and slippery to ride the trail effectively (I think I was running Mituboshi Superheat tires at the time). After ramming full speed into a tree at the end of the "McBridge" (when I couldn't stop), we called it quits that day and hauled our asses off of Pre-reap with our tails between our legs and went down Coiler which was under about 6-12" of water. In hindsight, not a great day to be on the trails - at least we did some water re-routing though!

Those trails were serious: to put this in perspective, I remember in 1993 when Dan came into class (we were both doing degrees in Physics at UBC at the time) super excited about a trail he had just made: this was the Reaper bridge entrance into the Reaper trail. I was riding a lot of Seymour at the time (Severed, etc…) and I thought "what's the big deal"… It wasn't until I actually went and tried to ride Pre-Reap / Reaper around 1996 and realized absolutely how ridiculous this trail was.

Think of the gear at that time (1993): hardtails, 1.9" - 2.1" single walled hard rubber tires, canti-brakes, 1.5" - 2" travel suspension forks (1993 was the year that Rockshox came out with the Mag21 fork!), pretty much no pads, XC helmets and clothing, etc…

These guys were so far ahead of the curve with these trails it's simply not fathomable for most people to realize what they were doing considering the state of the sport and gear that they were using at that time.

Props to the builders and while Cypress is pretty awesome in its current state, the early trails would still scare me now.


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June 11, 2009, 10:19 p.m.
Posts: 2502
Joined: Jan. 3, 2003

I hardly get the chance to visit Cyps anymore, but it remains the place of my first Shore experience, and some of the best rides I've ever had. Riding some of that stuff on the older short travel bikes and spandex was scary…but we did it.

Sad walk through memory lane.

***Disclaimer: this post is in no way, shape, or form intended to insult anybody, anything, any animal, any lifeform, or non lifeform, or otherwise, of any kind.

June 11, 2009, 10:33 p.m.
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Joined: Oct. 23, 2003














June 11, 2009, 11:32 p.m.
Posts: 6662
Joined: Nov. 20, 2002

fuk - thanks for the memory Thad . I have that issue of Bike. I showed that to my Mum and she thought it was nuts what we were doing/

June 12, 2009, 7:52 a.m.
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Joined: May 26, 2007

That Bike article is awesome! I remember everyone in our house running out to buy it when it came out, we were so stoked that the Shore and the trails we rode were in Bike. Don't think we put it down for a month, kept reading it over and over.

June 12, 2009, 8:48 a.m.
Posts: 731
Joined: Nov. 24, 2008

Totally agree. It always confused me as to why people would build elevated structures over sweet natural gnarl.

No rainbows here wayner… I disagree

I rode cypress back in the day, reaper ect…it made me the rider I am today…what ever that is! The shore for me back then was about manning up and hitting the big stuff, hucking if you will. You either rode it or got yer ass handed to ya. You learned quick or quit. This made the "North Shore" name and rep which spread around the world. This was hardest stuff on earth to ride…but then everyone had to hit it.

But alas this type of riding was not sustainable, most of us know that now…but it was fun while it lasted. Riping virgin loam and discovering all the secret trials….nothing better than finding fresh cedar to crazy drops…bike art imho

Props to all the builders of old…and those who keep the new genre of trails alive today.

Blogging - Never before have so many people with so little to say said so much to so few.

June 14, 2009, 11:19 a.m.
Posts: 3483
Joined: Nov. 27, 2002

I remember (back in the UK) buying the bike issue above and ordering Diggers early movies off NSMB. For me that was by far the most exciting time in mountain biking. It felt so completely new, against the grain. Obviously even more so for someone 5000 miles away from the trails. I can't understand people in this thread saying anything negative about that era. It was the catalyst that changed the face of mountain biking in a way that DH racing never could.

Like early skateboading and BMX, some of it looks goofy by todays standards but it's still the sports history and always will be.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8p0_nc5Wu7I

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- Morgman

June 14, 2009, 1:43 p.m.
Posts: 11203
Joined: Nov. 18, 2004

No rainbows here wayner… I disagree

I rode cypress back in the day, reaper ect…it made me the rider I am today…what ever that is! The shore for me back then was about manning up and hitting the big stuff, hucking if you will. You either rode it or got yer ass handed to ya. You learned quick or quit. This made the "North Shore" name and rep which spread around the world. This was hardest stuff on earth to ride…but then everyone had to hit it.

But alas this type of riding was not sustainable, most of us know that now…but it was fun while it lasted. Riping virgin loam and discovering all the secret trials….nothing better than finding fresh cedar to crazy drops…bike art imho

Props to all the builders of old…and those who keep the new genre of trails alive today.

You are definitely the wheelie-drop type Anderson.

June 14, 2009, 1:59 p.m.
Posts: 2
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

Those steroids never did arrive.

June 14, 2009, 7:56 p.m.
Posts: 5058
Joined: Nov. 25, 2002

That Bike article is awesome! I remember everyone in our house running out to buy it when it came out, we were so stoked that the Shore and the trails we rode were in Bike. Don't think we put it down for a month, kept reading it over and over.

yep. the fact that our little corner of the world was getting international recognition was so cool. it was an exciting time. i still recall each of the bits of trails in those pics as they were. great to have that kind of documentation.

June 14, 2009, 9:41 p.m.
Posts: 8552
Joined: Nov. 15, 2002

Can't remember which movie that filmed the fifth before it got torn down, maybe Shawn Johnson's Torque or maybe Ride to the Hills? Seems like as soon as people heard about it it was already torn down, didn't last long.

Wasn't it Jamie Houssian shooting for Bj

June 14, 2009, 9:47 p.m.
Posts: 10010
Joined: March 11, 2003

You are definitely the wheelie-drop type Anderson.

RIP B[HTML_REMOVED]A/Ewok Village…

Eric, got any pics of that stuff?

Is there a Vancouver in Taiwan?! I had no idea!!

Nothing sums up my life's achievements like my stuffed corpse, suplexing a cougar.

June 15, 2009, 12:15 a.m.
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Joined: May 6, 2006

Wasn't it Jamie Houssian shooting for Bj

June 15, 2009, 12:15 a.m.
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Joined: May 6, 2006

Also, I absolutely cannot believe that this was ten years ago, both in the sense that it feels like riding the shore on my old brown Norco with canti brakes and top tube/stem pad was just yesterday, and that it feels like it was much longer than that at the same time.

As for Reaper and Pre-Reaper, I finally thought I was up for it, and tried to ride it once but it was still too snowwy at that point. It was a while before we got around to trying to get back up there, and then it was all gone. That still bugs me.

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