Whistler Riding!

If Moab is the most famous overseas MTB destination when you live in NZ, Whistler is definitely a close second.  So it was great to get back up there yesterday with (what’s left of) my bike & get some cross-country & downhill rides in.  It was a slightly later start to the day after finding my car had been towed from the Visitor Garage in Karin’s building; but with that sorted I was in Whistler & riding by 11.30.

I started from the village & followed the Whistler Valley Single Track route that ended up being just over twenty kilometres. Mid-week, the trails close to town were still insanely popular – especially with large family groups. There were plenty of small kids out there & they were doing well as the rocky trails weren’t exactly a cake-walk. Mind you, I was climbing & they were mostly going downhill so maybe it was a little easier that way. The quick-fix of the dogbone on my bike only lasted three kilometres before the stresses of me pedalling uphill bent it, most annoying. The trails were good, but the names were even better – I rode Peaches, en Regalia, Dinah Moe Humm, The Torture Never Stops (it wasn’t that bad), Fountain of Love, Pinocchio’s Furniture (lots of wooden bridges & so on), & Gee I Like Your Pants among others.

With a little time on the road & cyclepath I was riding Cut Yer Bars & then A River Runs Through It. ARRTI was rated a black & had a lot of structures to balance on, jump over & so on. With my bottom bracket wobbling around & being worn out after three months of traveling I wasn’t really in the mood for what is quite a boring trail if you’re going slowly. There were a few see-saws/teeter-totters, this was the most interesting one & I managed to ride over this quite OK. I think it was the first one I’ve seen on a bike trail with industrial bearings for pivot.

I wonder what the lubrication schedule is for this, I could probably put it in Maximo if required

I spent an hour or so going around bike stores in town trying to make my bike more rideable so that it was worth going on some lift-assisted rides. Eventually I found the side of a long-cage derailleur in a crate of old ruined parts & after some filing I got it to fit. I was a little confused by the accent of the girl I bought my ticket off – turned out she was from Auckland, NZ; I’m disturbed by that. Off I went to join the DH set, feeling completely out of place as usual with my open-face helmet, clipless pedals, only four inches of travel & a 27lb bike.

I got one good run down B-Line that was great fun before the derailleur cage broke & my bottom bracket started thwacking around. The next two runs were good too, just I was a little distracted. More good trail names: I rode Ninja Cougar, Karate Monkey Samurai Pizza Cat, Heart of Darkness & Crank It Up. A mildly frustrating day all up with the bike, but the riding was good (if not completely my cup of tea) & I rode Whistler! I do hope I can find some solution to the dogbone issue back in Canmore as I’ve been so looking forward to doing all my favourite rides back there for the last few months – I still think Jumpingpound Ridge/Cox Hill rates as highly as any I’ve done on this trip (but just might be a nostalgically distorted view of what was a really good ride).

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