BC Alpine Mystic

The last day of summer was showing up on the weather forecast – on a Thursday. This is what Personal Leave days are for. The drive through Vancouver during rush-hour traffic delayed coffee and cake at the Purebread bakery in Whistler. Finally pedaled at noon on a blue-bird day, heading off to the new westside alpine trails built by the WORCA.

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Only 20 miles and 5k ft. of climbing, but quality mountain bike trails. The Flank trail is a repurposed logging road, but offers a (mostly) decent grade, shade and occasional views. Whistler Mountain on the right:

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The new trail, Into the Mystique, is machine-built and in a few places needs to be landscaped better, but it is very well laid out: grade, drainage and soil compaction are all first class.

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The entire climb was rideable for me, even with occasional steeps and a rock slab. Fun stuff.

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After an 2k ft. of climbing, the trail reaches the alpine. Amazing.

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Lots of riders out.

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Someone spent a lot of time thinking about how to lay out the trail.

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The trail layout looks simple and obvious – and is entirely rideable. It goes up the yellow hill on switchbacks:

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Alpine magic in big gulps.

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Keep riding like this will go on forever.

 

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A side trail gets a bit narrower and technical as it wraps around Mt. Sproatt. Just what I needed now.

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Eventually, there would be a few hike-a-bike sections. Can’t live on Koolaid alone.  The summit of Mt. Sproatt is a short scramble, but I stay on the trail east of the summit.

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The trail builders got a free ride down with a helicopter, just before I arrive at the final lookout.

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Not bad.

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Complete with picnic benches, there are views of the entire range: Black Tusk, Whistler Mt., Blackcomb Mt. Wedge Mt., Armchair … were just a few that other intrepid bikers listed for me.

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Could this connect to the Rainbow trail some day? How about winter fatbiking up here?

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Chatted with a guy from Redmond, WA, on the way down who was wearing a full-face helmet.

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The Lord of the Squirrels trail is rated “blue” in the downhill direction.

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Which is mostly true, but had me walking one roll-over/drop-off. If that’s a blue trail, I don’t think I’ll attempt the black trails at Whistler !  Super sweet, though.

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British Columbia, you’ve got the best alpine mountain bike trails close to Seattle.

Well done, WORCA!

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