Whistler Bike Park’s operations manager, Brian Finestone posted up an interesting update this week. It seems the ugly head of rogue trail building has risen again in the Bike Park. Every three or four years this seems to happen, but this time it looks even more virulent than ever. The problem with rogue building is often it’s not done with any mandate from land managers or user groups, zero consideration or forethought for the bigger picture, and usually executed with almost no sensible trail design, therefore impacting the existing trails (both in terms of sustainability and experience), creates a maintenance burden, an environmental hazard, and aggravates relationships with other stakeholders on or around the land it occurs on. Why anyone would go to such lengths to build within the Bike Park is a real head-scratcher but it seems the WBP are taking it very seriously. It’s not just a case of braking bumps not being smoothed out while lines are closed down, but perhaps some people losing their access to paradise. Here’s the post from Whistler Blackcomb’s Bike Park page.
Give Us A Break Or We Will Give You One.
By Brian Finestone.
It’s September and we are in the process of getting onto all of our high traffic trails to give them some love after a dry summer of heavy use. The amount of trail to maintain and the traffic volume we see is staggering when you think about it. WMBP Trail Crew work hard daily to repair blown berms, remove braking bumps and reshape haggard jump lips so riders can experience the best of what is the Whistler Mountain Bike Park at any time of the season.
There are never enough hours in a day to get every task done and the crew work tirelessly to keep the momentum going. A frustrating new trend has surfaced which is eating away at our time and ability to work on our trails. Unsanctioned trail building and rogue lines have been growing in the Park like an insidious mold. These lines are not built to our standard for safety or environmental protection and need to be decommissioned, thereby using up our valuable Trail Crew resources.
We will be undertaking the task of decommissioning and reveg of these lines in the coming weeks. If you are responsible for these lines, have ridden them or know who is building in the Park, please give us a break and stop doing so. Pass along the request to your riding friends too. If we continue to find trails re-opened we will be tracking the riders responsible and offering them a holiday from riding in our Park and skiing our hills.
This problem needs to go away immediately and not come back. If you are a trail building enthusiast, we encourage you to do it via the proper channels, join WORCA, get permission, and do it right! Whistler has tons of room for “GOOD” trails but building your own lines in our Park is not an option.
On a positive note, the trails are in good shape with work this week complete on a new entrance into Funshine / Smoke & Mirrors. Afternoon Delight received a top to bottom overhaul and B-Line saw a bunch of machine time bringing back the flow to this classic trail. In Garbanzo the construction of more sections of Una Moss and retrofit of sections of Freight Train are still underway with the aim to complete a new link before end of season. It’s getting late, Top of the World only has a few weeks left so get up there before it disappears for another year under 8m of snow. See you on the trails, BF