Lots of downhill mountain biking this weekend

If you are inclined to ride inclines, this weekend has plenty in store for you. Both Whitehorse and Carcross will be home to downhill mountain biking events this weekend.

If you are inclined to ride inclines, this weekend has plenty in store for you.

Both Whitehorse and Carcross will be home to downhill mountain biking events this weekend.

For the second of three weekends this summer, Whitehorse’s Mount Sima ski resort will run its chairlift to take mountain bikers up to the summit on Saturday and Sunday.

From Saturday to Monday Carcross will host its first CarCranked Festival with shuttles up Montana Mountain. The event will include an enduro race, guided rides, bike clinics, barbecues and more.

“We worked with Sima to identify weekends that were possible and this was one of them,” said Yukon’s Contagious Mountain Bike Club president Sierra van der Meer. “We knew that there was going to be some overlap, but there’s overlap in every weekend.

“People have different types of biking they like to do. So some of the people who aren’t interested in doing Carcross will maybe be interested in going to Sima. It’s a bike-apalooza weekend.”

The event at Sima is also open to paragliders, hikers and those simply wanting to take panoramic rides on the lift. Sima’s WildPlay adventure park will also be open during the weekend.

The Contagious club teamed up with the non-profit group Friends of Sima, who oversee operations at the ski hill, to host the event. The first was held the weekend of July 19-20 and the next will be September 13-14.

“We have a partnership with Sima and we’re working to open it up for limited summer use,” said van der Meer. “We’re taking a real community approach to it and are taking a simple way to make sure downhill mountain biking can still happen in the Yukon in the summer.

“We’ve been working with the Friends of Sima to see what we can do to continue downhill mountain biking. We’re doing it small so it’s sustainable with a much more community approach to it.

“I think that’s an interesting partnership out of here.”

The enduro race in the CarCranked Festival will be held on the famed Montana Mountain and will take each rider approximately five hours to complete. In November of 2011, the International Mountain Bicycling Association inducted the Mountain Hero Trail on Montana Mountain into its Epic Trails category.

Sunday will include “loosely organized social rides, shuttles going up the mountain, heli-biking and all kinds of stuff,” said organizer Jane Koepke, in a recent interview with the News.

The following Saturday, on August 23, mountain bikers are invited to enter the Canyon Mountain Crusher in Whitehorse. The enduro race will feature three stages on Grey Mountain followed by four stages at Mount McIntyre with shuttles in between.

“There’ll be some flatter portions and uphill, but generally losing-elevation stages,” said organizer Jonah Clark. “The emphasis is not on how fast a climber you are, but how fast downhill and all-around bike handler you are. We’re using trails that are more technically difficult to ride than typical cross-country races would have.”

The day after the Crusher it’ll be time to crown Yukon’s king and queen of mountain biking at the Yukon championships.

The King of the Rocky Canyon SEnD formerly King of the Canyon – will have a new location this year at Mount McIntyre. Since its inception the championship has been held in the Grey Mountain area. This year the Contagious club decided to move the event because it already held an event – the 24 Hours of Light Mountain Bike Festival – at Grey Mountain this summer.

Contact Tom Patrick at

tomp@yukon-news.com

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