#killooet

Two team camps in one year!? If this keeps up, we’re going to run out of things that rhyme with Lillooet in short order.

It’s only been two months since #nofrillooet, but a lot of things have changed since then; the snows have melted, bare arms and legs have come out to play, camping has become a viable alternative to our usual motel accommodations, and everybody has come with skinny go-fast tires this time around. What hasn’t changed is the fact that camp is always hard. The particular brand of pain that gets inflicted upon you varies with each iteration, but at least all the routes are out-and-back, so if/when you get spat out the back, at least you get some recovery time before getting swept up by the group on the return.

In all honesty, the most difficult part of Mighty Camp is being able to capture decent photos. The folks who opt to make the trek north are usually looking to put some hard mileage in and aren’t really into noodling around. Case in point: after stopping at the top of a switchback descent to get some snaps, I watched the group roll away and ended up chasing for 17km solo over some pretty washboard-y dirt to make it to the turnaround. It didn’t help that I ripped open one of my few remaining gels, managing to get more of it on my hands, shifters, bibs, and legs than actually into my mouth hole. The most fun parts of the ride also happen to be the fast/twisty bits and the last thing I want is to cause a pileup in the name of snagging something for the ‘gram.

So, enjoy these brief glimpses into some of the chiller moments from the weekend.

COTR18 - Day of Thunder (from two sets of eyes)

Shot by “real” Meat:

Shot by “fake” Meat:

Kamloops Invasion

The VCXC Crew (and friends) made the long trek up to Kamloops this past weekend for the BC Interior Cross CactiCross double-header. Despite the name, there were no cacti to be found. Kudos to the course designers for maximizing space usage; although the park we were in was quite small and required a lot of doubling back, the course flowed well and never felt like we were sprinting down a series of dead straights into hairpins. Intermittent rain on day one left made for some greasy corners in the latter races, but things dried up and turned things quite tacky for day two. The beach sand along the river was, dare I say, the perfect consistency: firm, fast, and well-packed in spots and loose enough to let the bikes get drifty in others, and at the same time, not heavy enough to sound like it was imploding my drivetrain.

Click to expand in a lightbox. Please feel free to share, but credit if you do.

I'm back: Lower Mainland CX#1: Donkey Cross

Pardon my absence over the last few months. I’ll bore you with the details at some other point because I know all you really want are ‘cross photos. I’m sorry for the blatant lack of coverage of the novice/intermediate women’s field; I’m still adjusting to the new race day schedule and having them go off right after my field finishes means that I’m going to have to make some changes to my post-race changing/eating routine in order to not keel over AND do the photo thing. I’ll be better next time, I promise.

Click to open in a lightbox. Please tag/credit if you’re going to share.

Ride for Water Recon: Part Deuce

I had the opportunity to head back out to Chilliwack last weekend to take a look at the two climbs we didn't get to from the weekend previous. The weather had taken a glorious 180 and we set out at 8AM when it was still a bit brisk, but knew that things would quickly warm up. If you missed part one, last weekend's recap can be found here.

First up, Tamihi to Cultus Lake, which will pop up at about 100km into the long course. The most important note about this climb is probably how chunky the terrain is. The entire way is liberally sprinkled with protruding rocks and there's a nice runoff trench in the middle. You'll want to exercise some care if you're changing lines to overtake other riders. The descent on the other side is still bumpy and will have you rolling over loose rock/shale in spots. Given the summer-like conditions we've seen this week, it's highly unlikely that any of the puddles will still be there, but the craters they leave behind will be. If you're running tubed, this is a section where the danger of flatting increases. Keep your eyes up!

R0011536.jpg
R0011562.jpg
R0011572.jpg
R0011545.jpg

The highlight of the day, without a doubt, was the singletrack climb up Vedder. The dirt conditions were just about perfect and once you get into a rhythm, everything just flows. Do keep in mind that it does get kind of tight in here, so please be courteous/patient if you're passing/being passed. If you're "racing" the event, it's worth burning a match to be first into this section, but otherwise, take a moment and enjoy the scenery. The switchbacks should be wide enough for passing as long as you announce your intention to pass and whether you're going to go inside or outside line. Try and keep a bit in reserve since you'll still have some service road to climb after you exit the singletrack and it does get violently steep for a few pitches and this will be coming towards the tail end of a 150km day. Traversing the road (aka doing the "paperboy") is a perfectly appropriate technique to get you over this last hurdle.

R0011673.jpg
R0011702.jpg
R0011716.jpg
R0011737.jpg
R0011815.jpg

The long course will see some alterations in the coming week. The original plan was to descend Duck Farm trail, but that section is going to be removed and likely replaced with a mellower descent down a service road. The trail is properly gnarly, rocky, and heavily trenched out in the middle. It's exhilarating in its own way, but would not be a pleasant experience at the end of an already long day. Enjoy these photos, secure in the knowledge that you won't have to hurl yourself down this

R0011859.jpg
R0011864.jpg