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!


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.


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