It had been too long since I’d spent time outside the City of Vancouver. I made the decision to leave the city and pursue academics at Quest University in Squamish, BC. This was the best decision I could have ever made. I couldn’t solely justify leaving the city to become the preconceived model of a dirt bag reminiscent of the early 2000’s, so Squamish seemed the place to settle down and focus on improving my riding while experiencing what Quest University and the Squamish community are all about.
What makes the trails in this area so enduring is the Squamish Off-Road Cycling Association, or “SORCA” for short. This organization keeps the trails clear and buff, but most importantly it keeps them up to date. What I’ve noticed with the new generation of cyclists, I put myself in this category, is that the wooden stunts and awkward corners of past years have been slowly eradicated and instead replaced with features to maximize speed. The trail crews in Squamish have kept up with the change in riding style and bicycle geometry.
I’ve recently made the shift to a 650b wheel size, and was expecting to find trails un-accepting of this change. But the scope and absolute freedom the trails in Squamish offer have squashed any learning curve necessary. The community surrounding the local riding scene here has also blown me away. On any Sunday expect to see hundreds of riders out for a spin on Half Nelson or Angry Midget.
If you’re interested in purchasing a SORCA trail pass to generate funding for the local trail crews, here’s a link to their webpage: www.sorca.ca/about/the-sorca-trail-pass/
Words by Dexter Robson