Words and photos by local rider Dylan Sherrard.
It began as a pitter-patter on the rooftop late last night and grew to be a full-blown downpour before this foggy morning came. There is a thick mist floating past the window as we pour our coffee, and a gentle steam rising from the trees as the first of the light begins to warm the scene and provide the sparks of our wildest dreams.
While we ready ourselves for the ride, we move slow, and recognize this to be a special point in time. The moisture in the air, the extra layer we wear, and the fading colour of alpine flowers signal the approach of a mountain biker’s most treasured affair.
As the sliding temperatures and softening textures should have made us aware, this season is changing fast. But fear not, for the peak of the season has yet to pass. It is autumn’s gracious task to save the best to be enjoyed as the last. And as our memories of moments begin to blur in the past, the memories of these days are most certain to last.
Now that autumn has clearly arrived we feel a shift in the tide, and a new urgency for the ride.
We approach the moist dirt, apprehensive at first, in fear of a possible slip or a slide. But as puddles pass by at the start of our ride, we are greeted with limitless traction and smiles we cannot hide. It feels as though nothing could go awry and these tacky turns are certain to keep us alive.
The moist soil of the trail seems to dampen all sound, so in silence we whip and we slash and we shred all around. For in this instance, there is no dust to be found. Only a wonderful combination of conditions and instincts to keep us alive.
On these tacky-dirt days we’ll be dancing through the woods at such incredible speeds it will, at times, feel hard to believe. But these days are not dreams, with conditions supreme they are far more real than they ever may seem. These are bicycle powder days - no if’s, and’s, or but’s or go-in-between’s. They make the mountains feels mellow and small, so we let off our brakes and coast in the bliss of it all.
So on behalf of Sun Peaks, go forth, charge hard, and enjoy your last laps. The peak of the season will continue on buzzing until every last lap has been lapped. While these days may grow shorter, and these nights a bit colder, we assure you these rides will be just as you’ve ordered. And once the dark of night decides the light of day is done, we’ll tip back tall glasses in a single track celebration to the berms that we’ve blasted and the battles we’ve won.
And before we wish this season good night, we’d like to say thanks to you for being the light that has allowed our future to be shining so bright.