It's starting to become somewhat of a tradition to do these trips with Quinn and Spencer.
I half-suspect that when they get a text from me they know it's going to be at least a bit of a suffer-fest. Last year – we planned out a 4-day bikepacking trip in the South Chilcotins which was the first time any of us had even been bikepacking. It was entirely out of our wheelhouse but we decided to just put ourselves in a situation where we needed to figure it out. This year – I pitched them on the idea of a trip that included shorter days of riding, less remote terrain and dinner being burgers, tacos and beer over dehydrated meals. The main difference is I wanted to make sure we'd get on some more technical and playful terrain.
We're not hardcore bikepackers – Quinn's a Freerider, Spencer races Enduro and I'm a photographer who just loves being in the mountains. The goal wasn't to crush as much distance as we can from point A to point B – but to just be in the mountains and embrace adventure.
It's opened up an entirely new way of biking for all of us.Trail Etiquette
Leave No Trace – Be sure to pack out at least as much as you pack in. Consider improving the trail experience for those that follow by picking up and removing any litter.
Stay on Trail – Be sensitive to the dirt beneath you and the environment around you. Wet and muddy trails are more vulnerable to damage than dry ones. When the trail is soft, consider other riding options. This also means staying on existing trails and not creating new ones. Don’t cut switchbacks. Don’t ride around standing water which results in widening the trail.
Be Prepared – Know your equipment, your ability and the area in which you are riding and prepare accordingly. Strive to be self-sufficient: keep your equipment in good repair and carry necessary supplies for changes in weather or other conditions. Always wear a helmet and appropriate safety gear.Gear
Last year when we did a 4-day bikepacking trip in the Chilcotins – I noticed there was a handful things I just didn't need. When you're spending day in and day out with all your gear on your back. You want only the essentials. The goal of this trip was to pack really light, mainly bringing fewer clothes and cookware than before. I opted to use a mug for my oatmeal in the morning and bring a lunch that didn't need any dishes or much packaging. One major benefit to bikepacking so close to civilization is that you're able to stop for dinner each night which brings your overall weight way down.
A quick tip I learned in the Chilcotins last year... chain lube is a must (stored in an old Mio bottle).Bikes
We opted to bring the 2021 Commencal Meta TR Race. Spencer ran his stock with the Lyrik and 29's, whereas Quinn swapped his out for 27.5 and his Suntour fork with Chromag components. We went back and forth on deciding between the Meta AM, Meta TR, Clash or the Meta Hardtail. Last year – Quinn went with the Clash, Spencer ran the Meta 29 and I used a Meta 27.5. This year – we opted for the new Meta TR.
And they worked perfectly.Our Favourite Trails
Here are some of our favourite trails from the trip – but honestly it's hard to go wrong with the seemingly endless amount of world-class trails around here.Day 1
– Langdale to Roberts Creek Campground
After finishing up work on Thursday afternoon, we piled our gear into Quinn's truck and made our way to Horseshoe Bay for the 7 pm to Langdale. After getting off the ferry – we made a few "wrong turns" through Sprockids. Later realizing it would have been much faster to have just ripped the highway over to Roberts Creek. Instead, we spent a good two hours roaming around in the dark trying to find our way with more hike-a-bikes than one could ever want. After making it to camp around 11 pm, we ate some candy and called it a night.Day 2
– Roberts Creek Campground to Sechelt
With tired legs and recovering from our suffer-fest the night before – we ate some breakfast before leaving camp. On our way back through Roberts Creek, we opted to stop at the Gumboot Café for a second breakfast and some coffee. We met up with Spencer and Derek up the Access Road for a lap on Hand Solo, Built to Spill and the Roberts Creek Classic – Mach Chicken. After getting our fix of riding without the bags – we cruised over to Sechelt for a dip in the ocean and dinner at the Wobbly Canoe. As it was a long weekend – campsites were all booked up. We ended up getting a spot in the corner of a playground at Bayside Campground... according to the lady working we were the first people to have ever rented out that spot.Day 3
– Sechelt to Halfmoon Bay
After a long sleep in the playground and being woken up a handful of times from wolves howling. We hopped on the bikes to grab some breakfast at The Bakery in Sechelt – a must-stop if you're passing through. We hit the road with some new found energy and began our climb up a series of Access Roads to the top of Cabin Fever. With tired legs – this trail ended up providing some really playful riding that you could still have fun on with the big backpacks. After this – we made the decision to rip down into Halfmoon Bay. The heat and the gruelling first evening took a toll on us and at the end of the day the goal was to ride trails we wanted to ride – not just crush Access Roads from A to B. After ticking off most of the trails on our list – we decided to call it a day.
The trip ended with some lunch at the café, beers on the beach and a dip in the warm waters of Halfmoon Bay. Our skin was burnt, bikes were dirty, and the legs were heavy. We piled our gear back in the truck and made our way home.Featured Riders:
Spencer WightA big thank you to:
Sunshine Coast Tourism