24 Hours in the Squamish Backcountry - Photo Epic

May 17, 2016
by OneUp Components  
Photo Epic - 24hrs in the Squamish Backcountry
We all have our favourite local trails, but it’s all too easy to get stuck in the rut of only riding our go-to loops. If you're prepared to step outside your comfort zone and go in search of new trails, some epic adventures are waiting for you. Don't expect to find these routes laid out for you, though, adventure is often about taking your own paths.

Join Pat Foster and Jeremy Norris for 24 hours in the Squamish backcountry, with Reuben Krabbe behind the lens.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  Galileo's Coffee is the starting point for many Sea-to-Sky adventures. That's the ocean out the window, in case you were wondering.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  The crew started early to avoid the summer heat. It wasn't a gentle warm up, though.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  Shut up legs

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  Less than half way up and coffee seems like a distant memory.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  If it was easy, everybody would do it.

Photo Epic - 24hrs in the Squamish Backcountry
  Another group with the same objective, but with smaller calves and deeper pockets. We'll stick to earning our turns.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
The tree line in Squamish is around 1,600m and the town is at sea level. Any alpine ride is pretty hard fought.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  #SlabsOfSquamish

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  Don't believe the plus-sized hype. Bikepacking works just fine on your current rig. All you need are legs and a sense of adventure.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
Insert inspirational quote here...

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  You reap what you sew.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  A room with a view that's better than any 5 Star hotel.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
Way above the bright lights of Squampton.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  Protip: A basic Sil tarp is lighter and cheaper than any tent and no need for poles, use your bike.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  When was the last time you slept with your bike?

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  Rise and shine...

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  ...for the breakfast of champions.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
It's all downhill from here. 1,700m to go!

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
Steep and deep. #Funduro

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  Loam is where the heart is.

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe

Alpine overnighter. Rad mountain bike packing mission. Photo Reuben Krabbe
  IPA, the ultimate recovery drink. Next stop Mag's 99.

OneUp Components is proud to call Squamish, BC our home. We hope this inspires you to get off the beaten path. It doesn’t matter where you live, adventure is just a pedal away. Go Ride.

WORK LESS, RIDE MORE

oneupcomponents.com


MENTIONS: @OneUpComponents / @ReubenKrabbe




105 Comments

  • + 84
 Amazing photos pb, 90% of those could be In the running for photo of the year!
  • + 63
 The quote of the day :
Don't believe the Plus-sized hype!
  • + 10
 @enrico650: "Don't believe the plus-sized hype. Bikepacking works just fine on your current rig. All you need are legs and a sense of adventure."
Ah yes, he hit the nail right on the head with this one!
  • + 8
 @enrico650: it's crazy that people think plus bikes are for bikepacking. Mountain bikes are for bikepacking, plus tires are great for mountain biking and therefore great for bikepacking. As a fan of wide tires, I still totally agree with the quote - the best bikepacking bike is the one you take bikepacking.
  • + 1
 Was thinking the same thing
  • + 2
 A picture is truly worth 1000 words in this story. Makes me want to go ride #jobdone
  • + 1
 Especially the last one Wink
  • + 1
 Reuben is killer
  • + 39
 Reasons I love this: No special bikepacking bags. No special bikepacking bikes. No helicopters or seaplanes. 1 Thing they should mention: down sleeping bags are your friend. (So are Klymit's super cheap Static V Insulated)
  • + 39
 "Another group with the same objective, but with smaller calves and deeper pockets. We'll stick to earning our turns."

Possibly the best thing I have read on PB Smile

Great article and pictures!
  • + 15
 Love the bike-as-tarp-poles idea.
  • + 9
 Pat and Jeremy have a symbiotic relationship with that place. Building and maintaining the trails up there. Two guys that are beyond awesome. #Borca
  • + 7
 Why do we never get the general route/location of these bike-packing trip stories? Even if they're in Nepal or somewhere, I'd love to see the approximate area being ridden on a map.
  • + 4
 because they don't want punters like me to find out where they went
  • + 3
 4th pic makes it look like they climbed up the fsr behind Britannia Beach (south of Squamish, where Galileo Coffee shop is) toward Sky Pilot mountain. Never been up there so I dunno if that's right or not but there are trails up there and people do heli drops. If this is supposed to be a secret I'll edit this msg but it's pretty easy to tell from the photos.
  • - 1
 got ya covered...see above
  • + 1
 @racerfacer: Why not are these private trails or something.
  • + 6
 These are not secret trails by any means, they say it's above Squamish, most locals know exactly where they are and there were many articles on PB about this area. I think they just wanted to keep the sense of adventure, as with the quote "Don't expect to find these routes laid out for you, though, adventure is often about taking your own paths"
  • + 1
 @lanka: agreed. If you need your hand held then by all means ask for the Gps
  • + 6
 What I would like to see is a pack list for a one nighter like this. As far as gear goes I have a good idea, but what are you eating? I'm typically hungry about an hour after breakfast (what most people would consider a large breakfast). What do you start the day with, snacks, lunch etc...
  • + 6
 A) this trailsystem is no secret B) if you choose to go be aware that this is some real steep sea to sky gnar...you be better off seeing how you do on the less epic equally hard trails before wandering off on this trail...tuff rescue if your not up to snuff...C) if you do how be very nice to the trials moto community that rides up in that area....they have been there long before pinkbike started to cover the area and they are to be thanked for most of the trails built and maintained in that area D) last I was there ( on a trials moto, since the trails are above my pay grade on a bike..engine braking is my friend on steeps) there were no trail markers and you can quickly get in way over your head and drop down the wrong side of a trail if you don't know your way...so go with a local
  • + 5
 Bike packing is easy to do like that when you're going out for one night with the city still in view. More nights require more food, water, and possibly gear; hence the fat bike/hardtail method. Its not hype if you're ACTUALLY bike packing. One nighters are fun though.
  • + 9
 Expensive XX1 build on the tent poles.
  • + 3
 Now that looks proper out in the wilds. Genuine question, are bears a concern for bikers ? just interested in that kind of thing given I ride in a country where the nastiest think is an irritable squirrel.
  • + 13
 Yes we have a good amount of relatively harmless black bears here in Squamish. mommas with cubs are an issue, but make lots of noise and they tend to leave. We have had the odd Grizzly here as well. The bigger grizzly population is 75km or so north from us. The biggest predator to be worried about is cougars. Thriving population of those. Typically you don't see them until they are attached to your neck. But that doesn't happen often.
  • + 3
 @onemind123: When I occassionally ride out west I'm always so damn worried about cougars. Feel like we are the perfect meal for a cat. Easier to catch than a deer and no antlers getting in the way.
  • + 1
 Thanks both for taking time to reply, always associated Canada with bears not cougars - can't imagine going out for a ride and being on the menu. A small (!) price to pay for riding the best trails in the world.
  • + 3
 We have the same problem here in Utah, but if you don't keep food in your tent and hang it up high and away from camp, it is not a concern. We hear about cougar sightings, but there are so many deer, I have never heard of one actually attacking someone on a mountain bike. But I don't think I could sleep right on the ground, I don't want mice or bugs crawling in my ears. Fullly ripstop enclosed when I am out in the wild, thank you very much.
  • + 2
 @onemind123: "Typically you don't see them until they are attached to your neck. But that doesn't happen often."

Oh, well thats ok then! Big Grin
  • + 1
 @onemind123: My wife had one stalking her recently by Seymour. Took several minutes of screaming and waving her bike around before it left.
  • + 1
 @Norski: I'm from Wales originally and was paranoid about bumping into the wild life when we moved here first, couple of bear encounters later and plenty of time out riding and it's surprising how you get used to it - scarier parts of the Valleys and Newport Wink
  • + 2
 @SteveH250: you may have a point about Newport....
  • + 2
 My longest travel on a bike was nearly 98km from my city (Antofagasta) to a small town (Mejillones), daylight, almost 28°C highest and same sized backpacks full of food and water, nearly 5 liters... Here in the desert you can't find water easily.
  • + 5
 Omg insane pictures, I should study but my mind is riding. Nice phrases too
  • + 3
 Well done Jeremy, quite a mission that was. Killer pics. Any pinkbikers looking to ride some of these Squamish gems this summer check out www.ridebc.ca. I'll show ya around!
  • + 1
 Great article on a beautiful zone. Pinkbike devs, the parallax scrolling on some of these images really doesn't work (I've seen it in a few other articles too over the last year and I personally don't see it fitting the format).
  • + 4
 You know, I'm not even jealous at all. This 60 meter hill is more than enough.
  • + 2
 Love the photos but arrghhh whatever the transition (moving while I scroll down) you're doing on some of the full width images genuinely make me feel motion-sick Frown .
  • + 1
 Going to Squamish in July! 3 days at Alice Lake, then 3 days in Pemberton, on our way home from the Island.
Thanks a lot, now it'll seem like forever until we go (I sound like my kids).
  • + 1
 Nice job! But really, there are so many other IPAs I would have chosen than the one you guys were drinking. That beer is the Budweiser of the craft world, horrible horrible beer.
  • + 13
 Ha ha, true! The general store was all out of Fat Tug, so it was the best of a bad bunch!
  • + 0
 @OneUpComponents: check out some of the offerings from Yellow Dog. I don't think I will ever drink Fat Tug again!
  • + 1
 @cornichons: The Smoked Porter and ISBA from Yellow Dog are up there on our list as well...
  • + 1
 @cornichons: : never say never to the Fat Tug. Until this past Sunday I hadn't had one of those for 6 months or so. It was a reminder what quality complex beer that is. One of the best for sure.

Yellow dog is killing it. When we ride Eagle we'll sometimes extend the ride to finish off at Yellow Dog or Moody Ales. The trails from Eagle mountain can pretty much finish off a stones throw from the four breweries in Port Moody.
  • + 2
 Was thinking... how are the photos so good? Then I realized it was Reuben Krabbe... thats why.
  • + 3
 "Sow" not "sew".

Very cool adventure.
  • + 2
 Naw, man, they made their own packs!
  • + 1
 @MtbSince84: that's what I originally thought. that or the tents. but i was hungover and decided i wasn't thinking straight.
  • + 1
 Awesome photo epic, fellas. I really enjoyed this - especially like the shot captioned #SlabsofSquamish - is that Mt. Garibaldi in between the crevasse?
  • + 2
 Damn it pinkbike, why do you always have to show me everything i could be doing rather than revising!!
  • + 3
 No big deal just another sea to sky ride "out in the back yard"!
  • + 4
 Squamptastic.
  • + 1
 What a lesson! I can go out and do this right now, I have a backpack and a tarp. Awesome!
  • + 2
 I just got home from work. Did I miss anything?
  • + 2
 Wow , amazing photos. Well Done!!
  • + 1
 does anyone knows where i can get a ´tent` like the one these guys are using?
  • + 1
 The lower road accent is through private land and mountain bikers are no longer a welcome to trespass, just sayin.
  • + 1
 Say it aint so?
  • + 2
 @boxxerace: It aint so. Well it is and it aint. If you get caught it is and if you don't it aint. Live free or die.
  • + 1
 Awesome! Such a killer trip. To plan more Squamish adventures and navigate with Trailforks data, check out www.ridespots.com
  • + 1
 Wait was that a dude hanging from a helicopter on his bike? or just the bike?
  • + 1
 Just the bikes
  • + 1
 @LucWicklund: it must be true, i'm blind..
  • + 1
 Looks awesome! Got a route recommendation for others who might want to do a ride such as this?
  • - 2
 Yes... Check out www.ridespots.com
  • + 2
 Would anyone have a packing list for a ride like this?
  • + 1
 Awesome. Great stuff pinkbike, oneup, Pat and Jeremy. This is exactly why I come here.
  • + 1
 Those were some epic photos and an excellent adventure. Wish I could get more riding like that myself.
  • + 2
 Disneyland?
  • - 1
 Disneyland is in California.
  • + 2
 @cornichons: Thanks for that buddy.
  • + 0
 @cornichons: yup, that's the one I want everyone reading this going to.......
  • + 1
 @onemind123: looks like a sweet ride and some epic photos. nice work on earning your turns.

But not sure what your trying to accomplish by blowing this up on pinkbike and then at the same time wanting to keep it a secret??
  • + 1
 @whatyousaid: if it is a secret it's a pretty piss poor one. Super easy to do. Even organizing the heli drop is semi affordable with a group of four.
  • + 2
 We really have to get off our asses and do it this summer...
  • + 1
 @onemind123: any idea who to contact for a heli drop on this?
  • + 1
 @supercusty: check in swith the guys at www.blacktuskhelicopter.com - they have reasonable rates, fly out of Squamish, and most important a good safety record.
  • + 0
 @supercusty: probably a helicopter tour company Wink
  • + 1
 @onemind123: heli drop would be sweet if the price is cheap just to experience flying in a helicopter, never been.

But I'm all about earning your turns and enjoy climbing...curious how much hike -a- bike there is on this route?
  • + 0
 @whatyousaid: there is shitloads of hike a bike on it which is why it's an overnighter if you are not using a heli drop.

My wife and I agree it's worth it to spend a few hundred bucks if it means being home at night with the kids.
  • + 0
 @onemind123: We've done it up and back in a day. Lots of hike a bike, but manageable if you're fit.

I'd spend a few hundred bucks if it guaranteed not being around kids ;-)
  • + 1
 Truly bromantic! Great photos. Looking forward to doing it this summer.
  • + 1
 there i wanna ride right now !
  • + 1
 This was so inspirational. Cant find words. I ll do this adventure too!!!!
  • + 1
 Killer pics!! Beautiful part of the world!!
  • + 1
 how much weight was in the packs at the start of the trip?
  • + 1
 i also want to know how much was the weight in the packs, i have ever had a bike trip with a bit heavy thing to carry in my back pack and i think its not a good idea. it gives me pain on my shoulder. next time, i'd better put things tied on my bike and let my shoulder free.
  • + 1
 I'd like to see and hear more gear tips for a 24-48hr sortie
  • + 1
 Yeh gents, stoked to see the article and foto's from this one! Nice work!
  • + 0
 Gonna kill that dropper post leaving it upside down all night
  • + 3
 Get real. We leave lots of bikes upside down at night with all brands of dropper and nothing happens to them.
  • + 0
 @vikb: Even the mfgs tell you not to do it.
  • + 1
 @owlie: Link please
  • + 2
 @owlie: So in other words you have nothing to back up your BS claim.
  • + 0
 @vikb: In other words, you want me to google it for you.
  • + 1
 @owlie: Nope. I read did the research and there is nothing to google. You are talking BS. I told my bike mechanic about your upside down dropper worries and he says you owe him $5 for making him laugh so hard he spewed coke onto his workstand.
  • + 1
 Awesome photos!!
  • + 0
 I have that sleeping pad!!!!
  • + 1
 awesome.

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