Alpine Bike Parks Installs First Concrete Pump Track in North America

Dec 21, 2014 at 10:51
by Judd de Vall  

For a few years now, our crew at Alpine Bike Parks has been inspired by Claudio Calouri's concrete pump track work in Europe and finally we got the opportunity to build our own here in North America.

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We had our little test rider Eli Shostak take some laps in another torrential storm. It was a beautiful thing to see a kid carving turns in the rain!!:

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Riders in Powell River, BC are the stoked and lucky crew to get a new bike park this winter that includes a concrete pump track, a kids downhill trail and multiple slope style trails. The project was funded by a grant from the Powell River Community Forest with support from the Powell River Cycling Association. When combined with the nearby skate bowl (old school for sure) and new skate plaza by Spectrum Skateparks, it makes a great actions sports facility.

This is the concept plan for the facility:

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By the time we got to design development, we changed the pump track design to the design you see below. The layout is symmetrical and allows head-to-head style racing starting from a slanted start gate. This design was inspired by the SRAM/Adam Billinghurst/Kenny Smith creation at this years Whistler Crankworx. Being based in Whistler is awesome because it allows us to garner inspiration from all the incredible builders in town. For those who are not interested in head-to-head racing and are looking to get creative there are tons of alternate lines for cruising. No need to get stuck in a rut!

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The prep process prior to the final surface of concrete is extensive and more expensive than even the best possible dirt. Multiple lifts of highly compacted road base allowed us to build up the design, even in wet weather. Originally we were going to surface the track with asphalt but we were concerned about whether the shapes would be right. It turns out that your features need to be shaped differently so that they work well once concrete is applied.

Here is the track with drainage installed and the road base fully compacted:

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Here's the sub base prepped with wire mesh and rebar with the first truck rolling up:

Alpine Bike Parks Canada

Once it comes out of the truck it goes into a line pump and then gets spread out before being free formed. Lucas Fulgham of Earthramp Bike Parks (Vanier Park in Vancouver/ Kush Trails) has been working with us for two years now and we are proud to have him shaping dirt and here screeding concrete:

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Late night finishing work from the boys at Creative Concrete:

Alpine Bike Parks Canada

Here's the finished pump track. The concrete surface is ever-so-slightly rougher than a skatepark, which maximizes the traction in the berms. By hiring concrete shapers with skatepark experience we were able to get the shapes we wanted. Thanks to Brian from Radius Contracting, Creative Concrete of Comox Valley, BC and Mike and Matt for getting this done in a pinch:

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Alpine Bike Parks would like to thank the City of Powell River, the Powell River Cycling Association, the Powell River Community Forest and everyone else who has helped to make this project a reality. We care about the future of bike parks and want to design and build the highest quality parks possible. We would love to work with your community to make your bike park dreams a reality. Alpine Bike Parks is a licensed contractor in the USA and Canada and we are insured to work globally. Mountain biking feeds our families so please reach out to us and see what we can bring to the table.

Contact: Judd de Vall, Principal
Cell: 604-902-2552 - Toll Free: 1-800-924-5690 - Email: judd@alpinebikeparks.com

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5 Comments

  • + 5
 Very cool! I would like to visit. I hope we get something like this in North Van.
  • + 2
 What advantage do you see in using these pre-fabricated lips and other features over wooden ones created on site?
  • + 4
 Cities and municipalities prefer them because they are engineered and is easier to deal with from a liability stand point. I have worked with alpine on a project in the past (invergarry bike park in surrey bc ) and it was a huge success. The flow form lips are awesome and way sturdier and more durable than wood framed lips. Great work on this latest one Judd!
  • + 1
 Huge victory! When I was younger we would write letters to our government asking for a section of land to build trails and now they got it! Super stoked!
  • + 1
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