Located towards the eastern end of the Fraser Valley; the 6,000 person town of Hope, B.C. is the only town in that region without any meaningful number of trails listed on Trailforks
or in the Locals' Guide to Fraser Valley Rides (guidebook purchase through Pinkbike
). Even after asking local boys like Trailforks' founder Trevor May one does not get a good feel for why this is the case. No meaningful trail network came to be in Hope, unlike in many other small BC towns where trailbuilding grew organically as a wild, unplanned, chaotic volunteer based effort .
The dearth of biking facilities changed officially as of June 20, 2015 when the Hope Bike Park
officially opened (official name: Coquihalla River Community Park
). Located at Kawkawa Lake Road just next to the Coquihalla campground the bike park is on city-granted land. With 2.5 acres to build, Hoots Inc.
managed to incorporate 3 pump tracks, 7 different jump lines (beginner, intermediate, advanced and pro
). The area was left wooded so the dirt won't cook in summer and various TTFs including the 91m long Logzilla log ride fir feature. There is water close by so it can be easily maintained. In short, it's a large, perfect location.
Pathway Partners, volunteers and the Hope Bike ParkPathway Partners
of Hope was the main driver of the Hope Bike Park. Pathway is a volunteer organization backed by the town of Hope working towards "promot[ing] healthy self-propelled living for the residents of Hope and its Visitors
" through trails and greenways development. As explained by Pathways' volunteer Stephanie the organization applied for and won a one-time $480,000 BC provincial government made available during the 2012 by-election. Stakeholders and volunteers then put their heads together to brainstorm about what to do with this unexpected windfall. The town of Hope made the city property greenspace available catalyzing other volunteer donations of time and money to create an opportunity for greenspace and trail development amenities to be developed close to the town's urban environment.
Since then there have been subsequent large donations (Regional District: $80,000; Nestle Waters Canada $40,000; Valley Helicopters $10,000 among many donors
). Jay Hoots of Hoots Inc. said that it's been a pleasure working with the community, its volunteers and the town of Hope on this project. A key has been that Hoots Inc. was brought in at an early stage to design and plan the park. Early engineering plans to clearcut the greenspace were scrapped and the trees and undergrowth was preserved; which means that the ground hasn't decomposed to sand due to solar and also that subsequent maintenance of the park will be relatively easy.
On the left - Sharon of MTBTrails discussing donating park benches to the Hope Bike Park in memory of her brother. On the right - uber volunteer coordinator Stephanie of Pathway Partners
The Hoots crew proud of their work. Front row L to R: Alan, Paul, Ben and Ben. Rear: Jay Hoots
Initial plan drawings for the Park
Sign for the park
There was substantial volunteer work from Hope locals for the Bike Park. Here are Rick and Kelly
Provincial and regional fire crews came out to help during down-time while waiting for forest fires
Volunteer raking of the pumptracks
More volunteers congregating to get assignments
Ben watering the jumps
Jay on the machine
Alan on the compactor
The Riding and the lines
We managed to shoot some pictures and video the week before the Hope Bike Park opened, but unfortunately couldn't make the grand opening.
The Bike Park's location is convenient for anyone travelling the TransCanada highway to drop by and take a look. Everyone is welcome to ride the lines. Hope, its community and the volunteers of Hope are to be applauded for such foresight and the vision to allow this rider-designed and rider-built park to come to fruition.
Paul on Logzilla
Ben on one of the many jump lines
Paul testing his newly raked pumptrack line
Jay on one of the whalebacks leading to the middle pumptrack
Alan giving the thumbs up to the advanced jumps
Alan and Ben testing the dirt pro line
Alan dropping into the wood booster pro line
Team approves of the Ben and Alan boost factory
Alan going for max vert
Ben going head over heels on the booster pro line
More pictures here