Battle Over Expanding Whistler Mountain Biking Trails in Garibaldi Park Heats Up
Last week, BC Parks resisted the opportunity to expand Whistler summer trail offerings to mountain bike enthusiasts by not changing the Garibaldi Provincial Park draft management plan. Approximately 100 people consisting of members from the Whistler Off Road Cycling Association (WORCA) and other mountain biking enthusiasts attended a public meeting at the Whistler Conference Centre. For mountain biking enthusiasts, the main issue on the table was the desire to expand Whistler mountain biking trails into the Spearhead area of Garibaldi Park.
Although an overwhelming majority of respondents, 80 per cent, responded in favour of mountain biking in the Spearhead with proper management, BC Parks did not agree. The survey seem to indicate or raise expectations that BC Parks would amend the draft plan to include such mountain biking expansion in to the provincial park, however, it appears that was never the case for BC Parks.
WORCA to Present Alternate Plans to BC Parks
Staff of BC Parks continued to reiterate that ecologists had studied the alpine terrain of Spearhead in Garibaldi Park and was concerned about the cumulative usage and its impact to the local land. WORCA is looking to present a concept before Jan. 10 that would see a new trail system developed from Singing Pass to Flute and Cheakamus Lake. The plan includes the offer of volunteered manual labour to help implement the concept from WORCA members.
Next year will mark the 10th Anniversary of Crankworx in Whistler, an even that has continued to grow and build the mountain biking community in Whistler to one of the world’s best. After Whistler received a record 375,000 summer visits this year, the demand of expanded trails for mountain bikers, hikers, trail runners, and other athletes will only increase as Whistler looks to maximize and grow their summer offerings.