In the lead-up to the last Crankworx Whistler in 2019, organizers received a message asking if there would be any adaptive events during the festival.
At the time, no such thing existed on the Crankworx World Tour, but with a passion for getting as many people on bikes as possible, as well as three years of experience working with the Whistler Adaptive Sports Program in the winter, Crankworx’ Kidsworx supervisor Carly Fox took the suggestion and ran with it.
“At the time, it was just kind of starting to gain some traction in other areas and with other types of bikes in terms of downhill adaptive racing and adaptive biking,” she said.
“So we thought, ‘Well, there’s actually probably a good chunk of people that hadn’t considered that mountain biking would be a sport for them as a wheelchair user or someone with limited mobility or mobility challenges.’ So, in 2019, we made it a jam session and invited anyone who wanted to try an adaptive bike to come up Whistler Mountain, and we had a handful of Whistler Adaptive’s cross-country bikes for use.”
Despite the limited equipment and modest amount of people in the first year, Fox considers the 2019 Jam Session to have been a complete success. However, with adaptive mountain biking blowing up over the last two years, she is expecting this year’s sessions to be even more popular and has worked hard to make participation even easier for whoever wants to join.
Overall, this year’s adaptive sessions will consist of multiple guided tours throughout the valley’s extensive trail network on bikes donated from Bowhead Cycles and Whistler Adaptive, including e-bikes, assisted handcycle bikes and cross-country bikes.
The sessions will feature coaches from Whistler Adaptive and Kootenay Adaptive Sport, as well as some professional adaptive athletes who will be on hand to give pointers.
The Adaptive Jam Session is free for anyone interested. The fun gets underway on Thursday, Aug. 11 in Lot 2, with trail-ride tours starting at 10 a.m. and then at noon.
Anyone interested can email Fox at email@example.com.