WORCA expands focus on trails, freeriders 

Members to get more for their money

The Whistler Off-Road Cycling Association is ramping up for another busy year of trail advocacy, trail maintenance, races, riding clinics and other special events.

At the same time the group will continue to expand its focus on recruiting the growing local community of downhillers and freeriders in Whistler – with the help of the municipality, Whistler-Blackcomb, and local businesses.

"We’re doing a few new things this year for our members that will help to get people out," says WORCA president Tony Horn.

"The municipality and Whistler-Blackcomb have been great, totally supportive of WORCA, so we’re basically building on those partnerships, and giving people incentives to join."

One of the larger projects on the slate for this year is a freeride park in the Rainbow Park area on the side of Alta Lake Road. WORCA will use the park to host clinics, and it will likely be open to the public.

According to Horn it will be a developmental park with stunts for beginner, intermediate and expert riders. WORCA will use the municipality’s new bicycle trail grading standards to mark the difficulty level of every stunt in the park the same way that the mountains mark their runs.

"Stunts are part of every trail these days, but there’s really nowhere you can go to safely practice and improve," says Horn.

Another project that will go into high gear this summer is the construction of the Foreplay multipurpose trail.

Last year WORCA was granted $10,000 to finish Foreplay by a local development group to compensate for the trails that are being impacted by the construction of a new subdivision in the area known as the B.C. Rail Lands. Whole sections of Danimal, Beaver Pass and 99er are either being lost or diverted as a result of the development.

The municipality is also funding the construction of a suspension bridge over Wedge Creek, which will allow trail builder Chris Markle to link the completed section of Foreplay to the Green Lake Loop.

The group has another $8,000 to fund trail maintenance on other trails from a combination of membership fees and municipal grants. Markle was awarded the maintenance contract for the second year in a row.

WORCA will also continue to rely on volunteer trail maintenance days and nights for a lot of the work. However, to sweeten the deal this year, WORCA will be offering a two-day getaway to the Mike Wiegele Bike Festival in September to the person who comes out for the most trail maintenance events.

The Pemberton Off-Road Mountain Bike Club already held its first trail maintenance day of the year, which was also attended by members of WORCA and the Pemberton Valley Trails Association.

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