Photos by John Gibson
Singletrack 6 kicked off under clear blue skies, balmy temperatures, and high spirits. Today’s stage covered 40 kilometers and climbed 1800 meters through the Kananaskis Country. The first 5 kilometers was double track and gravel road, but once the race hit singletrack, it never let up, all the way to the finish.
Riders entered the first section of trail guarded by this menace. It was a fair warning, but the trails turned out to be nothing but heavenly. Narrow winding old school singletrack climbs fast, open flow-trail descents, and everything in between greeted riders as they work their way up and over Moose Mountain.
The first timed descent of the week today was from the highest point of the race. The Race of Spades trail had many so-called "TTF's" or technical trail features, and kept everyone on their toes. The name of the game was getting loose, and putting in your best effort not to go over the bars or clip a tree on the steep, tight trail.
Miles of Smiles and a beard that could break your girlfriend’s heart. Riders today where stoked on the amount and variety of trail. It was nearly impossible to find someone not having an awesome time.
A rider in the open men 40+ category does his best to not get too up-close-and-personal with some of the trees. With handlebars getting wider every year, there are numerous bark scars throughout the trail network where riders got a little too friendly with the locals.
"Just over that next hill" isn't a phrase you want to hear when inquiring about the location of the finish line around here. It’s hard to argue with a view like this though. Over that hill is another and another, all the way into the Kootenays and eastern British Columbia–the destination for the next great day of Singletrack 6 at Nipika Lodge near Radium, BC.
These nice ladies from Brazil where exceeding the 15 pieces of flair protocol no problem. The number of international riders at the race is outstanding, with over 40 countries represented on the start line. People from all over the world love singletrack!