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DH in GTA?

This topic contains 15 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Whynot 4 years, 9 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 16 total)
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  • #808450

    Gar
    Participant

    We are trying to find out how many riders would be interested in an outdoor bike park close to the GTA.

    Thoughts?

    Please take a minute to complete this survey.

    https://acuitybrands.az1.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_6tWymH1e9haCI0B

    #808504

    Whynot
    Participant

    Hopefully you get enough responses to help you assess the opportunity.

    #808515

    jcitizen
    Participant

    I’d be so pumped if there was some lift/shuttle access runs within half an hour of the city. Like skiing, I don’t need much elevation, I just want to take advantage of cool terrain, and I think around the GTA there are a couple of lumps that would be fun to rip down. Going to Blue is just not an option for me now as a young dad, nor am I stoked to drive 5 hours in a day for 4 hours of riding when the don is 12min from my house.

    #808520

    Gar
    Participant

    Glad the thought has sparked a bit of interest! The people I have talked with in the community regarding this idea have all been very optimistic. I truly hope the survey results prove the same. It would be helpful if everyone would share the survey link on facebook.

    Cheers!

    #808524

    FastTimes
    Keymaster

    I’ve shared it on our FB page @gar It links back to here so that the topic can be discussed on the forums, enabling feedback and comments from the community beyond what is provided with a survey alone.

    #808525

    jcitizen
    Participant

    Even a set of DH specific tracks that could be reached by a smooth paved climb for self-shuttling would be nice. Riding the trail up always seems to compromise the trail down. There’s actually a system in Pittsburgh in Frick Park kinda like this. A bunch of single track and a bit of elevation for you to rip down and then a nice gravel path you can role up slow on.

    #808536

    Gar
    Participant

    That’s great! Thanks @fasttimes.

    That’s not a bad idea @jcitizen. An easy climbing trail would be okay, especially with elevation in the area being what it is. I just thought a shuttle might help riders get the most out of their day.

    #808537

    Neville Park
    Participant

    @gar – I’m totally into the idea of a loop that focuses in on DH / bike park. climbing or shuttle is cool by me, I don’t mind earning em’

    So you are looking local to Orangeville / Hockley Valley area?
    Any thoughts on Dagmar / Lakeridge / Skyloft zone? (oak ridges moraine i should say)?

    Take a look at the Inverhuron bike park too … their website is terrible, but the lines they have created are pretty heavy for the elevation they have (sub few hundred feet) … ughh and all the youtube stuff i found is terrible.. kinda would have to go and check it yourself.

    #808538

    jcitizen
    Participant

    That’s great! Thanks @fasttimes.

    That’s not a bad idea @jcitizen. An easy climbing trail would be okay, especially with elevation in the area being what it is. I just thought a shuttle might help riders get the most out of their day.

    Shuttle is the dream, but I’ll take whatever I can get, haha. Good luck with this.

    #808539

    FastTimes
    Keymaster

    I am with @jcitizen I would be totally happy with an enduro, earn your turns, style track. Certainly makes the best use of the new breed of ultra capable 160mm bikes. These are the bikes that most folks have so it makes sense to offer this as many of us like to grind up.

    I bought a membership at Kelso this summer so that I could do this very thing and really enjoyed it. It was pretty lame but it was still fun and that’s what it’s all about. It’s the best we have within a short drive and after a dozen climbs and descents, I felt pretty happy, even challenged. Kelso has some decent terrain and has traditionally drawn the largest turnout for DH events in Southern Ontario. Being able to ride the 3-4 different tracks that we’ve raced on is what makes it unique in this regard.

    That being said, given that with some initiative you can do this at Kelso already, the question then becomes what would need to be build for the DH portion of the proposed park to make it better/different. Or would simple getting Kelso to run the lift for the big bike crowd be what we’re after? Or are the majority of riders after a flowy jump park?

    Personally, I like rocky and rooty, natural trails over build up tracks so this would be the best option for me. I don’t even take advantage of Sunnyside and it’s numbers indicate that others don’t either so I would carefully research whether a gravity fed equivalent will attract more riders and be sustainable. A mix of both would be the best I think. Maintenance, volunteering and other operational issues are things that we can learn the do and don’ts from Sunnyside as well. Though I think there would be more support and volunteering if this park is build from the ground up with input and support from the community.

    #808544

    matthewg
    Participant

    I agree with the pedal/walk up plan. It will keep cost lower and enviro impact lower which will hopefully make it more realistic. I think most of our XC trails are pretty wicked but would like to see more built up features. Whether they be jumps, drops, skinnys, berm etc. it was be nice to have more to get gnarly. It would be nice to have more public places built for more advanced riders that aren’t full on XC guys.

    I rode Ganaraska Forest yesterday and with their hills and space there is huge potential more more feature laden trails. Some of the stuff in Durham forest is a step in the right direction but it would be nice to have more ‘North Shore’ style features in the middle of some more advanced trails.

    I feel like our liability system will make this difficult.

    #808548

    Gar
    Participant

    I know what your saying @fasttimes, I love the natural stuff too, but I’m not sure I agree with your thoughts on the flowy stuff not being a big draw. I’ve just starting researching, so I don’t have any concrete numbers as of yet, but my experience at Blue this year was that the majority of riders I talked with were heading for Haloe and H2O.

    I don’t think we can look to Sunnyside as any sort of indication as to weather or not riders want bike park style gravity runs. I tend to think that if Sunnyside were in a better location it would see a lot more traffic. I believe the majority of mountain bikers escape the city, or at least it’s surroundings, (ie. The Don Valley) to experience their ride. We just don’t have anything close by that pushes progression in the woods other than our local hike a bike trails.

    I love the Ganny @matthewg, I ride there twice a week. I race Paul’s. And yes, there is some decent elevation in there, but it’s a conservation area with some amazing single track, that’s it.

    I don’t dislike the thought of an “easy climb” or “earn your descend” style park, I just don’t think it would draw riders the way a full on lift or shuttle access park would.

    #808578

    Whynot
    Participant

    Natural and flow trails would be ideal. I think attendance at Blue since they’ve opened flow trails is a good indicator of demand for such trails compared to Sunnyside (location has got to be a huge drawback for that park becoming a destination for non-local riders).

    Maybe consider allowing the ability to earn ones turns or access a shuttle, with fees set accordingly (i.e. much reduced ticket for a non-shuttle pass) would be an interesting model to consider.

    I also wonder if a private club-type model may help alleviate liability concerns and costs? Ask for a small memebrship fee to ride the park (which could come with equivalent value of day passes so it isn’t really extra cost to riders but on paper allows you to operate like a private club instead of a public facility).

    #808581

    jcitizen
    Participant

    It’s true, if the terrain demands big bikes people will not accept having to ride up. I like the idea of being able to ride up for a lesser rate, though. I’d pretty much only be hitting flow trails, so my burly hardtail would suffice.

    Good luck with this. I’d love to see something come of it.

    #809221

    singlesprocket
    Participant

    hockley valley had some downhill runs in the past. we actually started building a dh run at one of the ski places there quite a few years ago.

    the reality is unless you pair it up with other activities it will be hard to keep the lights on. your roi is just not there.

    from a municipal/region perspective it makes more sense to put in a skill/bmx park or an extensive trail network.

    with regards to sunnyside i think there has to be a realistic reconsideration of the layout dependent on the frequency of use. from my observations about half of the park needs to be reworked.

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