Maps and Riding Destinations
Hartland Mountain Bike Park (The Dump). -Updated Feb 6, 2013-
Of course, if you are talking about a mountain biking trip to Vancouver Island, you must visit Victoria at some point. We are spoiled here in Victoria to have at close proximity to downtown and official Mountain Bike Park. The Hartland Mountain Bike Park (affectionately referred to as “The Dump” for its close proximity to Victoria’s transfer station, recycling depot and of course, landfill.
Hartland MTB park is a CRD Regional Park, but it is built, managed and maintained almost exclusively by the South Island Mountain Bike Society (SIMBS) under a license agreement with the CRD. They(SIMBS) have spent the better part of 12 years working on this network of trails that dates back probably 10-12 years before that. A mixture of easy (blue) to double and triple black diamond trails, the “Dump” has it all. Check out the local bike shops listed on the links page, and pick up a trail map of the park, well worth the $$.
North Saanich Freeride Park
Do you like Dirt Jumps? Pump Tracks? Freeride skills parks? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions then the North Saanich Freeride Park is your next Victoria BC destination. Built by a dedicated group of locals over the past few years, this park has been growing in size, scale and popularity. This season it has undergone a massive re-design and is looking better than ever! This is all located just 20 minutes north of Victoria in Sunny Sydney BC.
The Freeridebc.com website has a ton of information on the park, any closures for maintenance, updates and a good photo gallery to boot. Check it out even if you dont ever plan on going there but like to ride, or follow them on Facebook.
Sooke BC. -Updated Feb 6, 2013-
Located only 45 minutes from downtown Victoria is the West Coast “gem” of a small town, Sooke BC. While there are great B&B’s, restaurants, coffee shops, bike shops and sightseeing, the main reason to go there in my opinion, the riding! Just recently the CRD announced that they have included in their parks plan an official Mountain Bike Park (multi-use) located in the Harbourview Road area just off of Juan De Fuca Hwy. While this is in the early stages of becoming a park, it already hosts an amazing network of trails and fire road with true payoff destinations making the ride up worth every second in the granny ring. The trail work here is second to none, and this will one day become a true world class destination for Mountain Bikers. Lookouts, lakes…you name it Sooke has it!
Also located in Sooke is Broom Hill. While not an official park (yet), it is a great ride, with some stellar trails and some truly dedicated and skilled locals building and maintaining the network of trails that exists there today. This is always a good ride, and well worth the effort to visit it if you have the time.
The maps below are just a sample of the EXCELLENT maps contained in the Mountain Bike Vancouver Island map book for sale on Freak Maps. These 2 maps are free to download from VIMB.com or from the Freak Maps website. If you want the full meal deal, that fits nicely into a camel back, please pick up a copy of the map book loaded with local trail maps and sweet single-track locations (all that for under $25 bucks).
Harbourview Road Map… (Click image to download PDF)
Broom Hill Map…(Click image to download PDF)
“Freak Maps” posted with the permission of Freakmaps.com Dan Cammiade
Located some 45 minutes North of Victoria BC on the Trans Canada Highway is Duncan BC, City of Totems. This is the home of 2 of my personal favorite mountain biking hills anywhere, Mt Prevost (Pre-Vost) and Mt Tzouhalem (Zoo-Hey-Lam). These are 2 very different mountains, and are only about 20 minutes apart.
Mt Tzouhalem is about 10 minutes from the center of downtown Duncan on Cowichan Bay. This hill is all about the All-Mountain bike, but a freeride or well climbing DH bike will do the trick too. Some of the buff-est trails around, and always a good time. This is a good mix of XC, AM and FR riding with some stunts tossed in to the mix.
There is a great site with some excellent maps and details on Mt Tzouhalem. The Heavy J’s Official Mt Tzouhalem Website is a great resource, check it out and be sure to say thanks for the maps and the trails!!
Mt Prevost is another animal all-together. The Island Cup DH series makes a stop here, and for a good reason, this place rips. Prevost is a DH/Freeride hill, and shuttles are more often the order of the day. Many people climb up the fire road, but the up is WAY up, so if you are doing this, be prepared. The trails are fast, flowy and technical, bring your full face and some armor, just in case.
No maps that I know of for Mt Prevost, so meet the locals, and get the tour. Experience Cycles is a good place to start, good guys and a great shop. They also have a club site, check it out.
Nanaimo BC and Mid Island Riding
Pending more research… I know there are a lot of trails up there, just need to get the details! In the meantime if you want to ride Nanaimo, check out the Nanaimo Mountain Bike Club’s website and hook up with them on a group ride. Meet new people, ride new trails! They are a great goup and have a really active FaceBook page.
Stay tuned for more trails and maps as they become available. Have some Nanaimo map links? Send them to me and I will get them online!
Courtenay/Cumberland/Comox Valley BC
I could do a lot of typing here, or I could simply point you to a friends website devoted to this area. In the interest of “KISS” or keeping it simple, I will do the latter. The Comox Valley MTB website is an excellent resource for all things Mountain Bike “up island”. Colin has done a great job on this site, and it is a superb resource for trail maps, events, local community chatter etc. I HIGHLY suggest that if you are even considering venturing up that way, and you are bring your shock bike along, visit this site. Be sure to check out the Comox Valley bike shops and pick up a local trail maps for Forbidden Plateau and the awesome trails in and around Cumberland BC.
Mount Washington (The Islands Own Gravity Park)
What more can I say about that? Yes, on Vancouver Island we even have our own lift accessed gravity park. This is the home of some of the most amazing snow in the winter, and a whole bunch of DH/Freeride trails in the summer. Get your DH on and make your way up to Mt Washington for a day or two of lift accessed DH goodness. Or, better yet mix it up with a day on the hill and a day on the trails in and around Cumberland or up on Forbidden Plateau? Either way, you cant go wrong.
From their website…
“Mount Washington Alpine Resort is located on the northern tip of the Beaufort Mountain Range on scenic Vancouver Island. Views of the Pacific Ocean, Strathcona Provincial Park, and the mainland’s Coast Mountains provide you with picture-perfect backdrops for your day of riding. If you’re looking for lift-accessed trails located in the hotbed of modern-day freeride mountain biking, please place a check-mark beside Mount Washington for your next biking adventure.
Mount Washington offers 2 high-speed lifts, one four-person and one six-person, that are fully equipped to carry your trusty ride safely and efficiently to the top of the mountain. The lifts provide quick and easy access to Mount Washington’s 37 kilometres of trails. Whether you’re into dirt jumps, wooden stunts, berms, old-school single track, or fast DH rippers, all tastes from novice to expert are catered for. Mount Washington’s experienced trail builders have created a kick-ass mountain bike playground in the heart of Vancouver Island.”
2011 Trail map PDF.
2011 Bike Park Hours of Operations
|July 15 – September 5: 11am to 7:30pm|
September 10-11 and September 17-19 : noon – 6:30pm
Ok, so this is Vancouver Island Mountain Biking, so why the Vancouver Links? I love this web page!! One of the best websites out there for maps of the Lower Mainland trails is the venerable Gutsploder! A stellar resource for anyone planning a trip out west, and looking to get a feel for the trails out here on the coast. Great trail maps, video and details on some of the most important mountain biking trails in the world are on this site… so check it out.
Image from Gutsploder.net Website
I cant imagine how many hours have gone into this website and the maps, but they are a great resource, and many thanks to those that maintain this Mountain Biking online resource.
More Maps…More Places…More Riding
There are probably hundreds of places outside of Vancouver Island and the lower mainland I could add to this page, but the reality is this is VIMB, so lets keep it local (or mostly local). If you are looking for BC based trail maps, try the Googles and search them out. There are thousands of miles of trails in BC awaiting your visit, not to mention the best lift accessed riding destinations in the world. Enjoy!!