SIMBS Cumberland Weekend…

The Whole Gang...

The Saturday Epic Ride Gang…

The South Island Mountain Bike Society [SIMBS] is an advocacy group for my part of Vancouver Island. They do good things like plan and build new trails. They maintain the trails we already have and represent the mountain bike community as needed with local agencies. Last week they had a weekend getaway planned for members in Cumberland BC. With a $20 donation to the local trail building group you got a bed at the Riding Fool Hostel, free burgers and free beer…plus a guided group ride Saturday and Sunday.

Getting to Cumberland...

Getting to Cumberland…

Sharon was feeling good after Hornby Island so we decided to join in the fun.

The Saturday ride was epic at nearly 5hrs long and covered some amazing trails. Far rougher and more technical than Hornby Island we got to put our bikes through their paces. One thing that was really neat was the large number of beginner friendly bridges and wooden stunts. Typical stunts are expert only affairs, but the trails we rode nice wide bridges that were long and suitable for anyone beyond the beginner level.

Click for larger map and GPS track...

Click for larger map and GPS track…

It was a lot of fun to ride with a big group of 12 or so SIMBS members. Thankfully I wasn’t the slowest rider so I got to enjoy the ride at a comfortable pace.

Cranking to the top...

Cranking to the top…

I was glad to have a guide to show us the way and I ran my GPS to capture the route so I could go back and ride it again at a later date. Hopefully with my DSLR to properly capture the riding potential of this area.

Sharon about to fly...

Sharon about to fly…

We were surprisingly energetic after the big day and the Riding Fool Hostel is a very comfortable spot to shower, relax with a beer and tell some lies about the day’s adventure. I made my way to bed around midnight when things started to get a little on the crazy side after emptying both kegs of beer.

Chilling at the hostel...

Chilling at the hostel…

I got up early on Sunday and scored a delicious breakfast at Mar’s on Main before a slightly smaller group set out for a less ambitious ride. I was having a lot of fun and feeling strong on the second day. We re-rode a few trails from Saturday which meant I could really hit the gas now that I knew what lay ahead.

Michael on his Nimble 9...

Michael on his Nimble 9…

Sadly one of our group crashed pretty hard and needed to get back to his truck so I escorted him down the mountain on the main logging roads. It was a shame to miss that last 90mins of trail riding, but you gotta look out for one another on the trails. I’d appreciate someone else doing that for me.

The Lazy One...

The Lazy One…

I had a total blast in Cumberland and the Nomad is the right bike for the fast rough trails. I’m happy that I can get there in 3hrs and have the Riding Fool Hostel as an affordable base of operations.

Joanne shredding on her Bronson...

Joanne shredding on her Bronson…

Thanks to everyone at SIMBS that was involved in making the event happen. πŸ™‚

One of many wooden structures...

One of many wooden structures…

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3 thoughts on “SIMBS Cumberland Weekend…

  1. Hey Vik – I read a comment of yours somewhere that you’re not loving the Ibis HDR 650. Is it because of the rear tire clearance issue, or are you just not liking the ride? I’m looking to upgrade from an old 100mm x-country bike to a Bronson/HDR type rig and I’d love to hear your opinion. Thanks!

    • @Kilowati – I was ready to buy an Ibis for my next MTB based on the great performance of the Mojo HD, but I wanted 650B wheels. So I waited patiently to see what they came out with this year.

      The HDR is a 130mm 650B bike with limited room for bigger tires such as the Conti Trail King 2.4″ which is what I am currently running on my Nomad. You can tweak the HDR for more travel in 650B mode by modifying the shock, but it’s a hack fix and the poor tire clearance remains and you end up messing with the BB height.

      Basically the old HD was convertible to 650B with the same limitations so this new bike is really not very new and offers nothing substantially different.

      So I gave up on it. I want a nice build and I’ll keep my bike for 3-6yrs so I don’t want to buy something that’s heavily compromised right out of the box. I’m sure Ibis will fix these issues in the next year or two, but I’ve given up waiting. When I need my next next MTB I’ll see what they have to offer.

      Three great 650B choices that are currently available in the 6″ of travel zone:

      – Lenz Lunchbox 29er or 650B
      – Knolly Warden 650B
      – SC Bronson

      These bikes all have the travel I am looking for and lots of room for big tires and reasonably high BBs for rocky terrain.

  2. Thanks Vik – you’re the man!

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