Since we decided to stay on the island last weekend rather than try and find some off island mountain biking for Sharon’s birthday we figured we should at least hit some new trails. We’ve heard lots of good things about the riding at Mount Tzouhalem aka The Zoo near Duncan BC. It’s an easy 1 hr drive north for us. So we loaded up the car and hit the road.
We managed to wrangle our friends Deanna and Sean into coming along to check out the new trails.
Not wanting to get lost of spend too much time futzing with a paper map I found a promising looking GPS track online and downloaded it to my Garmin Etrex 20.
After an hour of changing tires and multiple tubes on S&D’s Hecklers we finally got them – mostly – rideable! Those bikes seem to always have mechanical issues and there is talk of replacing them with new 650B Hecklers from Santa Cruz. **fingers crossed**!!
One of the things we had heard about The Zoo was the trails were smoother and flowy. This was in fact true. Although there were some rough sections of BC roots and rocks – for the most part the trails we explored were buff and had a super fun flow to them.
While I wouldn’t call the riding easy – there are lots of steep climbs to deal with and there is a reasonable amount of technical riding, but overall the character of the trails is less demanding than say Hartland or Cumberland.
There were lots of wooden structures to play on and quite a few dirt jumps to launch off. These weren’t as beginner friendly as the ones we rode in Cumberland, but as long as you looked before you leaped there was something for everyone. As a plus the trails were really dry – unlike the riding close in to Victoria where the winter slickness has started.
Thanks to whomever posted that GPS track online. It was a great ride and we really enjoyed every bit of it. Now that we know the lay of the land we’ll explore some other riding at the Zoo on out next visit.
I’m going to say this is our favourite riding spot on the island at the moment. The quality of the trails and the ease of getting there make it pretty hard to resist. I think you’ll be seeing lots more Mount Tzouhalem riding posts from us.