Forbidden Plateau logging starting sooner than expected

UROC has been asked to communicate the following harvesting information from TimberWest. Although this area falls outside of the URoC – TW land use agreement area we will work with TW to minimize impact to trails where operationally possible and remove debris for trail reconstruction.

“We are planning to log the block CW001 near Forbidden Plateau beginning later this week or early next week. Generally some sections of the impacted trails will be cut but they will have to be closed during harvesting operations. The harvesting will be done by a contractor and we will do our best to minimize impacts to the trails.”

Affected trails to include:

Upper Cabin Fever, Cabin Fever, Gecko, Two Sheiks, Screamin Deamon, Iron Horse.

Please follow any signage and please respect the boundaries of the logging activities.


Bike trails at Mount Washington headed in a new direction

COMOX VALLEY, VANCOUVER ISLAND – Following a three-year hiatus, the chairlifts will once again be spinning this summer for lift-accessed mountain biking at Mount Washington Alpine Resort. The trail crew has been working steadily throughout the spring for an anticipated mid-July opening. They have been using new techniques to re-build some of the old trails and working to add new trails to the range of offerings.

Mike Manara, who is responsible for the design and construction of the Bike Park, recently spent three days riding over 100 kilometers of trail in the Park City, Utah area. While there, he met with Charlie Sturgis, the head of the Mountain Trails Foundation, to discuss their trail network, which the International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA) designated five years ago as the world’s first Gold Level Ride Destination.

The meetings focused on new trail design and building techniques that helped Park City achieve its vaulted IMBA status – there are still only five Gold Level destinations in the world. This is not the first trail research Manara has done; he states “By spending time with industry partners we have been working on best practices with our connections at Whistler Bike Park and Silver Star to absorb knowledge from the top Parks in the industry.” His objective has been to bring these best practices in the mountain biking world back to the trails at Mount Washington.

Manara’s trip to Utah was at the invitation of the resort’s new owners, Pacific Group Resorts, Inc. (PGRI.) One of the principals of PGRI has been involved in the ongoing efforts to make Park City a world-class mountain biking destination, so biking is something they understand intimately. An estimated $250,000 will be invested into the mountain biking trails at Mount Washington this summer with enhancements planned for each year thereafter.

According to Manara, the trip was extremely worthwhile, “We rode an amazing array of terrain; flow trails, gravity trails, cross-country trails, bike parks, skills parks and pump tracks. I even had the chance to ride the brand new WOW! Trail which is 14 kilometers of some of the best downhill trail I have ever ridden. When you go to a place like that with such a variety of top-quality riding, you can’t help but be inspired to bring back great ideas we can use here.”

Manara is an avid and experienced mountain biker. He has been involved with the trails in Cumberland for the last 15 years and is one of the founders and longtime president of the United Riders of Cumberland (UROC) in the Comox Valley. He has seen the explosion in the number of riders so he understands how important the trails are to the success of Mount Washington’s mountain biking offering.

“I am hands on with the crew,” Manara explained. “We are finding new ways to build great trails at the resort, including using smaller machines which require less reclamation work. This means the overall time spent on the trail work is more productive and less impactful on the environment, while producing more interesting riding because it can have a better flow with the terrain.”

The team is made up of 12 builders who share the same ideas and values of building fast, flowy, smooth and fun trails on Vancouver Island. “The crew building the trails are riders,” stated Manara. “It is important that the people building the trails understand the flow and style that makes the experience great for a rider.”

Mario Fehrenberg and Scott Stansbury from Cumberland are on the Mount Washington trail crew. Both builders are especially proud of their work on the trail called Vanilla, a flow trail that is part of the Cumberland system. Joining them are Bill McLane from Nanaimo and Jeremy Baker from Courtenay. McLane worked on the trails for “Builder,” a mountain biking trail film. Baker helped build the original “Monster Mile,” one of Mount Washington’s signature trails, in 1997. Fehrenberg, Manara’s right hand man, noted, “We’re having a blast putting together the trails this time around. There are definitely huge improvements, and we’re making sure they are dialed and work great for the riders.”

“We are rebuilding the trail-system in three phases,” noted Manara. “The first phase has been focusing on sculpting a new Bike Park entrance to the Hawk Chair with a series of berms that will be fun for every skill level. Additionally, our beginner trail Green Line, is being reworked and Back in Black has received a face lift. In phase two, we are connecting a number of trails into one new line which will create the first new intermediate run; Hot Wheels. Phase three will see the top sections of the mountain linked together in a new way. We are also rebuilding a scenic 10 km cross-country (XC) bike loop with a modest total elevation change of 200 meters, The Finger Trail, which can be ridden from the base area without requiring lift access.”

The weather the first few weeks of June, while being a rainy challenge, has been an opportunity to see how the work that has be completed sets up in the alpine environment. Fehrenberg explains “When it rains, we build bridges over sensitive terrain and source out areas of possible erosion so we can create a more sustainable trail using grade reversals and low impact drainage. We want the trails to be here for the long-term so they need to be able to stand up to the weather in our region. It works out well for the riders, too, because it gives us natural opportunities to create the flow that today’s mountain bikers have so much fun riding.”

With four to six lift serviced, gravity fed trails expected for opening day, Mount Washington will have an experience available for every skill level and style of rider. The downhill and cross-country mountain biking trail systems will continue to expand throughout the summer season. The bike crew will work on new trails as weather permits. At the same time, they will ensure that the current trails remain in great shape through daily maintenance.

Peter Gibson, General Manager at Mount Washington commented “We are thrilled to be back in the bike business. The trails are looking amazing and having Mike heading up the team gives us a lot of confidence that the trail system will be top notch.”

“The decision to reintroduce the Bike Park wasn’t taken lightly,” Don Sharpe, Director of Business Operations at the resort divulged this week. “Our new owners are committed to a successful long-term plan for summer development, so they wanted to make sure that whatever we did was sustainable. We have all been working on bringing mountain biking back to Mount Washington since last November.”

Best practices from around the mountain biking world, sustainable trails, and bigger smiles on the riders’ faces from fast and flowing trails. Mount Washington’s trail builders may have hit on a winning formula.


  • Mike Manara
  • Mario Fehrenberg
  • Bill McLane
  • Scott Stansbury
  • Tony Radomi
  • Arne Neumann
  • Chris Snodgrass
  • Jef Gurney
  • Nick Dunn
  • Peter Dunn
  • Joseph Schnurr

Read more about their bios online

Busy month ahead in Cumberland

Mountain bike events in Cumberland will be fast and furious. Beginning May 5th, the United Riders of Cumberland host three events in June, and welcome BC Bike Race for it’s 10th visit in July.

For more information, check the following links

BC Bike Race returns for the 10th visit on July 7th.

Island legend passes away

Maybe it’s something in the water, the trees or the sea air, but Vancouver Island has brought forth a long list of cycling talents. Most of us will agree, a giant has fallen with the loss of Stevie Smith, but his legend will live on with mountain bikers across this island and around the world. 

Devinci Cycles – May 10, 2016

Canadian Downhill Legend Steve Smith Dies at 26

Rider’s drive, determination, and love for living will be remembered by all those whose paths he crossed

World Cup sensation Steve Smith passed away this afternoon after suffering a massive brain injury resulting from an enduro motorcycle accident in his hometown of Nanaimo, British Columbia. He was 26 years old.

Today we lost a great person, who taught me about myself and influenced many,” says Devinci Global Racing Team Manager, Gabe Fox. “Stevie was a fierce competitor, an honest friend and a rider who made me proud on countless occasions. I am honoured to consider him my friend for so long.

At UCI MTB World Cup, MT ST ANNE, Quebec canada
At UCI MTB World Cup, MT ST ANNE, Quebec canada

Smith hailed from Vancouver Island, where he sharpened his mountain biking skills on the rainforest trails of Mt. Prevost. A force on the Canadian downhill racing scene for years, he became an international household name in 2013 after pocketing World Cup wins at Leogang, Hafjell, and Mont-Sainte-Anne, Que. Those efforts culminated in the World Cup overall title the same year—downhill racing’s ultimate achievement.

Smith is revered by fellow competitors and loved by friends, family and fans, who’ve been following what had been an explosive start to the 2016 season. Pushing past injuries that led to consecutive sidelined seasons, The Canadian Chainsaw was back in podium form this past April for the UCI WC Mountain Bike opener in Lourdes, France, where he finished in second place.

A driven athlete and fierce competitor, Smith was humble and grounded off the track. He was a notable influence on all young and aspiring Canadian gravity racers and others around the world. He was also a key mentor to friend and DGR teammate, Mark Wallace.

I would not be anywhere on the bike without Steve,” Wallace says. “Most importantly he taught me to be confident in my abilities, race my bike properly and take risks. As training partners, we pushed each other to the limit.

Downhill at the 2013 Leogang UCI MTB World Cup Finals, Austria.
Downhill at the 2013 Leogang UCI MTB World Cup Finals, Austria.

At home, in his close-knit Vancouver Island community, Smith was known as a consummate outdoorsman. This is where he spent time fishing, camping, and sinking birdie putts on the golf course. His spirit was infectious and inspirational. He passed away peacefully surrounded by his close family and those he positively affected. Steve Smith is survived by his devoted mother, Tiann, sister, Kara, his uncle, Eric, niece and nephew, Myla and Luke, grandmother, Judi, and girlfriend, Caily Schenkeveld.

His family remembers him as a great warrior.

Steve was the most successful Canadian Gravity Racer of all time,” Fox says. “His passing leaves a huge hole in our hearts here at Devinci.

, during the 2016 UCI MTB World Cup, round two Cairns, Australia.
, during the 2016 UCI MTB World Cup, round two Cairns, Australia.

A Celebration of Life will be held on May 21 at 1 p.m. at the Vancouver Island Convention Centre in Nanaimo, B.C. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the “Stevie Smith Legacy Fund” Funds will be earmarked for a Tiann Smith initiative, assisting talented young athletes.

Cumberland Trails Agreement Finalized

January 5, 2016

Cumberland, BC – The United Riders of Cumberland (UROC), Village of Cumberland, TimberWest Forest Corp., and Hancock Forest Management are excited to announce that a land access agreement has been reached to formally allow non-motorized recreation on private managed forest lands adjacent to the Village of Cumberland.

This progressive and multi-faceted agreement not only authorizes public recreation on private and public forest lands south of the Village, but gives the private landowners the opportunity to better communicate and manage risks associated with people recreating on their land.

Photo : Dave Silver Photography
Photo : Dave Silver Photography

“This agreement represents the collective efforts of all parties involved and demonstrates what can be achieved through collaboration,” said Mike Manara, UROC President. “I am proud of the UROC board for their dedication to this project and the commitment to making mountain biking a legitimate industry in our community. We are stoked to put Cumberland and our amazing trails on the map! I would also like to thank the Village of Cumberland for their support in this endeavour, as well as all the volunteers that have contributed to our trail network over the years – you know who you are and we thank you!”

“Completion of this project is a very positive step,” said Domenico Iannidinardo, Chief Forester and VP Sustainability for TimberWest. “Years in the making, this agreement provides for legitimate access to mountain bikers and recreationists to enjoy a series of trails over multiple ownerships. Much credit must go to UROC and the Village of Cumberland for their efforts in bringing this agreement together.”

“Hancock Forest Management endeavors to give back to the communities that surround our managed forest lands and a Trails Agreement gives us an opportunity to do that,” said Matthew Merritt, Forester for Hancock Forest Management. “We are excited to move forward, working with the bike club to ensure a safe and sustainable use of the Valley’s resources.”

For the Village of Cumberland, the agreement helps to move forward Council’s goal of improving recreation opportunities in the community.

“Trails mean so much to our community from both a quality of life perspective, as well as an economic driver,” said Mayor Leslie Baird. “The parties know that working forests and trail-based recreational can be compatible land uses and that everybody – including residents of the Village – will benefit from this collaborative agreement.”

Under the terms of the agreement, UROC will take on key trail management and maintenance responsibilities for the approximately 70km Cumberland trail network, while also continuing to work in partnership with local trail builders and other stakeholders. UROC will be working closely with the Village of Cumberland and private landowners on several trail infrastructure projects, including new trailhead information kiosks and the replacement of bridges over important stream crossings. Next up, UROC will be completing an inventory of the trail network to determine trail maintenance priorities and confirming trail difficulty ratings.

Over time visitors to the area can expect to see upgraded trail signage, improved route information, and consistent and proactive trail maintenance.


• The United Riders of Cumberland is a Cumberland-based registered society that organizes events, group rides and other activities for mountain bikers of all ages and advocates for trails on behalf of all users. UROC requests that all trail users consider becoming members of the organization to assist the club in its new role in trail management. Check out for more info, or search them on Facebook for updates and trail notices.

• TimberWest is Western Canada’s largest private timberland company with 325,400 hectares / 804,200 acres on Vancouver Island and leads the coastal industry in the growing and harvesting of second-growth timber. The Company is a leader in sustainable forest management and is committed to Vancouver Island communities.

• Hancock Forest Management manages timberlands for large private investors. Hancock Forest Management is a wholly owned subsidiary of Hancock Natural Resource Group (HNRG), providing property management services for HNRG investor-owned properties. The Company manages nearly 6.8 million acres of timberland globally. In the Northwest Division, Hancock manages land in Washington, Oregon, California and British Columbia.

• The Village of Cumberland will continue to maintain trail management responsibilities for trails in the Cumberland Community Forest, Coal Creek Historic Park and other Village parks and trails with the support of UROC and other stakeholders. UROC will take on primary trail management responsibilities on the 193 ha of Village-owned lands in the Perseverance and Cumberland Creek watersheds.

Cumberland Land Use Agreement Signed!

Fountain Pen and Signature
Fountain Pen and Signature

A process which began almost 8 years ago has succeeded in the first comprehensive land use agreement on Vancouver Island. Historically eastern Vancouver Island was granted to Robert Dunsmuir for the creation of the E&N Railway.

Many hands later private forest land dominates the hills behind many island communities. The United Riders of Cumberland with assistance from the Village of Cumberland drafted an agreement with Timberwest and Hancock Forest Management which may become a guideline for other recreation groups on Vancouver Island.

More details to come shortly, but we would like to congratulate the UROC board on this great step forward.

Cumberland hosting two Island Cup MTB races in April

Some of Vancouver Island’s best mountain bikers will descend on the Comox Valley this month as Cumberland hosts two Island Cup races that also promise to attract a strong contingent of local riders.

uroc-island-cup-2015Elite cross-country riders, as well as amateurs, kids and weekend warriors, will test their mettle on Sunday, April 12 at the Cumberland XC, hosted by the United Riders of Cumberland (UROC). The third race of the Island Cup XC series and Cumberland’s first race of the season, the Cumberland XC will feature a great new course for racers, as well as a fun supervised group ride for children.

The Cumberland XC is open to riders of all ages and abilities and starts at noon on April 12, with check-in by 10 a.m. at Cumberland Village Park.

A week later, on April 19, downhillers will get the chance to showcase their skills at the Dodge City DH, the only downhill race on the Island this year. Like the XC event, the Dodge City DH is hosted by UROC and is open to riders of all ages and abilities, although full-face helmets are mandatory for all racers. This year’s race features an updated course and a single crown fork category. The race starts at 1 p.m. on April 19, with shuttles and sign-in beginning at 9 a.m. at Cumberland’s Chinese Heritage Park.

Participants of both events will be treated to a well-deserved free barbecue, and all riders will have a chance to win several sponsor-donated prizes. Registration is $30 for the XC race and $50 for the DH. Riders under 12 can participate in either event for free.


Riders must pre-register online for these events at

UROC Events Calendar is full of biking fun!

While we may not all be into xc or dh racing, there are a lot of good things going with the United Riders of Cumberland. A full race calendar of all disciplines along with trail maintenance, fundraisers, jump park construction and more, there is something for everyone.

uroc-2015-event-posterIt all kicks off April 2nd with a fundraiser at the White Whale.

  • April 12th – Cumberland XC race – All ages and abilities
  • April 19th – Cumberland DCDH race – All ages and even something for big wheels
  • May 5, 12, 19 – Toonie Races
  • May 24th – Coal Town Classic Marathon – 30 and 50km loops
  • June 13th – 12 Hours of Cumberland – Solo or as a team of 2 or 4
  • Sept 12th – Cyclocross Criterium – Ride through the Waverley Hotel
  • Sept 20th – Dodge City Enduro – 3 timed segments

All weekend races are online pre-registration. (Toonie races are day of registration)

Trail maintenance dates will be ongoing through the spring.

For more information be sure to check or find their Facebook page for all events and more information.

Cumberland host to the BC Bike Race – June 30th

10402689_10154341438090451_1090277815773128543_nMonday June 30th, over 500 racers from 28 countries will roll down Dunsmuir Ave, working up through almost 50km’s of the Cumberland Trail network.

  • Race start is 8:30am
  • Shuttles to the cheer zone at the start of Teapot at 9/10/11am
  • Kids race Registration 10am, race at 11am Village Park


BC Bike Race – The “Ultimate Singletrack Experience” has captured the imagination of the world – For many this seven-day adventure represents the ‘bucket list’ journey of a lifetime, for others it is a heated battle on the most amazing terrain possible.

What if you rode through the wood with the hands at the hub like Tron

The top contenders this year will vie for a title that begins on the legendary trails of the North Shore and finishes in the mountains surrounding Whistler.

There are no official teams of three but you might end up making it one if you jive right.

The battle heats up as the top three contenders from last years Open Men’s category return to begin where they left off: defending Champion Kris Sneddon (CAN), runner up Spencer Paxson (USA), and 3rd place finisher, Eric “the Viking’ Knudson (DEN). The international battle to be crowned the “King of Singletrack” will also see challenges from other stage race winners: Oliver Zurbrugg (SWISS), Carlos Lizalde (MEX), Barry Wicks (USA) and Jason Sager (USA).

Hair sandwich at Campbell River.

The bearded Viking having fun with Tippie, but show him the trail and he will attack

Sonke and Hovey on the rocks.

The Open Women’s team looks fairly unbeatable with former World Champion and Olympian, Catharine Pendrel(CAN) teaming up with Maghalie Rochette (CAN). While the Open Women’s Solo field oozes talent with Wendy Simms (CAN) set to defend her title against Olympian Leah Davison(USA) and endurance specialist Sonya Looney(USA).

It s not a runway. Wendy Simms Kona holds the Solo and Enduro overall. Jaclyn Shapel Liv Giant Austrailia is closing in after today at 1 27 back.

Wendy on the Sunshine Coast, also crushing the Enduro.

Of note: Peter Reid the 3 x World Ironman Champion has been training hard and will certainly keep the other top racers honest in their singletrack efforts.

From North Vancouver via Cumberland on Vancouver Island, to Powell River and Sechelt on the Sunshine Coast, over to Squamish and the final day in Whistler this 2014 BC Bike Race will connect some the of best trail networks in the world into one amazing week of mountain biking. The riders will travel 310 kilometers, climb and descend nearly the height of Mount Everest, 8733m before they finish this journey.

The Enduro special segments are a highlight to each day - 13 in total over the week give riders a different set of bragging rights. photo Dave Silver

Changes for the 2014 Event –

This years BC Bike Race includes a brand new opening stage on the hallowed North Shore of Vancouver, a place where the global history of mountain biking has taken many of its cues. As well a completely new Cumberland course for stage 2. The North Shore’s trail selections and Cumberland’s reflect the new-school trail building style that is synonymous with the words ‘pump’ and ‘flow’. With the trails being developed so well and so fast in all the communities along the route, the opportunities to showcase and highlight the work and efforts of the trail builders couldn’t be missed.

Powell river and it s beach are a highlight of the race.

As the week long stage race progresses the changes become less obvious but nonetheless important for overall rider satisfaction. The route stays on course for stage 3, Powell River with more singletrack handcrafted for BC Bike Race. Two nights will be spent on the gorgeous Willingdon Beach, while some minor changes to the Sunshine Coast point-to-point stages were made to remove unrewarded climbs and add some reprieve to weary legs mid-week. Squamish has a new feature climbing trail called ‘50 Shades of Green’ that leads to a new descent called “Ruperts”. Stage 7 in Whistler will also see some adjustments to the Whistler Bike Park segment: Crank it up has been replaced by Ninja Cougar, Karate Monkey, Ho Chi Min Trail and the always favorite Heart of Darkness.

BCBR 2014

Registered Racer List: Here

We hope you get stoked for a summer of riding, follow the Story and Results here:

Registration for 2015, begins July 7th at 12 pm noon.



Want to see more about the 2013 Race? Check the following Video

Seven: The BC Bike Race Movie from BC Bike Race on Vimeo.


SEVEN a documentary by Aaron Larocque about the BC Bike Race has been released to the public. The movie is now available on Pinkbike after a successful screening at the Rickshaw Theatre in Vancouver with over 400 attendees.

The release of SEVEN just days before BC Bike Race gets set to roll, will kick off the 8th eighth edition, July 29th in North Vancouver.

This documentary will showcase the deeper connection between the participants and the journey that is called the ‘Ultimate Singletrack Experience’. This odyssey through the host communities and along this, now famous, circle route through ancient Rainforests, is all set against the rugged scenery of coastal British Columbia.

“BC Bike Race is an event about people from different backgrounds coming together to share and experience some of the best mountain biking in the world. I think ‘Seven’ really reflects that experience. The people and personalities that shape the event each year are what inspired this film. I’d like to thank the many people that helped make this film possible, but most of all I want to thank the riders whose experience we were allowed to capture”. Said director Aaron Larocque

“While each year only 600 riders are able to do the event, making a documentary to share the experience seemed like a great way to include the whole world. Our aim was to make people laugh, cry, to not be too serious and at the end of the day inspire people to get out there and ride their bikes. This journey that is the BC Bike Race is amazing and it’s so difficult to translate cross country riding into a story, but we think in 39 minutes we have more than achieved an amazing, inspirational story”. Said BCBR president and executive producer Dean Payne.

Pull up a chair, grab a beer, relax and enjoy SEVEN available exclusively on Pinkbike to watch for the next 24 hours.

We hope you get stoked for a summer of riding, follow the Race and 2014 story as it all unfolds, June 29-July 5th

UROC Women’s Rides Begin April 2nd

The snow has melted, the trails are awesome, the sun is shining later into the evenings… Tune up your bike & get ready to join the UROC Women’s Rides. The main ride (complete with ride leaders) will meet at 5:30 PM at The Riding Fool Hostel in Cumberland, beginning Wednesday, April 2. There is also a peer-group intermediate ride meeting at 6:00 PM – this one has no ride leader, and lights are required. Later in the season as the days get longer all rides will meet at 6.

Must Have UROC Membership

Ladies rides starting April 2nd
Ladies rides starting April 2nd

To take part in these UROC-sanctioned rides, you must have a UROC membership. Get one here: You can attend one ride before joining (you’ll have to sign a waiver), but then you will need a membership. This does 2 things: supports UROC & the awesomeness of mountain biking wonderfulness they support, and gives the club protection against liability. Mountain biking is risky business! To find out more about why UROC is so integral to biking promotion, land access, and trail building, check out their website:

Can you Lead a Ride?
If you know the trails and love to ride, be a Ride Leader!! You don’t have to commit to every week – even a few per season helps spread the love of mountain biking. You don’t have to be an expert rider – rides are non-instructional. You just have to offer encouragement, carry a first-aid kit, and make sure no-one gets lost! You don’t have to “lead” by riding in front of the group, or offering sage wisdom (optional)… just be a part of the crew & have fun! Contact Barbara Milley at if you are interested.

Who’s Who?
The Women’s Ride Co-ordinator is once again the awesome & lovely Barbara Milley. You will recognize her smiling face from last year, when she shared the post with Marie-Clare Goodwin. MC will be at some rides this year, but instead of taking care of our motley crew she has a beautiful new baby to care for. Thanks so much to Barb & MC for all their work last year!!! Looking forward to another great season. If you would like to reach Barb, email her at If you reply to this email, it goes to the uroc ladies email acct – also managed by Barb. These newsletters are sent out by Lauren LaBossiere ( I am helping Barb with communications this season, and spear-heading some trail maintenance stuff for our group as well…

Hope to see you all Wednesday, April 2nd!!