Wednesday, December 31, 2008

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!!!!!!!

Here's to a great year ahead filled with health and happiness, out of control laughter and long rides with friends and family.



*Big thanks to Christophe from Zurich for sending us this sweet card. Christophe joined us on a Cloudraker trip last summer.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Winter ripping on the North Shore!

Clients and friends Karaleen and Bryan sent us these sweet snowy photos of riding on Vancouver's North Shore recently. They've joined us in both Costa Rica and Switzerland in the past two years. Oh, and if you click on the link to Switzerland you'll see them railing it home to our base in the Swiss Valais! Thanks for the photos guys and we look forward to more rides together!!

It looks like Santa was good to them this year.



Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas wish list according to VeloNews.com

Velo News' Jason Sumner know's what he wants for Christmas...to join Big Mountain in Switzerland this summer and watch Lance Armstrong and the Tour de France from his mountain bike on our July 17-25 Cloudraker trip. Read about it.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Happy Holidays!

From your friends at Big Mountain...here's to ripping into more than just wrapping paper this holiday season! Enjoy the holidays!

video

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Dear Wade

Want to win a trip to Costa Rica with Wade Simmons? Click here for the deets.

Peru photos

Click here to view some great images from pro photographer Robin O'Neill from her recent trip to Peru with Big Mountain.

We've got some great trips in Peru in 2009, what are you waiting for? Click here.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

2009 Spring Training Camp with Dre - dates and details launched!

We've just launched dates for a new Spring Training Camp with Andreas Hestler, one of North America’s most celebrated cross-country mountain bikers.
During the 8-day adventure participants will join former Olympian, 3-time winner of the Trans Rockies, celebrated coach and charismatic athlete Andreas Hestler on this private training camp and learn riding and training techniques to improve mountain bike skills.
Quote from Hestler: I believe that the difference between amateur cyclists and professionals is dedication and focus, says Hestler. During this training camp, we will have one unified goal, to gather miles and learn skills over a concentrated period of time. These skills can be applied to racing or everyday riding. Off the bike, Hestler will share his secrets about goal setting, nutrition, seasonal periodization, stage racing and more. For those training for a multi-day event or just looking to improve their skills and fitness, this is a great opportunity.
The location for the camp is one of North America’s mountain bike Mecas near Las Vegas, Nevada. Just beyond the strip lies an arid region with varied trails, spectacular scenery and world class riding. Riders will visit Bootleg Canyon, Blue Diamond, Hurricane, Thunder Mountain and even hike Zion National Park for a morning. Some of the trails in this area are like Moab on steroids,” says Hestler enthusiastically, slick rock that winds and undulates with plenty of cornering and singletrack to practice skills and fitness. We’re going to have fun.

Trip dates: March 28 to April 4, 2009
Cost: $2475 Canadian
For more info, email us at: info@ridebig.com or contact us.





Big thanks to pro photographer Colin Meagher for these photos.

Testimonial: Southern Africa Mountain Bike Safari

This is a quote from clients who just returned from our Rhythm of Africa trip. Thanks for the kind words!

"We had an amazing time. It was the total package: culture, scenery, animals and epic riding. Greg and the guides were amazing and everything went off with out a hitch. It was simply a unreal trip – like being inside a National Geographic episode.
Truly an epic adventure! Thanks so much for letting us experience it."
Scott and Patti, Alberta Canada





Check out some more of Scott and Patti's photos here.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Notes from the road...

Hey friends. I thought i'd share some photos and little anecdotes from travels in SE Asia. We're running a road bike trip with our sister company Cycleventures in Northern Thailand for the next 12 days. It's good to be here. Watch this space for more soon.


A strange looking Buddha statue that was about 20 feet tall. Very serious.


A random dude who was just begging for a photo. This is at a temple on a mountain near the city of Chiang Mai.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving to our American friends and clients!

I know we've all heard way too much from Sarah Palin but we just could not resist. Have a great thanksgiving!

Monday, November 17, 2008

In the latest issue of Bike Magazine



Guide Joe Schwartz railing a tasty trail to Tasch in the Zermatt area on our Cloudraker Swiss mountain biking trip.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Moment in time

On this particular Swiss Cloudraker trip in 2007 the weather was challenging: cold, rainy and even snowy at times. OK, it sucked. As it happens though, our group came together like old friends, supported each other with good times and laughs and we made it through big days unscathed, albeit dirty. A good thing about the Swiss trails and rain is that the water drains well and is generally gravely which means good traction and little mud. Plus, it'll rain (or snow) but not for too long, well at least not for someone coming from Vancouver on the Wet Coast or Canada. I'm getting sidetracked here. So there we were. The day started off in fresh snow, the trail was called Goldielocks - a big loop, 50 km, 6-7 hours with challenging technical XC sections, a buffed section, a paved traverse/climb, hike a bike and a mother descent - 10,000 feet of downhill all in all. A super all-mountain day. Towards the end of the day we always stop at a viewpoint where the land eroded away to nothing. I was leading on this section and as i approached i heard scurrying in the forest, then rocks falling somewhere in the distance. I looked out into the mist and there was a chamois perched on a precarious rocky outcropping looking back at me. I pulled out my camera and go this shot just before the mist came in and the creature disappeared in the white.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Richie Schley


This photo is of pro rider Richie last year in Costa Rica on our Pura Vida DH trip. Photo Harookz.

He just launched slick promo that's worth a look, filmed by Darcy from the Collective. Check it out here.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

respect

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Wade Simmons on the cover of Bike Magazine


Big Mountain guide Wade Simmons lands another cover, this time on the latest issue of Bike Magazine. In 2009 you can join Wade in both Costa Rica on our Pura Vida DH trip from Feb 13-21 and Feb 21-March 1 and in Switzerland on our Alpenrock DH trips in August. Ride with Wade for 9 days in Switzerland? Costa Rica?

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Schwartzy: the Euro interview

Click here - Read the French version at the top, English at the bottom. Join Joe and his DH bike in Switzerland next summer.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Fall

Fall is a great time to ride. In the fall nature is getting ready to sleep and things are less rushed it seems. Call some friends and see what they're doing on Saturday, not too early because it's still cold, not too late because the sun sets early. Start pedaling and realize that you might be wearing too many layers but you keep riding anyway. Wet leaves cover rocks and make for tricky sections, you're on your game though after many months of straight riding. You let off the brakes and skip through the forest.


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Morocco next month! Let's go!

We've still got a few spaces available on our Moroccan Dirt Merchant trip, November 2-11. What are you waiting for, contact us and start packing!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Rampage video...the future of mtb comps!

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Trek Session 88 DH...dream bike!

Pinkbike.com covers the highly anticipated Session 88 DH bike from Trek, the out-of-the-box race bike weighing in at 38 lbs. Read the specs, listen to Andrew Shandro tell you more and drool over this dream machine here.





The new Session 88 DH would be KILLER on one of our downhill trips...how about the Swiss Alpenrock? Or perhaps a little tropical downhill mountain biking in Costa Rica, a la Pura Vida? Or something more exotic like the Inca DH trip?

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Vegas Interbike

The dust has settled from last week's successful trip to Interbike in Vegas. Hands where shaked, deals made and beers downed - all in all a great trip! Read about the Trek Remedy 9 on pinkbike.com.

The bright lights of the strip.


Photographer Harookz, pro mountain biker Ben Boyko and our man Paulo Valle who heads up our downhill mountain bike trips in Costa Rica.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Misty Mountain Hop!

We just wrapped up our inaugural BC Kootenay's Misty Mountain Hop all-mountain adventure today. BIG thanks for guides Joe and Pat for their hard work leading a group of Californians, a Vancouverite, an Edmontonian and Seattleite. What a trip! Highlights... Idaho Peak in New Denver, Rossland's 7 Summits, Meadow Creek and of course Nelson's epic web of singletrack. The Kootenays rock and there's no doubt that we'll be back soon. 'Til then...happy riding.

Todd and Sarge letting off the brakes on Idaho Peak.


"I love riding my mountain bike!" Sarge, stoked.

Lance rides dirt + comes 2nd in the Leadville 100

Good to see that Lance is getting out on his mountain bike. Check it out.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Chilcotin week-end

It's been great to ride some classics here in BC after spending so much time on the road discovering and exploring the world. You really appreciate the backyard I tell you. One such nugget is our Chilcotin Range, about 3 1/2 hours north of Whistler up and over an old dusty logging road. It's a bitch to get to but so very worth it. The forecast looked great so we packed up a big crew-cab pick-up with Big Mountain guide Ryan Sullivan, his wife Cathrine and Jory and flew up to remote Lorna Lake where we camped a night. It was so nice, the moon was nearly full as we sat around the fire. The next day we climbed up and over Lorna Pass, along Tyaughton Creek, then up to Spruce Lake, along the High Line and then all the way down Gun Creek. What a ripper of a day!!! 10 1/2 hours later...and very weary we rolled in and set up camp. We're going to re-launch our Chilcotin trip in 2009...stay tuned.


Unloading the Beaver on Lorna Lake.


Jory, railing the High Line.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

More Cloudraker all-mountain action

From Vernon Huffman, California. Thanks for the great shots and great rides Vernon!
Check it out.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Blake Jorgenson Photos

We had the pleasure of shooting with Blake last month in Switzerland and here's a little preview of what he captured, go to his website. Click the thumbs at the bottom.

Oh, and in Blake's words "Our Switzerland trip was amazing. Without a doubt the best riding I have ever done."

Monday, September 08, 2008

Swiss Cloudraker all-mountain photos

Want to see what actually goes on behind the scenes on one of our epic Swiss all-mountain extravaganzas? The good, the bad and the ugly. Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Alpenrock DH photos and vert

If you'd like to view some photos taken from some clients one of our Alpenrock DH trips this summer check 'em out here.

The final total for vert descended on both of our Swiss DH trip was:

Alpenrock I: 85,000 feet
Alpenrock II: 115,000 feet

These aren't laps in a bike park either...think one of two descents down fresh trails that have barely seen bikes...

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Some big photos

Here are a few sweet photos from the summer in Switzerland that you might enjoy.



Tuesday, August 19, 2008

DH THE ALPS

It's been awhile...we've been having so much fun here in Swissland going downhill on big bikes on our Alpenrock DH trips. After years of mind-blowing research on oil-tanker-sized downhills we've dialed in this trip to the point where participants are pumped, satisfied, wowed, stoked by day 1 and by day 2 they understand why we call it the Alpenrock and why we are Big Mountain. We're having a blast.

Here's a photo of returning participant Lee from Sydney Australia having fun amongst the grapes on the tail end of Rolling Orgy, a trail that Lee compared to skiing waist deep powder.



Another of Vancouverites Brian and Karaleen dropping in on the La Vallee Express, a secret nug off the backside of Verbier that drops us pretty much on the patio at our 3-star hotel.

Friday, August 08, 2008

big recon

We rode a spectacular hawg yesterday, 8 hours or so on the bike. It all started with a monorail, then a gondola then a tram to a cool 2750 meters. From there we traversed, descended and climbed in a super arid high alpine zone like nothing i've ever seen - the glacial lakes were teal-blue, rocks ochre and the mountains dark grey with little fiesty flowers popping everywhere. The top of our ride lay at nearly 3000 meters with a 2300 meter descent ahead - over 7000 feet.


Here's a photo of local madman Francois, licking his lips at the descent ahead.




A sweet cabin with a sweeter view. Perhaps we'll stay here at the 2009 Cloudraker Swiss mountain biking trip?

Sunday, August 03, 2008

As good as it gets

Joe Schwartz and i just wrapped up a 9-day Cloudraker trip that will go down in the books. The group consisted of crazy Californians, tough Canucks and a stylin' Swiss German and all were on fire - we all ate up as many big days as we could swallow on this trip, big big days!! We ripped up some amazing terrain and unreal rides together. The group gelled like old friends and solid bonds were forged right from day one. Thanks to all for a great trip...

Here's a photo of some of our group after a wet descent in Zermatt. We logged 14,000+ vertical feet of descending on this day.


A sweet photo of Joe. If you look really closely you'll see a Swiss flag flappin' on his back. It was Aug 1, Swiss Day!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Zermatt rocks

Zermatt's got the horn there's no doubt. One night after a fine fine day of blue skies and great wall of China sized descents we ended up on a street in downtown Zermatt with a bunch of beers in front of us and the pole position on this mad performer who played four keyboards and sang in this strange bone chilling teenage female voice with a hint of Janice Joplin in there for good measure. People gathered around, some clapped, babies cried, dogs paced nervously and others just didn't know what to think. We drank beer and watched while the Matterhorn just did it's thing. More riding tomorrow....



Saturday, July 26, 2008

Bike Magazine Photo Annual

We're pumped...Big Mountain's Swiss trips featured in the most sought after mountain bike issue of the year. Check it out!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Epic into Italy

On the Cloudraker trip we do this big ride (6-7+ hours!!!) from near our hotel, up and over a pass at 2800 meters to the Italian border than way way down to the city of Aosta for pasta and gelato. It's a beauty. Here's a photo of client Dave Bouck from Whistler BC as he makes the last bid to the border. In the background are peaks that are part of the famous winter ski traverse, the Haute Route.



This photo is on the other side. John Ruth from San Fransisco sunning himself while Ian Buxton chills out and guide Al Pittar gets serious in the fetal position! As John said, "lying in the dirt's never felt so good..."

Monday, July 21, 2008

Cloudraker

I'm sitting at our hotel in the small town of Lourtier in the Val de Bagnes region of French-speaking Switzerland. We're taking a morning off from riding to relax, stretch and work on some bikes. This afternoon we're heading out for a few local shuttles. Tomorrow is a big day as we pedal up and over a pass out of our backyard to Aosta Italy for dinner and a gelato. The fun continues!





More about the Cloudraker mountain biking trip in Switzerland.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

New trail

This afternoon i went for a ride with local XC lung Laurent for a super fun alpine ride. First we drove up a mountain in the backyard to 1700 m and traversed and climbed to 2350 m. There were a few hike-a-bike sections in there that nearly killed me. Must have been a combo of jetlag, altitude and fitness, i think. I did feel better about an hour in to the ride. The views were staggering with big-ass peaks all around and the clouds came in a out providing peek-a-boo views. After crossing the base of a glacier we started down for 1000 m (3000 or so feet). It was a nice descent and very technical at times. I will do this trail again, I'd love to ride it in blue skies and views.



Monday, July 14, 2008

In Switzerland: snow and yodelling

Rolled in this week for another summer of Alpenrippppping to fresh pow on the hills. I left BC's 30c blue bird days for snow...what's up? I guess it happens in the big mountains. The good news is that it's sunny now and 25c, the mountains look killer with a fresh blanket of white.



Have i told you how much i LOVE my new Trek Remedy 9? Talk about the perfect all-mountain bike! And my new Crank Bros Joplin seat post is a dream come true and my Rock Shox Lyrics eat up the track like a hungry teenager lapping up a Slurpee on a sticky summer day. I'm not saying this because im biased. It's true!



Check the upcoming Switzerland mountain biking holidays.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Mr. Tinker

Wondering what Tinker Juarez is up to these days? Me too. Check out his website for some interesting tid bits on one of mountain biking's most enduring competitors and colourful characters.

Here's a photo of Tinker with Big Mountain friends Michael Costigan and Andrea Kraft while on the BC Bike Race. Nice goat Costigan, love it!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

BC Bike Race - a success!

Big Mountain guide Ryan Sullivan and myself were kindly invited by Dean Payne of the BC Bike Race to participate in the final day of his 7-day stage race from Victoria BC to Whistler. I lived in Whistler for 12 years so i was pretty pumped to come up from Vancouver for a day of punishment. And that's what i got...punished. 47 km later with lots of climbing and technical singletrack later i rolled through the finish line pretty wiped. I was in good shape going in, but just good shape. Hats off to all the 400 competitors who where on their 6th day when we rolled in for our first. You are animals. Read more about the race here.



Big Mountain guide Ryan Sullivan: big smiles before the pain began!



The start of Day 7 in Whistler's Creekside. Ready, Set, Go!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Fueling the engine with Andreas Hestler from BCBR

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

BIKE MAGAZINE: check us out the July issue!