Rubberhead Bike Festival getting in shape for another year
Rossland’s Rubberhead Bike Festival returns in early September for another round of heart-pumping, high-flying, and mettle-testing events. The festival takes place over two weekends in September and caters to all ages, backgrounds, and skill-levels. This will be the fifth year of the festival, as it is now organized, but the ‘Rubberhead’ name goes back much further than that.
“The Rubberhead name dates back to the late 80’s, when it was the name for the big cross-country race that used to be held here,” said Tyler Merringer of Revolution Cycles. Over the years, it changed form, from being more of a localized event, to not happening at all for a few years.
“This is the fifth year that we’ve brought it back in its new incarnation. We’ve resurrected the old name as a title for a broader series of events that are comprised of the Seven Summits Poker Ride, the Huck’en Berries Jam, and the DreadHead Enduro DH.”
The Seven Summits Poker Ride is in its ninth year and takes place Sunday, September 1st.
Participants start from the Nancy Greene Summit and end with a descent down the Dewdney Trail. It should be stressed that this is not a competitive event, and fun is the main order of the day. Prizes will be awarded for things like ‘best costume’ and ‘heaviest bike’, not for fastest times.
Though the name of the game is fun, the ride itself is intense and physically taxing. It is recommended that participants be familiar with the route beforehand and are prepared for the challenges associated with it. Upon completion, the festivities continue at the Lion’s Campground, starting at 2:30 p.m.. All participants in the Poker Ride must be KCTS members.
On September 7th, Centennial Bike Park plays host to the fifth installment of The Huck’en Berries Bike Jam. This event is great for spectators of all ages. “We’ll have the beer gardens up and running, as well as some kids’ events on the pump track and perhaps some pick-up bike polo,” said Merringer. The park will also have a BBQ set up, sponsored by Rossland Rotary Club.
As for the track itself, it looks to be better than ever. Powder Pig Excavation has been helping dig and shape the jumps, all under the watchful gaze of Rory Belter, event organizer and also of Revolution Cycles.
The competition is open to all ages and skill levels, with different categories based on each. Participants can register at Revolution Cycles anytime up until the day of the event, with the hucking to commence at 3pm.
Also taking place on September 7th is the Dreadhead Enduro/DH race. This year’s format is a bit different, with the setting for the course being the Larch Ridge, Monticola, and B.S. trails, with a two-run timed event.
“The enduro format has become more popular lately, in racing, so we’re trying to jive with that, in that it’s going to be a bit longer downhill, with a non-timed, uphill climb,” said Merringer.
Participants will pedal up to the top of Monticola, via Larch Ridge, and then be timed on their descent to where Monticola meets up with Neptune Creek FSR. Riders will then have a time allowance to pedal back up COG/Gibbards FSR/Larch Ridge, to the top of B.S. and will then be timed on that descent to the same finish line.
Both times will be combined to determine a winner. Registration will take place the afternoon before, and the morning of the event.
Volunteers are needed for all of the events. The Poker Ride needs people at card stations, handing out cards to participants, the Huck’en Berries Jam needs shovellers, as well as people to help set up and take down things like the beer gardens.
Timers and people with first aid training are needed for all the events, and there are still other positions that require volunteers. Anyone interested in lending a hand can talk to Revolution Cycles, and for more information on any of the events, check out the festival’s website.