Cycling / Biking

Yukon. Home to World Class Cycling

A woman and two dogs sit on a bech with a mountain bike nearby

The Yukon by Mountain Bike

Over 700 kilometres of trails, and growing every year. For most residents, it’s a short drive or bike to the mountain biking trails.

Biking With Your Spouse

Mountain biking, like relationships require work. From the first date to the wedding day, you’re constantly learning how to be with someone.

Arctic lupine and my “meditation pillow” on wheels

Mindfulness on Two Wheels

Exploring the Yukon while exercising mindfulness on two wheels can help you take in all the splendour the territory has to offer.

She Shreds

Michelle Friesen is part of the next wave of amazing Yukon women aiming to make mountain biking accessible and inclusive. And she’s clearly happy to be leading the way.

Krank It Up

This month, Mt. McIntyre will host the new summer mountain bike festival, organized by the Contagious Mountain Bike Club (CMBC). Klondike Krankfest replaces CMBC’s previous summer event, 24 Hours of Light. Plans until late May anticipated a three-day weekend event that would feature many activities including a downhill mountain bike race, an enduro race, a …

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Gearing up for the season

It’s the ultimate garage sale, especially if you’re the type to keep more bikes than cars in your garage. This spring, the Contagious Mountain Bike Club (CMBC) is hosting its annual bicycle garage sale. Anyone can bring a bike (or bikes) to Shipyards Park on May 4 and leave them with CMBC members to be sold. The …

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Down, down, downhill at Mount Sima – Part 5 of 5

It’s Wednesday afternoon, the sun is warm and not a cloud in the sky as avid mountain bikers unload their bikes and prepare themselves for Mount Sima downhill riding. It’s my first time riding down what is described to me as a “downhill course.” This means that instead of the usual “cross-country” riding, where you …

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Bicycle fun under the midnight sun

The Contagious Mountain Biking Club (CMBC) is hosting their annual 24 Hour of Light bike race. This is one of the last remaining 24-hour mountain-bike races in Canada, and it is the only 24-hour race in North America where no lights are allowed,

Learning how to ride and not die

It can be intimidating starting a new sport, especially one that is generally about riding downhill, on unpaved mountains, with perilous things like rocks and trees that don’t seem to move out of your way.

Seniors on speed

What 69-year-old chooses an activity that routinely results in numb hands, painful wrists and soreness in an area that makes it difficult to perform certain necessary bodily functions? Well, it turns out that there are quite a number of these folks in the Yukon.

Bike maintenance for idiots

I enjoyed hiking but wanted to explore more of the Yukon. It was a decision between a kayak for the rivers and a mountain bike for the mountains.

The evolution of Icycle Sports

Icycle Sports started in the summer of 1998 by Patrick Plemel in his basement in Riverdale. In 1999 they opened their first location on Wood Street, then had multiple locations until 2006 when they moved to their current location on Quartz Road. Since its inception, it has undergone many changes, including a change in ownership. …

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Third Time’s the Charm

My friend, Lucy (not her real name – she asked me to call her that), is no stranger to adventure. The daring Ontario expat, who has called the Yukon home for the last decade, has twice answered the call to cycle the Dempster Highway – a rugged expanse of terrain stretching from Dawson City to …

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Let Me Get to Know You. How About a Little Bicycle Trip?

When Hélène met François, she’d been dreaming of a long-distance bicycle trip for years. I think the fact that François was an experienced cyclist just maybe added to the attraction. Within 18 months, they had sold almost everything they owned, and loaded what they couldn’t or didn’t want to sell into their car, parked it …

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Never Again

In this two-part series Alexander Weber writes about competing in his first Ironman triathlon. In Part One he told us about his race preparation and his feelings before the competition. We left him three days before race day… Race day: My alarm goes off at 4 a.m. I eat a single slice of toast with …

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Fear and Loathing

Dear Reader, having just read the title of this article, I assume you may believe the following about myself: I am insane, and I am a diehard superhuman athlete. While you may be right about the former, I would disagree with the latter. Before I delve deeper into that, let’s get some information out of …

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Catch the Infection

Kid Vicious, Starbuck’s Revenge, Goat. No, not my favorite B-movies, but mountain bike trails christened by those who build and ride them. All of these routes, some gnarly and others more family-friendly, can be found up on Mount McIntyre, where years of volunteer labour is culminating this summer in a grand venture by the Contagious …

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Journeys That Open the Heart

Whitehorse musician and adventurer Thorin Loeks is off on another journey. On June 4th, Loeks started to hitchhike from his home just outside of Whitehorse up to Dawson City where began a cycling trip. His initial plan was to bicycle south to Montana. There, he was going to switch his bike for a paddle, and …

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The 2016 Kluane-Chilkat International Bike Relay: A Photo Retrospect

The relay creates memories worth cherishing. Piles of cyclist race through the Haines Pass, many in costumes. Many without training or practice or cycling experience. Teams camp in fields before and after the race, which takes place around the summer solstice. The light is almost the best part of the race, hence the photo retrospect.

Hot Ticket to Ride

France has the Tour de France. Italy has the Giro d’Italia. And here in the Yukon, we have the Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay. The relay sees cyclists ride the spectacular 238.3 km from Haines Junction, Yukon, to Haines, Alaska. The race is split into eight legs and can be done as a relay by …

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Boost Your Workout the Tasty Way

With the season of marathons and relays upon us, your training plans may be kicking into high gear. And heading into competition – whether personal or with others – you may also be looking for an edge.  Enter science. The science behind athletic performance has highlighted the benefit of nitric oxide to improve glucose uptake, …

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Two Yukon Kids in Utah

What happened to the kids from the class of 2009? Where are they all now, six years later? They must have finished their studies or done their travelling. Do they have kids? Government jobs? I do know what life is like for Austin Davignon and Alexander Chisholme; Alexander is my son and Austin is his …

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Ready to Rock the North

The Midnight Sons Band is fresh off a tour and ready to rock. On Saturday, October 3, the band is presenting – and performing at – Rock the North, which is an all-ages dance at the Yukon Convention Centre featuring the rockabilly/psychobilly band Ryan McNally and his Red Hot Ramblers, and Victoria bluesman Jesse Roper. …

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Carcross: Hiking, biking and … Kiteboarding

Carcross has always been known for hiking. Lately, with Montana Mountain right next door, it has become a favoured destination for biking, too. Now, word is filtering out to the world that Lake Bennett is offering up some world-class opportunities for kiting. You’ve seen it before: whenever a soft-drink company wants a commercial to show …

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Kookatsoon Calling

Do you like wind in your face? Because if you love a headwind, I recommend biking south along the Alaska Highway. All that extra initial effort will just fade away into a lovely tailwind on your return trip home. Biking to Kookatsoon Lake and back is a great beginner ride. Starting from downtown Whitehorse it …

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Hiking the West Coast Trail

Gruelling. Gruelling is the word used to describe the West Coast Trail in the official online guidebook. The trail is a 75-kilometre backpacking trek, situated on the southwestern edge of Vancouver Island. It boasts equal parts beautiful, dense green rainforest sections, ocean cliffside views, mud bogs, old growth trees, waterfalls, and scenic ocean beach sections. …

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Why They Bike

We hear them before we see them; they squeak up behind us on the snowy trail or sidewalk. A muffled “on your left” as they slowly pedal by. Their LED headlight, taillight, and headlamp briefly illuminate the dusky winter daylight. The headlights of passing cars reflect off the back of their neon safety vest. Ski …

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The peninsular city of Halifax isn’t a safe place to bicycle commute, but that sure makes it fun. The streets in the hilled port city are from a single-lane, dirt, horse-pulled-cart era. They graduated from dirt to cobblestone to pavement in most areas, but they didn’t end up widening the streets in a lot of …

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Mysterious Bicycle

You may have heard about the bicycles stolen from Cadence Cycle in July. But did you hear about the one that mysteriously appeared? Around July 9, an old one-speed with a coaster-brake showed up in front of 506 Wood Street, just beside Cadence Cycle. It stood on a kickstand, with an old sprung Dunlop saddle, …

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Shifting Gears

The Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay is about to check-off its 22nd year, and organizers are making sure the race adapts to changing times. Mike Kramer, a race organizer, explains: “We are constantly trying to improve the environmental sustainability and safety of the race, and in order to do so, we are constantly looking at …

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Big Ride for a Big Cause

One might think that winning six Olympic medals in two sports speaks for itself. Not for Clara Hughes, who believes there’s still so much more to talk about. The only Olympian to win multiple medals at both summer and winter Olympics, Hughes is now traversing the country to talk not about her accomplishments, but about …

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Cycle of Seasons

It’s that time of year again — when the sun gets warmer, the days get brighter, and the schedules get busier. It becomes apparent who’s been really anticipating these warmer days when some people break out their summer gear much too early. In the meantime, new beginnings overlap with old ends, and it’s time for …

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Biking is for winter, too

Biking in extreme weather is hard on any bike. Whether you have decided to you use your bike all four seasons, or you have purchased a bike just for winter, it needs only one speed. That one high gear makes it easy to power through snow and, let’s face it, your gear selector will probably …

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Cycling to Inspire

British Columbia teen Saskia Vaisey writes in her blog, “A human connection is the most powerful way to affect people.” She is one of four young people finding their way to the Yukon to do just that. Vaisey, along with Gavin Rea (California), Jessica Magonet (Quebec) and Graham May (British Columbia) will be teaming up …

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Family on Wheels

I have always been impressed by cyclists on the Alaska Highway. You know the ones I mean — bikes loaded down, their grimaced, sweating faces telling me how tough they are, and intimidating me into thinking, “I can’t imagine I could ever do that.” Those guys have nothing on my new heroes, the Skarstedt/Roberts/Stapley/Kingsley family …

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Gearing up to Hammer the Trails

If you ride a mountain bike from the 1990s with your kick-around shoes on and some jeans, have no fear, you are welcome at the Contagious Mountain Bike Club (CMBC). Kristina Gardner, treasurer of the club, says everyone is welcome, from beginners to those that go hard and are dialed into the scene. “There are …

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Yukon’s Big Bike Race

Ok, so we share it with Alaska, but it starts in the Yukon. And I hope you’ve already submitted your registration for this year’s June 15 race. There was a lot of pouting today in my workplace when I mentioned that registration for the Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay (KCIBR) was already closed because they’d …

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Bicycle Parts Reborn as Art

Philippe’s Bicycle Repair occupies a modest little house on Wood Street. The front yard is filled with many bike parts, but they are not strewn about as one might expect; rather, they are arranged – designed to catch the eye and imaginations of those who pass by. Inside, Philippe Leblond, the owner, builds and repairs …

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The Other Two Wheels

You should always start planning the next adventure before the current one is complete. Even better, before the current one even gets started. I have quite eclectic interests. Some might say it is the result of a restless nature. Maybe it is just a short attention span. I consider it one of my best attributes. …

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No Tunes for Cyclists

BIt will have to be chirping birds, ripping muscles, cheering teammates and perhaps even grazing grizzly bears that make up the soundtrack for competitors in this year’s Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay (KCIBR). Organizers have made the decision to ban headphones for the 2009 race, meaning that competitors will not have the option of cranking …

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An extraordinary way of living with the ‘ordinary’

This isn’t about an extraordinary family—not even about an extraordinary child (because all children are extraordinary). Rather, it’s about living with an “ordinary” disease in an extraordinary way. Nathalie Dugas and her husband, Sean Mather, are parenting Liam, 8, who wa s diagnosed with Juvenile Diabetes (Type 1 Diabetes) when he was five. Nathalie says …

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Another Take on Commuting

I am in awe of bicycle commuters. I feel one-upped by them. So I decided, way back in February, that as soon as the weather was reasonable I would start cycling to work at least three days per week. I spent serious coin on some very-high-tech, all-weather cycling clothes and waited for May and reasonable …

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It’s About the Hail !?!

Fall is an absolutely stellar time to go mountain biking in the Yukon. It was a Sunday slated for chores when my guy gives me a call from his shop and says, “Get geared up, we’re going for a mountain bike ride.” I had felt the heat of the sun on my shoulders when I …

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He’s a Real Everywhere Man

Dean Eyre sits on a stool in the middle of his newly purchased bike shop on Wood Street. A man as passionate as Eyre deserves to own a place like this: “There’s something nice about going somewhere and knowing that you used your own muscles to get you there. “I think they (bicycles) are the …

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Give Away Your Bike

You should give away your bike … I’m talking about your old one – the one that is sitting unused in your shed or garage because you have taken advantage of the new technology and upgraded to lighter and faster. I’ve spent the entire past weekend, not riding trails but buried in the task of …

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Tour of Canadian Organic Farms Starts Here

Tana Silverland didn’t ask for any attention, but she’s learning quickly that it has a way of finding her. The British ex-pat, who used to be a university administrator in Cambridge, England, is about to embark on a two-and-a-half-year bicycle odyssey across Canada. Attention seems to be a natural consequence of doing something interesting and …

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Three Legs Inspire 4×2

This is just what hundreds of cyclists will be doing next week, as the Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay celebrates its 19th birthday. Teams ranging from one to eight riders will attempt to traverse the 238 km between Haines Junction and Haines, Alaska. A competitor myself, the first time I rode this race I got …

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“I Miss Riding in Traffic”

So what’s Dean Eyre doing here? He’s taking the job of finding the right bikes for people really seriously – and having fun doing it. Eyre is the owner of Cadence Cycle at 508 Wood Street, in the centre of downtown Whitehorse. Yes, it used to be Phillipe’s Bicycle Repair but since January 2010 Eyre …

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Relaying the Relay

The Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay turns 20 this year. For all of those years, Ron McFadyen has worked dedicatedly in the background, radio in hand, to make the event a success. “I founded the Yukon Amateur Radio Association in 1976,” McFadyen explains. “At that point we had one VHF radio repeater in Whitehorse, the …

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Fat Tracks

Have you ever driven past someone on a bike at -35 in a blizzard and thought they were crazy? You’re probably not alone. Let’s face it, it’s cold and miserable outside, and bikes aren’t really designed to tackle winter conditions (anyone who has ever tried to ride their mountain bike down a toboggan hill knows …

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Mechanical Improvisation

People like to ask: “What is Yukon art?” Such a small population generates little by way of trends or movements. Most artists are, to one degree or another, in a class by themselves. Philippe LeBlond is one such artist. He takes his engineering background, his experience as a bike mechanic and his commitment to reuse …

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Two Sports in One

Normally the summer season is relatively quiet on Whitehorse’s biathlon range, but not this year. A partnership between the Contagious Mountain Bike Club and Biathlon Yukon has created a new way for Yukoners to make use of the range. Bike biathlon races have been taking place each Monday in August to the delight of local …

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Biking the Lakes

The Yukon summer is event-driven. Because of this, once they step off the pedals after finishing their leg of the Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay many riders put their road bikes aside in favour of a mountain bike or a pair of running shoes as they gear up for road relays, trail marathons, and the …

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Defying Gravity

For anyone who likes to play on two wheels on the local bike trails, Mount Sima is the place to be the weekend of July 14 and 15. That’s when the local ski hill will play host to the AFD Gravity Cup, the second and final downhill mountain bike race in the 2012 AFD Downhill …

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Broken Shoulder Scene

There are moments in life when you suddenly realize that you are heading for disaster and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it. Some people have experienced this sensation once or twice. Some, like me, have experienced it more times than they would like to count. A lucky few have yet to know …

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