A solid mid-mountain base of snow in the winter translates to a waiting game for the snow to melt in the summer.
Still, Mount Washington Alpine Resort is optimistic that the mountain bike trails would be open in time for Canada Day weekend. The Resort opened for summer operations on June 22 amid high hopes for premier bike racing events this year.
“We have lots of special things planned,” Resort Director of Marketing Karen Bonell said. For example, Mount Waashington will be hosting the Tim Horton’s National Mountain Bike Championships (July 18-22). “We’ve never had the nationals here,” Bonell said.
The B.C. Day long weekend in August features the Bearclaw Invitational, a few weeks earlier than last year’s successful event.
On August 25, the Jump Park will be overrun with bikes for the inaugural Jump Jam. An extreme case of Vertigo caps the cycling season at the Resort. On September 23, the Mount Washington Hill Climb will challenge even the most experienced of road cyclists – some of whom will be just as happy to finish as to win.
One event visitors to the Resort won’t see this year is the chocolate festival. “Getting chocolatiers to come in the summertime was like pulling teeth,” Bonell said. “They’re busy, and chocolate melts. We just had to say you can’t keep pulling teeth - it’s not working.”
Two events that are working, however, are the Beer and Wine Festivals. The Eighth Annual Beer Festival kicks off with a beer pairing dinner July 13, a five-course, tapas-style meal featuring unique beer pairings. The festival runs July 14.
The Ninth Annual Wine Fest is preceded the night before by a wine pairing dinner, another five-course culinary treat. The festival, on Aug. 11, features a wide selection of wines and award-winning cheeses.
Another event that will be back is the Sprint to the Summit on September 1, during the Labour Day weekend. The Sprint to the Summit is a running race up the face of the mountain. “The people that were in it last year just couldn’t believe the trail,” Bonell said. “You’re literally going up.” The trail ascends behind Deer Lodge and continues up Powder Face, where the old blue chairlift was located.