With little snow on the lower mountain last season Whistler-Blackcomb was forced to cancel the fifth annual Crud to Mud Classic race, a combined ski/snowboard and mountain bike race on Whistler Mountain.
With a healthy snowpack and an early opening for the bike park the Crud to Mud returns this Sunday.
There are categories for solo men, women and juniors, as well as for relay teams of two, where one team member will take on the giant slalom course and another will take on the bike park.
As always there is a lot of speculation as to what will be the winning solo strategy. Skiers are faster than snowboarders in the gates, but snowboarders can easily use their boots on the bike park descent for faster transitions.
Registration could also be a big factor. Solos and teams race in the order they sign up, and the earlier in the day you race the harder the snow. Same goes for the dirt, if it happens to be a rainy day in the bike park.
The price is $30 for an individual or $50 for a team of two. If you dont have a seasons pass or bike park pass youll have to pay $20 for a special lift ticket. If you have a snow pass but no bike park pass, or vice versa, a lift ticket is available for $10.
Registration includes a free beverage and entry to the after-party at the GLC.
No registrations will be accepted after 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 20, and the event has been capped at 120 participants/teams. There is also a mandatory participant check-in between noon and 4 p.m. Saturday. Uploading starts at 8:30 a.m. on Sunday.
Because of the spring conditions all snowboarders and skiers are warned to expect some rock and dirt, and that Whistler-Blackcomb is not responsible for damaged equipment.
Barring any sudden changes to the on-mountain conditions the on-snow course includes Raven, Old Crow and Upper Olympic to mid-station. The bike park section will be through A-Line.