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Rain upped the ante in Valleycliffe of the Dolls

Slick surfaces made for more challenging ride, reduced numbers


Mountain bikers taking part in the third annual Beyond the Valleycliffe of the Dolls challenge got their first Double Dog Dare a little earlier than expected when they woke up to pouring rain last Saturday, May 29.

BVOD is a ride around the Valleycliffe subdivision of Squamish, including five climbs to small peaks in the area and long downhill sections with steep rocks and stunts. The winner of the event is not determined by time but by the way participants ride several Double Dog Dares – the most challenging sections – on the course.

"I woke up at four in the morning to the sound of the rain and I was like ‘oh no, there goes half of the people,’" said Bryan Raiser, the organizer of the event for Cynical Sunshine.

"All things considered it was pretty good. I didn’t make any money again but that’s alright because everybody had a good time and nobody got hurt – which was good because it was really slimy on the off-camber rocks and roots."

The BVOD followed the same general route as last year, although one section that has a lot of mossy rock was left out for safety reasons. Volunteers also built a new teeter-totter stunt for the end of the course during the race, surprising the riders at the finish line with one final Double Dog Dare.

Everybody rode well says Raiser. "Everybody stepped it up on the downhill, and it was really amazing because there were a lot of good climbers, too – people were pedalling their pigs up hills that I was definitely hiking," he said.

At the end of the contest, after some "completely subjective judging" at the Double Dog Dares the award went to 15 year old Kyle Fortin.

"He really killed it, riding everything there was to ride, and everybody was totally impressed by this kid," said Raiser.

"Emily Bernatches was also the only lady to ride the course and she did awesome, too. Those were our winners for the day."

Because of the low numbers almost all of the riders got a prize for what turned out to be about a five hour race. Two riders decided to ride the course faster, but for the most part people "were loving the no-pressure approach," said Raiser.

Despite the conditions the event drew riders from as far away as Burnaby and Pemberton.

Raiser says the event will be back next year and every year until he’s either dead, unable to ride, or the Valleycliffe area trails are either closed to riders or developed.

For more information on the 2004 BVOD and pictures from this year’s event visit

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