Andy Traslin negotiating a Smith Creek trail in West Kelowna. Photo: Mike Traslin/Contributor

Central Okanagan endurance test for mountain bikers

Kelowna rider devises Kelowna-West Kelowna 6 Crown riding trek

Andy Traslin thinks he has assembled the ultimate Central Okanagan endurance ride for mountain bikers.

Traslin, a past mountain bike race competitor, has devised a new trail option that he has dubbed Kelowna-West Kelowna 6 Crown, a cross-community circuit that connects the riding trails for Kuipers, Gillard and Crawford in the South Slopes, Knox Mountain in north Kelowna, and Rose Valley and Smith Creek in West Kelowna.

Traslin said the trail network maps in at 142 kms in length with a combined vertical climb of 13,044-feet. It has taken him 16 hours, 17 minutes to complete the circuit himself the first time.

While his hardcore riding option is one you might try once or twice over the course of riding season, the 43-year-old says it helps promote the many mountain riding options for both local residents and tourist mountain bikers alike.

Related: Mountain bikers to manage Gillard

“I got the idea from reading about about a couple of endurance stories in the Capital News about a paddleboarder and long distance runner around Okanagan Lake, and started thinking about how to connect all these great riding trails that exist in our area,” Traslin said.

He drew on the Crown 6 name from a popular riding spot in North Vancouver, where he moved from to Kelowna a year ago, called the Triple Crown, which extends across trail network terrain from Seymour Mountain to Grouse Mountain to Cypress Mountain.

While he was technically not out carving out new trails, Traslin’s hope is his riding route option will raise awareness among all mountain bikers about the plethora of local trail riding options available.

The challenge, he said, was trying to maintain the trail riding experience when pedalling across Kelowna and across the lake to West Kelowna.

“You find little trails along the way that get you off a busy streets such as Gordon Drive or Highway 97, but overall I was looking to create a fun endurance ride option for people motivated for a bigger challenge than what riding one particular network of trails can offer,” he said.

As a newcomer to Kelowna, he says it took him awhile himself to become familiarized with all the various trail riding options, so he hopes publicizing the Kelowna-West Kelowna 6 Crown circuit will help others.

“Mountain biking is just an awesome and beautiful thing to do and there are so many areas to ride here. It is endless,” he said.

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