TransRockies Stage: 4 & 5


The Planet Foods TransRockies Classic Stage 4 took riders from the Nipika Mountain Resort to Whiteswan Lake, BC.

After a big day of epic views, riders rode the last few kilometers down the White River to base camp where they were greeted by one of the most picturesque camp sites thus far. A wildflower meadow surrounded by towering peaks, complete with two friendly horses and a wonderful swimming hole had riders basking in luxury following the stage. An impromtu fire pit was called into duty and s'mores roasted as the sun set on another epic day in the Rockies.

Cedric Clyburn, from Asheville, NC drove up to the TransRockies with his Dad. It took them five days and they stopped in Kentucky, which Cedric described as "not great" and also at Bad Lands National Park which was "Pretty cool". Cedric just graduated from high school, and has never done anything like TransRockies before. Here's what he had to say about the week so far, as told to Barry Wicks:

"This is probably the greatest thing I've ever done in my life. I used to not be very into Canada for some reason, but man, after being here, I really like it. My mom is from France, so we usually go there every summer. She and my sister flew up here and met us and are supporting us in the race. I got on the podium on day two and dedicated it to her because I think she is amazing. I've been having an awesome time riding with everyone, meeting tons of people out on the trail, and having great conversations about all kinds of things. I talked to a guy for like 15 minutes today and now I'm totally rethinking my major for next year."

The Honey Stinger Stage 5 of the TransRockies Classic broke clear and cool as racers prepared to take on challenging an 87km push with one timed segment and a neutral transfer over a high mountain pass in route to Elkford for the night. Dramatic views and challenging yet rewarding trails capped off another stunning day of racing. Photographer John Gibson commented that the media squad had their own epic version of TransRockies today. They used team work and brute force to haul their motorcycles over the final pass littered with babyhead sized rocks and steep grades that many of riders found challenging on their bikes, let alone on motorcycles.

Toru Watanabe from Kanagawa, Japan and Yuzo Kawai from Sendai, Japan, met via faceook five months ago when Toru asked Yuzo if he would come to Canada and race TransRockies with him. They decided to team up after talking for five minutes, but only met each other in person six days before the start of the race. Toru moved to Canada after traveling to Vancouver on a working vacation and trying mountain biking on Vancouver's North Shore for the first time in 2002. He went back to Japan, bought a mountain bike, and found a way to move his company over to Calgary so he coud ride his bike more. Yozo has been riding and racing xc mountain bikes for a long time. He says in Japan, there are many trails, but they are all secret and you have to be taken by the locals who built them. Otherwise, it is very hard to find places to ride. Toru and Yuzo have made an excellent team all week, with Toru leading the way on the downhills and Yuzo doing all the work on the hills and flats and they say that they are very complimentary riders. They are excited for the remaining stages and very excited for the after party in Fernie were a dance party is alleged to be planned.