Vanier Park: Rough Around the Edges

Last year domestic and foreign shredders alike were treated to a new public dirt jump park at Vanier park in Vancouver thanks to the hard work of the boys over at Earthramp Bikeparks. It was a great riding season and everyone who had the pleasure of riding Vanier Park dirt jumps were pleased with the results. There’s a variety of jumps catering to a wide audience from the novice, the knee high groms, right up to the ‘pro’.

As you can see from the pic above and the pics below the jumps have made it through winter and are in clear need of some tender loving care. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the dynamics of dirt jumps, this is a fairly typical state for jumps to get into from the repetitive freezing and melting of water within the dirt during the winter months. Dirt is further broken down by the barrage of rain water that falls during these periods and compounds the effects of the frost.

What the layman’s eye probably doesn’t see is that these jumps have fared pretty well thanks to the efforts of the locals who tarp the jumps during the frosty season. With a bout of good weather and some eager hands to provide labour of love, the jumps will be spick and span and ready to ride again.

All the place needs is for people who are eager to ride it to donate their time, even a meager amount to help get the place running again. If you’re not experienced with digging jumps, like myself, you can still chip in. After all, wheel barrows don’t wheel themselves and dirt doesn’t dig itself up. Plus the local boys who dig there are approachable and more than happy to teach you how to build and maintain jumps or just instruct you how to be useful, you only need to ask!

In very little time, with very little effort the renowned ‘Shark Fin’ hip will be in full shreddable form. I don’t know about you lot but, it’s my goal to make it over the Fin at least once this year. So for me, picking up a shovel for a short while is pittance to pay for the pleasure of roasting one over the Shark Fin.

Howard here is a regular at Vanier. You can see him floating around his makeshift pond as you walk into the park. The ripples beside him is the last remaining evidence of the last kid who never gave anything back to his local trails. You may not contribute this year and you might sneak a few runs passed all of us but Howard sees all and he judges you. You’ve been warned!

As Howard always says “Many hands make light work!”.

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  1. Andy says:

    Thanks for the post on Vanier. I’m new to dirt jumping and definitely fall into the category of “don’t know the first thing about maintaining jumps”. That said, I’m a grunt and would totally be willing to haul dirt. I’ve been trying to find an organized work day somewhere online where I could help out, but I haven’t heard of anything. Are you aware of any upcoming work parties?

  2. Hey Andy. Unfortunately there is no formal organised dig days as of yet. However, you can check out http://rideonagain.com , also http://earthrampbikeparks.com, as well as http://www.dunbarcycles.com and their respective facebook pages for updates and clues to if their is anything in the works. I will try to post something up on muffinandpedal’s facebook page if I hear anything. The weekends are a good bet if its sunny, get there earlyish and see if anyone’s around, I have a funny feeling that this weekend may yield some digging at Vanier so stop by if you’re in the hood.

  3. george says:

    Hey there lads,

    My name’s George Sittlinger, and I just moved here after being abroad for ages. I live around the corner from the jumps and go down there most days when it’s not pissing rain from about 5 or so onwards. As far as I know there’s no real organized work day, but if you come down and I’m around, I’d be happy to have a helping hand, and can help teach you how to best work on the jumps if you’re not so sure.

    Howard is the man but should watch his ass… there’s an eagle that’s been hanging out in the tree above the roll in lately.

    If anybody wants to dig, look me up on facebook and I’ll meet you down there.

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