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Aug 5-7 - Vallee Bras du Nord

atoine

Chimp
Mar 17, 2017
6
3
GREAT riding, don't miss Sentiers Du Moulin if you're looking after more technical & steep ride. It's juste 45minutes from Bras-du-Nord
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
20,382
19,390
Canaderp
GREAT riding, don't miss Sentiers Du Moulin if you're looking after more technical & steep ride. It's juste 45minutes from Bras-du-Nord
Its on the list...

I did VBN solo last summer. Trying to get some other people to come out this time, to experience how awesome it is there!
 

Sandwich

Pig my fish!
Staff member
May 23, 2002
21,058
5,966
borcester rhymes
Its been a few years since. Thinking of heading there?
There's a group ride/vacation that's planning on heading up there this summer. I am waffling because while I really liked riding with these guys (and the apres ride adventures), the trails in quebec look to be either all flow or all extremely technical with almost no in between. All of the videos I've seen are manicured berms with wooden drops or jumps in between, or 2ft rock gardens hundreds of feet long. That's not my preferred kind of trail and there is plenty of riding like that in southern new england where I wouldn't have to drive for 7 hours.

It's hard to justify driving right by something like the kingdom trails or even the Stowe VT area that we rode last time in favor of more riding I don't like, but I don't want to miss out on a good time either.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
20,382
19,390
Canaderp
There's a group ride/vacation that's planning on heading up there this summer. I am waffling because while I really liked riding with these guys (and the apres ride adventures), the trails in quebec look to be either all flow or all extremely technical with almost no in between. All of the videos I've seen are manicured berms with wooden drops or jumps in between, or 2ft rock gardens hundreds of feet long. That's not my preferred kind of trail and there is plenty of riding like that in southern new england where I wouldn't have to drive for 7 hours.

It's hard to justify driving right by something like the kingdom trails or even the Stowe VT area that we rode last time in favor of more riding I don't like, but I don't want to miss out on a good time either.
If that group is going to Vallee Bras du Nord, then I'd say you'd have a good time. The trails there have a good mix of flow and tech. One tip off, is that you'll see people here on both enduro bikes and cross country bikes.

My quick and dirty review:

Saint-Raymond trail area - these are the trails in town, where you start at the brew pub/motel. Short climbs with a good variety - some tech, some jumps etc. Theres enough to choose from that you don't have to ride a black jump trail with gaps, if you don't want to.

Shanahan area - this is the trail area out in the wilderness. Tons of variety here, everything from family fun flow trails, to big ass climbs and tech. The tech, IMO, isn't crazy, its more rock slabs and whatnot, not super slow janky stuff and not DH level tech.

-blue trails by the river are all flowy pretty much. Family friendly, but lots of fun.
-L'Aurore/La Boreale/Legende - this group of trails are fun. The climb is long, but pretty mellow. The tech isn't crazy, but its a fun downhill, if you take La Boreale all the way down. If you cutoff to Legende, which you should (or climb it twice), you'll ride down a super long rock slab next to a water fall. There are some optional hard moves in there.
-Neilson (Est/North/South) - this is a great route, but its a long day and lots of climbing. Neilson North gets technical while you are following the river. The bigass jump lines are next to the climb on Neilson East, but if you're not into that just skip it and keep going on the Neilson route. You can skip Neilson East all together if its too big of a day or if its super hot. You'll climb somewhere between 600-900 meters if you do the whole Neilson route.

The pictures and whatnot on Trailforks give a good idea of what its like there. I really like the place. The Shanahan area is spread out enough that you shouldn't be bumping into people all the time - though I'd suggest going on a weekday.

Cooling off with a beer in the river after is super nice.
 

Sandwich

Pig my fish!
Staff member
May 23, 2002
21,058
5,966
borcester rhymes
Thanks! That's encouraging.

What I'm hearing from them is Empire 47, Sentiers du moulin, and vallee bras du nord. I'm not opposed to riding different trails if the huck bros are going to session some wooden features- there's nothing worse than standing around for 30 minutes while each member of a 10 person ride does some stupid wooden feature in the woods several times...I just don't know what's up there. Personally, I would love to be able to do about 20 miles a day of dirt ribbons with tech and some natural drops and flow. If I can get that, I think I can figure the rest out.
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
20,382
19,390
Canaderp
Haven't been to Empire 47, but I hear its good and has a good mix of stuff.

Sentiers du Moulin is another good spot. It also has a good mix; there is some super gnarly stuff, some trails with mandatory gaps and they also have stuff in between...even "XC" type stuff if you want.

The good thing at SdM is that if your GAP BROS want to ride that stuff, you can do a different one and end up at the bottom with them.

The place is also split into two distinct sections. The Maelstrom side is pretty great, if you're into all the natural stuff, I don't think there are any wooden jumps on that side (there is a jump trail at the very bottom, though). Wolverine is a wild trail, but if you don't feel like doing that, you could check out Slab City and cycle back up the hill.

I mean I guess the bottom line is that theres a variety of stuff. Some of the tech is really tech a SdM, but the other stuff is great as well. No one in our group really rides those huge gap trails and we have a blast.