Star Tracks Mountain Bike Adventure
October 15th 2017 9:00am
Organizers: Barb Campbell (Event Director), Michael Lucente (Event Director)
Event Web Page: https://stars.whyjustrun.ca/events/view/3041
Update September 6, 2017: We've heard that some racers are planning on camping at Albion Hills, so we are planning an adventure running training session at Albion Hills on the day before Star Tracks. Update October 12: Due to low registration numbers, the Saturday training session has been cancelled.
See the Albion Hills Trails as you've never seen them before!
We are excited to present the 4th Annual Star Tracks Mountain Bike Adventure at Albion Hills Conservation Area. This is a rare opportunity for Ontario riders to try mountain bike orienteering (MTBO) - an exciting mix of mountain biking and navigation. If you can read a trail map and have at least intermediate mountain biking skills, you're ready to try this sport. Canada has never been represented at the World MTBO Championships. Will we discover a future superstar?
How does Mountain Bike Orienteering work?
At the start, each competitor will receive a map showing places around Albion Hills where flags are located (controls). Riders will visit these controls in numerical order, trying to choose the best route to visit them all as quickly as possible. Control flags are placed along trails - at bends, junctions and other obvious features - or beside park roads or in open areas. It will help if you can tell the difference between a hilly trail (lots of contour lines) vs. a flat trail, but if you can read a trail map, you've got this! This is the perfect event for adventurous types who know how to mountain bike but are less experienced with map navigation.
Riders must stay on trails, roads, parking lots, maintained grass or other open areas. Bushwhacking through forests or overgrown meadows is not permitted. Riders must use only the race map provided and (optionally) a compass to navigate. For further information about the sport of Mountain Bike Orienteering at the elite level, see the International Orienteering Federation.
We will be using the electronic SportIdent (SI) timing system to record racers' visits to each control. We can lend you an SI timing card if you don't own one. A time trial format will be used where racers start individually at 30-second intervals. This allows you to choose your own route.
- Mountain Bike
- Watch or other Timing device to keep an eye on the time limit
- SI Timing Chip (provided if you don't have one, $50 replacement fee if lost - please be careful)
- Map (provided)
- Whistle or Cell Phone (In case of trouble - phone not to be used for navigation)
- Map holder. Experienced mountain bike orienteers often use a specialized bike map holder on their handlebars. You don't need one for this event but please come prepared with some plan for carrying your map, which will be in a plastic sleeve. Some people stick the map in their jersey pocket and pull it out to look at it. Others attach their map to their handlebars, pin it to their clothing, or tuck it under the bottom of their bike shorts or inside their jersey. It's up to you but test your idea and be sure to ride safely.
- Compass: You don't need one but most people will carry one. A compass can help you match your map to your location in the real world.
- Bike Computer - Legal but not required. (And really not that helpful.)
- GPS Watch - Legal for recording your ride, not to be used for navigation.
- Water or food. There will not be water or food on the race course but refreshments will be provided at the finish.
We are offering two courses that racers will choose from when they register. All courses start and finish at the Albion Hills Chalet.
- Novice (30-60 minutes) - This course is intended for those who have basic trail riding and trail map navigation skills. We will offer different options to accommodate different levels of ability, i.e. there will be a short course option. You can complete the Novice course without doing much single track but if you explore away from the intended route, you may end up on more difficult trails. Be prepared to walk your bike if this happens.
- Open (75-120 minutes) - This course is intended for intermediate to strong bikers and navigators.
Participants with intermediate skills should be comfortable with riding safely (or occasionally getting off to walk) on trails with roots, logs, rocks, mud, wash-outs, steep slopes, drop-offs, forest debris and other typical trail hazards.
Although most riding will be on trails or grass, all courses will include some park roads where riders may encounter occasional vehicles and must adhere to traffic rules. Parents, please accompany your children on the race course if you have concerns.
All participants will need to sign a waiver on race day. Parent or guardian signature is required for participants under age 18.
- Open Male/Female
- Masters Male/Female (45-59)
- SuperMasters Male/Female (60+)
- Junior Male/Female under 21
- Open Male/Female
- Junior Boy/Girl (14 or under)
- Family Team (1 or 2 parents racing with 1 or more of their children age 14 or under)
Albion Hills, 1:10,000
This is a modified orienteering map that does not include all of the special symbols used in international mountain bike orienteering. Most single track trails at Albion Hills are designated one-way. This is indicated by small arrows on the map and by signage at the trail entrances.
Race Day Schedule
9:15 - 9:45 a.m. Registration outside Albion Hills Chalet (Washrooms will be open.)
9:45 a.m. Maps distributed
9:55 a.m. Pre-race briefing outside Chalet
10:00 a.m. First Open rider starts. Riders will be started individually at 30-second intervals.
10:00 a.m. Novice racers meeting and Q&A with race director
Riders must return to the Chalet within 2 hours, whether or not they have finished the course. Please check in to return your SportIdent timing card and let us know you got back safely. Stick around to share race stories and snacks by the campfire!
Directions to Meeting Location
Meet on the lawn outside the Albion Hills Conservation Area Chalet: Turn west off Hwy 50 into Albion Hills. Take the first left at the "Chalet" sign. Drive down the hill, cross the Humber River and take the right fork toward the Chalet parking lot. We will fill the closest parking lot quickly but there is more parking nearby.
Albion Hills will be open for camping. Some of last year's participants arrived the night before, claimed campsites near the race starting line, and enjoyed marshmallows over an open fire with hot chocolate (or an adult beverage). We encourage you to consider camping. Other racers have reserved sites 110 and 111 in the Deer Run section of the campground so we suggest you book something nearby. Look for the orienteering flag!
Race entry fee includes Albion Hills park entrance fee so riders do not need to pay at the gate. You're welcome to stay and ride all day! Non-racers older than 14 years old will need to buy day passes.
Until Sept. 30
Race Day (only 10 extra maps will be printed)
|Youth (14 or under)||$20||$25||$30|
|Adult shadowing Youth 14 or under for safety (not competing themselves)||$15||$15||$15|
(2 parents and their children aged 18 or under)
Note: Families can take advantage of this price even if they are not racing as a Family Team. A Family may also choose to split into two parent-child teams.
2016 Star Tracks MTB Adventure Race
2015 Star Tracks MTB Adventure Race
2014 Star Tracks MTB Adventure Race
Contact Barb at Barb@Elmtreedental.com.
...to Albion Hills Conservation Area for many years of welcoming mountain bikers and orienteers to this beautiful park.
...to the Ukrainian Orienteering Club for permission to use their map of Albion Hills for this event.