Off-road riding tends to be a pretty popular pastime in Northern B.C.—and for good reason. Backcountry is plentiful and there is plenty of draw to outdoor pursuits. It seems easy to find groups of enthusiasts that are serious about caring for their sports.
Rob Weaver is the treasurer of the Northern Dirt Riders, as well as Fort St. John’s motocross club. Being involved in a club is a good way to help promote the positive sides of riding, a much needed initiative in many off-road groups.
“The objective of our club is to promote, to the public, a healthy, environmentally conscientious, responsible group of off-road enthusiasts on two-wheel bikes,” said Weaver, speaking of the Northern Dirt Riders. “I say two-wheel because we have the Moose ATV Club for quads. Unfortunately, in any bike form you’ll always have guys that are drinking beer, driving fast and leaving garbage. We want to help the public understand that there is a larger group of people that are more responsible. Plus, we want to give bikers that are in this area the knowledge and the ability to go to places that are safe, legal and quite fun to ride in.”
The Northern Dirt Riders club has been around for five years and expects to have about 40 members for the upcoming riding season. They have previously held Pacific Northwest Motorcycle Association (PNWMA) races, which draw riders who hope to keep their points position from as far away as Vancouver. Due to the sheer amount of work it takes to host such an event, the dirt bike club has yet to decide if it wants to do so for the 2013 season.
Regardless, a number of club rides are regularly held throughout the year. These organized outings generally involve a destination. Nearby Hudson’s Hope is a favourite that is visited at least once annually. Club rides are open to non-members and are able to accommodate any level of rider. Truly, the northern riders are serious about promoting their sport.
Weaver has been riding for over 30 years and definitely knows about the riding throughout his area.
“Into June the snowmobiling is done locally,” he said. “Of course, you can still sled in the mountains. ATVs go first for the mud. We need it to be fairly dry because we’re single track so we generally won’t be riding until into April, depending on the weather. There are places that dry up sooner than ours, because we’re primarily a muddy clay area. Hudson’s Hope has a lot of sand and gravel or we’ll go into Alberta as there’s sand there as well.”
To ride Hudson’s Hope, be sure to ask around as the trails can be difficult to find, but worth the effort. Fort St. John has an established trail system as does nearby Taylor. The region is doubtless a great place to head for responsible off-roaders who are looking to explore some amazing backcountry.
Other things to do in Hudson’s Hope
Great riding might be your reason to visit Hudson’s Hope, yet there are lots of other things to do when you’re not out on your machine. With an ATV-specific campground slated for late this season, the town becomes an even more attractive option.
- Wildlife sighting