Road Cycling in Pemberton

pemberton Road Cycling

Pemberton road cyclists want you to know that Pemberton is on the map. Since IRONMAN Canada came to town in 2013 and the Slow Food Cycle Sunday started back in 2005, people have begun to make the extra 20 minute trek from Whistler  to Pemberton, either as individual riders or as groups. Whistler is still a more popular destination for the road cyclist; you’ll definitely see more cyclists on the road there, and there are more stores that cater to the cyclist. Still, we’re on the map.

What makes Pemberton a special place for road cycling is that it is a hub of sorts: Whereas Whistler can be a great place to train, you are limited to going up and down the valley. In Pemberton, you can head out in any direction for a solid ride.

Some Recommended Rides

Road Cycling Sea to Sky Banner

Whistler to Pemberton

The ride from Whistler to Pemberton gives riders a net 300 meter / 328 yard descent, for example, and on either end of the ride is a Village with ample opportunities for food and drink. A popular stop on the Whistler end is McIvor’s in Alpine Meadows. In Pemberton, cafes such as the Mount Currie Coffee Company or The Pony offer a great stop for cyclists. On the way to and from Whistler, however, it is important to know that there is nowhere to stop for water or snacks. The 32 kilometre / 19.9 mile ride can get fairly hot in the summer months, so be prepared. If you’re serious, you can of course head all the way to Squamish and back.

Pemberton to Lillooet

Another ride from Pemberton heads through the Lil’wat Nation on Highway 99 north to Lillooet on the Duffy Road. This is a 100 kilometre / 62.1 mile ride, with fairly tough switchbacks. On this ride, however, you need to be prepared with food and enough water, as there are not as many options for rest stops. The positive side to this is that this ride is intensely quiet. Traffic is rare, as are fellow cyclists. You may be surprised by the occasional wild horse or cow, but what will perhaps surprise you the most is the quiet you will experience along the way.

Pemberton Meadows

Heading out to the Pemberton Meadows gives you a third ride from Pemberton. On this ride, you can continue out along pristine farmland for kilometre after kilometre, only needing to watch out for the occasional tractor or perhaps a fellow cyclist. This ride is quiet, long and straight; an easy ride without the hills of the other two options. However, there is not option for a rest stop along the way, so you do need to be prepared with enough food and water. You may find a road side fruit stand at the Van Loons, at the turn off road to the Hurley on your way to Meager Creek. They’ve even begun to keep a small refrigerator with water and snacks for cyclists. But it’s not smart to count on this: bring your own snacks and water, and top up with what you find at the Van Loons fruit stand.

Road Cycling: The New Golf

Since road cyclists want long rides to choose from, Pemberton makes a great place to start and stop from. On long summer days, you can leave in the early morning and be back to Pemberton before it gets too hot.

In many ways, road cycling is the perfect sport for the semi retired: some have even called it “the new golf” since cyclists need to carve out a similar amount of time from their day. Of course, the physical outlay is considerably more for the road cyclist. Also similar to golf is the outlay of cash: you can spend a few thousand dollars on your bike as you move up from an aluminum frame to a carbon fibre frame and components.

Whereas on a mountain bike, the bike itself is very technical, with components costing quite a bit of money as you move up to more and more expert bikes. With road cycling, the bikes themselves are quite simple: it’s the weight of the bike that’s key. Or lack of weight.

On long rides, especially on hills, you’ll want a carbon fibre frame to get you where you want to go. And just like in any sport, get the best you can afford. It will last, and you will be a lot happier. Carbon fibre is five times as strong as steel and can also absorb a lot more. This comes in handy when you’re riding on anything that is less than perfect asphalt, which you will encounter on country roads outside of Pemberton.

Benefits

In part because of the combined efforts made by the IRONMAN Canada race and Slow Food Cycle Sunday, road cycling in Pemberton is quickly maturing, and Pemberton’s benefits as a place to train for serious cycling or to spend the day with family and friends are being noticed:

  • Roads accommodate bicycles with 14 to 16 foot lane widths
  • Encourages safe cycling
  • Stores provide safe convenient bicycle parking
  • Accommodation welcomes cyclists and provides storage
  • Basic bike tools are readily available
  • Cafes and restaurants are cyclist-friendly

Wear a helmet

Header image by Dave Steers

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2015 Pemberton Enduro Mountain Bike Race
April 25
It's on! The PVTA Pemberton Enduro is happening today starting at 8:30 am. Be there to ride (if you've signed up) or cheer on your friends!

Lillooet Lake Rodeo 2015 - Day 1
May 16
Day one of the 2015 Lillooet Lake Rodeo is all about fun! A parade starts things off, followed by novice events - Join us!

Lillooet Lake Rodeo 2015 - Day 2
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Day two of this three day rodeo begins the professional WIREA rodeo in Lillooet Lake. Come to see the action!

Lillooet Lake Rodeo 2015 - Day 3
May 18
The final day of the 2015 Lillooet Lake Rodeo has arrived! Take in all the fun and excitement of this WIREA event!

PVTA Spring Fundraiser
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Take some time to get out to the Pemberton Legion tonight to help raise money for this worthy cause and have a bit of fun, too!

2015 Nimby Fifty XC MTB Race
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An epic mountain bike race covering many of the world-class single track trails, climbs, and descents that the Pemberton, BC trails are famous for.

Barn Burner Triple
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The Barn Burner Triple is a cool new trail running series utilizing the single track mountain bike trails in Pemberton, B.C. The course will take runners through the mountain and forests of Pemberton offering spectacular views.

10th Annual 2015 Rotary and Chamber Golf Fundraiser
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The 2015 Big Sky Golf Club Rotary and Pemberton Chamber of Commerce Fundraiser is back, and will be held Monday, June 22nd, 2015.

Pemberton Music Festival 2015 - Day 1
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The Pemberton Music Festival is back and the lineup is better than ever. Kendrick Lamar, The Black Keys, J. Cole, Tiesto, and so many more!

Pemberton Music Festival 2015 - Day 2
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The Pemberton Music Festival is back for the second year of amazing performances and comedy. With five tents this year, you know it's going to rock!

Foraging for Native Plants in the Pemberton Valley
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Learning how to forage for native plants is a valuable skill that's also fun to learn.

Pemberton Music Festival + More Things to Do This Summer
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Family Cycle Route Planner for Pemberton
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Pemberton Music Festival 2015 Line Up
April 03
Its official Pemberton Music Festival has announced their line-up for their 2015 event. Headlining this year's event are rock super stars the Black Keys, hip hop heavyweights J.Cole & Kendrick Lamar and world renowned DJ Tiesto.

2015 Golf Season in Pemberton Almost Here?
March 19
Golf season in Pemberton is almost here? Thanks to the mild winter The Meadows at Pemberton has set their opening day for Friday, March 27. Get those wrenches out of the garage. Dust off those golf shoes. We're golfing in March this year!

Pemberton Camping — Provincial Campgrounds and More!
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Pemberton camping season is just around the corner. If you're looking into provincial campgrounds or something more rustic we've got lots to explore.

Horseback Riding in Pemberton this Spring
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Pemberton has more horses per capita than anywhere in BC. And that means that you'll see horses in our downtown and around the Valley. Why not join in the fun and take a horseback riding tour this spring?

Heliski in Pemberton This Winter — And MTB, too!
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You may have heard of the fantastic weather we've been having this winter in Pemberton. You can literally heliski in Pemberton and go for a bike ride, too! So pick your pleasure, and we'll see you soon.

Mountain Bike Season Already?
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That's right!! Thanks to the recent warm and wet conditions in Pemberton the snow has disappeared and made way for an unbelievably early mountain bike season. Check the pic from inside.

Ice Fishing in Pemberton
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Just because it's wintertime doesn't mean it's time to put away the fishing rod. Wintertime can be the best time to pull up a healthy trout fish from one of Pemberton's fresh water lakes. Learn more about winter fishing in Pemberton BC!

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