Van-living is where Christine spends about 1/3rd of her year so she can be found all over the place! The rest of the time, Calgary is home. Not new to teaching, Christine has been a University course instructor since 2006. Taking her expertise as a teacher and applying it to mountain biking Christine is ready to get you out on your bike and falling in love with mountain biking just like her! Maybe you’ll even have as hard of a time picking ‘one’ favorite trail as her by the end of your lesson (she named off about 6!).
When did you first start riding and how did you get into it?
I had tried riding a few times, mostly local xc trails, but had never got hooked. In 2016 I finished converting my van and for its first road trip decided to drive to Alaska. It was too early for hiking and too late for skiing so on a whim I bought my first full suspension mountain bike (a Rocky Mountain Element!) to take on the trip. Several laps of the flowy trails around Whitehorse, Yukon got me hooked!
Where do you call home? Wherever the van is parked! Between weekends and road trips I spend over 1/3 of the year living in the van ?. In between trips I live in Calgary.
What’s the best thing about mtb for you? Mountain biking is such a diverse sport. There are so many amazing trail networks out there that cater to all different styles of riding and skill levels. From flow trails to roots and rocks, from pushing your bike up logging roads to riding the chairlift. I even bought a dirt jumper last summer and it opened up a whole new style of riding and places to go!
Favourite trail? South Park to Hula Girl in Invermere! No wait! Pinch and Roll in Kimberley. It’s a super playful trail with nothing too scary and ends on NIMBY, a flow trail that is the most fun you can have over 120 meters of descent. It’s not a trail but the Chestermere Bike Park is super rad! Ooohh and Black Mountain in Pisgah, Premature in Golden, Sunset/Schultz Creek in Flagstaff…
Favourite after ride drink? Hands down, an iced mocha!
What do you want your students to gain from your coaching/teaching? I want my students to get a jumpstart on their riding skills. There are many techniques in riding that can make it safer, faster, and more fun – but they are not obvious! When I started taking lessons after a couple years of riding, I was amazed how quickly I was able to progress in such a short time. I want to offer that same feeling of progress to my students. Most of all, riding better makes every trail more fun!
What has been the most valuable piece of advice you’ve been given or received in mountain biking or any other sport? Stop staring at the trees! (also known as look where you want to go). A friend told me this in the context of backcountry tree skiing, but it applies to every sport I do whether it be mountain biking, kiteboarding or skiing!