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  1. #1
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    Into the Mystic and Lord of the Squirrels

    Hi All!

    We will be in Whistler beginning of August and are planning to do lots of biking. We spend a lot of time biking in the mountains in Jasper so are definitely more cross country riders.


    I would really like to do Into the Mystic and Lord of the Squirrels one day and am trying to figure out the logistics. Our kids are in day camp while we are there so we will be a little constrained for time on epic ride days. What is the shortest loop to do to complete this ride? Where is the best/closest place to park? About how long might it take to complete this route? We have a fair bit of practice riding uphill, but I wouldn't say we are super speedy doing so.

    I have a Liv Lust and my husband has a Norco Fluid FS 7.2+. Will these bikes be ok for these trails? I have a full face helmet and some padding, but my husband does not. How necessary are these items for this loop?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    The cycling association made a good 'info sheet' with a lot of the info you're looking for, it's linked here http://www.worca.com/sproatt-alpine-multi-use-trail/

    The 'quickest' way to get through it I suppose would be park at rainbow park, either get a ride or ride up Stonebridge (would ride up scotia Creek climb), head up the flank, do the into the mystic /squirrels skipping happy hour if you are pressed for time, then bomb down what's labelled as 'leftovers' on trailforks (its an old road) and back to rainbow park. There's a new parking lot planned but no idea if it will be there in a couple months.

    Although driving over there doesn't really shave too much time off just riding from the village (if you're staying close to there) IMO. Getting a ride to the top of Stonebridge helps though, but no parking there.

    The time varies so much, but the slowest group I've been with took about 7 hours, which was very(!) slow and included happy hour.

  3. #3
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    Thanks Kevin!

  4. #4
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    You don't need pads or a full face for Mystic Squirrels.

    Like Kevin said the Mystic Squirrels loop times don't include the time getting there and exiting. So budget time and energy accordingly

    One of the easiest descents off that loop to exit off Flank is Industrial Waste which is a nice ride in and of itself
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  5. #5
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    Thanks Lee!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevin267 View Post
    The time varies so much, but the slowest group I've been with took about 7 hours, which was very(!) slow and included happy hour.
    I'll bet that I'd take 8 hours.

    Of course that would also involve two happy hours!
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  7. #7
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    Took us almost all day, but we parked at function junction and went up there. Were also not fast. The whips carrying just a single water bottle passed by us like we were standing still. Actually we were, taking a break admiring view! It was somewhere around six hours. I drained a 20oz bottle and 3 litre hydration pack and had to squirrel some water from friends! This year I think I'm getting a portable water filtration device. Can reduce the water load and weight on the climb, refill at the alpine lake at top.

    No need full face and pads. XC weight pads might be nice insurance. Up to you if you feel its worth the weight penalty hauling it up the mountain.

    If you're into epic rides, it's worth it tho!

  8. #8
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    Awesome! Thanks Root. We will definitely be taking our MSR Trailshot with us. It's a fantastic, light, versatile filtration device if you're looking for one.

  9. #9
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    Yup friend shower me that, im prob going to pick one up. Bonus itll be ice cold water too! Btw check conditions, friend said currently theres still so much snow trail is closed.

  10. #10
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    It's open. (Rode it the other day.) Some snow patches on "On the Rocks" but good to go.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by timvan_78 View Post
    It's open. (Rode it the other day.) Some snow patches on "On the Rocks" but good to go.
    We like some snow (last year)
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  12. #12
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    I just did this loop. Less Happy Hour with an unfit friend. We got dropped off at Stone Bridge and ended up at Function Junction for beers. At a slow, but steady pace we were done in 4.5hrs with 1hr stopped time.

    The climb [Into The Mystic] is non-technical and you can do it in a wheel chair. The alpine part of the ride [On The Rocks] is non-technical and fast. The last bit [Lord of the Squirrels] is rated blue in Whistler and would be a black trail anywhere else. It's not hard, but it's not nothing. No mandatory drops or particularly difficult features, but it's a sustained downhill and if you ride with speed it's challenging.

    The first 1/3rd of the ride is boring, but gets you to the alpine. The alpine section is fairly boring, but the views are lovely. The last 1/3rd is techy interesting riding.

    All in all it's a good half day on the bike.
    Safe riding,

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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    I just did this loop. Less Happy Hour with an unfit friend. We got dropped off at Stone Bridge and ended up at Function Junction for beers. At a slow, but steady pace we were done in 4.5hrs with 1hr stopped time.
    Wow!!! Your unfit friend is far more fit than we are! When did you do it? Maybe you passed us in the trail We did it on Tues Aug 7th.

    I agree with most of your description of the trail. Especially the fact that the descent felt much more like a black than a blue. It was by far the hardest trail I have ever ridden. It was just such sustained roots and loose rocks on the way down. I really didnít enjoy it and was happy to get to the bottom. The whole experience was amazing though and I loved riding through the alpine. On the Rocks was my favourite part by far and I didnít think it was boring. I still found the downhill part of it fairly technical. Iím so glad we did this.

    We also staged from Stonebridge and we were 7 hours from truck to truck with 4 hours 45 minutes of moving time.

    Been there, rode that, bought the t-shirt!
    Into the Mystic and Lord of the Squirrels-6a6249f1-cad4-4a0c-8db0-a8f0c91c55bd.jpg
    Last edited by mLeier; 08-10-2018 at 07:28 PM.

  14. #14
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    Nice t-shirt! The only commercial establishments I entered in Whistler were those that sold groceries or sold beer. I might have bought the t-shirt otherwise.

    I'm glad you guys had fun.

    We did it the on Thurs the 2nd of Aug. My buddy was wrecked afterwards, but I'll let him know he rocked it.

    The DH was what we'd call BC XC. Like normal XC, but steeper with more roots and rocks.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    The alpine section is fairly boring, but the views are lovely.
    Wow, never heard some describe alpine riding as boring. I guess from an MTB perspective it is, but from a life experience, fairly unmatched.

    I just rode 50km at or above the treeline this past weekend in Revelstoke, (Frisby, Keystone and Caribou Pass) and had such a blast, with very little technical.
    Straight outta Rossland

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by CptSydor View Post
    Wow, never heard some describe alpine riding as boring. I guess from an MTB perspective it is, but from a life experience, fairly unmatched.

    I just rode 50km at or above the treeline this past weekend in Revelstoke, (Frisby, Keystone and Caribou Pass) and had such a blast, with very little technical.
    I didn't say it sucked. I'd do a non-technical alpine ride for the views. That said I'd prefer one that also had technical riding.

    It's like the difference between walking up a mountain or rock climbing it. You get great views both ways, but one is more interesting and challenging.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    Nice t-shirt! The only commercial establishments I entered in Whistler were those that sold groceries or sold beer. I might have bought the t-shirt otherwise.

    I'm glad you guys had fun.

    We did it the on Thurs the 2nd of Aug. My buddy was wrecked afterwards, but I'll let him know he rocked it.

    The DH was what we'd call BC XC. Like normal XC, but steeper with more roots and rocks.
    You might be able to buy one online. $10 from each shirt go s back to WORCA for trail karma!

  18. #18
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    We rode it in late July, the 26th to be exact. Based solely on expectations, Into the Mystic was easier than expected due to how smooth it was. That being said, I still stopped 3-4 times for a total of 15 minutes. I enjoyed On the Rocks though I have to admit, I thought the climbing was over by that point, Damn it!! Going down LOTS was bad ass!! I agree the top 2/3 of that trail would be a black trail down here but that's exactly the type of trail I prefer...fast, rooty, chunky. I'll put up with the climbing just to do the DH next time we go back. Great job WORCA.

    We started at Stonebridge as well and did NOT ride Happy Hour. 4417' of climbing in 4:45 for us.
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  19. #19
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    Is it possible, and if it is, is it even worth it to shuttle Callaghan Creek FSR to the access road, and then up to With a Twist?

    With a Twist starts just below the Canadian Wilderness Adventures cabin.

    I own a Jeep, and have lots of 4x4 experience (some of it in tough situations), and will be renting a 4x4 when I'm out there this month. I, obviously, don't want to get to crazy in a rental though so I will err on the side of caution...
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  20. #20
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    Not worth it, it's hard to get a vehicle all the way up there, I know someone who used a side by side to do it though. The road is really nasty (unless it's changed its been a couple years since I've been up there) you'd be brave to do it in a rental haha.

  21. #21
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    Hey all, just came here to make a post about this trail and I see there is one already! I may be able to sneak a weekend in mid/late september. What are my chances of bad weather? I live in the western cascade foothills in WA so I don't MIND a little rain but hate getting caught out in big downpours or snow at the top.

    Just trying to decide if it's worth the trip up that time of year. I'm used to epics but would probably be on my own. Plenty of people up there on the off chance something happens I can't fix trailside?

    AM hardtail or squishy bike?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by big_slacker View Post
    Hey all, just came here to make a post about this trail and I see there is one already! I may be able to sneak a weekend in mid/late september. What are my chances of bad weather? I live in the western cascade foothills in WA so I don't MIND a little rain but hate getting caught out in big downpours or snow at the top.

    Just trying to decide if it's worth the trip up that time of year. I'm used to epics but would probably be on my own. Plenty of people up there on the off chance something happens I can't fix trailside?

    AM hardtail or squishy bike?
    Chances are good there will be some nice weather at that time, last year it was good until the first week of October. Just keep an eye on the forecast, I wouldn't do it if it's forecasted to be significant rain.

    Most nice days there's lots of people up there, but be prepared to fix your own stuff because chances are the folks you run into might not be able to help either!

    And whatever bike you like riding more, I'd say 'squishy' but that's pretty vague

  23. #23
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    Also, there is cell service along pretty much the whole route. By the lake up top I didnt have any cell service with Telus but som American kids did!

  24. #24
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    big_slacker....I rode it on a 6" travel Tracer and that was overkill for most of the ride but I appreciated having it going down the top 2/3rds of Lord of the Squirrels itself. It might be a "blue" run on Trailforks but I think it's a solid "black" trail. As far as traffic, we rode it on a thursday morning in July and saw (3) others on the climb up. Once we reached the top of 'Into the Mystic' there were 10-12 riders from multiple groups taking photos, resting, etc...we then all leap-frogged each other until LOTS. My buddy and I went down LOTS 1st and never saw another rider.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevin267 View Post
    Chances are good there will be some nice weather at that time, last year it was good until the first week of October. Just keep an eye on the forecast, I wouldn't do it if it's forecasted to be significant rain.

    Most nice days there's lots of people up there, but be prepared to fix your own stuff because chances are the folks you run into might not be able to help either!

    And whatever bike you like riding more, I'd say 'squishy' but that's pretty vague
    Quote Originally Posted by k2rider1964 View Post
    big_slacker....I rode it on a 6" travel Tracer and that was overkill for most of the ride but I appreciated having it going down the top 2/3rds of Lord of the Squirrels itself. It might be a "blue" run on Trailforks but I think it's a solid "black" trail. As far as traffic, we rode it on a thursday morning in July and saw (3) others on the climb up. Once we reached the top of 'Into the Mystic' there were 10-12 riders from multiple groups taking photos, resting, etc...we then all leap-frogged each other until LOTS. My buddy and I went down LOTS 1st and never saw another rider.
    Thanks for the info!

    Squishy means 125mm travel 5010. The hardtail is a carbon 29er with 120mm fox 34 up front and a dropper. It does well but like any hardtail it'll be more of a handful at speed on chattery stuff. Sounds like I'd enjoy the HT on the way up, but the 5010 more on the way down.

    After talking to my wife it's looking like it'll be first weekend of september or not at all, so chances are weather will be decent!

  26. #26
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    FYI - LOTS and other trails are closed until further notice.

    TRAIL CLOSURES FOR GRIZZLY BEAR:

    The Sproatt Alpine Network (Into the Mystic, Lord of the Squirrels, Happy Hour and With a Twist) and Rainbow Lake Trail are now closed, along with Skywalk, Kevinís Homerun, Screaming Cat Lake and Upper 19 Mile Creek trails closed until further notice

    The Conservation Officer Service (COS) in consultation with Ministry of Forestry, Land and Natural Resource Operations (FLNRO), Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) and area biologists have closed the following trails:

    ∑ Into the Mystic

    ∑ Lord of the Squirrels

    ∑ Happy Hour

    ∑ With a Twist

    ∑ Rainbow Lake Trail

    ∑ Skywalk South

    ∑ Skywalk North

    ∑ Kevin's Homerun Trail

    ∑ Screaming Cat Lake Trail

    ∑ Upper 19 Mile Creek Trail​
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  27. #27
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    Oh my, just did the Mystic/LOTS about a week ago. Awesome ride, but kinda gives me a wake up call! My rear shock went out and I had to rent a bike, forgot to transfer my bear dinner bell.

  28. #28
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    Is this place inside Whistler?

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  29. #29
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    It is in Whistler, but not in the actual bike park. It goes up the mountain on the other side of the valley.

    Into the Mystic and Lord of the Squirrels-90765085-fe33-459f-86f1-ee8fce67d3d7.jpg

  30. #30
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    And it's rideable from Whistler village.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevin267 View Post
    And it's rideable from Whistler village.
    It is, but that adds a lot of kmís and a LOT more elevation just to get to the starting point!

  32. #32
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    I don't think it's that bad at all, I like to go from creekside, up nita lake drive, then either up stone bridge place or part single track option up peice of cake and industrial waste to reach the flank. I feel kind of silly driving within whistler to most rides unless pressed for time.

  33. #33
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    Did they close it because they felt it was being overused? Was there a big snowstorm 4 weeks ago?
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by k2rider1964 View Post
    Did they close it because they felt it was being overused? Was there a big snowstorm 4 weeks ago?
    Aggressive grizzly in the area apparently.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by cerebroside View Post
    Aggressive grizzly in the area apparently.
    That's a good enough reason for me

    I saw several black bears but I'm glad I didn't run into any grizzly's. I was actually freaked out most of my solo ride on Comfortably Numb. I was just sure that something was going to come out and kill me.
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  36. #36
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    Are there that many grizzlies around Whistler?

    I was there for a week last summer and didn't really think about those bears since they are pretty much absent from our Cascades.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Curveball View Post
    Are there that many grizzlies around Whistler?
    https://www.piquenewsmagazine.com/wh...t?oid=10295177

    Yes.
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