Empire Trails to Open May 20th



Empire Trails Notice📜

The Empire Trails officially open on May 20th!
We are temporarily shut down for trail maintenance; to complete the new trails and official mapping we’ve been working on. There are also have a few more surprises for you all in the works!

We have decided to drop the day pass rate to $5 a person this season as an added incentive to visit this amazing trail system and bring a friend with you.

Trail building help is needed! Our trail building team sure could use extra sets of hands. We’ll be out on the trails every weekend leading up to opening day. Send us a message to join in!
" - Empire Trails


A reminder that they are looking for volunteers to help make the place awesome.


hmmmmmm…looking for volunteers to build trails to grow/establish their business

I need a volunteer to sell printing to help grow my business but I have yet to find one. Should it not be incumbent on a business to pay it’s employees and not ask them to volunteer? Building trails benefits the business owner. Why should we volunteer?


The inevitable question when money is involved…

My assumption is that the money will be dumped back into the trails. Although, I haven’t seen it mentioned anywhere.

Maybe the benefit of volunteering will be pre-ride and a waver in the pass.

I think in the end we would all benefit from high quality trails out there.


Duuuuddee, because mountain biking is touchy feely goodness… Sportwheels, Bikes Plus, The Bike People, Cyclesmith all had a hand in developing the trails there at some time or other so get in on it, you don’t have to be bike shop to donate your or your employees time!

Lolz, I don’t actually remember if Bikes Plus had a race there or not. I think they were the predecessor to Cyclesmith, though.

And this is why the IMBA people when they were here cautioned against building trails on land without a contract with the landowner.


You did forget Slickrock Cycles who held the first race there.


Right, I think I was confusing Slickrock with Bikes Plus. Bikes Plus always seemed to use Jack’s Lake. Thanks.


Before anybody jumps up and down, I think that 5 bucks is a fair price and if people want to volunteer their time to build trails, there is nothing wrong with that either, if that is what you are into.

I just think that local trails without private land ownership deserve more of people’s attention, is all.


I’ve never done any trail-building, but would be happy to go learn. I’d be happy to drive a few of us up there if anyone is headed that way some Saturday afternoon or a Sunday. I’m curious to see these Empire trails I’ve heard so little about. :wink:


I might take you up on that offer :stuck_out_tongue:


Random thought’s on the topic. Bikes plus ran a couple of points races there years ago years ago. I got a course map in the basement somewhere. Like volunteering itself asking for volunteers is free. Don’t mean your going to get any but why don’t you give it a shot anyway muddy. 5 bucks seems more reasonably but only time will tell in the end . This may be the first year in a long time that no annual or points race is being held in gore. Has the endurance race got life left or has it had it’s day in gore. I always felt it was a better points course myself. Interested to see the new work and how it will mesh with the existing trails.


Was it the Bikes Plus version that sent us to the right off the dirt road climb into that heinous singletrack? I think it may have been. Its a clearcut now, thank god.


I agree Kirk… taking advantage of the build it-ride it culture. Why not offer a free trail pass for the volunteers or 1/2 a dozen


No that was the very first race there, the slick rock cycle race in 97. It was the only time that section was ever used next year cycle smith had their first 8 hour event with a much different course.
Footnote The only section of singletrack that was used for every event is the first singletrack after the gravel road climb.


@muddy, @TheBuilder

I don’t see this, how are they taking advantage?

So quick to jump on peoples back and talk shit with very little information, its shameful really, we’re not on Facebook here.
Have you personally contacted them about volunteering? Maybe they are offering some kind of compensation that you don’t know about.


Literally nobody is making money in this process–to describe it as a ‘business’ isn’t really fair. My guess is that the $5 fees they collect will cover the insurance to open it and maybe some tools or machine time to fix and update trails. I get not wanting to volunteer trail build time when the trails cannot be accessed without paying, especially when there are other initiatives like the MRWA system that is on public land and for use by everyone. As was noted above, has anyone asked the Blois’ if they’re open to giving a free pass to anyone who volunteers? My guess is they are.

That said, these are pretty great trails, and I’m happy to pay a few bucks a few times a year to have access to something different from the norm, especially if they’re kept in great shape.


Hmmm, I read that as “utilizing” as opposed to “exploiting”.


I dunno, I remember racing it where we just went up the road (the start finish was at the top) and then one year later on we were racing the same course but everyone was like ‘why the fuck did they put that shitty section in there and screw up a perfectly good race course?’

I’ll have to consult my archives.


I didn’t want to start a whole thing here. To be clear, I have no issue at all with paying to ride a trail. I would easily pay $10 for a “destination ride” . It is not like this will be anyone’s every day trail so I doubt anyone will mind paying once in awhile.

I do still have an issue with someone saying they would like to have volunteers to help build and grow their business. Wouldn’t we all. Payroll is my company’s biggest expense


I mean really, they might get some extra beer money out of this endeavor but probably not. I think @brightwhite nailed it as far as costs go. You’d be crazy to think charging money to ride a trail in NS would be a “business” to make a living from.

I’m glad they have lowered the price, $5 is more in line with what they have traditionally had to offer. I stopped riding there last year when the $10 fee came in to effect. I mean the trails are fun and all, but they are fairly short and there were some things on the trails that were falling to neglect.

I really hope they step up to the plate this year, fix the rickety old rotting bridges and any new trails they put in are well thought out and well constructed, so that people feel like they are getting an awesome experience for their money. I think the goal would be to have people to feel guilty for not paying after experiencing the trails. Like the experience I had in Fredericton this winter. I felt compelled to buy a membership ($25 suggested for the winter) after having such a great time on the trails that obviously had so much time and effort put into them.