Polar bear swims are great. On one hand there’s the non-swimmers nursing a boozy flu thinking about how cold it is and trying to piece together the year and night that just passed. Then there’s the half naked lovers of life, frantically catching their breath while sprinting out of the freezing ocean. These people are not dwelling on the past, they’re living in the holy-cow now with shocked extremities thinking only about getting to that warm towel as fast as possible. Once out of the water, everything is great. Things are instantly warmer as the bitter cold is replaced with a wet numbness that is refreshingly focusing.
Squamish always steps things up a notch and this year was no different. Other polar bear swims only involve freezing water, but here you can get oil, caustic soda, and probably even some yummy mercury. Plus, the tide was in so to get to the water you had to scuttle over dozens of slimy logs proving once again, everything is harder in Squamish.
Even so, people love this challenging town as was shown later that day during the new, New Years tradition: The Test of Metal sign-up sprint. Being involved for so long it’s nice to see something new and this year many gathered to watch the spots fill during the shortest party ever. Forty-eight minutes is all it took for 800 riders to sign up with literally hundreds more on the wait list in a matter of minutes. It’s staggering to think how something so home-grown-awesome has become among, if not the, most popular mountain bike race on the continent.
As cool as that is, it’s sad to think these awe-inspiring numbers apear to mean nothing to our Province as they allow BC Timber Sales to log our signature trail not to mention our watershed. I know, it’s a new year, turn a new leaf, etc. But the only thing I want turning are the wheels to strip BCTS of it’s horribly ignorant power. It’s our watershed for Pete’s sake. Doubly sickening is the fact that logging our watershed isn’t even an issue as BCTS responds “we do it all the time”. Hear that kids? If you do something morally reprehensible it’s only acceptable if you do it all the time.
But it’s not all oil dumps and Provincial Squamish