Analysing terrain data
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The exposure grade describes the potential consequences of falling or slipping off the path.
Low Exposure: The path is on completely flat land and potential injury is limited to falling over.
Medium Exposure: The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.
High Exposure: Some trail sections have exposed ledges or steep ascents/descents where falling could cause serious injury.
Extreme Exposure: Some trail sections are extremely exposed where falling will almost certainly result in serious injury or death.
Mt Fromme on Vancouver’s North Shore is ground-zero for freeride mountain biking, and this loop is a beauty.
It’s almost entirely on singletrack and will challenge, possibly frustrate, and definitely reward good intermediate riders and better.
Several of the trails in this route are rated amongst the top 10 in the world on trail review websites. The uphill singletrack route has been stitched together over a number of years with countless hours of volunteer work and the generous sponsorship of a number of local companies.
It’s so well built that a rider with great skills could (theoretically) keep their feet off the ground all the way from bottom to top.
Don’t let the green and blue ratings fool you, though: this is a tough climb that gets more technically challenging higher up.
Look for arrows marking the "uphill" trail. Park along E Breamer Road and look for the small pull-out where the Dempsey track starts.
From here, the up trails are Dempsey, St.
Mary’s, Skid Row Connector/Ascent, Baden Powell, Dreamweaver, Executioner Connector, Executioner, Ramble On, and D’Yer Mak’er.
They start off at a cruisy gradient with a few wooden bridges and rocks to keep things interesting.
D’Yer Mak’er at the end is a real grunt with some steep, tricky roots to negotiate.
This spits you out onto Mountain Highway, the main gravel road.
Follow this uphill, around one switchback, and past the turn-offs to a few other downhill trails before you arrive at the start of 7th Secret.
Have a break—you’ve earned it! Of the two trails down, 7th Secret is more challenging than Expresso.
The entry move is probably the scariest part and serves as an ability filter.
After that, it’s a fast roller coaster down a well-armoured trail, with all sorts of features coming at you—wooden ladders, rock drops, and log rolls.
Definitely take it easy the first time! 7th Secret drops you back onto the gravel road, right in front of Expresso.
This trail is all fun! Officially it’s a black, but many North Shore riders consider it intermediate.
It’s fast, with bermed corners and a bunch of mostly optional technical features.
Zig and zag down through the lush forest until you hit an intersection with the Baden Powell.
Do a quick left and then right onto Lower Expresso.
Everything is fast and rollable here! Finish up back on Dempsey.
All too soon, and seemingly without warning, you pop out at your car.
Ready for another lap?