Grizzly Bear Refuge Kicking Horse Mountain Resort is also the home to a 22 acres (89,000 m2) acre Grizzly Bear "Refuge"; two orphaned cubs (Cari & Boo) were taken there in 2003, but one (Cari) died during her first winter hibernation due to a twisted intestine. Boo can often be seen mid-winter from the Gondola, if he decides to take some exercise, but can be more reliably seen on a 'bear tour' during the summer months, provided he has not escaped (as he did for several weeks in 2006 and 2011). Mountain Biking Kicking Horse is open during the summer for downhill mountain biking accessed by the gondola. Kicking horse provides the longest descent in Canada for mountain biking. Downhill biking (DH) is a time trial mountain biking event held on a course with a net decrease in elevation. As the name of this discipline implies, downhill races are held on steep, downhill terrain, resulting in high speed descents and, most commonly, with extended air time off jumps and other obstacles. A continuous course is defined on each side by a strip of tape. The width of the course can vary greatly over the length of the course, but it is typically between about 2m and 10m wide. Riders have one attempt to reach the finish line in the shortest amount of time while remaining between the tape. The rider must choose their path (or line) by compromising between the shortest possible line and the line that can be travelled at the highest speed. If a rider leaves the course by crossing or breaking the tape, he must return to the course at the point of exit. Riders start at intervals, often seeded from slowest to fastest. Courses typically take two to five minutes to complete and winning margins are often less than a second. Riders are timed with equipment similar to that used in Downhill skiing. The 1st downhill tim
-trial race took place in Fairfax, California on October 22, 1976 on a fireroad now referred to as Repack Road, due to the need to repack the single rear hub brake after a descent. The bikes used were based on beach cruisers that had a single rear brake that worked by pedalling backwards. A mechanism came into operation causing a conical metal (bronze) brake shoe to be wound on a thread into a conical metal hub. To prevent a metal to metal brake from snatching it was always filled with grease. Heavy use of the brake during the descent would cause the brake to over heat, melting the grease till it drained from the hub and required repacking. Ten riders descended 1300 feet of Repack in about 5 minutes. The first bikes used for descending were known as "klunkers" or "paperboy bikes": coaster brake cruisers using balloon tires first imported to America by Ignatz Schwinn. By 1979, two organizers and competitors of the Repack downhill, Charlie Kelly and Gary Fisher founded the company which named the sport, MountainBikes. As mountain biking grew enormously during the 80s, downhill riders continued to use either rigid or limited suspension travel (under 2 inches) bicycles, and purpose made downhill bikes were not made until the 90s. Some of these innovations included dual crown suspension forks and disc brakes, as well as very elaborate frame suspension designs. Later, riders from all disciplines of cycling began focusing on downhill. Particularly, many BMX racers made the crossover, including champions such as John Tomac (Team Tomac Bikes), and Brian Lopes. Their influence is seen in the increased difficulty of many courses, especially the big jumps and drops aspect of downhill. The coming of age for downhill biking was its inclusion at the first UCI Mountain Bike Championship, held in 1990 in Durango, Colorado.
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