Small town Livin’ is the theme of this blog and in this particular episode I wanted to send a big thank you to some of the people that make living in this particular small town so great. In particular I want to thank the River Rats trail builders and all those that help them and or build their own trails. There have been some phenomenal additions to the Cumberland trail network in the last year. The River Rats have built a phenomenal route down Nikkei mountain, Rhizome, Fiscal Cliff and Woodcutter are all different and excellent. The views on the way up are incredible and at the top you have a 360 degree view from the Beaufort range across the Trent river valley to the ocean and mountains of the lower mainland. Rhiezone is a fast flowing trail that is still quite fresh and will become even better with time. Fiscal cliff has some technical xc sections and will have you sweating until the huge bridge of a finish. Woodcutter is my personal favorite of the three ( since I don’t have a fancy seat post and like to roll). It is a fast rock n’ roller through some steep banked turns that are a riot. The three linked together offer an awesome climb and fun descent. The other huge addition by the River Rats is the massive extension to the Pot Luck/ Thirsty Beaver route. Switchback is a long climb up and a long descent down to the top of Pot Luck. It has some steep sections, some xc up and down and some rolling sections. It is still very fresh and will only get better in time. I really need to get one of them fancy seat posts, or even better a new bike that comes with one.
Real estate pitch- Please buy a house or list with me so I can get a new bike.
There is also a great new edition and alternate route from the bottom of Thirsty Beaver. Slick rock is off the top of short climb and the beginning of Teapot and offers a fast rock n roll fall line ride down to the descent section of That Damn Trail. There is an awesome bridge and rock feature that sends you into a nasty bit ( which can be bypassed). Fast and super fun it is a great alternative to Off Broadway / 42nd st .
Queso grande is another newer trail that was put in last year and I am told that is has seen a fair amount of work and faster with better flow with a new upper section. It also offers some great views across Comox Lake and has some brilliant descent sections that will thrill the most expert of riders.
These recent additions combined with the building of double pumper, 50 to 1 , rugburn, swamp monster, scat/brat, high roller and missing link has vaulted Cumberland to arguable one of the best bike networks in Canada, and it feels to me as though this party is just getting started. I can’t wait to see what the future holds. There is a good reason to get excited as the village of Cumberland under a new CAO and parks rec manger have given UROC ( United Riders of Cumberland) the ability to try and develop land usage agreements with the land owners above the town. This under reported and very big news will create the ability to sign , market and manage this phenomenal recreational amenity. With the right level of co-operation from the land owners, the village and the trail users can all be winners.
Here is a link to a great and accurate trail, Colin Wilson is the hero of this effort
Hi everybody, hope you are all getting excited about the shift in season and are looking forward to your favourite summer time activities. I have just taken the skis and boots out of the car and now it is time for stinky bike pads, helmet and gloves. I am told there are new trails to ride and it seems that mountain biking is growing every year in popularity , with adults and kids. Aside from the lovely fact that the trails are drying out I wanted to share a couple of articles in the recently published Business Gazette. The first is an article in which I was interviewed regarding the state of commercial leases, here is the link.
The second is an article I have written in regards to real estate investment and particularly for the junior or first time investor. I believe that the current down market is actually a greta thing for investors as rents are stable and at a rate that makes owning a rental property very attractive. Read on and give me a call if you want to talk further.
Spring is in the air and the local real estate market remains somewhat stagnant. Statistically, we’re slightly off in pricing and sales activity from last year. Personally, I view this type of market as a great opportunity for first-time buyers and investors seeking great value between sale prices and rental rates.
Despite stats that show the market continues to cool, I’m optimistic. After all, whatever the market, the Comox Valley remains a great place to live and work. I tend to take a long-term view of economic cycles, and I firmly believe that the Valley has more to offer than any other community on the Island.
You can’t argue with statistics, however, and the facts are that it remains a buyer’s market. As a listing agent, I encourage my sellers to price themselves to be the best choice in their particular category. Ass a buyer’s agent, I search for value or create it through a lower priced offer for my clients. It’s not always possible to get the seller and the buyer to agree on the value of a property, but the buyer always has the option of walking away.
As there are almost always other options, it can be a tough market for sellers who are not prepared to offer the absolute best value to a prospective purchaser. When a property is well-priced (a good location helps too!), we’re often seeing competing bids, which reinforces my belief in this wonderful place we call home, as I’m able to see that others feel the same way.
Despite what the media and your uncle John may claim, the world is not ending. Those who are serious about living in and loving the Comox Valley can still find (or create) great value. Investors should also be excited about this springtime market, as it’s offering the best pricing we’ve seen in six years for investment properties. From a cash flow perspective, rents have gone up, prices have come down and there are great deals for the junior investor looking to start building a portfolio of well-located townhomes and condos.
Here is my most recent column in the business Gazette, I have opted to just copy and paste as the pdf of the online version does not have indivisual links to stories
“Where we choose to live” a real estate column of sorts
There is no denying that the Comox Valley is a fantastic place to live. We could argue over the economic climate and the things that are not happening but in this column I want to discuss why we live here. I would suggest that most young people that have moved to or back to the valley in the last ten years have done so at a sacrifice to their careers, but knowingly because the lifestyle is so great.
Winter time can be rainy, nasty and windy. Not so great in the valley but exactly what skiers and snowboarders want. There is a great facility for families, intermediates and experts alike and it remains a secret in the industry. Mt Washington is having another good season and a great reason to be here, to commit to this place called the Comox Valley. As I write this column there are 24 cms of fresh snow on the hill and it is actually sunny. 24 cms of snow is not even really a big deal here, whereas at other resorts it would be their biggest dump of the year. Just another monday in the valley in February. To their credit Mt washington has been excellent at getting the expert backside terrain open this year. Keep it up! The powder hounds appreciate your hard work.
But it is a club at this facility that is truly one of my favorite reasons to live here and one of the reasons I moved here. It’s called the Mt Washington ski club and it is a fantastic place to have your kids learn how to ski. The sacrifices we make to enjoy our passions is the balance of life and we certainly make sacrifices so that the kids can get the best possible ski experience and instruction. One of the great beauties of this club is the passion of the parents who run the club , put on the races, cook the fundraising lunches, do the recycling , deal with the garbage. It is a group effort, it’s a club.
This past weekend we hosted a race with over 200 kids and it went off without a hitch . We had racers from five other clubs and they all had a great time. It is a simple club with fantastic coaches ( led by John Trimmer) and they consistently produce medals and beat the city kids. It is a small town club run that is unpretentious and all about the skiing . It is just another example of why this place is such a great place to live. It is also emblematic of the spirit of the valley and North Island, because the same enthusiasm is happening in theatre, dance, soccer, football, hockey, baseball. You name it, if you love to do it, there is likely a great group in the area already doing it. What a great place to live.
Check out my ski and bike videos to give you a sample of “Why We Live Here”
You never know when the snow is going to fly and the sun will come out. Part of living in the Comox Valley is deciding on what recreational activity you want to partake in on any given day. Biking in February – no problem, trails are dry, go for a walk, pouring rain in the valley- go skiing- it’s dumping on the ski hill and there is likely no one else up there. I have decided to try and put together a series ” first track jimmy”. Our skiing on the island can often be fantastic and is on occasion epic. Just another reason to consider livin in this little slice of paradise where golf, biking and skiing are your daily options.
Another great reason to be here: