Perhaps one of the worst elements about the pandemic for mountain bikers was the part about staying close to home. A huge portion of riders look forward to a summer trip every year and a lot of Americans make the voyage to Whistler or the North Shore for obvious reasons. After a year of not being able to travel north, the opportunity is returning.
On August 9, US citizens and permanent residents will be able to enter Canada again if they have been fully vaccinated for at least 14 days ahead of their travel. Just enough time to make it to Crankworx – had they known the border would reopen. Canada hopes to allow visitors from all countries starting on September 7, according to the New York Times.
Canada closed its border to nonessential travel on March 21, 2020. That meant that events like Crankworx Whistler, BC Bike Race, and other international mountain bike happnenings in the country would shut down, halt tourism revenue, and make for a challenging set of circumstances for event organizers.
Canada has slowly ramped up its vaccinations, with about 50 percent of the population now fully vaccinated, and 75% have had a first dose, according to the Times. Visitors must present a proof of vaccination at the border, and the country will only accept vaccines from which it has approved for its own population. Those include Pfizer, BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Janssen or Johnson & Johnson. Aside from your mountain bike, that card will be the most important item to bring. Visitors are also required to present a negative Covid test upon arrival that was taken 72 hours prior to travel.
Mandatory quarantine requirements will be dropped for air travelers on August 9, for vaccinated visitors. Children under 12 who aren’t eligible for vaccines will be exempt from the quarantine requirement as well.
Though the reopening doesn’t mean things will be exactly how they were previously, it’s nice that the news has trended more toward reopening, and festivals taking place again, rather than closing and cancelling.