Whistler Trail Build: Midgard and MissFire, Start to Finish in Photos

Ever wonder how great mountain bike trails are built? This photo essay shows the evolution of two of Whistler's newest mountain bike trails, Midgard and MissFire, from flags to finished trail.

Midgard and Missfire are two new trails in the Creekside area of the Whistler Mountain Bike Park, both built by Gravity Logic. They are envisioned as connectors from the Top of the World trail descending from the Peak Zone to Creekside, maximizing a trail and singletrack descent from Peak to Creek.

Both trails have different characteristics, despite being built by the same organization. MissFire is a black diamond rated, technical, hand-built, mostly natural-surfaced trail that’s 1.4km long with a 14.7% grade. Midgard, on the other hand, is a 3.2km long, machine-built intermediate trail with a 7.6% grade. Of course, this is by no means the end of new things for Creekside. The plans are for more trails, with the Creekside area being the main focus for expansion according to the WMBP master plan.

Here’s the story of the MissFire and Midgard builds in photos.

The last Midgard bridge: from 2017 to 2019

Last bridge on Midgard circa 2017 before the bridge spanning this gorgeous waterfall was built. With Shawn B.

Last bridge on Midgard, circa 2018. The bridge has just been decked. ShawnB, KubanP, Sharon, AlexR.

Last bridge on Midgard in 2019.

Midgard berm work: 2018-19

Midgard is a bermed blue trail. Photos taken circa 2018. Gregg Winter is the operator.

Gregg Winter machined berms and helped build bridges on Midgard. Pictures from early season 2019 before the trail opened.

Midgard berms during the opening month in 2019.

MissFire singletrack: 2018-19

MissFire branches off from Midgard. Its trail bed is left natural. Photo circa 2018.

MissFire circa 2019. Still natural.

MissFire trail bed 2018 on an off-sloped, rooty, loamy corner. Scott and Arlo worked on this corner for over four hours to flatten it out so it would catch the descenders. Photo is with ScottV and Arlo.

Same MissFire corner in 2019. Pine needles have fallen over the trail work so all of Scott and Arlo’s efforts are covered in loam.

While the goal of MissFire’s build was to keep it technical, in keeping with its black rating, pre-emptive work was done on some steep corners where erosion was anticipated. The photo on the left is from 2018, and the right is pre-opening 2019.

Midgard / MissFire junction and bridging: 2018-2019

The Midgard / MissFire junction 2018. That MissFire section was all natural in its early stage.

MissGuard trail intersection and bridge circa 2019. The MissFire trail bed has seen quite a bit more work in the past year.

MissFire Trail and bridge in 2018. The bridge entry was rocked in but the exit was still loam and needed to be hiked.

MissFire Trail and bridge in 2019. A year of pine needles and organic has re-loamed the rocked-in entry to the bridge. The trailbed of the bridge exit is now handbuilt benchcut so you can ride straight through.

THE Midgard Rock

The Midgard rock barrier seems to pose a problem as it’s smack-dab where the trail has to go. Photo circa 2018 with Alex R, KubanP, ShawnB and Sharon.

The former Midgard rockface with the rock magically gone, circa 2019.

Jerry of Gravity Logic working away with the rock hammer on the Midgard rock – circa 2018 and early 2019.

Midgard post rock-face dismantling.

Thanks to Tom and Shawn of Gravity Logic for letting us preview and document the trail build!

Tom Pro in his native environment.

Whistler’s alpine trails descend from Top of the World toward the Creekside zone.

Top of the World views. TOTW connects the Whistler Mountain Bike Park Alpine Zone to the Creek Zone via Midgard/MissFire.