Naramata Centre – May 1-3, 2024

We will gather on the unceded territory of the Syilx Okanagan people who have cared for this land since time immemorial (learn more).

About The Symposium

The MTB Symposium is a gathering of creative minds with a vested interest in advancing the future of mountain bike recreation and tourism in British Columbia.

Our goal is to make mountain biking more accessible, more inclusive, and more sustainable while delivering key social and economic benefits to our communities and destinations.

British Columbia has long been a major contributor to the world of mountain biking.  From its clandestine beginnings to its growth into the mainstream, mountain biking has become an established form of outdoor recreation and lifestyle that people enjoy in every corner of the province.  The diverse trails and inspiring landscapes that are cherished by so many British Columbians have caught the attention of riders from around the globe.

The 2024 Mountain Bike Symposium is an opportunity for stakeholders and experts to share insights and knowledge about how to progress toward a more sustainable and vibrant future for mountain biking where stewardship is well resourced, and participation is equitably enabled.

This year’s theme is “Stewardship; Creating a Culture of Care”. Stewardship can be applied to many aspects of mountain biking from the responsible management of trails to the effective leadership of our organizations and to the way we promote and market the experience to riders. Ultimately it comes down to having the appropriate tools, knowledge, and resources to actively inform and deal with situations as they arise and to also prepare for our future vitality.  Fostering stewardship is critical and we all share a common goal of creating a model for our communities and the province that supports stewardship to ensure trails and mountain biking provide a legacy of benefits for generations to come.

Where & When

May 1-3, 2024.  The main event takes place at the Naramata Centre.  This unique venue is nestled in the South Okanagan approximately 10 kilometers north of Penticton on the eastside of Okanagan Lake.  For over a decade, Penticton and the hills above Naramata have become a popular destination for mountain bikers.  The area offers one of BC’s most scenic and distinctive landscapes with many other local attributes to complement the riding from world class wineries and breweries to refreshing lakes and locally grown produce.

Here’s what’s happening…

  • Pre-Symposium Workshops: April 30th-May 1st
  • Welcome Reception and Registration: May 1st, 6-10 pm
  • Two full days of sessions: May 2nd and 3rd
  • Guided rides and social events: The opening group ride starts at 1 pm on May 1st followed by the welcome reception at 6 pm at Slackwater Brewing in Penticton.
  • Accommodation: A wide range of accommodation options are available in the area including at the Naramata Centre.
  • Stay for the weekend and enjoy all that Penticton and Naramata have to offer in the beautiful South Okanagan.

The Speakers

The symposium will feature presentations by visionaries, change makers, and those that have been in the trenches advocating for trails and promoting BC as a world-class destination.  We will explore solutions to the challenges we face while keeping an open mind towards new approaches and new partnerships.  Topics covered will be as diverse as the BC landscape.  More details will be announced as the agenda comes together for topics and speakers. 

Pre-Symposium Workshops

Trail Building Workshop

This one-and-a-half-day workshop will start on the morning of April 30 and wrap at noon on May 1st.  It is an informative hands-on learning experience focused on sustainable trail-building techniques.  The workshop is open to Full Symposium Registrants however space is limited (maximum 25 participants).  Click here for more details.

Wilderness Advanced First Aid Workshop (certification course)

This is a 40-hour Wilderness Advanced First Aid (WAFA) course for mountain bike professionals. This course includes an online pre-course and two full field days held on April 30th and May 1st.  Click here for more details. 

De-colonizing Trails Workshop

This half-day workshop will include a field visit to a local trail system along with Indigenous representatives to explore how local trail systems can impact First Nations and explore strategies and opportunities for collaboration and partnership to foster outdoor recreation that is sustainable and upholds Indigenous Rights and Title. Click here for more details.

Social Events

There will be many opportunities for networking in a safe, casual, and fun atmosphere. 

Join us at the Welcome Reception on Wednesday, May 1st from 6-10 pm at Slackwater Brewing.  Meet your fellow delegates and enjoy some local flavours and libations.  More details to come including transportation options.

The fun continues on Thursday evening, May 2nd, in Naramata.  One more chance to corner that person with the question you have been dying to ask!  More details to come.

What's Included

When you register for the full symposium, the following is included:

  • 2 full days of sessions featuring knowledgeable and entertaining speakers and presentations.
  • Breakfast and lunch on Thursday and Friday.
  • Welcome reception and other social events (Wednesday and Thursday evenings)
  • Pre-symposium workshops on Tuesday and/or Wednesday (limited space, some workshops require additional fees.)
  • Guided rides on scenic trails over some of the most unique terrain found in the province.

Accommodation

The Naramata Centre offers a range of accommodation options including camping. To check availability and to book, click here (Note: Rates are based on 2 night stay, arriving May 1st / departing May 3rd.  Additional nights, before or after, can be added and are subject to availability).

Other accommodation options are available in Naramata and Penticton.  Check accommodation options at VisitPenticton.comDiscoverNaramata.com or through your favourite booking app.

Guided Group Rides

So many options, from fast and flowy grassy ponderosa meadows and gullies to techy rock ridgelines with vistas of Okanagan Lake below.  The KVR Rail Trail provides further options for those that want to capture more of the spectacular views and experience some of the local history at a more leisurely pace.   Whatever your style from XC to Enduro or E-mtb, the area is sure to please. 

More information on ride options coming soon.

Who Should Attend?

The MTB Tourism Symposium is an event for anybody with a stake in developing, promoting, or managing mountain biking for recreation and tourism.

Attendees typically include:

  • Mtb/outdoor adventure tourism operators
  • Event producers
  • Media specialists
  • First Nations/Community Leaders
  • Land Managers
  • Park planners
  • Destination marketing organizations
  • Bike industry representatives
  • Trail advocates, builders and maintainers
  • Government and industry professionals

Schedule

Below is the basic schedule for this year’s program.

(A detailed schedule will be posted when topics and speakers are confirmed.  Be sure to subscribe to the newsletter to get all the updates.)

Register

Registration is now open!

Early bird rate is in effect until March 15th

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Looking for Accommodation?

The Naramata Centre offers a range of accommodation options including camping. To check availability and to book, click here (Note: Rates are based on 2 night stay, arriving May 1st / departing May 3rd.  Additional nights, before or after, can be added and are subject to availability).

Other accommodation options are available in Naramata and Penticton.  Check accommodation options at VisitPenticton.comDiscoverNaramata.com or through your favourite booking app.

Would you Like to Receive Updates?

Subscribe to the symposium newsletter and we’ll send you updates as we get closer to the event.

We respect your privacy.  This site does not use cookies and we will only use your email for the purpose of communicating information about the event.

Partners

     

                            

           

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor, please contact Grant Lamont at grant@mbta.ca

Got a Question?

For questions about the conference, please contact the MBTA Executive Director, Martin Littlejohn, using the email address below. We’ll get back to you as soon as possible!

martin@mbta.ca