Riders will speed around the slopes at Panorama Mountain Resort from Friday, June 1st to Sunday, June 3rd in the third annual Panorama Hare Scramble off-road dirt bike race.

Kendyl Hart, past president and founder of the Windermere Valley Dirt Riders, expects to see more than 400 dirt bikers at the event, which is one of four western Canadian cross-country championship races.

He anticipates there will be pros, experts, veterans and experienced riders on the toughest courses, but there are a variety of races for riders to choose from depending on their experience. Everyone from children to new racers to expert riders are welcome to participate.

“We try to slot them into the correct race that would be competitive for them but not over their heads,” he said. “We’re all there to have fun and make it somewhat challenging for everyone,” he said.

While there’s “nothing super crazy” on the course, Mr. Hart said participants can expect steep downhills, bridges with tricky approaches and obstacles including roots, logs and branches.

They can also expect dust, dirt spraying out from behind the other riders (called roost) and possible wipeouts.

Mr. Hart has been dirt biking since he was a child and raised his children on the trails as well. His sons race competitively and his daughters and wife also enjoy zooming along the trails.

“It’s a good family sport,” he said. “We all (dirt bike) together. It’s tons of fun.”

Mr. Hart is looking forward to the event for the racing, for the camaraderie and to see people he knows. For his family, dirt bike races are like reunions.

“You’re always meeting your old friends there,” he said.

The Panorama Hare Scramble will start on Friday, June 1st with the King of the Hill climbing race. The most challenging races will run on Saturday, June 2nd with riders on the courses for up to 2.5 hours. Additional races will take place Sunday, June 3rd.

Hares and rabbits have not confirmed their attendance, and may or may not be around to be scrambled.

The event is organized by the Windermere Valley Dirt Riders. For more information, visit wvdr.ca/events/.