PREVIEW: With a recent MTB epic published on pinkbike.com, taking in 42 kilometers, over 1000 meters elevation and 16 hours of riding and shooting, we couldn’t help but catch up with Abby Cooper for more details.

First things first, meet Abby Cooper, a new member of the Polygon Team. Abby is based in Squamish BC and no stranger to exploring trails around the globe with camera gear in tow. Specializing in remote locations as a photographer and creative director Abby’s already taken her Sisku T8 on some epics. Speaking of epics, her recent article on Pinkbike “Exploring the Babine Mountain Range in Northern BC” was certainly a big one!

Curious to get her behind the scenes perspective on riding and photographing Cronin Pass in Smithers BC, we organized a little Q+A with Abby to get some of the nitty-gritty details, here’s what she has to share!

Q: What ability level of riding is required for Cronin Pass?
A: The trail varies a lot. At times it is an overgrown mining road, so while spacious and not technical, they are hard to navigate and can be relentlessly steep. The alpine ups are quite steep and techy and the biggest descent is a multi-use trail which adds some technicalities with the steep, tight and exposed corners. If you’re comfortable riding blacks this should be a good trail for you, but don’t be heartbroken if you walk a down section. That being said, if you’re pushing the blues to their max, you can probably do this traverse with the expectation to walk a few sections. Don’t forget the flow in between is spectacular!

Q: Tips for first-time traversers?
A: Slow is smooth and smooth is fast. No fast burn payoffs here. Save something sugary to eat up top and bring extra water. Tires and tools required – light and unprepared isn’t the right kinda light. Oh, and don’t think you won’t walk something – even if it’s just for some saddle free time.

Q: The most useful item of gear packed?
A: On my bike, hands down the EDC OneUp tool – that came into play multiple times. In my pack, my camera gear did a lot of work, all my extra layers got worn (including an Arc’teryx puffy) and of course I’m always glad to have my Bivy Stick emergency communication device in the pack and not have to use it.

Q: The most useful item of gear packed?
A: These gnarly fake lemonade flavoured hydration tables – they were disgusting.

Q: Why the Siskiu T8?
A: This bike has the capability of doing everything in my books. Perfect amount of travel for flow and tech while keeping it light and simple on the way up! Wouldn’t consider anything else for the adventure.

Q: The best part about riding in Smithers BC?
A: The town vibes. From friendly fishermen in the streets to rogue builders on the trails and the random people across from you at Smithers Brewing – everyone is stoked about their surroundings and how could you not be – this place is stunning with adventure offerings in all directions!

Q: Other notable trails to ride in the area?
A: Piper Down is really cool – it has a plane crash gap! Also, Huckin’ Eh is an absolute Smithers classic!

Q: We gotta know, what flavour of pizza did you devour?
A: Hawaiian of course

We’ll undoubtedly see more of Abby in the coming months – follow her on Instagram for more Polygon riding goodness – @abbydells!

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