Mountain biker Martin Littlejohn will speak at Spirit Square on Tuesday.

Marketing mountain biking in Campbell River is kicking off an extensive campaign to put Campbell River’s mountain bike trails on the map is kicking off an extensive campaign to put Campbell River’s mountain bike trails on the map.

According to the organization, the city encompasses arguably some of the best mountain biking terrain in the province, but a focused marketing strategy to promote this growing industry to the world is lacking.

Tourism BC says the mountain biking tourism sector generates $635 million a year for the Province and represents an enormous overall value for an industry sector that has minimal environmental impact.

The town of Whistler has enjoyed so much success in promoting its mountain biking that over the course of the past 10 years the industry has grown and is now valued as a $16 million a year business and employs 194 people year round.

It is the goal of to jump start the promotions of mountain biking within the guidelines of the Mountain Biking Tourism Association, take advantage of the pool of expertise and resources this marketing embodies, work with local industry stakeholders to enhance Campbell River’s profile and promote the product to its fullest potential, therefore building a sustainable environment for our existing tourism related businesses and set the stage for further growth of the industry.

GoCampbellRiver’s first step is to join the Mountain Biking Tourism Association (MBTA) of B.C. and to participate in its marketing initiatives by hosting a series of pages on its website. This website is the main call to action for all the marketing initiatives the MBTA is currently engaged in.

The MBTA is an arm’s length organization whose primary funding is supplied by Industry stakeholders and Tourism BC and whose principal goal is to grow the mountain biking industry in the province.

The Mountain Biking BC website allows active and committed riding communities across the province to consolidate their information, share it with mountain bike enthusiasts and build awareness of British Columbia as the most diverse mountain biking destination in the world.

With this proposal, Campbell River will be posted as a region on the site, (it is currently not represented). Membership grants the opportunity to post news on area mountain biking; list trail networks with online maps; post a gallery of pictures and video and more.

These pages would be designed and managed by and will include any regional business related to the industry that wish to participate.

It has been established that Campbell River has three trail networks that qualify under the MBTA’s criteria for a mountain biking destination. Those are the Snowden Demonstration Forest, the Pumphouse Trails, and the Beaver Lodge Lands. Trails that don’t meet the criteria are Menzies Mountain, Stories Creek, McIvor Lake, and Wood Creek. This does not mean that these trail systems cannot be promoted, they just cannot be promoted by the MBTA’s initiatives, unless in the future they meet the requirements.

You are Invited welcomes Martin Littlejohn, the Managing Director of the Mountain Biking Tourism Association (MBTA), for an informal discussion to explore options and gain an understanding on where the industry has come and where it is going.

Littlejohn will highlight the state of the mountain biking industry and the province’s goals.

He will explain what participation in the initiatives means and the economic advantages to the community, with proactive methods to drive the industry forward; an industry that currently generates millions of dollars of revenue for communities across the province.  Littlejohn will be at Spirit Square this Tuesday from  9 – 10:30 a.m.

Littlejohn is the co-founder of the Western Canada Mountain Bike Tourism Association, with 20 years experience in recreation and tourism in planning, marketing, and product development. He is involved in a number of initiatives to develop mountain bike tourism in the province including MTCA’s Mountain Bike Policy Working Committee (2006), Bike Parks BC marketing program (2006-present), the BC Mountain Bike Tourism Strategy (2009, the Mountain Biking BC marketing program (2010) and more. His diverse background in tourism includes inbound tourism management experience developing, marketing, and operating packaged and custom made tours for international markets including Japan, Australia, USA, and Europe.