The Kubota Dream Project with Kurt Sorge

For Kurt, the bike always meant freedom; his three chords and the truth were two wheels and the trail, independence he could wield with adrenaline. After learning how to ride from his grandma, the Nelson native went on to build a storied 15-year career as a pro rider with three historic Red Bull Rampage wins. Now, he’s building the next evolution of his yard, moulding it to fit his vision of the ultimate home trail. It won’t be easy, but to Kurt that’s just part of the fun.

A seven-hour drive east from Vancouver and nestled where the Selkirk mountains meet the western arm of Lake Kootenay, Nelson is a town with a rich tradition of artisans and mountain biking — and there’s no shortage of hiking trails to explore. But to ride the big jumps, you’ll have to venture off the beaten path. The very same paths where a young Kurt would practice on dirt mounds and ditches. Or on jumps he would build with his friends. The problem was these jumps were only short-term solutions — they could be plowed flat the next day. Soon the idea of building his own track started to form.

It took ten years to get to this point. Over time, the yard would go through plenty of revisions, all to create better angle’s or to add more speed leading to more air. It was also during this period Kurt Sorge switched from designing and running the track, to taking a more hands-on approach. He quickly learned how to use an excavator to work more efficiently and to make ample progress through the winter months in time for spring.

By working on the yard, Kurt could shape the 5-acre track to fit his terms. Every hill, dip, curve, ramp, jump and bump are tailored to challenge and elevate his style — a rider’s playground just steps outside his door. The project also drew in the help of his friends. Together they plugged away as the yard came closer to reality.

From the operator’s seat of his Kubota U55 excavator, Kurt Sorge takes in the progress on his Nelson yard. He spots a few warm up lines, carefully placed friend lines, medium lines, a large line featuring a wide gap along with more slopes taking shape. He’s been putting in the work on his dream yard — and it shows.

A season later and they were nearing completion. One of the final tasks on the yard was the relocation of its second largest landing. It was a serious challenge, but for Kurt, this tweak would allow for better alignment and more speed. Armed with shovels and his trusty Kubota, Kurt and his friends got to work. It took two weeks to complete the move, but the finished product resulted in a more satisfying jump.

The latest build of the track features a large line with metal ramps leading to a 50-foot gap on big dirt landings. It also balanced medium lines with wood ramps, and smaller dirt trails that flow to the larger lines to give the track a quick pace and tempo. To add more spice to his runs, Kurt built “The Road Gap” to maximize airtime and thrills.

And then the moment of truth arrived — it was time to ride the finished yard. Kurt got on his ash black Evil Bike and ripped through the earth. A blink later and he was airborne. He hit every slope and ramp with brutal speed. From point A to Z and all spaces at once. Each trail and line he took flowed seamlessly to suit his style, a dirt bike demigod reigning over his domain.

Every jump in his yard had a story to tell. All held a chapter in his dream of building a track fit for the adventures he wants. The dream was now a reality, and it was best enjoyed at top speed.

Dreaming big always demands audacity. It takes guts to pursue despite all the risks and obstacles. But it’s always worth powering through — because sometimes the reward is just that great.

We would like to extend a special thanks to Kemlee Equipment for supplying us with the Kubota equipment.