NZ MTB Ride Guide: Queenstown Bike Park
With some of the best lift access mountain biking in the world Queenstown should be on the list for all Australian mountain bikers who thrive on gravity descents. With a flight time from Brisbane of under 4 hours it's the shortest travel time to premium chair lift / gondola MTB riding for many local riders. So what's on offer in Queenstown?
Bike Park Access
The crown jewel itself, Skyline Queenstown. Situated at the top of town you'll be able to comfortably ride to the bike park from pretty much all Queenstown accommodation. It's pay to play here if you want the luxury of the gondola which I really recommend, lift tickets available online or a the bottom of the Gondola. For those eager riders you can pedal up the access road to the top but you'll be more than a little less comfortable than your gondola riding mates at the top.
With a fast uplift and long daylight hours you can punch out a seriously large number of laps here. So, take it easy, build up your speed and comfort over the days riding. A black trail in Queenstown is significantly harder than any black or double black run at Gap Creek or you local Brisbane mountain bike tracks.
The park has some serious terrain lurking inside it so you're going to want to come prepared to make the most of your trip. It's steel so make sure you've got fresh tyres for the best traction possible and a spare set of brake pads handy. With the difficult terrain found in the park we'd strongly recommend riders wear a full face helmet, gloves and knee pads at minimum in case of a crash.
Check out the below list of some of our favourite trail. Do keep in mind our above note about trail difficulty!
Hammy's - Green - Flow trail, great to warm up on and race your mates down on the wide, multi-line trial.
Vertigo - Blue - Flow trail with some fun jumps and great berms. A great trail to relax and flow down but keep focused as a crash at these speeds hurt.
Thinigymajig - Blue - Tech trail with lots of roots, as you work your way along side the hill, battling the off camber. Hitting this at top speed is a challenge for any rider!
Shashika - Black - Tech trail with some rocky / rooty shelfs into corners. Stay sharp and watch that front wheel!
Huck Yeah - Black - Jumps! A great jump line but only for riders confident and experienced in the air, crashes here will come with high consequences but the high speeds and big air time makes it a tonne of fun for skilled riders.
World Cup - Double Black - As the name suggests this is a steep, rough, rutted descent like World Cup tracks you see on Red Bull TV. Take your time first lap down and scope out the features and lines of the track before pushing hard.
It goes without saying this is just the tip of the ice-berg for Queenstown Bike Park trails, have fun exploring the many trials on the mountain.
Off The Bike
One thing that Queenstown offers like no other riding location in the world is the entertainment off the bike. Depending on your budget there is great food all through the village and a tonne of activates including bungee jumping, jet boating and more. Not to mention the picturesque location of the town being right on the lake.
You've probably heard of 'Ferg Burger' and yes It's worth having. Huge, delicious, juicy burgers. Rumour has it they taste better at 1 in the morning after a large consumption of alcohol as well. But, when you're not in the mood to wait in line go next door to 'Ferg Baker' and grab a pie or pastry. Minimal / no wait time and still delicious!