Riding the Mountain: Stage 1

Mountain bikers

The City of Hobart has started work on four new mountain bike trails on the lower slopes of kunanyi/Mt Wellington as part of plans to create an improved, more connected recreational track network.

The trails will be built by the City of Hobart within a year - two will be for mountain bike riders only, two will be shared use.

The design of each track underwent comprehensive on-ground environmental, heritage and Aboriginal value assessments using local knowledge to ensure minimum impacts. The detailed studies undertaken to inform the project and support the planning application are available below under assessment reports.

Together, the four trails form a keystone in the City of Hobart's Riding the Mountain plan, which aims to improve the riding network in kunanyi/Mount Wellington's foothills and better serve local and tourism needs.

The new trails will be funded by a partnership between all three levels of government – including a new $238 000 Australian Government grant through national COVID stimulus funding aimed at supporting tourism recovery – the Regional Recovery Tourism Program.

Important: The Upper Luge mountain bike track will be closed for about six weeks. No other impacts to existing trails are expected.

About the new trails

Two of the new climbing trails will be shared use – enabling walkers and trail runners to share in an easier ascent up part of the mountain. The downhill trails will be mountain bike only, separating use where required to make the network safer and better for all.

The four new trails create about 7km of new trail experiences on the mountain.

Rocky Wheel'n (3.3km)

An easy climb from the Wellington Park entry near Bracken Lane to the North-South Track near The Springs. Graded as an easy mountain bike and walking track, Rocky Wheel'n will be dual direction for walkers and runners, but uphill only for mountain bikers. A gentle gradient will make climbing the track achievable by people of most ages and fitness levels.

Free Wheel'n (2.2km)

A fun beginner descent. Graded as an easy, downhill mountain bike only track. Free Wheel'n will create a fun riding experience with minimal levels of risk. A great ride for beginners looking to improve their skills.

Skid Road (1km)

This moderately difficult climbing track will give riders access to the new Upper Luge track and is shared use, dual direction for walkers, uphill only for mountain bike riders.

Upper Luge (650m)

An existing informal trail that will be a mountain bike only, downhill track that improves the character and riding experience of the current trail, but is brought up to international mountain bike trail building standards.

Benefits of this project

The City of Hobart's Riding the Mountain plan responds to limited local riding opportunities, the growing popularity of mountain biking and puts Hobart in a position to make a strong contribution to Tasmania's mountain biking reputation.

  • The new recreational mountain biking trails will benefit a wide range of users and be good for locals, tourists and local small businesses.
  • Investing now in better mountain bike trails will have immediate economic benefits in the community and there will be a clear trickle-down effect among local tourism operators as Hobart boosts it mountain biking credentials to help support tourism across Tasmania.
  • This work will help pull Tasmania through the COVID downturn. With half the country in lockdown, the tourism sector is doing it hard and Hobart tourism is hurting.

The project is part of broader City of Hobart plans that will see almost $1.5 million spent this financial year on track and trail works, providing work for Tasmanian trail builders.

The new trails are part of the City of Hobart's Riding the Mountain blueprint for improved mountain bike riding in the mountain's foothills.

Implementing stage one of the Riding the Mountain plan will deliver a better tourism experience – a recreational network that enables visitors to explore the mountain's natural beauty and is accessible to a wide range of riders, walkers and runners.