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Mountain Bike Blog



Merry Christmas from MTB-TV - What a year its been


"In twenty thirteen we rode awesome trails."

.. but before I start on a mountain bike tale of self indulgence I would like to thank you for your support of MTB Trail Videos.  Whether you watched our YouTube videos, Tweeted, posted on our Facebook page or simply visited our website your online interaction has helped drive me to film more trails.  Cheers!

Click on the YouTube logo to bust out into full HD

I had an absolutely stellar year riding my mountain bike.  The mission to increase our trail video database took me to many new trail destinations.  I went as far north as Nerang on the Gold Coast, west to Lithgow, Newnes and Rydal, south to Stromlo and the NSW Snowy Mountains (Thredbo and Bungarra) and to some great new bike parks in Sydney (OMV and Jubes).

I also got to ride more of the trails around Fred Caterson Reserve, Terrey Hills, St Ives and Belrose plus venture into unauthorised trail territory .. shhhh.

But!  The most significant revelation this year for me personally was my ever growing appreciation of single track.

A surprisingly rapid skill progression followed by a foolishly unexpected boost in power and momentum (tip: commuting) had me flying around trails I would not have enjoyed this time last year.  Confidence is an amazing thing and I will save the detailed story of how I went from a timid, brake happy, top heavy weekend warrior to a speed hungry, gravity loving, power enthused, top heavy weekend warrior for another time.

Enough about me .. more about the best trails of 2013.

Top Three for 2013

Stromlo - [Feature Video]

Its mix of fast open descents, technical tight descents, drops rocks and bumps, technical cross country, fun climbs (yeah really!) and optional wife-shuttle has it firmly planted as my favourite place to ride in 2013.  To the point where my last visit was a 1 day hit and run - 7 hours driving for 4 hours of riding! 
Favourite Run:Western Wedgetail, Pork Barrel, Double Dissolution - [Feature Video]
Our Next Video:  Vapour Trail (adjacent to the DH) - wearing FF helmet and body armour.


This largely unmentioned State Forest park has some brilliant trails, some legal but most are unauthorised, and yet most are well maintained and see a lot of traffic.  It's unusually difficult to find info on Nerang especially if you want to go unauthorised.  Your best options are to visit a local bike shop, talk to other mountain bikers on the trail or just follow a White Rabbit down a trail.  BTW there are ludicrous amounts of legal fire trail through the State Forest.  Take your hard tail and your enduro bike on your next Gold Coast holiday (roughly 20mins drive from Coolangatta or Broadbeach).
Favourite Run:  Can't tell you
Our Next Video: Can't tell you

Thredbo - [Feature Video]

Is amazing and despite having lifted access riding that mountain is physically punishing.  But the fun doesn't end on the ski slopes, there is an ever growing set of XC trails and this summer the full 20km Thredbo Valley Trail opens running all the way from Thredbo to Bullocks flat and beyond.  20km of cruisey descending - mostly.  I can't wait to get back there.
Favourite Run: Kosciusko Flow Trail
Our Next Video: (the rest of ..) the Valley Trail

Other places we loved in 2013

The Single Track

Bungara Alpine Centre (Jindabyne) - [Feature Video]
This year: Emu's run and around the Green Circuit
Next Year: The new G Trail

Ourimbah - [Feature Video]
This year: Jurassic Park and Rollercoaster
Next Year:  Going to get up that bastard rock garden on the Jelly Leg Climb!

St Ives
This Year: St Ives Horse Trail and onto the Wildflower Gardens Single Track (since the apocalypse)
Next Year:  Get smoother and faster

Fred Caterson Reserve (this place keeps surprising us)
This Year: the Bottom Trail
Next Year: The Fullers Road Downhill (that nasty piece of work from the pipeline to the Bottom Trail) - could end up hospitalised. [Feature Video]

The Fire Trails

Mt Kosciuszko
This Year: The Summit Ride
Next Year: I choose not to race! [Feature Video]

Terrey Hills
This Year: Cooyong Track (southern descent) and Duckholes
Next Year:  Mega Loop - ride them all in one day!

This Year: Heath & Bare Creek Track
Next Year:  Avoid going for Strava Records but extend the Terrey Hills Mega Loop.

The Bike Parks

This Year: Blue Descent
Next Year: The Logs

This Year: XC Descent
Next Year: Don't freak out little kids and then crash on the wall ride (2013 #FAIL video to come after XMAS - I'm expecting more footage)

2014 Bucket List

Places we haven't ridden that are on the radar for 2014
Rotorua (NZ), Townsville (QLD), Toowoomba (QLD), Mt Joyce (QLD), Mt Annan (NSW), Awaba (NSW), Taree (NSW), Kowen (ACT).

Other Bucket List Trails

  • All the trails around Brisbane and the Gold Coast Hinterland
  • Cairns and Atherton - World Cup trip maybe?
  • MT BULLER - OH HELL YES! The Epic Trail (build just started), 40km descent (I'm actually crying)
  • Bright - apparently they have beer too - (Bikes and Brews tour)
  • Tasmania - By 2017 the whole state will be one big MTB trail network
  • Queenstown NZ - I get the feeling Queenstown only needs another year or two and it will be the Whistler of "the alternate summer".
  • And generally anywhere where they have uplifts and don't speak with an'strayen accent.

Merry Christmas Mountain Bikers .. I hope you had as much fun as I did this year and here's to an even bigger 2014. Woooohooo!



The trails

The Edit:

Did you get the homage?  It was a take on the mid 90's Nike Hope ad that I managed to find earlier this year on YouTube after a decade of searching - the YouTube account has since been banned :(
(I reckon we did a better job than Nike of remixing/combining Buffalo Tom's songs, Soda Jerk and Treehouse)


Trail Centres and Trails featured in this blog



This website is brought to you by MTB weekend warrior Aaron Markie.
There are plenty of great websites out there with a wealth of information about Mountain Bike Trails,
however in my experience its hard to get a good mix of info, maps, photos and videos of trails I've never ridden.
The idea of this website is to tie those 4 elements together and give you a more detailed look at the MTB Trails I ride.
If you have anything to add then let me know.