Tasmania is famous for our world-class mountain biking trails. With an abundance of natural forests and tracks to discover, it’s the best way to get out amongst nature and enjoy some breathtaking scenery. Whether you’re just starting out and still finding your groove, or a more seasoned rider, there’s a bike trail for all abilities to enjoy right across Tasmania.
With two young adventurous boys we’ve tested many of the local riding tracks around Launceston, albeit being slightly restricted over recent months and having to resort to creating our own trails through the vineyards to keep the boys occupied during lockdown. But if you’re heading to Tasmania for some mountain biking fun, we’ve highlighted some of the must visit bike trails to explore.
With COVID-19 restrictions still in place in some areas, many of these trails have only just re-opened, so be sure to check before you make the trek out to hit the dirt.
Northern Tasmanian Trails
Blue Derby Network
Perhaps the most famous Tasmanian mountain biking area is the 125km of trails in the temperate rainforest in North-East Tasmania forming the Blue Derby Network, located in the old mining town of Derby. Since being custom built in 2015 this has become a biker’s paradise, with an abundance of trails to explore right on the doorstep of the town. Blue Derby was home to the Enduro World Series (EWS) in 2017, 2018 and 2019 with the international spotlight well shone on this part of our little Apple Isle. We are so excited that the EWS is once again coming to Derby in April 2021! Cruise to the top and tear down the tracks at pace! You’ll soon see what all the fuss is about.
Whilst Blue Derby is top of the list for the true mountain biking professionals, there’s also lots for families to enjoy. There is a flat scenic loop around Lake Derby, and from the trailhead, Route One is a fun one to start with approx. 6km of easy grade trails taking approximately an hour to complete. The tunnel trail is always a highlight for the young ones! There’s also a fantastic large sealed pump track for the kids. When its time to relax, the local cafés don’t disappoint!
There is no cost to ride the trails, being free to ride and access. There is a nominal cost if you want a shuttle lift up to the Black Stump which is absolutely recommended for the spectacular view. Plus, being only an hour and a half from Launceston Airport it’s easily a destination for a long weekend adventure, best in springtime from September onwards. Stay for a weekend and support some of the local businesses who very much are welcoming of guests and love seeing their little town transformed into a must visit global mountain biking hotspot.
As of 5 June there’s now unrestricted access to the trails and Derby Camp grounds for locals in Tasmania so you can get out and about again. Keep up to date with the latest developments and openings on the Blue Derby Facebook page. Alternatively plan your trip in advance and download the app on Google Play or the Apple Store.
Details: Ride Blue Derby
Hollybank Mountain Bike Park
Hollybank Mountain Bike Park is only twenty minutes north east of Launceston. There are three main trails to explore which are suited to a range of abilities. Those who are not faint hearted can be challenged with the rocky and rugged Juggernaught track, a ten kilometre downhill adventure. It’s the track that’s got the experts talking and tight twists and rugged terrain guarantee an exhilarating ride out in the wilderness! Slightly less challenging is the 4km intermediate Tall Timbers trail featuring sustained climbs and descents and lots of twists, turns and drops.
For those not quite so brave, the 5.5km No Sweat loop passes through a wide range of vegetation and terrain with no significant climbing and an all-weather trail surface that makes it ideal for year-round riding pleasure. There is also a skills area with a pump track and a jump track.
Visitors have free entry to the Hollybank Park, and if you’re growing tired of the mountain bikes there’s also a zipline, segway tours and tree ropes to explore. Plus, when your legs are too tired from riding, our Holm Oak Cellar Door is a short 40 minute drive away to end the day with a glass of Tasmanian Pinot Noir in front of the fire!
Details: Hollybank Wilderness Adventures
Trevallyn Nature Recreation Area
If you’re limited in time or looking for something more accessible around Launceston, one of the most popular local riding is in the Trevallyn Recreation Area. Bordering the world famous Cataract Gorge there’s everything from fire trails to fun single track. The network includes eight kilometres of purpose-built single track stretching from Gorge Road to Hoo Hoo Hut.
Along with mountain bike trails, the reserve offers walking tracks, horse trails, rock climbing, windsurfing and orienteering facilities. It’s spectacular and a place that the whole Duffy family enjoys.
Details: Tasmanian Government
Kate Reed Reserve Nature Recreation Area
The Kate Reed Nature Reserve Recreation Area is another network of tracks with something for everyone in close proximity to Launceston, being only 10 minutes from Launceston CBD. A series of unsealed trails with over 20km of single track, and some great berm trails which are now signposted. The wide fire trails make it great for beginners and families, while there remains plenty of opportunity for more experienced riders to flex their muscles on the single track. It’s also the home to Silverdome Tasmania’s main cycling Velodrome so it’s certainly the mecca for all things bike related.
Details: Tasmanian Government
St Helens Mountain Biking Trails
These trails certainly take the cake for having some of the most spectacular scenery in Northern Tasmania, located near the picturesque Bay of Fires. Meander through a series of stacked loops just south of the St Helens Township or explore an epic 42km wilderness trail that starts at the top of Blue Tier and winds down to Swimcart Beach in the internationally acclaimed Bay of Fires National Park.
Take a virtual spin with legendary rider Hans Rey who explores the magnificent Bay of Fires Trail from Blue Tier to St Helens:
Details: St Helens Mountain Bike Trails
Local News – George Town Plans Underway!
Another world class facility is slated for our own local area and we could not be more excited about the plans for George Town! In what could rival Derby as a mountain bike destination, the local George Town Chamber of Commerce in collaboration with Bell Bay Aluminum has engaged World Trail to build 80km of purpose built mountain bike trails on the flanks of Mount George and in the Tippogoree Hills. The project is working to a two-year timeline, with project completion in October 2021.
Southern Tasmanian Trails
Maydena Bike Park
Located in the Derwent Valley (which also is home to some fabulous wineries), only 80 minutes from Hobart is the Maydena Bike Park. Opened in January 2018 the full-service bike park has over 62 individual gravity trails to explore and boasts a massive 820 metre elevation, the highest of any bike park in Australia. Designed and built by renowned trail company Dirt Art, there’s a shuttle uplift service, bike hire, a bike school, events and tours. There’s something for everyone to enjoy here with, a top to bottom beginner trail, a wilderness ride and a ‘Go with the Flow’ trail testing even the most die-hard of speedsters! There is also a great café at the base where you can watch the riders on the sealed pump track hone in their skills.
We recommend pre-booking your ticket to give you as much time on the trail as possible. Don’t forget to stop at the Summit where the lookout gives you spectacular views of the rugged South West Heritage Wilderness Area.
Be sure to plan ahead though – there’s limited weekends from June and the park will close on July 5th until September 26th. Book online here.
Details: Maydena Bike Park
North South Track – Mt Wellington
Not for the faint hearted, the 10km North South Track on Mt Wellington features an awesome descent. The trail takes riders from a signposted carpark at The Springs, halfway up Mt Wellington, down to the Glenorchy Mountain Bike Park! Enjoy the local scenery and views which need to be captured with your GoPro to reminisce over in future.
Details: Flow Mountain Bike
Glenorchy Mountain Bike Park
Only 20mins from Hobart CBD, the Glenorchy Mountain Bike Park provides mountain bike opportunities for all levels with a wide range of trails including cross country, downhill, mountain cross, dirt jumps and northshore style tracks.
Details: Glenorchy City Council
Meehan Range Nature Recreation Area
The Meehan Range is a popular multiple use area on the Eastern shore of Hobart, and has been a popular mountain biking destination since the early 1980s. There’s a mix of trails, some shared use tracks others fire-trails. The mix of steep and challenging conditions mean that this is a spot for the more experienced riders, but worth adding to your ride list if you’re up for some adventure.
Clarence Mountain Bike Park
Located in the Meehan Range, only 15mins from Hobart CBD, the Clarence Mountain Bike Park includes 40km of single track, including an impressive skills park, pump track, dirt jumps and a range of trails catering for beginners, intermediate and advanced riders.
Details: Clarence City Council
Not a circuit for the faint hearted, this ride follows a 4WD track over the back of the Saw Back Range to the old mining town of Adamsfield and then back out again. It’s quite technical as you climb up the track through some of the spectacular myrtle forests. Whilst a challenging track, it is quite remote with poor phone coverage so be sure to gather some friends for the ride to be safe. Definitely cross country terrain and a trail that you need to allow a day to explore.
Details: Tassie Trails
Maria Island National Park
It’s slightly off the beaten track and needs a little planning but a trip to Maria Island National Park is certainly one to put on your must visit list as it’s nothing short of spectacular. With a combination of historic ruins, dramatic sea cliffs it’s a chance to escape and unwind with 30km of tracks and trails. There’s no shops and no cars so it’s the perfect place to escape.
Many of the roads are suitable for exploring the island, with more experienced cyclists heading south to reach the remote areas with slightly more difficult terrain. Bring your own bike across on the ferry from Darlington (not forgetting your helmet), or hire one when you get there.
You can access Maria Island by passenger ferry from Triabunna, located off the Tasman highway, and the trip between Triabunna and Darlington takes approximately 45 minutes. View timetable here.
Best Tasmanian Mountain Bike Trails for Kids
Former Australian Mountain Biker Zoë King notes “Tasmania is the perfect location to get the kids into mountain biking with most areas having a great progression of trails for the kids to cut their teeth into. There are plenty of places with skills areas and pump tracks where even the youngest of kids can have a go. Derby would have to be my favourite truly offering something for everyone!
There’s so many trails to explore that we can’t capture them all, but if you are looking for a map to make your way around Tasmania, perhaps try this local map. Don’t forget if you’re heading our way to come and visit our Cellar Door whilst you’re in town. Tasmania may be becoming renowned for our mountain bike trails, but equally our wines are just as well regarded and we’d love to take you through our range of wines if you’re in Northern Tasmania.