Three must-do mountain bike trails to add to your bucket list
With spring well and truly here and the school holidays approaching, it’s time to dust off the mountain bike and head for the trails!
One of Subaru drivers’ most common hobbies is mountain biking, so our owners are in for a treat as we’ve got the inside word on the must-do trails in the Central Plateau region.
We’ve teamed up with TCB Ski Board and Bike in Ohakune who have all the local knowledge on where to ride and are one of the Subaru Snow Week’s partners - providing epic discounts to Subaru drivers. So, if you’re travelling to the Central Plateau for Subaru Snow Week (28th September to 2nd October) it’s the season to hit the mountains one day and the bike trails the next!
Mountain Biking in the Central Plateau
Whether you’re a beginner or wanting to get your kids confident on their bikes; more of a confident rider; or want some gnarly trails to test your skills, there are plenty of options for all levels.
There are many different places in the area that offer bike rentals, enabling you to experience the stunning trails, including TCB Ski Board and Bike in Ohakune. We chatted to TCB owner Ben Wiggins to find out what some of the must-do trails are, and it turns out bikers are spoilt for choice!
The scenic Old Coach Road trail ticks the boxes for all riders and with a medium level of fitness required, it can be ridden by five-year-olds through to those aged 70-plus.
The Grade 2 bike ride from Horopito to Ohakune Junction and back to TCB is about 17km and takes around 2.5 hours. Starting from the Horopito end means the ride is mainly downhill and combines the gentle undulating terrain of the Old Coach Road with new trails through stunning native bush.
Great photo opportunities exist at the Taonui Viaduct and when you ride out onto the Hapuawhenua Viaduct, or into the old train tunnel. Storyboards along the way inform riders of the struggles the pioneers had in shaping and building the Ohakune Old Coach Road.
If you’re in need of some wheels to get you going, TCB Ski Board and Bike have a range of quality hard tail, full suspension or e-bikes that can be rented for this trip. They also have transport packages leaving several times daily to drop you off at the starting points.
As part of Subaru Snow Week, if you show your Subaru keys, you’ll get with two for the price of one bike rentals from 28th September to 2nd October.
Check out more details about the Old Coach Road trail here.
(Photo credit: Backpackerguide.nz)
For those who are confident on a bike, the Fishers Track mountain bike trail could be your next challenge as it includes a 520m descent through farmland and rural gravel roads.
Riders need to be prepared for a steady climb from the start. It’s located at the National Park Village at the end of Carroll Street, where riders then head over the railway crossing and follow the Fishers Track signpost up to the summit. From here, you are rewarded for your labours with a long 17km downhill stretch along a grassy farm track and rural gravel roads. Finish up with a gradual climb back up to the end point at the remote Kaitieke First World War Monument.
Choosing the right weather for this track is important. The insider tip from TCB is that the track is not as much fun when it’s wet. The surface is mixed but does have a fair proportion of grass, which makes for some interesting cornering when there’s been some rain.
Find out more about the Fishers Track here.
(Photo credit: plateauproductions)
For riders who are after a bit more adventure, the advanced tracks in the Uenuku Pines in the Waikune Forest will be must-dos on your list.
The Pines, as it’s known, is the first mountain bike park in the Ruapehu region and features 14km of trails. There are two green trails for beginners, nine blue intermediate trails and seven black trails for expert riders. There’s gaps, jumps, bridges and other skill-testing features scattered throughout the forest.
TCB say riders could easily spend a day here riding loops. Ben recommends this ride if the weather is wet as the 30% single track is not too badly affected by the rain.
To find the Uenuku Pines, head 3km south (towards Ohakune) on SH4 from the National Park. The old Waikune prison is on your left and on your right is the mountain bike park. To access the Pines, you'll need to join the Ruapehu MTB Club. Membership is only $15/year for adults, $10 for kids, or $25 for the whole family.
For more information about the advanced Uenuku Pines and how to join the Ruapehu MTB Club, click here and check out one of the epic trails in action below.
If you’re heading to Mt Ruapehu for Subaru Snow Week, we highly recommend visiting some of the great bike trails in Ohakune while you’re in the Central Plateau. During Subaru Snow Week (28th September – 2nd October) there are plenty of local deals available to Subaru owners. If you simply show your Subaru keys, you’ll get access to these exclusive offers.
TCB have got you covered for your biking and snow sport needs, with two for the price of one bike rentals or two for the price of one ski tuning during Subaru Snow Week when you show your Subaru keys.
With All-Wheel Drive as standard and plenty of ground clearance, there’s a Subaru SUV to suit your lifestyle and enable you to hit the mountain bike trails, with ample room for all your gear too. Find out which Subaru SUV is right for you, with the large Subaru Outback, medium SUV Forester or compact XV to choose from.
Subaru is excited to offer its customers exclusive deals, including discounts on lift passes for Subaru Snow Week, in conjunction with Ruapehu Alpine Lifts (RAL) with whom Subaru has been the official vehicle partner for 22 years. Check out all the other amazing offers exclusive to Subaru owners here.