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Mountain bike riders set to blaze a trail through national parks

SYDNEY'S mountain bikers have always been hampered by one thing - a conspicuous lack of proper mountain trails.

Instead they have independently, usually illegally, carved their own tracks through national parks around the city fringes.

This could be about to change, with the state government to release a discussion paper today on ways of balancing the needs of the state's 30,000 dedicated mountain bike riders with those of people who go to national parks for the trees and wildlife, peace and quiet.

From SMH here (took up a good deal of page 3 in print):

Update: The Manly Daily's Take:

Update 17/9: The St George & Sutherland Shire Leader piece:

DECCW media release is here:

And the paper is supposed to be here from today (not up as of 07:00) here... discussion closes 18 October:

Update: Closing date for comments is now 25 October:

I cannot stress enough how important it is that everyone back this initiative! This means comment, comment, comment. Nothing is going to happen unless mountain bike riders show they have the numbers to justify proper facilities.

FWIW, I am meeting a NPWS Director Regional Manager (no longer acting director) this arvo for an informal chat that should now be pretty interesting Eye-wink

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Comments for Mowbray Park Reserve Action Plan Close Friday

In case you didn't notice, Cadam posted earlier:

Willoughby Council is asking for comment for the Draft Reserve Action Plan for Mowbray Park. This area contains some potential XC and even DH areas and is just outside of Chatswood. Even though MTB is not mentioned in the plan itself, it's open for the community to comment and is an oppurtune time to let council know about the need for MTB trails in the area.

Comments close on Friday (September 10) so if you can write in and let council know more MTB facilities are needed on the North Shore now's a good time. Full details and discussion here:

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This weekend's activities

A quick forum and riding round up for the weekend:

For some, this Sunday may well be their hardest ride of the year so wishing everyone heading to the Angry Doctor & Irate Intern best of luck. If you are still holding out hopes of snapping up a late entry BTW, check the classifieds - quick!

It's not all about the doctor though - don't forget those at tomorrow's Wollombi Wild Ride. If you aren't quite up to racing yet, perhaps a Novice Chix XC Clinic is the thing? Eye-wink Or for some plain old fun - head for the Yellomundie Roll on Sunday.

When out on the trails remember to stay safe and always ride within your abilities. There was quite a discussion about a recent accident at manly Dam. Also, look out for the wildlife as we were reminded snake season has started early and what lurks above the 19th hole...

And on the topic of snake bites, danielschipper asked, Why do I get punctures?. Other popular threads recently are, Two things to clarify..., a few words trail status updates, some pretty good tips on how to fix a Camelbak bladder and Frags wondered what to do with his Norco six 1. We also had news about Ku-ring-gai Unstructured Recreation Strategy - please comment!.

Finally, a few clips to rev you up for the weekend, check out these goodies...

Brian Lopes Downhill Run
Helmet cam | Peaty and Minaar | Worlds DH course at Mont Sainte Anne 2010
Post Office Bike jam

... and not so goodies from The Atherton Project - Season 2 Episode 7! Wishing superstar Dan and all those mere mortals out there who might be out of action right now (see above!) a speedy recovery.

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Ku-ring-gai Unstructured Recreation Strategy - please comment!

A heads up to all those wanting to work for better trails in the area: Ku-ring-gai council have their Unstructured Recreation Strategy out for comment. Please take a couple of minutes to have a look and comment (not here - I mean in an email to the council) with your support.

Comments on the document should quote reference number S06520 and be directed to or post to: The General Manager, Ku-ring-gai Council, Locked Bag 1056, Pymble NSW 2073

Just a quick, "I enjoy mountain bike riding in the area and fully support and encourage the council in their plans for better facilities for mountain bike riders." is enough Smiling

Submissions close 16 September 2010

More details on the link below, but briefly:

As part of a commitment to transparent and participatory decision making, Ku-ring-gai Council is seeking comment from the community on the draft Unstructured Recreation Strategy.

The strategy was developed to meet the following aims and to:

- Address current and future unstructured recreational activities undertaken within community land, such as walking, cycling and rock climbing, particularly within the Ku-ring-gai Bushland Reserve System;
- facilitate planning by addressing key infrastructure within the council area, which is not addressed by the Open Space Strategy;
- provide clear restrictions, permissible uses and guidelines for these activities, including the responsibilities of different user groups when utilising shared or multiple use facilities;
- provide guidance to bushland management and booking processes for relevant activities.

There are already some good trails in this area and I'd encourage everyone to write in and supporting this strategy to ensure these are not removed and also to encourage council to work with local riders for more of the same Smiling

Council link here with full document, and some taster maps from said document attached.

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Another round up

Seems like it's time for another round up, so let's see what everyone has been talking about the last couple weeks.

First up, nix85 asked about bike cleaning and got some answers... and a whole lot of discussion about chain wear. tubbsy asked New rear shock, where can I get one? and got some answers... and a whole lot of discussion about shock issues and the fabled Drop Bear! Budboy73m asked Noobs first MTB choice...any comments? and... wow... actually got answers about a beginners bike Eye-wink

On the race scene a few people are getting a bit concerned about the upcoming Angry Doctor Enduro. There's a check list thread but beware: Supagav warned, Angry Doc is very very hard. Meanwhile the three Mixed Nuts took out Masters Fours at the JetBlack 12 hours at Dargle Farm. Reports from each of them here, here and here - well done guys!

Elsewhere on Global Riders, the BMORC guys looked forward to Clean up the World day 17-19 September - why not follow their lead and arrange some action at your local trail?

Finally, don't forget while planning your weekend riding that ee-lec-shun thing that is coming up - how annoying! Eye-wink flubberghusted suggested there might be A reason to vote and depending on your location maybe there is. If you're still undecided, remember to take a look around at which pollies help the MTB cause before making up your mind.

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In the mood (world cup 2010 #5)

If this doesn't get you in the mood for a ride this weekend, nothing will!

The skills these guys have are insane - how did Gwin hold onto that!? Shocked

Fantastic clip of the DH world cup round at Val di Sole!

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What's going on?

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

I feel quite bad for anyone just getting into MTB over the last couple of months and who may have come here looking for riding advice or buddies. Our rides calendar has been mainly devoid of local riding lately due to the rain and there are too many red lights on the trail status page.

Is it that we've become a little softer than in the past and the weather is forcing everyone off the trails? Is this the wettest winter for years? The BOM's recent Sydney statement says not really (wettest June since 2007). Is it that riders are becoming more aware of the effects riding in the wet has on their bikes and on the trails? It's probably a combination of all that. I for one am really looking forward to Spring - anyone hear me? Eye-wink

Away from the Northern Beaches there was some good racing down at the Three Ring Circus on Sunday with a couple of riders getting on the podium. Congratulations to Antsonline and Steve 01 and all the other riders who made this a great event by the sounds of it.

Meanwhile, for those not venturing out, here's some popular threads to keep an eye on:

The evergreen light discussion
Chains suck, Chain suck
What is your weakest link re: your cycling?
Why go for only 1 front ring?
How to be... awesome!
Build a bike....

Of course, I'm just summarising from the Recent Hot page - why else would it have appeared? Eye-wink

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What's happening this week?

Well - it's that time of the year again when Aussie cyclists become slightly bleary eyed. Even the usually bike un-friendly Sydney media seem to be devoting some time to the event. Yes, I mean it's TdF time again. There's a tiny bit of chat over on the road site but things haven't really got going yet - some can't wait for this weekend's mountain sections. Ooops... enough of that though - for now Eye-wink

Last weekend turned out to be glorious, and hope everyone got back to enjoying what we love. There were certainly a lot of smiling faces on the Super Easy Terrey Hills ride and elsewhere. After one of these rides though, someone is considering Doing Duel (think he means 'Going') - and received plenty of advice on the subject. Some could do a lot worse than try the latest incarnation of the Lefty up front. Then, for those that have 'Done Dual' already, tips on keeping them discussed here.

Elsewhere in the region, that first Rocky Trail MTB GP took place at Awaba. There was also good news for this track as HMBA receives funding for toilets at Awaba. No more need to make like a bear Eye-wink

Not sure I should tempt fate by mentioning this weekend's riding. If the weather holds it will be Terrey Hills Train-ish-ing... if not... well - there's plenty of sleep to catch up on Eye-wink

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Good news week

The sun is shining at last, with this and other news giving us a real feel good factor this week.

Flynny reports that CTMBC have a $30K Grant awarded to help build new DH. While this will be a little far (Lithgow) for most here, the other big news out of the mountains is that the outcome of the Blue Mountains City Council (BMCC) meeting was a great result. Basically, it seems that BMCC have voted to develop some authorised riding trails up in the Blue Mountains. Well done to everyone on that campaign!

Given this week's dry weather we have a local off road ride in the calendar after what seems like too long! To ease back into things, come alone to Super Easy Terrey Hills this weekend Smiling

Or will you be back on the training regime? With readers noting that Scott 24hrs entries are open. If a 24hr is too full on then consider that Highland Fling entries open - but be quick with both of these! Or what to race this weekend? Saturday sees Rd 1 - Rocky Trail MTB GP Series 2010 - 4H+8H at Awaba. Great course to begin what should be a great series.

Finally some popular chat from the forum (as shown in the new recent hot listing): nh asked (maybe optimistically), What is my bike worth?, we had a bit of fun guessing where this Reading material was located, were reminded that changing Shifter Cables should be done regularly while clipless pedals and brakes threads seem to cause as much debate as usual.

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Forum round up

Recently on NoBMoB...

Well done to everyone who competed in last weekend's Husky Enduro 2010. Especially the first timers and those posting impressive times. Sounds like a great event, but where were the pictures? Sticking out tongue

Camera work was not lacking at Glenrock though, when sammydog and crew showed off their latest trailwork from last weekend. When will we get the chance to do this on the Northern Beaches? Who knows, but at least Warringah Council began their PoM meetings this week so here's hoping they take note of the great feedback given. Whilst nrthrnben reminded us to help out our interstate riding buddies, but time is running out - like today!

For those feeling a little flush, Rob asked if anyone knew of any worthy bike related charities, and had a couple of suggestions. Of course, sometimes just entering an event is the way to go. Don't forget this year's Woodford to Glenbrook Classic is on this Sunday. It may be too late to get an entry, but just be aware if you plan on riding the Oaks this weekend - Sunday morning is probably out, and take care of walkers all day.

With the trails still pretty damp in our area, the pick of this weekend's riding will probably be craked's just another manic menai or <cough>the blackstuff... again!</cough>. Or if you can't get up to the mountains this weekend, but maybe fancy a late night on Wednesday, the BMORC guys will be going for a night ride - Glenbrook to the Oaks then.

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This week's tweaks

Just in case you didn't notice, here's a heads up on the tweaks around the site this week:

One can now view popular images in a grid. By 'popular' we mean highest rated.

If you are logged in, you can now also see the grid with only the images you haven't rated - this is handy if you just want to flick through them and cast a vote or two. Handy hint: in most modern (tabbed) browsers pressing the mouse wheel opens links in a new tab - I often scan this grid and 'middle click' those I think worth of a closer look, then go through and rate them if worthy.

Another feature for those tracking their skills or fitness via hot lap challenges: you can now view your history in the 'My laps' tab. Eg, to view your times round the ever popular Manly Dam - Main Circuit hit this link (yes - it will only work if you are logged in).

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This week's round-up

Or maybe that should say "Last 2 weeks" round up?

Last week the talk was all about Capital Punishment 2010 and the 'fun' that was had. Check the link and read some of the blogs on what turned out to be a torturous event. Fatboy summed up some common feelings, "One look told me my wife had the day from hell with the kids so we had something in common...". Although we all know the complaints were only in jest... right? Eye-wink

We all know riding in bad conditions is bad for the trails and bad for your bike. After the terrible conditions in Canberra, sideshow asked, How to fix mud induced mechanicals?

With a couple of weeks rest now passed, I'll bet it doesn't feel that bad at all... erm... maybe? A lot of you must feel that way though, noting that this year's Angry Doctor event is already sold out! For those wanting an easier ride closer to home, some suggest the, Wollombi Wild Ride on the same weekend.

Here in Sydney, thankfully the sun is out, but be mindful that trails like Manly Dam take a long time to dry out. At least we can think about riding on some firetrails again though, and some lucky people will be doing that tomorrow. Friday riders, eh? Hawkeye is planning a birthday ride - perhaps he's getting shy though - it's not in the calendar yet Eye-wink

Or if you fancy just tuning your skills, nix85 asked, about the best place to practice log rolls n drop offs.

Elsewhere, the BMORC guys are heading to Lisdale on Sunday, or you could hit up Glenrock instead. Or even <cough>the black stuff</cough>.

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This week's round-up

In case anybody hasn't noticed it's been raining a lot in Sydney this week, with the forecast of worse to come no wonder the ride calendar is looking a little bleak too Sad

In fact, hairylittlehobbit asked, "Anywhere to ride?" Maybe the answer is to get a fancy wind trainer or just take a ride on the couch after grabbing a DVD or two from this awesome trailers thread.

Looks like the best bet for a decent ride will be out of town, so best wishes and good luck to all those heading South for the inaugural Capital Punishment event. Initially everyone was keen as mustard for this but the reality of a 7am start in Canberra winter might be hitting home with numerous entries hitting the classifieds. Grab yourself a late entry and head down for tomorrow's race if you can! Mind you, things might be bleak there, CookPassBartridge asked about wet weather gear but Morgan doesn't think the weather will be that bad Eye-wink

It's hard to not notice that NSW Tourism are promoting the state with MTB. Their campaign is in print and on billboards around the city. Sadly Sydney in particular isn't the riding mecca we'd like, but Sally Barnes gave riders hope with her reply to a few emails that have been sent. Keep up the campaign guys - let's get some real change! Smiling

Elsewhere on Global Riders GTA are having a Saturday dig day at Glenrock and point out Round 5 of the HMBA XC and DH Series is on at Awaba this Sunday. The guys from BMORC are going to hit up some sweet Oaks single track loops on Sunday. Take care at the Oaks guys - Jeff shared some of his surgeon's handywork - ouch!

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