New kunanyi tracks get families freewheelin’

TEN kilometres of new trails on kunanyi/Mount Wellington will create more family-friendly riding opportunities on the mountain while also boosting Hobart’s tourism economy.

Last month the City of Hobart officially opened two new ‘green’-graded mountain bike trails after nearly four years of planning and building.

“Our new tracks are creating a track network in the foothills of kunanyi/Mt Wellington that enables visitors to explore the mountain’s natural beauty while keeping riders, walkers and runners safe,” Deputy Lord Mayor Helen Burnet said.

“The two new tracks, Rocky Wheel’n and Free Wheel’n, fill a gap in the market by creating riding opportunities for less experienced riders, including younger kids and families.

“Rocky Wheel’n is an easy climbing, walking and running track designed for people of most ages and fitness levels and creates a new improved route from Fern Tree up to The Springs. Free Wheel’n is ideal for new riders who want a safe but fun taste of riding downhill.”

South Hobart resident Timothy Hargrave said he was excited to have world-class tracks close to home.“The two new trails are great for both inexperienced and experienced riders,” he said. “The descent is really fun but still quite easy, making it the perfect starting point for new riders.”

Mr Hargrave said his three-year-old daughter Bianca was already riding down the new track.“It can be hard to get started when you don’t have access to beginner-friendly tracks but these new trails will definitely have people hooked,” he said.

The new tracks are part of the City of Hobart’s Riding the Mountain plan for improved mountain bike riding in the foothills of kunanyi/Mt Wellington.

A SGS Economics and Planning report found that new tracks would draw new visitors to Tasmania and entice those coming for mountain bike riding to stay longer.

“The new tracks will increase participation in mountain biking and active outdoors recreation, and bring more mountain bike tourists and events to Hobart,” City Economy Portfolio chair Alderman Louise Bloomfield said.

The new trails have been funded in partnership by all three levels of government.

The project is part of broader City of Hobart plans that will see almost $2 million spent in the next two years on track and trail works.

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