Pedalling the bush capital

Cyclist riding towards sunset on the horizon by Lachlan Shaw Being born and raised in the bush capital, the foothills were my playground. Back in the late 1970s a Dragster bike was your ticket to explore.

Mt Ainslie, Black Mountain and Red Hill were my favourite little getaways. Although, if memory serves me right, there was a fair bit of pushing up hill. After all, there was only one gear.

At least the downhill expedition didn’t take too long. It was quick, with the key being the back brake. I got to see what was over the handle bars up close and personal a few times.
Looking back, I can see that getting out on my bike led to a yearning for our environment, being outdoors and immersed in nature. My old pushbike opened up a world of adventure and led to a sense of curiosity for what nature had to offer.

Fast forward a few years and a remarkable new generation of bikes is now available. From carbon fibre frames to electronic e-bikes, the range available today is impressive to say the least. They can all take you on an amazing two wheeled adventure.

The nation’s capital is a mecca for mountain biking. Canberra is home to a strong, passionate and ever-growing mountain biking community. Our region contains a unique diversity of trails that cater for everyone from professional mountain bike riders to first-time riders wanting to improve their fitness and get outside.

As we look to these opportunities we want to know what you think. What will define Canberra as a stimulating mountain biking destination? What features could be enhanced or created to improve mountain bike experiences across our parks, pine forests and urban areas?

You are invited to contribute ideas for creating a mountain bike trail network for our growing city. We will look at existing mountain bike trail networks and their connectivity, identity and management. There will be opportunities to explore options for new trails that enhance mountain bike experiences, all balanced against our local environment and other users.

We are holding public workshops where you can contribute to a new concept plan for Mountain Biking in the ACT. Due to high interest an additional workshop will be held on Wednesday 7 August.

To learn more about the consultation and the workshop visit: www.yoursay.act.gov.au/CanberraMTBExperience

Brett McNamara is with ACT Parks & Conservation Service.

Brett Mac

Brett McNamara - Regional Manager with ACT Parks & Conservation Service

Brett loves our national parks almost as much as the Gang-gang on his uniform. He is prone to using the word 'majestic' when referring to the bush capital. He loves talking. A lot. His favourite animal is the playful platypus.

Article also appeared in The Chronicle