A New Bike Park for NZ - Cardrona to Open the Trails
9 Dec 2014
As if New Zealand wasn't already awesome enough...! The unofficial extreme sports capital of the World, they already boast Queenstown Bike Park, FourForty Bike Park, the MTB Mecca of Rotorua, not to mention a host of other awesome bike park and Trail Centre hotspots like Woodhill, Rabbit Ridge, and so on..., all on 2 stunning islands smaller than Nevada State! Well now there's going to be another lift accessed shredding destination for the local riders to play on, and for the rest of us to dream of one day visiting. Cardrona Bike Park will be open to the public in the upcoming New Year holiday period, offering riders access to a variety of alpine mountain bike trails. The epic terrain of Cardrona Alpine Resort lends itself perfectly to mountain bike trails and these will include the two NZ national’s race tracks, a purpose built intermediate trail, and marked ‘green’ trails on the various ski runs and access roads. New lines can be explored by the more adventurous riders on the marked ‘freeride’ zones where riders will be free to make their mark and skid in some new lines!
The bike park opening is actually a trial period, running from the 27th of December through to the 11th of January which coincides with the blackout period for the Skyline Gondola in Queenstown. This is peak season for mountain biking in the Southern Lakes so Cardrona wanted to give riders another lift accessed option while the Skyline Gondola is closed. If the feedback is positive and demand is sufficient then they can look towards the future and focus on further expansion of mountain biking as a long term summer activity. As with any new venture it's success will be measured by the support it receives… so if you’re after more trails, more chairlifts and a longer season then get your family and friends together for some good times up Cardrona Bike Park this festive season!
There are also a couple of events worth checking out. Cardrona Alpine Resort will be the venue for the first round of the MTBNZ Cup DH and XC Series, hosted by Bike Wanaka on the 10th and 11th of January. In fact it's this event that we need to thank for the public bike park trial period - Cardrona were developing the trails for this race so thought it would be great to open them to the public - nice! And following that - an end of summer race - the Cardrona Mega Avalanche. More information and timing for this event will be announced on the 27th of December, but if it's anything like the famous Alpe D'Huez Megavalanche in France then you know it will be nuts! For both events, on-mountain accommodation and food/beverage facilities will be available (bookings essential).
Opening dates: December 27th - January 11th, including NYE and NY day, 10am-4pm for daily public chairlift access. Day passes can be purchased from 9am daily at the mountain guest services building. More information at www.cardrona.com.
Image: Local Queenstown couple Kate Fluker and Reon Boe on the mountain for a photo shoot to help promote Cardrona’s new venture into mountain biking. Kate has only been riding for a short time but is New Zealand’s top ranked female XC rider internationally. Partner Reon is an up and coming DH rider who has just been picked up by Giant after a strong season competing in the European WC events.