Mountain bikers in Brisbane are truly spoilt for choice for riding locations in South East Queensland. We are lucky to have a whopping 15 sanctioned MTB parks within a 2 hour drive from the Brisbane CBD. Some are as close as Gap Greek Reserve some 20mins away, and others just a highway drive down to the likes of Nerang in the Gold Coast. We’re incredibly lucky to have such infrastructure for our sport in the region and some parks take it to the next level
Hidden Vale Adventure Park (HVAP) is an hour and a half drive west of Birsbane’s inner suburbs on the way to Toowoomba. You’ll find yourself pass through the small rural town of Grandchester on the way to the Spicers Hidden Vale Resort. The team at Spicers own, maintain and develop the whole park with great care and passion. There is parking galore and riders sign in at the trailhead. Using the park and its facilities will cost you $10 for the day, but what you’ll get beyond the fence is worth it.
HVAP offers MTB hire of a fleet of bikes and e-bikes in a size for everyone should you need a bike. There is also an Uplift service that can take you and your crew from the trailhead to the highest point of the park to start on the trail “500 Above”. The park is an expansive 12,000 acres so starting right at the top is a real treat for any city-based mountain biker used to earning their descent. “500 Above” itself is raved about by weekend warriors all around.
Premier events of Queensland like the Cycle Epic, Hidden Vale 24hr and Dingo Duo showcase on the trails of HVAP every year. In my time of mountain biking I have been lucky to attend all, some more than once. The team at HVAP put on an awesome event well catered for in facilities and entertainment. The races themselves are well planned, smoothly run, and great for spectators. Racing or not, you’ll be getting to experience some one of the best trail networks in SEQ. Here are the three key trails mentions:
500 Above – the most talked about 7km stretch of trail in SEQ. Excellently planned and thoroughly maintained, this main showcase of HVAP’s trails has a gorgeous view to start, and even more beautiful immersion into a 20min experience of the trail riding we all love. Traversing the land farthest from the trailhead, you’ll find yourself gradually drop in elevation as the smile on your face grows wider. Even better if you can share the Uplift to the top!
Skyfall – a 2km descent dropping 200 vertical metres with views sure to distract. As you follow the ribbon of dirt down the hillside the view out the southern countryside suggests stopping to take it all in. Keep your momentum though, as this descent has switchbacks, fast corners, and a signature rock garden sure to make you feel like James Bond himself.
Ripple Effect – a 3.6km trail lacing itself in and out of the depressions of the land and delivers you a short climb away from the skills park. This one will require more leg work to get the best out of the trail as it crosses the contour of the hills. Where Ripple Effect lacks sharper elevation loss, you gain the thrill of constant fast corners weaving you through the trees.
HVAP has trails for every mountain biker. Having attended Cross Country and Enduro format events on their network, the park is an awesome platform to test yourself technically and physically against the clock. HVAP isn’t all about the racing though, the whole park is an awesome experience to be a part of and best shared with your buddies. Treat yourself to the full experience of the trail network with a weekend uplift, finish off with a pizza and a brew from the outdoor bar, or come hang out for one of their race weekends. You’ll be dreaming of the Hidden Vale long after you leave for home!
Categories: Riding Tips