The Thredbo Valley Track can now be counted among Australia's best mountain-biking experiences after National Parks and Wildlife Service Director Mick Pettitt announced its official opening on Friday 15 November. This world-class mountain bike track, meandering alongside the beautiful Thredbo River amongst the spectacular scenery of the iconic Snowy Mountains, offers a unique riding experience through picturesque natural terrain.
The new 18 kilometre extension from Bullocks Flat to Gaden Trout Hatchery doubles the original track to create a 35 kilometre experience for riders of all abilities. This project taps into the growing mountain bike tourism market and will drive significant growth in summer season visits to the region.
The Thredbo Valley Track is a shared-use track running along the Thredbo River Valley. It provides access to one of the best trout fishing streams in Australia, in the Thredbo River. Part of the upgrades to the original section includes a low mobility path, to ensure the track caters for all park visitors.
Trail design and construction contractors Dirt Art, bridge designer Murtagh Bond Structures Buro, bridge construction contractor Belevarde, and the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) project team are to be congratulated on the successful completion of this complex project in such a remote location.
Benefits of the project
This significant investment in regional tourism will support the establishment of the Snowy Mountains region as a summer adventure hub, creating jobs and providing greater stability for year-round employment in the region.
The $9.8 million Regional Growth Environment and Tourism Fund (RGETF) project was announced in 2017 by the Deputy Premier, the Hon John Barilaro. The RGETF provides funding for infrastructure that supports regional economic growth, creates local employment opportunities, and drives growth in the visitor economy.
The Thredbo Valley Track Extension Project will provide opportunities for on-park commercial operators to develop new visitor experiences and the anticipated growth in mountain bike visitors will increase demand for products and services including equipment suppliers, mountain bike tour operators, accommodation and food service providers and event organisers.
What's next for the project
Further work will also see the development of associated visitor infrastructure such as day use areas, carparks and signage.
The current project also plans further extensions of the Thredbo Valley Track from Gaden to Thredbo River Picnic Area (for completion in 2020), and from Thredbo to Dead Horse Gap (for completion in 2021) which will create more than 45 kilometres of world-class mountain bike trail.
Future plans could see the track linked by community trails through to Jindabyne, enabling users to cycle from the top of Thredbo resort or Dead Horse Gap, down the Thredbo Valley, along the foreshore of Lake Jindabyne, through the township and onwards to Mill Creek and Tyrolean Village to connect with council-managed bike circuits at East Jindabyne, for a combined trail length over 60 kilometres.
What you need to know
For information on your riding, fishing and guided tour options visit the Thredbo Valley Track visitor information page. Thredbo Valley Track already offered a fantastic range of options for first-time mountain bikers to ride through some of Australia's highest terrain and picturesque surrounds. The newly extended cross-country Thredbo Valley Track turns it up a notch – challenging more experienced riders like never before with 18 kilometres of new adrenaline-fuelled mountain-biking action.
The section of trail from Thredbo to Bullocks Flat and Lake Crackenback is suitable for the whole family to ride. This original section of track is largely graded as green with some blue sections. The new track from Bullocks Flat to Gaden Trout Hatchery, however, is more suitable for more advanced riders with experience and equipment for a more remote and challenging mountain bike experience.
Intermediate and advanced mountain bike riders can start at the peak of the Kosciuszko Express Chairlift and ride the Kosciuszko Flow Trail to Thredbo village before joining the Thredbo Valley Track at Friday Flat, making 41 kilometres of single track to Gaden Trout Hatchery.
From November to May (summer) you can cycle the full Thredbo Valley Track. Sections may occasionally close due to track works, poor weather or track conditions. From June to October (winter) all bikes, including fat bikes, are only permitted on the gravel section between Thredbo Diggings campground and Bullocks Flat. Some sections may open if conditions allow. Check for local alerts and closures on the website at Thredbo Valley Track alerts.
Bike riders should have moderate endurance and have intermediate mountain bike skills. As riders descend to Gaden Trout Hatchery there are still some challenging uphills requiring a good level of fitness. Ensure self-sufficiency for mountain bike repairs or be prepared to walk the full distance with your bike as there is no road access.