More Tassie bike tourism

Australian Geographic Outdoor - - News -

FANCY RID­ING Tassie’s Blue Derby MTB trails all day, then sit­ting back with awe­some food and drink that evening be­fore doss­ing down in your own, unique bush ac­com­mo­da­tion? Then it’s worth check­ing out the Blue Derby Pods Ride, a new pre­mium guided moun­tain bike ex­pe­ri­ence in north­east Tas­ma­nia’s lat­est MTB hot-spot.

The first of its kind in Tas­ma­nia, the Blue Derby Pods Ride is a three-day moun­tain bik­ing tour for small groups of eight peo­ple with two guides. It will use 100km of moun­tain bike trails in the Blue Derby Moun­tain Bike Trails net­work, which in­cludes the Derby, Blue Tier and Weld­bor­ough (Blue Derby) ar­eas of north­east Tas­ma­nia.

Mix­ing ad­ven­ture with some well-earned com­fort, riders will sleep in ar­chi­tec­turally de­signed eco-sen­si­tive pods for two, which feel as if they are lev­i­tat­ing above the for­est floor. Din­ing will be in a cen­tral hub build­ing sur­rounded by quintessen­tial Tas­ma­nian bush with views down to the Cas­cade River-Val­ley and beyond.

It’s another boost to the MTB-based tourism push by the Tas­ma­nian Gov­ern­ment. Ac­cord­ing to a Tas­ma­nian-Vis­i­tor Sur­vey (TVS), in the year to September 2016, there were 20,900 moun­tain bike vis­i­tors to Tas­ma­nia – an in­crease of 121% on the pre­vi­ous pe­riod

The Blue Derby Moun­tain Bik­ing trails in north­east Tas­ma­nia are a key driver of this growth. Moun­tain bik­ing is now be­ing cred­ited with the re­vival of the tiny river­side vil­lage of Derby – once a boom­ing tin min­ing set­tle­ment with room nights up 85% on the pre­vi­ous year.

The $2.9 mil­lion Blue Derby Moun­tain

Bik­ing Trail, right next to town, is a pur­pose­built track that weaves its way through tem­per­ate rain­for­est, large tracts of eu­ca­lypt and myr­tle for­est and wood­lands, all with sen­sa­tional views of this re­gion’s stun­ning land­scapes.

Guests on the Blue Derby Pods Ride will be treated to some of Tas­ma­nia’s finest pro­duce with a menu spe­cially cre­ated by lo­cal chef Daniel

Alps and his team at Alps & Amici, in Launce­s­ton. Riders will be able to un­wind af­ter a day in the sad­dle with lo­cally-crafted Tas­ma­nian wines and beers, such as the Dam Busters Pale Ale from the Lit­tle Rivers Brew­ing Com­pany, named af­ter one of the Blue Derby moun­tain bike trails.

The tour will in­cor­po­rate three con­sec­u­tive days of moun­tain bik­ing with­out back­track­ing on a va­ri­ety of world-class trails to suit the riders’ abil­i­ties. With a bus trans­fer from Launce­s­ton, riders meet their guides at the Lean­ing Church Vine­yard in Lalla. From there, the group drives to Blue Derby and hits the first 10km de­scent on the At­las trail, fol­lowed by an al fresco lunch in the heart of the Cas­cade-Val­ley. In the af­ter­noon and fol­low­ing day riders can choose to ex­plore more of the moun­tain bike trails through the Tas­ma­nian for­est – like Krushkas, Dam Busters, Flick­ety Sticks or Saw­tooth.

The fi­nal day sees the group cy­cling to Derby where riders will be trans­ported to the top of the Blue Tier, the high­est point of the Blue Derby Moun­tain Bik­ing Trail net­work. From here, they will de­scend through lush, dense rain­for­est to Weld­bor­ough.

The Blue Derby Pods Ride is the brain­child of Tara and Steve How­ell.The cou­ple moved from the cor­po­rate world to ful­fil their pas­sions of moun­tain bik­ing and show­cas­ing Tassie.

The three-day Blue Derby Pods Ride costs from $1,750 per per­son** and in­cludes ac­com­mo­da­tion in el­e­vated pods (twin-share), all meals and bev­er­ages, two qual­i­fied Ex­pe­ri­ence Lead­ers, three days’ moun­tain bike and gear hire - in­clud­ing bike, hel­met, gloves and rid­ing spray jacket - plus lug­gage stor­age.

Riders can bring their own bikes or hire one, free of charge. Blue Derby Pods Ride has a va­ri­ety of bikes avail­able in­clud­ing dual sus­pen­sion, with a choice of 27.5, 29 and 6Fat­tie wheel sizes.

De­par­tures run ev­ery three days on Satur­days, Mon­days and Wed­nes­days, with re­turn trans­fers be­tween Launce­s­ton and Blue Derby in­cluded in the price.

For more in­for­ma­tion on the Blue Derby Pods Ride visit www.blueder­by­pod­sride.com.au.

It’s another boost to the MTB-based tourism push by the Tassie gov­ern­ment.

Ride the awe­some Blue Derby trail net­work dur­ing the day, then re­lax in your own bush pod each evening.

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