Speakers Confirmed for 2017 Australian Mountain Bike Summit – Mt Buller

Now in its fourth year, Mt Buller, in collaboration with Flow Mountain Bike, is launching a revamped the program, this year designed around the themes Collaborate, Educate, Proliferate. The two-day event features a number of Australian and international speakers, presenting on a range of topics under the overarching themes.

Exploring what ‘Collaborate’ means for the mountain bike industry, Simon French from Dirt Art will share his learnings from his recent partnering with the Tasmanian government on the Maydena Bike Park, and from Western Australia, Jason Dover of Cape to Cape and Port to Port, will focus on the benefits an event / tourism board collaboration can bring. Simon Keane of Trailcare NSW will deliver a practical workshop exploring the challenges and achievements of trail advocacy.

‘Educate’ is considered not only from the perspective of what the industry can learn from each other, but also the important role education plays between the industry and riders. Jen Geale, one of the founders of incredibly successful Mountain Bikes Direct, and known for her superb communications skills, will offer insights into modern retailing, whilst workshops will explore mountain biking in schools (Jason English) and the importance of mountain biking coaching for the industry (Evan James, MTBA).

Speakers under the ‘Proliferate’ banner will examine some broad themes around industry longevity and sustainability – the big ‘where to from here’ questions. Proliferation is critical to the ongoing success of the mountain bike industry; Russell Garlick from TrailFund NZ will discuss the way individuals contribute to trail development in New Zealand, and from Specialized, Jeff Moore and Fanie Kok will look at how ‘big brands’ do more for the industry than sell bikes. A workshop exploring whether e-bikes will grow the sport rounds out the Proliferate sessions.

Covering MC duties will be renowned cycling commentator, SBS journalist and host of The Bike Lane, Matt Keenan.

Gill Dobson, Marketing Manager Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management, is thrilled to announce the line-up for 2017. “We are really excited about presenting to the mountain bike community a ‘new-look’ conference for 2017, and believe the collaboration with Flow has resulted in a program with a true industry perspective. We have a tremendous line-up of speakers with a depth and breadth of experience across the industry who are looking forward to sharing their knowledge and expertise with delegates.”

“The Summit is a fantastic opportunity for mountain bikers to come together, not only to learn from industry professionals, but to make new connections and networks, and of course go bike riding. We are looking forward to welcoming everyone to the Mt Buller Bike Park in 2017”.

Registration for the Australian Mountain Bike Summit is now open. Registration costs $499 per person plus booking fee, which covers the two-day conference, and all conference catering and networking functions including the official Summit Dinner. For further information and to register now, visit bike.mtbuller.com.au.

New Gravity-Focused Shimano Bike Buller Festival: Entries Open

Entries are open now for the new-look, more gravity-focused Shimano Bike Buller Festival, which will be held 10-12 March 2018.


So what’s new? For 2018, the crew from Rapid Ascent have opted to make the most of Mt Buller’s seriously epic descending potential. They’ve shifted the event focus away from the longer cross-country formats, following the market demand for more gravity and enduro style stages. The event now even includes a proper multi-stage Enduro race.

You’ve got to give credit to the Rapid Ascent crew – they’ve kept this event evolving. If you’ve done Bike Buller in years past, you’ll find it’s an entirely different experience now.

2018 sees a return of the 1100m descent of the Super D.

They’ve also introduced a new Gravity Gods combined title, which will be awarded to the rider with the best overall position across the ABOM Downhillm, Gravity Enduro and Outlaw All-Mountain events.

Cross country isn’t overlooked – there’s still a 30km XC stage, taking in the ridiculously good singletrack of Stonefly and Cornhill – but the shift towards more gravity is definitely a good evolution. After all, Buller’s descents are what make this place such a standout destination! Read below for the official word from Rapid Ascent.

Buller is a superb spot, we love it here.

EVENT DETAILS:

When: Saturday 10th – Monday 12th March, 2018 (March long weekend – VIC)
Where: Mt Buller, Victoria, Australia
What: A 3 day mountain bike festival on the spectacular trails at Mt Buller in the breathtaking Victorian Alps. The event coincides with the renowned ‘Picnic in the Park’ food, wine and music festival

  • GRAVITY RACES:
    ABOM Down Hill
    Gravity Enduro
    Super-D
    Outlaw All-mountain Trophy
  • XCOUNTRY RACES:
    30km Stonefly / Corn Hill circuit
  • SPECTATOR EVENTS:
    16” Dual Slalom
    Pump Track Pursuit
    Picnic in the Park
  • KIDS EVENTS:
    Village Ride
    Picnic in the Park Bike Fun

Entries are now open for the 2018 Shimano Bike Buller Festival that will see three massive days of mountain bike racing on Mt Buller’s internationally-recognised trails from the 10th-12th of March, 2018.
The mighty 10th edition of the event features a packed schedule of racing for all types of riders, including downhill, gravity enduro and cross country races, as well as spectator and kids events.


There will be a greater emphasis on gravity in 2018 that will see the return of the Mt Buller Super-D, and the Gravity Gods title for the key gravity races; The ABOM downhill, Gravity Enduro (Round 4 of the Victorian Gravity Tour) and the Outlaw all-mountain trophy.
The new 30km Stonefly-Corn Hill Circuit features all the best cross country single track in a ‘royal loop’ of the mountains, and the 16” Dual Slalom and Pump Track Pursuit round out the three-day schedule of racing.

What event would be complete with out kids’ bike slalom?

Over 600 riders are expected to race at Mt Buller for the event, with an even larger number of friends and family who also come to the alpine resort to spectate and enjoy the range of other, non-riding activities on offer.

Sam Maffett General Manager of Rapid Ascent Event Management said he was thrilled to have officially opened entries to the 2018 Shimano Bike Buller Festival.

“We are stoked to be bringing the 10th anniversary of the Bike Buller Festival to riders of all backgrounds and levels. Mt Buller is Australia’s most epic mountain biking destination, with some of the best trails in the country. Combined with a stacked schedule of races and full social calendar the appeal is high for groups of friends to come to the event together as well as riders and their families,” said Maffett.

“We welcome riders to enter just one or two races or lock in for the combined-races and contest the ‘Gravity Gods’ crown. It is the ultimate MTB event at the ultimate MTB destination. We can’t wait to see you there.”

The three-day celebration of mountain biking features an extensive Bike Expo with a range of social activities including the spectacle of the pump track and dual slalom races, MTB movies in the cinema, kids’ rides and the popular ‘Picnic in the Park’ food, wine and music festival held in the Mirimbah Park at the base of Mt Buller.

Toby Shingleton of Shimano Australia said he was excited to be heading to Mt Buller in 2018 for the Shimano Bike Buller Festival.

The Buller pump track sits right in the middle of the village, making for awesome spectating.

“As a supporter of MTB in Australia over many years our team is looking forward to joining riders from all over the country for this three day festival of riding in the Victorian Alps,” said Shingleton. “In addition to our Shimano Experience Project event centre, we will be bringing a team of our best sponsored riders across Gravity Enduro, XC and DH, as well as our fleet of STEPS E8000 demo bikes.”
The revolutionary Shimano Bike Buller Festival brings all that is great about mountain biking to the one location for a huge weekend of bikes, single track, fresh air and good times at a spectacular mountain top destination. Entries are now open for the Shimano Bike Buller Festival at BIKEBULLER.com.

2017 Australian Mountain Bike Summit at Buller

Mt Buller will host the fourth Australian Mountain Bike Summit on 4 – 5 December 2017, the only conference in Australia dedicated solely to the mountain bike industry. Presented by Mt Buller Bike Park, this year’s program has been curated by Flow Mountain Bike and features the theme of Collaborate, Educate, Proliferate.


Group Marketing Manager for Mt Buller Resort Management, Gillian Dobson, said the Summit is a must-attend industry event. “The Australian Mountain Bike Summit was developed after we recognised a gap in the market for such an event and has become a fixture on the calendar for the industry. We have dedicated ourselves to bringing together key players to educate, share and deliberate the key challenges and emerging opportunities currently impacting the Australian and international mountain bike markets.

“Building on the success of previous years, we are excited to be launching a new-look Australian Mountain Bike Summit for 2017, with a program developed in conjunction with industry gurus Flow Mountain Bike. Flow are renowned as passionate advocates in the MTB industry; in their own words, they exist to inspire and educate, making them the perfect fit for the Summit.”


“The Australian Mountain Bike Summit is a unique chance for as diverse range of people from across the spectrum of mountain biking to get together and learn. This year we’ve been working with Mt Buller to help expand the scope of the Summit to include a more diverse range of viewpoints, and to change up the format to encourage more sharing of knowledge between experts from different areas of the sport.

“We believe the path to a flourishing mountain bike scene in Australia is through building stronger connections between all areas of the sport – from clubs, racers, retailers, events and wholesalers, to trail builders, advocates, coaches and more – hence our theme of collaborate, educate, proliferate. If mountain biking is to continue growing here in Australia, both in terms of participation and local industry strength, we need to begin pooling our knowledge and learning from each other’s experiences.”


This year’s Summit will again be hosted by renowned cycling commentator and journalist Matt Keenan, and will feature a number of local and international mountain biking experts. Speakers, including Russel Garlick of TrailFundNZ, Jen and Michael Geale from Mountain Bikes Direct, Jeff Moore and Fanie Kok from Specialized and Jason English, MTB educator and 24 hour champion will deliver a range of keynote addresses and workshops that allow participants to hear from specialists, share ideas and ask questions in a collaborative environment.

“Importantly, the program also includes a range of networking functions, where delegates are given great opportunities to get out on Mt Buller’s trails, enjoy the hospitality and expand their networks.  Industry leaders come together with business operators, clubs, land managers and retailers to informally discuss topics of interests, make business connections and most importantly enjoy riding” said Dobson.

The Australian Mountain Bike Summit is preceded by the official launch of Mt Buller’s summer season on Saturday 2 December, which includes the full opening of Mt Buller’s trail network.  Delegates are encouraged to arrive early make the most of the freshly opened trails, and get a weekend’s riding under their belt ahead of the Summit.

Registration for the Australian Mountain Bike Summit is now open. Registration costs $499 per person plus booking fee, which covers the two-day conference, all conference catering and networking functions including the official Summit Dinner, and three guided rides. An early bird discount of 10% applies until Friday 20 October 2017.

For further information about the Australian Mountain Bike Summit, visit bike.mtbuller.com.au or email [email protected]

Ride High Country: Mt Buller


Of course, you’ve got to grind out a few metres in the other direction to earn all the descending, but thankfully the human brain is awfully good at quashing the hards times from memory and elevating the good. So all you’re left with is a head full of amazing downhills.

Maybe that’s why we always think of Mt Buller so joyfully. All we can remember is railing perfect turns on Misty Twist, screaming at full-speed down the Delatite River Trail, pumping the pure rhythm of Stonefly… It’s almost too good.

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Making the trip to Buller is pretty much an annual ritual for us, but this time our visit to Mt Buller was the final stop on our mammoth Ride High Country Road Trip, a week-long journey through the Victorian north-east’s best trails.

While the other destinations we visited on our road trip are all clustered tightly, Buller stands apart, about two hours’ drive from Beechworth or Bright. But coming to this part of world and not making the trip to Mt Buller would be like not eating dessert. And no one wants to miss out on sweet, sweet dessert.

DSC01090
You need a big map board when you’ve got big mountains.

To our delight, we scored Mt Buller is absolutely prime conditions. Our guide, the resolute Shannon Rademaker of All Terrain Cycles, took us straight to the best dirt on the mountain, at the recently refreshed Misty Twist. This trail has always been a favourite – it’s close enough to the village that you can squeeze it in for a quick afternoon loop, and the trail is a perfect ribbon of loam, draped through atmospheric snow gums. It links back into the fast and furious Clancy’s Run too, which is another iconic Buller fave.

That afternoon, slapping through brown berms, following the trustworthy wheel of Shannon, we locked yet another magical Buller memory away in the vault.

 

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Misty Twist at its best.

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With only limited time up our sleeves before facing the run back up the Hume to the Real World, we headed to the Delatite River Trail. If you’re looking for a uniquely Buller experience, this is it: 1000m of vertical descending, at speeds you frankly have no right to be hitting on a mountain bike!

The trail tapers out with its famous log bridge river crossings, and the icing on the cake is literally cake, in this case a brownie from awesome Mirimbah Store at the end of the trail. A quick coffee to get the brain back in order after the fury of Delatite, and it’s back up the hill on the shuttle, right to the peak of the village. You can see why saying goodbye to this place is always a rough breakup.

For more information on Mt Buller, or riding right across the Victorian High Country, head to ridehighcountry.com.au.

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No, I never want to say goodbye…
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The final stretches of Delatite.

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Epic weekend of riding at the GT Bike Buller Festival

Now in its ninth year, the GT Bike Buller Festival includes mountain bike races across a range of disciplines including Gravity Enduro, Downhill, X-Country, All Mountain, Pump Track, Kids, and Dual Slalom on Mt Buller’s internationally-recognised trails. untitled-4858

Riding commenced on Saturday with a 40km cross-country race over nearby Mt Stirling and a 20km race on the local Mt Buller trails with both events taking riders through some incredible snow gum wilderness in these high alpine areas. While these lung-busting races were under way an ‘all-mountain’ race was held for more gravity orientated riders on the Outlaw downhill track where speed and air time was more the order of the day as they powered down this technical downhill run before enjoyed the comforts of the chairlift for a free ride back up. 

The mixture of pedalling cross-country races and gravity hungry downhill races continued across Sunday with the Brakeburner and ABOM downhill races and on Monday with a 20km cross country race over Corn Hill and a huge gravity enduro race over the same popular trail network. 

It wasn’t all hard pedalling and challenging descents though with a range of spectacle events also included for the fun and enjoyment of everyone. Saturday night saw a hilarious dual slalom on kids 16” bikes and pump track pursuit for BMX elites, as well as MTB movie nights, kids rides and the Picnic in the Park gourmet food, wine and music festival at the base of the mountain. 

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Overall weekend winners were presented to riders with the fastest cumulative times across the three gravity events – titled the ‘Gravity God’ category, and the three cross-country events – titled the ‘XC Whippet’ category. Competitors in these events had to balance speed with endurance and bounce back each day ready to put it all on the line once again. 

After coming second last year by a margin of just one second, Shannon Hewetson claimed the Gravity God title with a cumulative time of 34.20 head of Kaine Cannan with 34.57 and Murray Stephens with 35.05. The leading Gravity Goddesses were Phillippa Norton with 39.27, Brody Chapman with 40.28 and the 2016 winner Sarah Booth in 3rd in a time of 41.18. untitled--5

The XC-Whippets categories were just as competitive with Adrian Jackson claiming victory in 4hr31.29. Adrian had a tough time of it though and suffered 2 punctures on the 40km race which set him back by 5 mins so needed to race hard in following days to secure the win over Bret Murray in 4hr44.07 in 2nd and Brad Clarke in 4hr48.28. The overall females saw Melissa Ansett, the 2016 winner, regain her title in a time of 5hr27.15 ahead of Daniela Erni Ruoss in 5hr40.08 and Suer Thompson in 5hr55.57. untitled--4

“We are absolutely thrilled with the 2017 GT Bike Buller Festival,” commented event manager Sam Maffett from Rapid Ascent, “to see so many riders across all popular MTB styles get together for a huge weekend of riding, fresh air and good times is always a thrill.” 

“We had some of Australia’s best riders from a range of disciplines and they all loved the trails and event format. There is a real sense of camaraderie between them that makes it a joy to be part of. Combined all this with the superb trails at Mt Buller and good weather and it really has been a superb weekend.”

For more information head to www.gtbikebuller.com 

FULL RESULTS:

Full results are available HERE

Bike Check: Josh Carlson’s Giant Reign Advanced

We were lucky to spend a good chunk of time with Josh this summer, on and off the bike, and those who have met him will agree – he’s a damn good guy, a gentleman, patient and generous, motivated to the cause as an athlete and incredibly fast on his bike. His frothing energy is also very infectious; it’s always a good time when he’s around. And yeah, he’s a pretty big deal nowadays.

_low6813
Hooning on the stunning Stonefly Trail, Mt Buller.

Chatting about racing, life, future and family, we learn that 2016 was a good year for the soon to be a father of two from Wollongong. The racing season went well, snagging a third place in EWS Whistler, and finishing up a highly credible 10th overall. He ended the year on a high with a third place in the final stage of 2016 in Italy, sharpening his focus on the 2017 season and beyond. With a solid amount of experience behind him now and brimming with confidence, we’ll surely be seeing him step on the highly coveted EWS podium more. And with a new three-year contract with Giant Factory Off-Road Racing Team and plans to move back home to Wollongong in 2017, it is all happening!

Josh runs a completely regular Giant Advanced frame in size XL, with a 150mm RockShox Reverb post.
Josh runs a completely regular Giant Advanced frame in size XL, with a 150mm RockShox Reverb post.
Josh Carlson, great guy, way faster than us.
Josh Carlson, great guy, way faster than us.

Josh had his 2016 Enduro World Series season bike with him, only ridden a handful of times since the final round of the season in Finale Ligure, Italy. It’s a pretty cool rig, with loads of unique custom modifications that Josh and his mechanic Colin Bailey work on together. The bike remained the same spec all year; the only change was the fork travel. Swapping between 160, 170 and 180mm of travel depending on the course.

Josh speaks very highly of his mechanic, Colin Bailey, “He puts my head back on when it falls off”.

“He’s a guru mechanic and comes from a racing background in the 90’s, the heydey of names like Palmer, Voreis and Peat. He’s placed top 10 in World Cup downhills, and well-known for playing a role in designing the incredibly successful Maxxis Minion DH tyre.

The amazing Delatite River Trail, Mt Buller.
The amazing Delatite River Trail, Mt Buller.

“Colin’s a real quiet and very observant guy, you think you’ve got it all under control, but he’ll say one thing and bring tremendous perspective to the moment. He’d write little notes on my bars, like ‘breathe and believe’ ‘have a crack, you’ve got this’, ‘do it for Eli’”

“He pays so much attention; it’s a relationship that I really enjoy. I hope he does too, but either way stuff it, he’s stuck with me for now, haha…”


Giant Reign Advanced

Frame: Giant Reign Advanced, size XL. Since the Whistler round of the 2015 EWS Josh would size up to the XL for longer reach, the length also helps shift weight off the rear wheel. Josh is 185cm tall (6’1″) and 82kg.

Josh's Giant Reign Advanced, size XL.
Josh’s Giant Reign Advanced, size XL.
Long reach, short stem. Requires muscle on tight trails, but worth it overall.
Long reach, short stem. Requires muscle on tight trails, but worth it overall.

“The XL certainly needs muscling around on really tight trails, but refining that technique and being a stronger rider is best for me, there is way more advantages in going longer in the racing we do.”

Josh is 185cm tall (6’1″) and 82kg.

Cockpit: Truvativ 50mm stem, 765mm wide aluminium Truvativ Boobar handlebar with 7 degrees back sweep and 30mm rise. Josh has been working on ways to get the front end a lot higher, hence 30mm rise.

Fork: RockShox Lyrik with a custom 46mm offset. Six clicks of rebound from open, 1-5 clicks of low-speed compression, 74 psi at 180mm travel, 80 psi at 160mm, two tokens in all three forks.

Josh travels with three forks, this was 160mm and the 180mm went on for more DH runs in Buller.
Josh travels with three forks, this was 160mm, and the 180mm went on for more DH runs in Buller.

160mm – Ireland.

180mm – La Thuille, Whistler.

170mm – Chile, Argentina, Aspen, Valberg, Finale Ligure.

Rear shock: RockShox Vivid R2C, with a 450lbs coil spring. 1-3 clicks of compression, the bump stop enables a shorter and lighter coil spring (and another spot for a name sticker, of course. #pro). Josh didn’t run an air shock all year.

Coil spring all year, the bump stop allows use of a lighter and shorter coil. And space for another sticker of course...
Coil spring all year, the bump stop allows the use of a lighter and shorter coil. And space for another sticker of course…
RockShoc Monarch Plus, compression and rebound adjustable.
RockShox Vivid R2C, high and low-speed compression and rebound adjustable.

Brakes: SRAM Guide RSC with 180mm rotors. Adjusted so the levers pull a long way to the bars, they’re not particularly grabby and set up in a way that you couldn’t really do an endo without shifting body weight forward. A setup choice from riding on the North Shore, where the slippery wet roots and rocks wreak havoc on your bike control, especially with a jerking and grabbing action on the powerful brakes. Josh tends to drag his brakes when traction is paramount, to promote a wheel that’s not locking up, but constantly rolling.

180mm rotors on SRAM Guide brakes.
180mm rotors on SRAM Guide brakes.
The levers come a long way to the bars.
The levers come a long way to the bars.

The Frother Bag: This is about as custom as it gets, handmade by Colin Bailey’s dad (Josh’s mechanic) this is the second prototype built solely and specifically for Josh. Velcro secures the heat moulded frame in the frame’s triangle, and the water-resistant material is tough and resilient. The two-way zip is easily used to access the contents.

The Frother Bag. Custom made by Josh's mechanic's dad. Awesome.
The Frother Bag. Custom made by Josh’s mechanic’s dad. Awesome.
Everything in one place, handy.
Everything in one place, handy.

Inside the Frother Bag is an inner tube, tyre plug, tape, multi-tool, tyre levers, spoke key, spare inner tube valve, valve core remover, and brake pads. Josh carries a handpump and will only and rarely rely on a Co2 unless it’s the final stage of a race._low6796 _low6583 _low6854 _low6949

Wheels and tyres: Josh uses SRAM Rail aluminium wheels and Schwalbe tyres. Up front is a Schwalbe Magic Mary with the Vert Star Super Gravity casing, and on the rear is a new Nobby Nic (a prototype 2.35″ with Super Gravity casing). The Magic Mary is an excellent front tyre, but too puncture-prone with such an open tread layout on the sharp rocky trails for a rear tyre too.

Aluminium rims here, for security all weekend long.
Aluminium rims here, for security all weekend long.

“No carbon wheels for me, for security sake, they need to last all weekend. I’ve got carbon wheels on my road bike because Colin doesn’t know. He’d take them from me if he found out.”

Drivetrain: SRAM Eagle with a 38 tooth ring (ouch!). “SRAM Eagle came to us from the La Thuille EWS round onwards. It’s lovely, just the best piece of equipment, it has a huge range of gears, super-smooth shifting and I’ve never knocked it on anything while riding.”

SRAM Eagle drivetrain, with a whopping 38 tooth ring.
SRAM Eagle drivetrain, with a whopping 38 tooth ring.

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Cranks are 170mm in length, shorter than usual for better ground clearance.

“I used the highest gear in Whistler and Aspen rounds of the EWS, that’s a 38/10”

Moto foam
Look carefully at the chain guide, Colin applies Moto foam, stops mud from sticking and adding weight. It also helps to stop stones from flicking up and jamming bash guard and chainring, especially with fresh tyres and on fire roads.

Watch this exact bike in action in our recent video with Josh on the amazing trails of Mt Buller, he’s pinned!

Bike Check: Josh Carlson's Giant Reign Advanced

“OMG, it’s Josh Carlson!” stumbles a starstruck fellow rider as we cruised the trails of Mt Buller. We grinned because we saw Josh humbled at the thought of just being recognised, an unfamiliar feeling for him since moving to Vancouver to further his career in enduro racing. Josh’s profile as a personality in the sport would grow all the way back here on home turf, returning home to ride over summer, he is more than just Josh the bike racer from Wollongong.

We were lucky to spend a good chunk of time with Josh this summer, on and off the bike, and those who have met him will agree – he’s a damn good guy, a gentleman, patient and generous, motivated to the cause as an athlete and incredibly fast on his bike. His frothing energy is also very infectious; it’s always a good time when he’s around. And yeah, he’s a pretty big deal nowadays.

_low6813
Hooning on the stunning Stonefly Trail, Mt Buller.

Chatting about racing, life, future and family, we learn that 2016 was a good year for the soon to be a father of two from Wollongong. The racing season went well, snagging a third place in EWS Whistler, and finishing up a highly credible 10th overall. He ended the year on a high with a third place in the final stage of 2016 in Italy, sharpening his focus on the 2017 season and beyond. With a solid amount of experience behind him now and brimming with confidence, we’ll surely be seeing him step on the highly coveted EWS podium more. And with a new three-year contract with Giant Factory Off-Road Racing Team and plans to move back home to Wollongong in 2017, it is all happening!

Josh runs a completely regular Giant Advanced frame in size XL, with a 150mm RockShox Reverb post.
Josh runs a completely regular Giant Advanced frame in size XL, with a 150mm RockShox Reverb post.
Josh Carlson, great guy, way faster than us.
Josh Carlson, great guy, way faster than us.

Josh had his 2016 Enduro World Series season bike with him, only ridden a handful of times since the final round of the season in Finale Ligure, Italy. It’s a pretty cool rig, with loads of unique custom modifications that Josh and his mechanic Colin Bailey work on together. The bike remained the same spec all year; the only change was the fork travel. Swapping between 160, 170 and 180mm of travel depending on the course.

Josh speaks very highly of his mechanic, Colin Bailey, “He puts my head back on when it falls off”.

“He’s a guru mechanic and comes from a racing background in the 90’s, the heydey of names like Palmer, Voreis and Peat. He’s placed top 10 in World Cup downhills, and well-known for playing a role in designing the incredibly successful Maxxis Minion DH tyre.

The amazing Delatite River Trail, Mt Buller.
The amazing Delatite River Trail, Mt Buller.

“Colin’s a real quiet and very observant guy, you think you’ve got it all under control, but he’ll say one thing and bring tremendous perspective to the moment. He’d write little notes on my bars, like ‘breathe and believe’ ‘have a crack, you’ve got this’, ‘do it for Eli’”

“He pays so much attention; it’s a relationship that I really enjoy. I hope he does too, but either way stuff it, he’s stuck with me for now, haha…”


Giant Reign Advanced

Frame: Giant Reign Advanced, size XL. Since the Whistler round of the 2015 EWS Josh would size up to the XL for longer reach, the length also helps shift weight off the rear wheel. Josh is 185cm tall (6’1″) and 82kg.

Josh's Giant Reign Advanced, size XL.
Josh’s Giant Reign Advanced, size XL.
Long reach, short stem. Requires muscle on tight trails, but worth it overall.
Long reach, short stem. Requires muscle on tight trails, but worth it overall.

“The XL certainly needs muscling around on really tight trails, but refining that technique and being a stronger rider is best for me, there is way more advantages in going longer in the racing we do.”

Josh is 185cm tall (6’1″) and 82kg.

Cockpit: Truvativ 50mm stem, 765mm wide aluminium Truvativ Boobar handlebar with 7 degrees back sweep and 30mm rise. Josh has been working on ways to get the front end a lot higher, hence 30mm rise.

Fork: RockShox Lyrik with a custom 46mm offset. Six clicks of rebound from open, 1-5 clicks of low-speed compression, 74 psi at 180mm travel, 80 psi at 160mm, two tokens in all three forks.

Josh travels with three forks, this was 160mm and the 180mm went on for more DH runs in Buller.
Josh travels with three forks, this was 160mm, and the 180mm went on for more DH runs in Buller.

160mm – Ireland.

180mm – La Thuille, Whistler.

170mm – Chile, Argentina, Aspen, Valberg, Finale Ligure.

Rear shock: RockShox Vivid R2C, with a 450lbs coil spring. 1-3 clicks of compression, the bump stop enables a shorter and lighter coil spring (and another spot for a name sticker, of course. #pro). Josh didn’t run an air shock all year.

Coil spring all year, the bump stop allows use of a lighter and shorter coil. And space for another sticker of course...
Coil spring all year, the bump stop allows the use of a lighter and shorter coil. And space for another sticker of course…
RockShoc Monarch Plus, compression and rebound adjustable.
RockShox Vivid R2C, high and low-speed compression and rebound adjustable.

Brakes: SRAM Guide RSC with 180mm rotors. Adjusted so the levers pull a long way to the bars, they’re not particularly grabby and set up in a way that you couldn’t really do an endo without shifting body weight forward. A setup choice from riding on the North Shore, where the slippery wet roots and rocks wreak havoc on your bike control, especially with a jerking and grabbing action on the powerful brakes. Josh tends to drag his brakes when traction is paramount, to promote a wheel that’s not locking up, but constantly rolling.

180mm rotors on SRAM Guide brakes.
180mm rotors on SRAM Guide brakes.
The levers come a long way to the bars.
The levers come a long way to the bars.

The Frother Bag: This is about as custom as it gets, handmade by Colin Bailey’s dad (Josh’s mechanic) this is the second prototype built solely and specifically for Josh. Velcro secures the heat moulded frame in the frame’s triangle, and the water-resistant material is tough and resilient. The two-way zip is easily used to access the contents.

The Frother Bag. Custom made by Josh's mechanic's dad. Awesome.
The Frother Bag. Custom made by Josh’s mechanic’s dad. Awesome.
Everything in one place, handy.
Everything in one place, handy.

Inside the Frother Bag is an inner tube, tyre plug, tape, multi-tool, tyre levers, spoke key, spare inner tube valve, valve core remover, and brake pads. Josh carries a handpump and will only and rarely rely on a Co2 unless it’s the final stage of a race._low6796 _low6583 _low6854 _low6949

Wheels and tyres: Josh uses SRAM Rail aluminium wheels and Schwalbe tyres. Up front is a Schwalbe Magic Mary with the Vert Star Super Gravity casing, and on the rear is a new Nobby Nic (a prototype 2.35″ with Super Gravity casing). The Magic Mary is an excellent front tyre, but too puncture-prone with such an open tread layout on the sharp rocky trails for a rear tyre too.

Aluminium rims here, for security all weekend long.
Aluminium rims here, for security all weekend long.

“No carbon wheels for me, for security sake, they need to last all weekend. I’ve got carbon wheels on my road bike because Colin doesn’t know. He’d take them from me if he found out.”

Drivetrain: SRAM Eagle with a 38 tooth ring (ouch!). “SRAM Eagle came to us from the La Thuille EWS round onwards. It’s lovely, just the best piece of equipment, it has a huge range of gears, super-smooth shifting and I’ve never knocked it on anything while riding.”

SRAM Eagle drivetrain, with a whopping 38 tooth ring.
SRAM Eagle drivetrain, with a whopping 38 tooth ring.

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Cranks are 170mm in length, shorter than usual for better ground clearance.

“I used the highest gear in Whistler and Aspen rounds of the EWS, that’s a 38/10”

Moto foam
Look carefully at the chain guide, Colin applies Moto foam, stops mud from sticking and adding weight. It also helps to stop stones from flicking up and jamming bash guard and chainring, especially with fresh tyres and on fire roads.

Watch this exact bike in action in our recent video with Josh on the amazing trails of Mt Buller, he’s pinned!

Mt Buller Welcomes The MIND BODY BIKE Women’s Festival

A weekend away at Buller means smiles all around!
A weekend away at Buller means smiles all around!

A new event for the mountain, the MIND BODY BIKE Women’s Festival is designed exclusively for women, offering a variety of activities to suit a range of interests.

No matter what sort of riding you're into, Mt Buller has you covered.
No matter what sort of riding you’re into, Mt Buller has you covered.

The festival encourages women to get away from the ordinary and reconnect and recharge with friends in beautiful mountain surrounds.

Does it get any nicer?
Does it get any nicer?

There is a range of programs for each facet of the event, with four different activity and accommodation packages available.

For bike lovers there are two options; a cross country mountain bike package suitable for beginner and intermediate riders, ‘BIKE’, and for the truly adventurous the ‘BIKE – GRAVITY’ package, which is downhill focused.

Bring your full face along to the Gravity weekend!
Bring your full face along to the Gravity weekend!

The ‘BIKE’ package offers a full weekend of mountain biking for women to brush up on skills, learn new techniques and enjoy the highs of riding alpine single track, whilst the ‘BIKE – GRAVITY’ program will have riders hitting the downhill trails with expert instructors, as well as specialist suspension and bike setup classes.

Ready to ride at Mt Buller's Mind, Body, Bike Women's Festival (c) Andrew Railton, Mt BullerSuitable for beginner to intermediate riders, this event is not just about bikes. The ‘MIND’ Package focusses on tranquility, mindfulness and relaxation, with activities including painting, cooking, an optional beginner bike skills course, Metafit class and yoga, whilst the ‘BODY’ Package combines food and fitness, featuring cooking classes, guided mountain bike rides, Metafit class and yoga.

We don't think it'll be too hard to get into a relaxed mindset.
We don’t think it’ll be too hard to get into a relaxed mindset.

There are also day trips available on the Delatite River Trail that include lunch, guides and shuttle or for guests seeking a customised itinerary tailor-made weekend packages can be put together for individuals or groups.

The Delatite River trail is an absolute classic.
The Delatite River Trail is an absolute classic.

Group Marketing Manager Gill Dobson is thrilled to welcome the event to the mountain. “The idyllic mountain scenery at Mt Buller will provide the perfect backdrop for women to take some time out to focus on themselves, away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Mt Buller’s world-class bike trails are the ideal location for women to come together to ride, relax and recharge.”

Along with riding, there'll be plenty of time to put your feet up over the weekend.
Along with riding, there’ll be plenty of time to put your feet up over the weekend.

“The range of activities on offer over the weekend, and the quality of the tuition will ensure everyone leaves feeling exhilarated and re-engaged, ready to tackle the world head-on!”

Smiles for miles.
Smiles for miles.

For further information visit mtbuller.com.au.

Video: Quietly Frothing, Mt Buller with Josh Carlson

But this trip was different; we were meeting to ride with the one and only Josh Carlson. Ranked number 10 in the world in the highly competitive and thrilling scene of enduro racing, Josh ain’t a slouch on a bike. We’d ridden with him once before in Buller, at the official opening of the fantastic Stonefly descent a few years ago, needless to say, it didn’t end well, and with a thud to the dirt, we learnt never again to try and match his speed through the corners.

There’s a very valid reason Josh is employed to race, while we are not.


Want this in your life too? For resort information, accommodation, trail maps, bike rental, upcoming events and more visit the Bike Buller website here: I NEED to do this!



Hit play on the video below, crank up the volume and jump right in.



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We invited Josh to film him ride Buller like we all do but at his pace. From the hotel, we warmed our bones on the rising sun and set off on our way, we blasted the top of Copperhead and split out to scoot through the town over towards Gang Gangs to begin our big ride towards Mt Stirling, off in the distance.

As we flicked and railed our way down the mint turns of Wooly Butt trail, the morning sun lit up the greenery around us, giving us the warm and fuzzy feels. The trails felt great beneath our tyres and looked like a total dream._low6494 _low6529 _low6545 _low6583 _low6605

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The vast Stonefly ascent lay out before us as we began to climb what must be one of the most picturesque trails in the alpine region, the colours, the running creeks, the bark peeling off the trees ahead of summer and that superb mountain air numbed our fatigue and hid the dull burn in our legs.

Some of the best sections of trail are on this climb, the stark contrasts of the sun-bleached gums, dry and white from bushfire against the vibrant flowers and lush green undergrowth. We pause at Willow’s Breeze and remember a good mate, and push on towards Bluff Spur for a bite to eat._low6750 _low6752 _low6772 _low6791 _low6796 _low6811 _low6830

The Mt Stirling Summit is a real burner; your legs will hate you and your lungs won’t let you forget what you did to them, but getting to the top is so damn rewarding that nothing else matters. The views are enormous, and you can see where you’ve come from, Mt Buller is a long way away, that’s where that sense of achievement comes from.  _low6955 _low6906 _low6949 _low6854 _low6932

When you know you’re at the absolute top, with everything below it’s a pretty sweet feeling. To get down to Mirimbah there is much ground to cover, so we let it rip and hammered our way down the fire trail from the summit to the start of the Stonefly descent._low6966

Ripping past the sign signalling the beginning of the 4km singletrack descent, it was time to turn it up and ride the narrow and twisting trail that we know and love.

Between us and the beginning of the Delatite River Trail is not exactly anyone’s favourite climb, Trigger Happy. It might be scenic, but it is steep and the best way to get to the Corn Hill Summit. We take our time and grind the final climb of the day.

Clancy’s Run is a real ball tearer, with huge swooping bowls and huge banked turns the dusty and rocky trail is not to be taken lightly, but with excellent visibility and predictability the speeds creep up and up, and we were flying.

It’s at the bottom of Clancy’s Run that the formidable Delatite River Trail begins, it may be a fire trail but it’s ridden at the type of speeds that you’d be hard pressed to match anywhere else. It’s a rush, a wild and rapid mad dash down alongside the river and over it a dozen times across gargantuan bridges made from fallen trees. _low6988 _low6996

Bursting out to the valley floor, with bike and body in one piece, buzzing and exhausted, it’s that Buller feeling we came for. Ahh, yeah. That’s real mountain biking all right.

Signing off the epic day is a tradition we can’t miss, watching the sunset with a beer from the Mt Buller Summit. Cheers.

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Upcoming Event: GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Alpinestars in March 2017

With great expectations for another superb event, entries are now open for the 2017 GT Bike Buller Festival that will see three massive days of racing at Mt Buller, Victoria from the 11th-13th of March, 2017.

The schedule has been consolidated for 2017 into 11 main MTB events over three days to maximise racing opportunities for riders, and provide a coordinated schedule that suits everyone.

Over 700 riders are expected to compete at Mt Buller for the 9th edition of the event, with an even larger number of friends and family who also come to the alpine resort to spectate and enjoy the range of other, non-riding activities on offer._dsc6648

The ‘Gravity Gods’ and ‘XC Whippet’ combined-races categories will return again, allowing riders to compete in three different races over the three days to award an overall weekend winner in both gravity and cross-country riding disciplines. Riders need to enter the three designated gravity events or three designated cross country events to be eligible to win the title and claim the cash and prizes.bikebullerday3-m-201 moo_2689 moo_3744 bikebullerday1m-282

Sam Maffett General Manager of Rapid Ascent Event Management said he was excited to have officially opened entries to the 2017 GT Bike Buller Festival, a feeling that would echo through the riding community.

“We can’t wait to get back to Buller – it’s always such an awesome biking weekend in one of the best bike parks in Australia. It is a highlight of the year for many riders from all over Australia,” said Maffett.

“With the return of the popular downhill and gravity events, and trademark short and long XC courses; 2017 will not disappoint.” 

The 2017 weekend will be an incredible celebration of all things mountain biking with a broad range of races for all types of riders who can enter just one event, or a combination of them all.

“Mt Buller is Australia’s most epic mountain biking destination, with some of the best trails in the country. Combine this with a stacked schedule of races and full social calendar the appeal is high for groups of mates to come to the event together as well as riders and their families, no matter what their interest or level.”

The three-day celebration of mountain biking will again coincide with the popular ‘Picnic in the Park’ food, wine and music festival held in the Mirimbah Park at the base of Mt Buller. There will also be an extensive Bike Expo and plenty for non-riders to enjoy, including events designed for spectators and a range of social activities._dsc7354 _dsc7338

Gillian Dobson, Group Manager, Marketing, Sales and Events, Mt Buller said she was excited to have the GT Bike Buller Festival back for another massive event at Mt Buller. 

“There is no wonder this event has become the highlight of our calendar – there are so many options for riders no matter what your level, plus plenty to do for non-riders too, including the popular Picnic in the Park food, wine and music festival in Mirimbah Park on the Sunday,” said Dobson. _dsc7219 _dsc7109 _dsc7202 _dsc6958

“The event gets bigger and better every year, giving participants and their friends and family the perfect balance of riding and fun for a sensational weekend here on top of the world at Mt Buller.”

Peter Kouppas of Monza Imports Cycling said he was very excited to partner with GT Bicycles and Rapid Ascent for what is shaping up to be a massive event. 

“GT is thrilled to be back at the mountain once again for 2017. From supplying the very best equipment to the best athletes around the world we know that GT can produce a mountain conqueror,” Kouppas said. 

“The GT Bike Buller event is a natural fit for Alpinestars. Proven and raced by the very best, Alpinestars mountain bike apparel and protection guards have all the technical specifications ensuring for a comfortable and safe ride. “_dsc6788 _dsc6072 _dsc5863 pumptrack-matt-6

“GT bicycles is very proud to be the naming partner of this event and can’t wait to see you there.” 

The revolutionary GT Bike Buller Festival brings all that is great about mountain biking to the one location for a huge weekend of bikes, single track, fresh air and good times at a spectacular mountain top destination. 

Entries are now open for the 2017 GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Alpinestars at BIKEBULLER.com.


EVENT DETAILS:

When: Saturday 11th – Monday 13th March, 2017 (March long weekend – VIC)
Where: Mt Buller, Victoria, Australia
What: A 3 day mountain bike festival on the spectacular trails at Mt Buller in the breathtaking Victorian Alps. The event coincides with the renowned ‘Picnic in the Park’ food, wine and music festival

GRAVITY RACES:

Outlaw All-mountain Trophy #
ABOM Down Hill #
Gravity Enduro #

 

XCOUNTRY RACES:

Stonefly Circuit 40km *
Buller Blitz 18km
Brake Burner *
Corn Hill XC 20km *

 

SPECTATOR EVENTS:

16” Dual Slalom
Pump Track Pursuit
Picnic in the Park

 

KIDS EVENTS:

Village Ride
Picnic in the Park Bike Fun

*   XC Whippet combined race

#  Gravity Gods combined race

Who:  Mountain bike riders of all levels and riding styles

Mt Buller to Host the Third Annual Australian Mountain Bike Summit

Mt Buller will host the third annual Australian Mountain Bike Summit on 5-6 December 2016 – the only conference in Australia dedicated solely to the mountain bike industry. Presented by Mt Buller Bike Park, the Summit has become a must-attend industry event that covers a range of topics relevant to individuals, groups and organisations in the mountain biking industry, or those looking to enter the space.

Hosted by renowned cycling commentator, SBS journalist and host of The Bike Lane, Matt Keenan this year’s Summit will feature a number of local and international mountain biking experts, including the visionary Charlie Sturgis, CEO of the Park City Mountain Trails Foundation, legendary trail builder Glen Jacobs of World Trail, Bradley Fauteux, CEO of Parks Victoria plus Australia’s foremost expert on adaptive mountain biking, Andrew Liddawi. Speakers will deliver a range of keynote addresses and workshops that allow participants to hear from the specialists, share ideas and ask questions in a collaborative environment. Covering MC duties will be Matt Keenan, renowned cycling commentator, SBS journalist and host of The Bike Lane. mtb_summit_151208_0327

“The Australian Mountain Bike Summit is unique in Australia, as it focusses purely on the challenges, opportunities and state of the market for the mountain bike industry”, said Gillian Dobson, Group Manager – Marketing, Sales and Events for Mt Buller Resort Management. 

“We developed the Australian Mountain Bike Summit after recognising a gap in the market for such an event, and dedicated ourselves to bringing together key industry players to learn about and discuss the key challenges and emerging opportunities currently impacting the Australian and international mountain bike markets.”

“Importantly, the program also allows for a range of networking opportunities, where industry leaders come together with business operators, clubs, land managers and retailers to informally discuss topics of interests and make business connections” said Dobson. “In addition, delegates are given several opportunities to get out on Mt Buller’s world-class trails, either as part of a guided tour or independently. Those up for a challenge will head straight to Mt Buller’s legendary 42km Australian Alpine Epic ride, the only trail of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere”.

mtb_summit_151207_0077The Australian Mountain Bike Summit is preceded by the official opening of the Mt Buller Bike Park on Saturday 3 December. The opening features a great program of activities and events across the weekend that will provide delegates a great reason to come early and make the most of their time at Mt Buller.

“The Australian MTB Summit is a highly interactive, engaging forum that combines expert and topical discussion with opportunities to expand networks, and participate actively in what it’s all about – mountain bike riding. We encourage everyone in the industry to consider attending this critical event”, concluded Dobson.

Registration for the Australian Mountain Bike Summit is now open. Registration costs $499 per person plus booking fee, which covers the two-day conference, all conference catering and networking functions including the three-course Official Summit Dinner, and three guided rides. An early bird discount of 10% applies until Sunday, 18 September.

For further information about the Australian Mountain Bike Summit, visit bike.mtbuller.com.au or email [email protected]

 

Must Ride: Beechworth, the Dream Town

We’ve spent plenty of time here before over the years filming and shooting videos for Flow themed around tourism, trails, road trips and beer. But this time a family holiday brought one half of Flow (the better half) to the iconic town of Beechworth for a few days of quality time, but not without a bike of course. Beechworth’s well-preserved township and rich Australian history give it the feeling of stepping back in time, around six hours from Sydney and three from Melbourne is more than enough to give the feeling of a proper getaway and also keeps the trails safe from the hordes of skidding tyres.

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That iconic main drag, looks like a movie set from a gold rush film. Is that Ned Kelly driving a Hilux down there!?
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We chose the new Pivot Switchblade set up with 27.5+ tyres to join us on the trails of Beechworth, a VERY good decision indeed! This bike loves slippery surfaces and technical terrain.
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Perfectly signed and marked, just rock up and shred! There’s even street signs in town pointing you in the direction of the MTB park. A real mountain bike town!
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Go on, just ride.

With a population of less than 3000 people it’s a surprise the town has amazing purpose-built mountain bike trails within a quick ride from the main drag, and plenty of adventure riding beyond that. The Beechworth MTB Park and Flame Trees have two trails in the Dirty Dozen, North East Victoria’s best trails handpicked by locals.

Check out the full dozen here – www.thedirtydozen.com.au.

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Yeeeeaaaaa!
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Thread through the chunks of granite and play with the varying surfaces under your tyres.
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When in town…
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Picture-perfect township.
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New school freeriding, find a boulder and ride up and down it, there’s a lot to explore around the place.
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Wade Simmonds!?
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Tanswell’s. The centre of town, good place for some live music, pub grub, cheap accomodation and meeting some cheery locals. Bridge Road Brewery is just out the back too, no need to go far…
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Out of town exploring some local trails and ‘fire roads’ in the surrounding hills.

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Big cheers to Derek and Chris for good yarns, local welcome and letting us tag along for a ride. Legends.

When we think of Beechworth we immediately think of sweet trails and er, beer! The local brewery Bridge Road Brewers is one of the finest craft brewers in the country, exporting all around the country its great quality brew. Aficionados know what we’re talking about, this place is beer tasting heaven and we feel even warmer and fuzzier with a hoppy pint in our hands knowing that the brewery is also heavily involved in the mountain bike scene, supporting development, events, and the local club the Beechworth Chain Gang.

You’d be mad not to try the tasting sample plank with 11 distinct beers brewed a few strides away from the bar. The pizza is seriously delicious too, take our word for it. And the pretzels. And the open fire…
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Exploring the fire trails in the National Park, right up to Barry’s Falls.
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Derek Visser, local legend. One of the locals keeping the trails running sweet for us city folk to have the best possible time.

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Squamish, Canada? No.
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The trails in the mountain bike park are sublime, we relish in the open and flowing nature of the trails through the sparse forest littered with grippy granite boulders and drifty soil. Heavenly stuff!
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Beechworth is right on the Mountains to Murray Rail Trail, calm gradients of endless flowing cycle path. A nice way to roll about the place and see the beautiful and austere Victorian countryside at a slower pace.

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Open corners! Flow to the max.

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Want To Ride Beechworth?

For more on what this place is all about head to our most recent Flow Nation trip to the region here: Flow Nation, Beechworth.

Trail locations of the two main trails in town: Beechworth MTB Park and Flame Trees.

Here’s a throwback to Flow’s first visit to the region.

Flow Nation Beechworth video.

 

The Dirty Dozen video from all five destinations in the region. Mt Buller, Mt Beauty, Bright, Beechworth and Falls Creek. Road trip!

Cheers!

Event Wrap-up: GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox

Mt Buller celebrated a huge weekend of mountain biking action at the GT Bike Buller MTB Festival presented by Fox, over the March Labour Day weekend, 12-14 March.

Now in its eight year, the GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox has become the ultimate biking weekend on the annual calendar, with the variety of events and lively social scene providing appeal for riders, friends and family.

The three-day event consisted of seven core mountain bike races, two spectacle events (the 16” dual slalom and pump track pursuit), a trail running race, three kids’ events and a whole bunch of added social activities.

With events to cater for riders of all disciplines and ability levels, the diverse crowd included plenty of cross country riders, downhill and gravity riders. Local riders enjoyed the increased level of competition, with participants from around Australia and as far afield as Chile, all making the most of the Victorian long weekend.

Day one of the GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox (c) Mandy Lamont
Day one of the GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox (c) Mandy Lamont

Hans ‘no way’ Rey, considered to be the world’s leader in extreme mountain biking, was a major drawcard to the event this year. Along with numerous race accomplishments, Rey is a three-time trials riding world champion, as well as a showman, a stuntman and an adventure mountain biker.

Hans led a 40km social ride along Mt Buller’s Alpine Epic Trail, which saw nearly 80 guests taking the opportunity to ride with the mountain biking legend, and share a beer with him at the end of the day. Hans followed the ride with a lively presentation that covered his career highlights, an entertaining evening for all.

Back by popular demand were the combined race categories, giving an overall weekend winner in both the gravity and cross-country riding disciplines. A rider’s individual times are combined, with the lowest cumulative time determining the victor.

Gravity Gods: 
Race the three designated gravity events to contest the Gravity Gods combined races category: Outlaw All Mountain Trophy, ABOM Downhill and Gravity Enduro.

Overall winning male: Ben Forbes
Overall winning female: Sarah Booth

XC Whippets:
Race the three designated cross-country events to contest the XC Whippet combined races category: Stirling Circuit 50km, Brake Burner Enduro, 20km Corn Hill XC.

Overall winning male: Paul van der Ploeg
Overall winning female: Melissa Anset
There was no shortage of competition this weekend. Several riders left the mountain with race titles and prizes; and everyone else left with a huge sense of satisfaction, having enjoyed the magnificent Mt Buller trails and festival atmosphere.

General Manager from Rapid Ascent, Sam Maffet summed up the weekend nicely.

“We’ve had a fantastic weekend celebrating the GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox and overall, it’s gone superbly well. This event brings riders from all levels and styles together in one place and we couldn’t have asked for a better place to be than at Mt Buller. There’s definitely the festival vibe here with so many events taking place across the weekend, and we can’t wait to do it all over again in 2017!”

This is how all the action unfolded.


SATURDAY 12TH MARCH:

Stirling Circuit 50km
This was a spectacular – and by all accounts extremely challenging – XC circuit over Mt Stirling and back again including Stonefly, the Corn Hill trails and a chairlift up Mt Buller at the end.

Overall winning male: Paul van der Ploeg
Overall winning female: Melissa Anset

Day two of the Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox (c) Mandy Lamont
Day two of the Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox (c) Mandy Lamont

Stonefly Circuit 35km
The rewarding XC race also took riders to Mt Stirling and back on the phenomenal Stonefly trail with chairlift at the end.

Overall winning male: Jasper Albrecht (17 years of age)
Overall winning female: Julia Clarke
GT Bicycles Outlaw All Mountain Trophy
In this mind-blowing all-mountain race on two of Mt Buller’s DH tracks – Outlaw Express and Yellow Post – riders completed 5 timed descents with an untimed chairlift back to the top. The fastest 3 descents made up the riders’ overall race time.

There were plenty of smiling faces and great tales told at the end of the descent as riders caught their breath as they jumped on the chairlift with their bikes.

At the end of the day it was Shannon Hewetson who posted the fastest men’s times and accomplished mountain biker Sarah Booth who won the women’s event.

Overall winning male: Shannon Hewetson
Overall winning female: Sarah Booth
Fox 16” Dual Slalom
There was plenty of noise from the crowd, encouraged along by the Red Bull Energy DJ, as two riders went head to head down a grass dual slalom track on Bourke Street, on 16” kids bikes! There were loads of stacks and cheering from the spectators as 32 riders took on the challenge. In the winner-takes-all elimination format Ben Forbes won the final round in a hot contest against Shannon Hewetson.

Overall winner: Ben Forbes

16 inch Dual Slalom event during the GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox at Mt Buller (c)Mandy Lamont
16 inch Dual Slalom event during the GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox at Mt Buller (c)Mandy Lamont

Lezyne Pump Track Pursuit
The trackside bar and BBQ and Red Bull Energy DJ kept the crowd pumping and after some thrilling head to head racing on the pump track. In a do-or-die elimination format, Gaelen Slaney managed to take the crown ahead of last year’s winner, Jackson Frew.

Overall winner: Gaelen Slaney 


SUNDAY 13TH MARCH:

6.5km Trail Run
A spectacular and challenging trail running race took runners along the scenic walking and riding trails up to the Mt Buller Summit, with a beautiful 3.5km descent back to the Village Square.

Overall winning male: Ross Hopkins
Overall winning female: Lauren Crowe

 

Gaelen Slaney and Jackson Frew following the final round of the Pump Track Pursuit_(c) Mt Buller_Andrew Railton
Gaelen Slaney and Jackson Frew following the final round of the Pump Track Pursuit_(c) Mt Buller_Andrew Railton
Gaelen Slaney during the head-to-head knockout round in the Pump Track Pursuit at the GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox (c) Mt Buller_Andrew Railton
Gaelen Slaney during the head-to-head knockout round in the Pump Track Pursuit at the GT Bike Buller Festival presented by Fox (c) Mt Buller_Andrew Railton

GT Bicycles Brake Burner Enduro
The most popular race for the weekend was the multi-lap enduro down a 7km XC/DH course to the base of the chairlift and back up again until the final 12km Super-D (Race 9) to the Picnic in the Park festival at the base of the mountain.

Overall winning male: Bret Murray
Overall winning female: Sue Thompson

 

Fox Mt Buller Super D
This exhilarating 12km Super-D race took riders from the top of Mt Buller all the way to the bottom – descending over 1100m in a single run. Riders flew down the Delatite River Trail to finish in the Picnic in the Park festival at the base of the mountain.

Overall winning male: Brad Wadsworth
Overall winning female: Alice Matthews

 

GT Bicycles ABOM Downhill
A single timed descent down Mt Buller’s original downhill track, ABOM from top to bottom.

Overall winning male: Tim Eaton
Overall winning female: Sarah Booth

 


MONDAY 14TH MARCH:

Corn Hill Crankfest XC 22km
It was a tight race on the challenging XC 22km Crankfest on the flowing single track around the Mt Buller Village and neighbouring Cornhill trails.

Overall winning male: Adrian Jackson
Overall winning female: Melissa Anset
Adidas Eyewear Gravity Enduro 20km
A gravity enduro around the most popular Mt Buller and Cornhill trails with 5 timed descents interspersed with untimed climbs and transit stages.

Overall winning male: Ben Forbes
Overall winning female: Philippa Norton


For details and entries visit www.gtbikebuller.com.au

Mt Buller: One Mountain, Many Ways to Ride it

With trails to suit just about every style of rider and bike, Buller’s the kind of place that can tempt you into to all kinds of quasi-justifiable, but potentially financially/familially destructive bike purchasing rampages.

You see, you’ve gotta bring a road bike, so you can enjoy the proximity to some of the country’s best roads and climbs, including the famed 16km ascent to the village.

And then you’ll definitely want a cross-country bike too, for ripping around the endless amount of flowy singletrack, on trails like Gang Gangs, Misty Twist and Medusa.

But then something with a bit more travel wouldn’t go astray as well, maybe an all-mountain bike, so you can really hammer it on the epic descents like Copperhead, Stonefly, the Australian Alpine Epic or the Delatite River Trail.

Of course you’ll also to bring your downhill bike, for cutting laps on the chair-lifted trails of International and ABOM too, so make sure you leave space in the car for that one as well….

Join us, as National Enduro Champ Chris Panozzo shows you how to make the most of Mt Buller!

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Climbing on perfect roads in the late arvo light.
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Picture perfect alpine singletrack on Misty Twist.
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Heading up Medusa, with Mt Stirling in the distance.

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Sunset at the Buller summit is to die for. It’s always worth the climb.
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Clancy’s Run, off the peak of Corn Hill.
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Jamming it into another granite berm on Clancy’s Run.
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And don’t forget your downhill bike. The descents of ABOM and International have been part of the Australian downhill circuit for years, for good reason.

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Must Ride: The Dirty Dozen – Mt Buller

This time around we’re here to ride the Dirty Dozen – a collection of 12 trails in north-east Victoria, hand picked by local riders. Buller’s the first of five stops, and it’s home to four trails of the dozen, more than any other location, including some trails which we’d rate as amongst the very best in Australia.

If you make the trip to Buller, don’t leave without seeing a sunset from the summit. It’s truly spectacular up there.
Copperhead has had a few touch-ups for the summer and is riding better than ever.

Copperhead

Named after the placid little snakes that call Buller home, Copperhead is a serpentine flow-down trail, which careens down the ski runs and gullies close to the Buller village. While most of Buller’s trails take you way out into the hills, Copperhead is right on the village doorstep, so you don’t need to commit to a big ride to enjoy it.

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Copperhead isn’t a flatout downhill track, though it is entirely descending, and can be ridden on any bike. Like most of Buller’s trails, the faster you hit it, the more features start to emerge, gaps, hip jumps and rollers that can be doubled up. This trails is all about getting in your rhythm and pumping your way down the hill – there are no white knuckle moments and the width and vision you’ve got down the trail makes it easy to relax and get into a groove. Fast riders can smash out the Copperhead descent in under three or four minutes, or it’ll take up to ten if you’re cruising.

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If the chairlift isn’t running, it’s an easy pedal back out to the road and back into the main trail network – head up Corn Hill if you’re keen to keep riding, or up the new Split Rock climb and back into the village.


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Why we ride.

Stonefly

When it was opened a few years ago, Stonefly represented a new standard in professional trail building. We remember being completely blown away the first time we rode this trail, awed by the terrain and the incredible four-kilometre descent too. To this day this wilderness ride continues to many people’s favourite Buller trail – it’s a really special part of the world and the ride is sensational.

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Stonefly is a 10km loop that lies across the saddle from Mt Buller, on the eastern slopes of Mt Stirling. The loop will take most people an hour or more, plus it’s a bit of a pedal out to the trail head, so make sure you’ve got a sambo or a pocket full of gels on board so you can really enjoy the whole experience.

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The Stonefly climb is broken up with all kinds of cool features, like this waterfall crossing.

Stonefly is 90% purpose built singletrack, and thanks to creative, inspired trail building even the six-kilometre climb is a joy. On the way up, you pass through some amazing stands of gums, across waterfalls, and the epic view of Willo’s Breeze – don’t chew your stem, sit up and enjoy it all.

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Willo’s Breeze.

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The descent is pure magic, traversing quickly through the open forests of snow gums and picking up pace before smacking you into an incredible roller coaster of berms and corners. You’ll be wetting yourself with laughter by the end, we promise.

From the finish of Stonefly you’ve got the option to climb back over Corn Hill to the village, or press on with even more descending, heading down the Circuit Rd to the River Spur Trail and Delatite River trail to Mirimbah where you can catch the shuttle back up!

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Alpine huts are found all through this region, opening up the possibility for overnight rides.
Amongst the ghosts of snow gums on Stonefly.

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Delatite River Trail

Delatite is a hard trail to put into words. Fast, is definitely one of the words you could use, but it’s grossly inadequate to convey the eye-blurring, face-whipping speeds you can hit on this trail. Scenic is another, but again, it doesn’t get across just how beautiful this trail is as it follows and crosses the tumbling Delatite River either.

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Big trees, big speeds on Delatite.

Because words are useless to get across how much we love this trail, you’ll just have to experience it for yourself. And experience is the right word, because it’s a ride that will stay with you a long time.

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Why we ride.

Descents of this speed and length are so rare in Australia, that Delatite is a real standout. But it’s not just the vertical drop and pace that make it so amazing, it’s the way the trail crosses the river on huge log bridges, the way it finishes in a beautiful park on the river’s edge, the fact you can so easily catch the shuttle back up… it’s just incredible.

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The Australian Alpine Epic

Buller’s latest mammoth addition to their network is the Epic, as it’s simply known. As the first trail in Australia to be granted IMBA Epic status, it’s a huge 40km point to point ride, an all-day affair for even fit, capable riders. It’s a big day, but it’s worth the burn.

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About to drop into a descent that never ends.

The Epic kicks off on familiar territory, using all the old favourite trails, including the ascent of Stonefly, to take you out to Mt Stirling before heading off into wilder country. Pack some food and be prepared for all kinds of weather – this is the alps, and you’re not likely to have phone reception on parts of the Epic either.

After some grunty climbs and singletrack intermissions you find yourself at the top of the pay-off, in the form of a nine-kilometer, life-changing descent. The sheer amount of work that has gone into this trail is mind-blowing, a never-ending ribbon of perfect trail that just keeps on giving. Every time you get the sense you’ve reached the bottom, the trail pitches down and you’re flying into another bit of trail that in any other context would have you stopping to ride again and again.

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Eventually it does end, back on the banks of the Delatite River once again, for a final mellow cruise back to Mirimbah where you can relax in shellshocked awe of what you’ve just ridden.

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The Epic takes you way, way off the beaten track.
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The final couple of kays rolling along the river’s edge are really pretty special.

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For more information on the trails of the Dirty Dozen, head to: http://www.thedirtydozen.com.au or for information on Buller, http://bike.mtbuller.com.au/index.php

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Australian Mountain Bike Summit Presenter Profiles

The second annual Australian Mountain Bike Summit will take place at Mount Buller on 7-8 December 2015, and some of the Australian cycling industry’s key figures will be there for two days of presentations, workshops, discussion and a little bit of riding too. It’s all about pooling knowledge and experience to get a clear idea of how mountain biking looks now, and will look in the future, from various perspectives: trail access, retailing, technology, women in mountain biking, racing, media and more.

Ahead of the Summit, we grabbed four of the key presenters to ask them a few questions about their personal experiences, opportunities and challenges. For more information about the Australian Mountain Bike Summit, or to register, head to http://bike.mtbuller.com.au/summit.php

[divider]Dave Donaldson[/divider]

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All visitors who respect the environment are warmly welcomed.

Dave Donaldson is the Deputy Mayor of Rotorua, New Zealand and has been one of the driving forces behind the rise of Rotorua to international mountain bike prominence. When it comes to developing and promoting a world class mountain bike destination, he knows it all. 

With so many riders from around the globe flocking to Rotorua, has ‘localism’ ever been an issue with the trails, and if so, how is it handled?

The only issue of ‘possessiveness’ with the trails has been the occasional flare up on social media between user groups – MTB’ers, joggers, and equestrian. There is low tolerance for hoof marks on MTB trails, but this is well managed by the cool heads on committees of the various user groups and event organisers. I have never heard of ‘localism’ being an issue in fact I’d suggest quite the reverse applies. Manaakitanga [hospitality] is a powerful concept in Rotorua and in the forest community in particular. All visitors who respect the environment are warmly welcomed.

Buller Summit Profiles-1

What do you see as Rotorua’s biggest opportunities for future growth as a mountain bike destination?

Two things. A scenic ride that would rival the Heaphy which is ‘on the radar’ of the Trails Trust. The other is a chairlift to facilitate rapid access to gravity and enduro trails in Whakarewarewa Forest.

Is it true that there’s a taniwha in the forest that eats lost Australians?

If you go by the trail names it’s a very spiritual place. The ghosts of a Taniwha [Lizard Monster]- Kataore , a Tohunga [Medicine Man] – Tuhoto Ariki, Kurungaituku [a legendary bird woman whocaptured the warrior Hatupatu] are all in there, but I’ve never heard of any lost Aussie falling prey. Quite honestly, at some times of the day and in the right weather conditions, it can be a spooky place if you’re alone. Also there can be some savage magpies in there this time of year [nesting] but Australians probably have an acquired immunity?

If you could pick one trail in Rotorua to ride before putting away the bike for good, which one would it be?

I will turn 65 two weeks before arriving in Mt Buller so I’ll officially be a Superannuitant and Gold Card holder. Right now that trail would be Tihi o Tawa. If, God willing, I’m still spinning the cranks in another decade, it would likely be Eagle vs Shark.

[divider]Scot Nicol[/divider]

Buller Summit Profiles-4

Incremental change rather than monumental change is how innovation happens in our industry.

Scot Nicol founded iconic brand Ibis Cycles way back in 1981 and since then he has steered the brand to global prominence. He’s seen it all – the trends, the technology changes, the shifts in the market, the rise of Asian manufacturing, the opportunities of global internet based retailing and much more. 

Who has been the bike industry’s great innovator of all time?

The answer is no one and everyone. Incremental change rather than monumental change is how innovation happens in our industry. Charles Goodyear invented vulcanization, which gave us pneumatic tires. Ignatz Schwinn gave us fat tires. Kestrel made some of the frames out of carbon. Paul Turner put front suspension on the bikes. Dave Weagle is on a lifetime pursuit to perfect rear suspension. Stan Koziatek pioneered tubeless on our mountain bikes. Ibis made them wide and in carbon.

What is the greatest area of opportunity for the mountain bike industry today?

Advocacy and trail building.

Has the evolution of wheels sizes been a push, or a pull development?

Both 29 and then 27.5 started with a tiny bit of push from small industry people. The insufferable 29er evangelicals tried to get the industry to take notice for many years. The pan simmered on a low boil for a number of years and then critical mass hit and 26″ died. In the rush to jump on the 29er bandwagon, a lot of manufacturers made really crappy 29ers. Although 650b had been around for decades, the 27.5″ movement started with some tires by Kirk Pacenti. All of a sudden the switch flipped, 29er sales plummeted and you couldn’t keep 27.5″ bikes in stock. Fortunately, 29ers are way better now, the zombie like attraction to 27.5″ has waned, and we’re going to see both 27.5 and 29″ peacefully coexist, as they should.

[divider]Kate Leeming[/divider]

AUSSIE ADVENTURERS

Travelling by bike gives a great sense of place – a unique perspective of how the world fits together.

Kate Leeming is one of the those people we all wish we’d become. A person who has been brave enough to make her life an adventure on two wheels, she has ridden across Africa, Russia, Australia and countless other expeditions raising awareness for a variety of issues. She’s currently training to ride across Antartica. Yes. Antarctica.  

You’ve ridden around the world twice, literally, what is it that motivates you to keep pedalling?

My intrinsic love of travelling by bike was developed when I first cycled through Europe (15,000km in total). I found that I made a very close connection with the people and the land, I loved bringing a line on a map to life, and travelling by bike gives a great sense of place – a unique perspective of how the world fits together. Each major expedition (13,400km across Russia, 25,000km through Australia and 22,000km west to east across Africa and next November, across the Antarctic continent) has a clear mission; I always define my physical objectives, I believe in the causes I am supporting and the story I aim to create. These motivations keep me going through the difficult times and on to the finish, and are the reason why I plan to do more.

What is it about a bike that makes it the right vehicle to raise awareness of the causes you champion?

Virtually everyone can relate to riding a bike at some level, so when people follow my journeys and read stories of my adventures, I am inviting them to ‘come along for the ride’ with me. My expeditions have subsequently become a platform to inspire, motivate and create understanding about cultures, geographies, environmental sustainability and in the case of the Breaking the Cycle in Africa Expedition, the causes and effects of extreme poverty. They are opportunities to develop deeper understanding for all involved. I am able to tell it how it really is. And now that I have established a track record with several successful expeditions under my belt, as well as writing, speaking and filmmaking, I am able to garner support because my expeditions are about far more than just a bike ride, a simple adventure or a world first.

How does one train to ride across the Antarctic?

I first tested myself and the Christini all-wheel drive fat-bike in Spitsbergen, Norway. Here the team was able to determine that my plan to cycle across the Antarctic continent was realistic. Experiencing cycling in true polar conditions I devised a program to prepare for Antarctica which involves a series of shorter expeditions training in Greenland and Iceland, at altitude in the Indian Himalaya and in sand (for strength) in the Simpson Desert. Until I can find the funding to do these trips, I keep the pedals turning on the hills and trails around Melbourne and put some intensive hours in the gym doing interval training and core strength so that I am in good condition to launch my specific plan.

[divider]Simon French[/divider]

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 I think sometimes we need to just relax and be thankful that we’re on a trail enjoying the outdoors.

As the founder of Dirt Art, one of Australia’s most-progressive and prolific professional trail building companies, Simon French has literally shaped the way we ride in Australia. His understanding of mountain bike tourism, trail building and the industry’s direction as a whole is a deep as the berms he creates. 

What is the next frontier for mountain bike trail building?

I think the next big thing for mountain bike trail building in Australia will be the rise of the commercial bike park and an increasing interest in private/public development partnerships. Developers and investors are beginning to see the potential for mountain bike tourism but they don’t always have the land required, whereas governments have the land but do not often have the funding and/or expertise to develop a successful facility. Our company are breaking new ground in this area with our Maydena project in Tasmania, but we are also working with a number of other commercial clients in Australia as they move through the early stages of their developments.

You can’t make a trail that will suit every rider. Discuss.

While as trail designers and builders we acknowledge that we will never please everyone, I think there is lots that we can do to make trails appeal to a broader range of riders. Building in optional technical sections, and creating a diverse experience in each trail definitely goes a long way to making trails more broadly appealing. At the end of the day though, a good rider can have fun riding pretty much anything, so I think sometimes we need to just relax and be thankful that we’re on a trail enjoying the outdoors.

Which trail/location are you most proud of and why?

We will always be proud of our project at Hollybank in Tasmania. We had an incredibly challenging site and only a relatively small volume of trail budgeted for, yet we were charged with developing something that would attract the visiting rider. The Juggernaut Trail at Hollybank embraced the shuttle-accessed gravity cross country concept and continues to attract massive attention from visiting riders. The trail is often referred to as Australia’s best mountain bike trail, which is something that we are really proud of.

Jared Graves and Peta Mullens Take RockShox Enduro Challenge, Mt Buller

The Sun comes out as racing heats up at the RockShox Enduro Challenge Powered by SRAM.

After shivering through what felt like arctic temperatures earlier in the week, the sun came out today in Mt Buller with perfect for Enduro Racing. We saw the strongest ever Enduro field assembled in Australia with no less than seven (7) World Champions taking to the start line. Saturdays Prologue winner Jared Graves led the field out on stage one, but with the only time factors being an overall limit it was soon Ryan Del La Rue, trail builder of many of the stages at Mt Buller, took the role of sweeping the road.

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In an unexpected move, Chain Reaction Cycles pair Sam Hill and Mike Jones, soon took over this role, ultimately completing all 6 stages over 30 minutes ahead of the rest of the field. A timing error on stage 5 saw the duo redo stage 5, but as it was the most DH of the stages, including a chairlift uplift there were no complaints.

Ultimately, Graves was too strong for the rest of the field, taking the quickest time on 5 of 6 stages, only losing out to a puncture on the Ski School Step that claimed more than 1 tyre over the weekend of racing. Total racing time was 23:20:05.

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Specialized Rider, Troy Brosnan was on fire all day taking home second place just under 1 minute behind Graves. Clearly this DH rider can pedal as well.

Ryan De La Rue, who spends his days on an excavator for World Trial, and has had an integral role in the construction of most of the stages, took home third place just 3 seconds behind Brosnan. Ryan will be looking to take on up to 5 races of the Enduro World Series this year, so this early season form is looking good for the privateer.

Yeti Rider Richie Rude and CRCs Sam Hill rounded out the top five.

In the women’s field, it was Peta Mullens, fresh off a win as Australian National Road Race Champion, who dominated the girls winning every stage coming in 30 seconds ahead of Qld’s Brodie Chapman. Claire Whiteman rounded out the top 3, with a time just over 1 minute behind Mullens.

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Post event presentations were well attended with over $15,000 worth of product being given away at random, including a Giant Reign, and $10,000 worth of SRAM product.

With over 200 riders entered from all over Australia, it was a great start to the new MTBA Enduro National Series. Round two will be staged in the home town of Jared Graves, Toowoomba on March 8.

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Overall Split Times

 

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Category Split Times

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For full results click here 

Mt Buller’s Signature Event, Bike Buller MTB Festival Presented by Orbea, is Coming

Mountain bikers are getting set for the biggest event on Mt Buller’s busy calendar, the Bike Buller MTB Festival Presented by Orbea on March 7-9.

Taking place over the Victorian Labour Day long weekend on Mt Buller’s world-class trails, the Bike Buller MTB Festival will see riders enjoy a jam-packed three days of mountain biking and festival fun at the popular Picnic in the Park food, wine and music festival at Mirimbah Park.

Will Geor 2014 Bike Buller MTB Festival winner - photo Rapid Ascent

The festival is an ‘all mountain’ event, held across Mt Buller’s world-class cross-country, endurance and downhill trails, and suitable for riders of all abilities and disciplines. Run by event management company Rapid Ascent, the team behind the Giant Odyssey, Salomon Trail Running Series, Surf Coast Century and a number of other iconic adventure events, the 2015 Bike Buller MTB Festival presented by Orbea has a massive 14-event schedule with a diverse range of mountain bike races, kids’ events and even a trail running component.

General Manager of Rapid Ascent, Sam Maffett, is looking forward to the 2015 event. “This year’s Bike Buller MTB Festival is set to be the biggest yet – we’ve added a number of events designed to appeal to the whole spectrum of mountain bikers, from downhill and enduro to short and long-course cross-country. Plus, with kids’ events and the addition of trail running, as well as the sensational Picnic in the Park food and wine festival, there really is something for everyone to enjoy over the long weekend.

“Mt Buller’s trail network is ideal for a full weekend of events, and we can’t wait to get back there for this sensational celebration of all things mountain biking”, said Maffett.

Riders can choose to do one or more events over the weekend with a healthy mix of XC, downhill, gravity enduro and even some spectator-friendly pump track events included in the schedule:

Saturday 7th March

Race 1 – Schwalbe Stirling Circuit 50km

Race 2 – Fox Stonefly Circuit 35km

Race 3 – Fox Outlaw All Mountain Trophy

Race 4 – Fox Kids Village Ride

Race 5 – Fox 16” Dual Slalom

Race 6 – LEZYNE Kids Pump Track

Race 7 – Flow Pump Track Pursuit

 

Sunday 8th March

9.5km Trail Run

Race 8 – SRAM Guide Brake Burner Enduro

Race 9 – Fox Mt Buller Super D 12km

Race 10 – Fox Kids Picnic in the Park Ride

 

Monday 9th March

Race 11 – Adidas Eyewear Crankfest 22km

Race 12 – BELL Super 2R Gravity Enduro 20km

Race 13 – Fox Buller DH Cup

Race 14 – Fox ABOM Downhill

 

For further information, including event details, accommodation and more, visit bike.mtbuller.com.au.

 

MTBA Announces Inaugural Enduro National Series

Mountain Bike Australia (MTBA) is thrilled to announce the inaugural Enduro National Series in 2015.

The Gravity Enduro discipline has seen significant growth in recent years, combining the thrills and excitement of downhill with the fitness elements of cross country racing. The series is comprised of a mix of landmark events in some of Australia’s best mountain bike destinations.

Beginning in early February, the first two rounds visit the hotly-contested RockShox Enduro Challenge events in Mt Buller and Toowoomba.

Round three sees riders head to South Australia, racing with the active Inside Line Mountain Bike Club.

In round four, the action will take place in the West Australian Gravity Enduro event on the challenging trails of the popular Goat Farm mountain bike park in Perth.

The series concludes in the ACT with Canberra Off-Road Cyclists Club at Stromlo Forest Park, the home of the 2009 UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships. 

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“The Enduro format has really taken off in recent years and I am proud that MTBA is now able to present a truly national series of established events for all riders,” said MTBA President Russell Baker. “In addition to being a great fun part of mountain biking, having our own Australian series will provide more opportunities for our riders to experience this level of competition at home and lead to the development of more world-class Australians.”

Australia boasts the reigning Enduro World Champion and World Series Champion, Jared Graves of Toowoomba in Queensland.

Graves, known as the “swiss army knife of mountain biking” due to his cross-discipline success, rode a truly amazing season on the way to the title. Racing in the opening round, the RockShox Enduro Challenge on Jan 31-Feb 1, will see reigning Champion Jared Graves race 2013 Champion Jerome Clementz (FRA), with downhill legends Troy Brosnan (SA) and Sam Hill (WA) adding even more superstar power to an amazing weekend.

Riders competing in the series will race for over $9000 in prize money, as well as the coveted title of National Series Champion and the Green and Gold jersey.

“We’ve had significant demand for the creation of National level events in this domain, and I’m pleased that MTBA has been able to respond to this demand,” said MTBA CEO Shane Coppin. “The Series is comprised of some of the discipline’s most iconic destinations and events and riders and fans alike can look forward to fantastic Enduro action”.

The inaugural Enduro National Championships will be held in Cairns, QLD based out of iconic Palm Cove in October as a standalone event separate to the series.

More information about the Series will be be available on the Enduro Nation Series website to be launched in mid-January.

Round 1 : Rockshox Enduro Challenge – January 31 & February 1 – Mt Buller, VIC

Round 2 : Rockshox Enduro Challenge – March 7 & 8 – Toowoomba, QLD

Round 3 : SA Inside Line Enduro – May 23 & 24 – Fox Creek, SA  (online information coming soon)

Round 4 : WA Gravity Enduro – June 13 & 14 – Goat Farm MTB Park – Perth, WA (new website coming soon)

Round 5 : CORC Enduro – July 25 & 26 – Stromlo Forest Park (online information coming soon)

 

Graves and Clementz Confirmed to Race RockShox Enduro, Mt Buller

The 2015 International Enduro Season will kick off with a bang at the RockShox Enduro Challenge, Powered by SRAM when 2013 Enduro World Champion Jerome Clementz will take on 2014 champion Jared Graves and his Yeti team mate, Richie Rude on the slopes of Mt Buller in Victoria.

Clementz, who was forced to sit out the majority of the 2014 season due to a shoulder injury will use the Mt Buller event to wrap up his Southern Hemisphere training program, spending time in New Zealand and Australia ahead of round one of the Enduro World Series to be held in Rotorua in March. Graves and team mate Richie Rude will travel from Toowoomba the location of the second Rock Shox Enduro Challenge to take on Clementz in their first head to head hit out for 2015.

Photos from the SEQ Gravity Enduro Series, Round 2 at Garapine on 18-05-2014.

Looking to spoil the party for the Enduro Specific Athletes will be UCI World Cup regulars Sam Hill, Troy Brosnan and Mike Jones as they prepare their assault on the 2015 UCI Mountain Bike World Cup.

Run under the same format and rules of the Enduro World Series, riders will take on six stages, taking in all elements of the Mt Buller trail network in Victoria’s High Country. Entries will be capped at 400 riders.

Event Management Solutions Australia are the leaders in Enduro racing in Australia, having been delivering top class events in the format for over 5 years. They also have extensive experience in delivering large scale events at a World Class level and in 2015 will be taking their support of Enduro a step further through the backing of an Australian Based Official EWS team.

For more information please visit www.gravityenduro.com.au or [email protected] 

Must Ride: The Australian Alpine Epic Trail, Mt Buller

This happened to us. The recently opened Australian Alpine Epic Trail is teeming with huge vistas, magical flow, effortless speed, massive trail variety and it’s all in a wide-eyed frothing ride that gives that feeling that only the most epic of epic rides can deliver. It’s a big day out, with plenty of climbing and hard effort to complete the whole 40km, but the best is saved for last with a rewarding final descent that is likely to change your life.

Flow loves a road trip to Buller, it’s a long drive down from Sydney but nothing beats that feeling of turning off the highway and heading up into the big mountains. Especially now that Mt Stirling/Mt Buller have lifted the bar once again with their latest masterpiece – the IMBA (International Mountain Bike Association) accredited Epic Trail. The Epic marks the final stage in their huge first phase of mountain bike trail development. With over 100km of premium trails in the region, and some that have been named ‘best trail in the Australia’ it’s only fitting that they sign off with a bang with The Epic, and with the trail builders themselves claiming it is their best work yet. Fear not, this is most definitely the end, we’ve been hearing rumours of the next phase of mountain bike trails at Buller to focus on downhill and beginner cross country trails near the village. Stay tuned for more.

The complete Epic Trail is a 40km journey that takes you from the Mt Buller village, through many of the original trails that lead up towards Howqua Gap and then you climb Stonefly. From the top of the incredible Stonefly you will descend (not the Stonefly singletrack descent) west towards Telephone Box Junction. Grab a bloody delicious coffee and food from the friendly crew at The Epicentre, then you climb up along Razorback Spur. The juiciest part of the new trail is the 7km descent.

The official opening of the trail was a real celebration, with the Bike Buller crew putting on a great show full of surprises for the riders who joined in on the inaugural ride. But once the crowds subsided (and unfortunately the rain arrived) Flow grabbed World Trail’s long serving trail builder and enduro shredder, Ryan De La Rue to show off their work for our camera, this is how it went down.

Directions of use: Watch the video, scroll the pictures, call your crew and plan a trip to ride The Epic as soon as possible.

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Not taken from a plane, views like this from the Mt Buller village are very common. Not bad, eh?

 

It's a 43km ride, in the alps. So, you have to earn your descent.
It’s a 40km ride, in the alps. So, you have to earn your descent.
Follow the signs to bliss trails.
Follow the signs to blissful trails.
The Epic takes you a long way away from Mt Buller, but you spot it at times from some of the long ridge lines that carry you along.
The Epic takes you a long way away from Mt Buller, but you spot it at times from some of the long ridge lines that carry you along.
Let the brakes off, you can trust the trail builders to have built a predictable and safe trail to ride fast.
Let the brakes off, you can trust the trail builders to have built a predictable and safe trail to ride fast.
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The trail rewards your bike handling skills, you’ll be pumping and flowing down the trail gaining speed at each turn.
Lush ferns line the singletrack, which turn into a blur of green as you hoot along.
Lush ferns line the singletrack, which turn into a blur of green as you hoot along.
The trail has been carefully crafted to maintain effortless speed. Less braking, supportive turns and plenty of visibility.
The trail has been carefully crafted to maintain effortless speed. Less braking, supportive turns and plenty of visibility.
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Through forests of mountain ash and alpine snow gums, the trail takes in the best that the alpine region has to offer.
How's the terrain! This was not an easy section of trail to build through, but the team manage to join up spectacular features with beautiful flowing singletrack just fine.
How’s the terrain! This was not an easy section of trail to build through, but the experienced team manage to join up spectacular features with beautiful flowing singletrack just fine.
At the crest of one of the toughest climbs, a well-placed piece of furniture awaits you.
At the crest of one of the toughest climbs, a well-placed piece of furniture awaits your tired wheels.
Breaking up the dizzyingly blissful singletrack are numerous linkages to allow your brain to recharge it's froth depleting froth levels.
Breaking up the dizzyingly blissful singletrack are numerous linkages to allow your brain to recharge its depleting froth levels.
From this point on, prepare to lose your mind.
From this point on, prepare to lose your mind.
Left, right, left, right.
Left, right, left, right.
Every inch of trail is a good experience.
Every inch of trail is a good experience.
One of the many, many heavenly turns.
One of the many, many heavenly turns.
Australian Alpine Epic Trail 26
You’ll be faced with a real dilemma, slow down and take in the stunning surrounds? Or let it RIP!
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Feature packed, it’s a real head explosion to take it all in.
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Turns link up with a magical sense of flow.
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From Lou’s Lookout you can see how much elevation you still have in the bank, plenty.

Australian Alpine Epic Traill (1)

Australian Alpine Epic Trail (10)

This particular section of trail towards the end had everyone stumped on how to negotiate the cliff-lined river. It took time, but World Trail managed. You'll probably spend about 1.5 seconds there...
This particular section of trail towards the end had the construction team stumped on how to negotiate the rocky cliff-lined river. It took time, but World Trail managed the task. You’ll probably spend about 1.5 seconds there though…
The final 3 km follows the Delatite river, roaring with fresh water from the mountains, teeming with fish and lined with lush ferns.
The final 3 km follows the Delatite river, roaring with fresh water from the mountains, teeming with fish and lined with lush ferns.
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You’d be forgiven in mistaking this photo was taken in Rotorua, NZ. The ferns are massive!
Ryan ducks a green curtain along the Delatite River.
Ryan ducks a green curtain along the Delatite River.
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No section is without flowing terrain to maintain momentum.
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The final few metres of the epic journey take you through a forest with a thick fluorescent green canopy.
Congratulations everyone, it's bloody great.
Congratulations everyone, it’s bloody great.

Want more Buller? Click here. We visited the alpine singletrack haven last year to explore the whole spread of trails on offer. 

For everything you need to know about mountain biking in Mt Buller. From accommodation options, bike hire, retail opening hours, trail maps, uplift shuttle details and more: http://bike.mtbuller.com.au

[divider]The Australian Alpine Epic[/divider]

Grade: Intermediate / Advanced
Distance: 40km
Riding time: 4 – 7 hours (ability dependant)
Gradient: Long distance, includes singletrack, fire trail sections and moderately challenging slopes
Fitness: High endurance, medium technical skill
Description: This journey takes riders through a variety of environments, and trail experiences. It utililises familiar favourites including Soul Revival, One Tree Hill, Gang Gangs, Picnic Trail, Cornhill Trail, Woolybutt and Stonefly (ascent). The experience gets a little more wild, as the trail continues through Mt Stirling to Telephone Box Junction, Razorback Trail, No.3 Road, and will thrill with an endless descending flowing down section to Carter’s Road. From there, a scenic river-side stint will bring you back to leafy Mirimbah Park at the base of Mt Buller and Mt Stirling Resorts. Don’t Forget: Be prepared. Pack food, water, trail map and a repair kit. Limited phone reception. Respect the alpine environment. Conditions can change quickly so pack a spare layer of clothing.

[divider]The Epicentre, coffee and food break![/divider]

Located along the new Epic trail at Telephone Box Junction on Mt Stirling, the Epicentre offers servicing (including call-outs), funky bike retail, loads of local knowledge, advice, delicious meals and coffee.

Thur 9am-4pm
Fri 9am-6pm
Sat 8am-5pm
Sun 8am-4pm
Open daily from 17 December 2014 – 26 January 2015

T: 0407 730 809
E: [email protected]
Facebook: Bike Related Industries

[divider]Shuttle Services[/divider]

Mt Buller has two shuttle services that operate during the mountain bike season, a shuttle that runs from the base of the mountain to the top (servicing the Klingsporn and Delatite River Trails) and a shuttle that services the downhill trails after the chairlift season ends.

Mirimbah – Mt Buller Shuttle

There are two awesome trails, (Delatite River Trail & Klingsporn Bridle Track), that take you from the top of Mt Buller right down to Mirimbah at the base of the mountain. If you ride these trails you can take our bike shuttle service back up the hill – too easy! 

The mountain bike shuttle operates from Mirimbah (at the base of the mountain) to Mt Buller each weekend from Melbourne Cup Weekend (2 November) until the Easter long weekend in April. 
Available: Saturdays & Sundays 1 November 2014 – 26 April 2015
Times: 9am, 11:30am, 2.30pm and 4:30pm (extra shuttles can be operated on demand for groups)
Cost: $15 per run or $40 for four
Bookings & enquiries: 03 5777 5529 or email [email protected].

PLEASE NOTE BOOKINGS ARE ESSENTIAL

Mirimbah – Mt Stirling Shuttle

Ride the Australian Alpine Epic from the Mt Buller Village to Telephone Box Junction (TBJ), and catch the shuttle back to Mirimbah or start your ride 1/3 of the way in, at TBJ.

The mountain bike shuttle operates from Mirimbah (at the base of the mountain) to Mt Stirling each weekend from 6 December until the 26 April. 

Available: Saturdays & Sundays 6 December 2014 –  26 April 2015
Times: Departs Mirimbah 10:15am & 12:45pm (extra shuttles can be operated on demand for groups)
Cost: $15 per run 
Bookings & enquiries: 03 5777 5529 or email [email protected]

PLEASE NOTE BOOKINGS ARE ESSENTIAL

 

Photo Feature Preview: Riding the Australian Alpine Epic Trail, first

December 6 was the day when hoards of frothing mountain bikers joined those who were already in town for the Australian Mountain Bike Summit to ride the Epic first. It was a real unknown, not even the locals had ridden it, anyone who found their way onto it or snuck in a ride before the open date were spotted on the surveillance cameras and busted custard accordingly. We even tried to pay the trail builders a visit earlier in the year when the trail was under construction, but the talk of being blindfolded and walking through the bush scared us off, so we eagerly awaited what was in store of this massive project.

To date, the project has received $125,000 in federal funding through T-QUAL Strategic Tourism Investment Grants, $375,000 in state funding through Regional Development Victoria. Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management has contributed $225,000 and the Mansfield Shire Council a further $25,000.

World Trail began construction in November 2013 a 40km trail that takes riders from the Mt Buller Village all the way down to the valley floor at Mirimbah via some old favourite trails and the recently completed linkages. You begin by riding some of the existing network toward the top of the well-loved Stonefly track, and it heads even further into the wilderness along ridge lines and mountain tops with a mixture of old and new trails. The juiciest bit is the 7km descent that throws you down the mountain in the finest flowing singletrack you will ever ride. Then you cruise a 2.7km undulating trail along the Delatite river to Mirimbah where an uplift shuttle awaits (if you’re organised) to return you back to Buller. It’s a mind bending ride, a real tough undertaking and is not for the faint hearted. A lot of climbing is rewarded with fun descending, so expect some highs and lows, cursing and hotting, it’s a real epic day ride.

Mount Buller threw one hell of a party for the riders to celebrate the Epic opening, whilst the weather didn’t like to party as much, the day was a real blast. This is how it unfolded.

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The drive to Buller is always a real pleasure, a true road trip in all respects. You pass through great country towns, it’s super scenic, and the approach to the big mountains always gets us very excited to ride.
We made it onto a really big billboard! Life is complete.
We made it on to a really big billboard! Life is complete. That Damian Breach photo is a real winner.
The launch of the Australian Alpine Epic Trail coincided with the inaugural Mountain Bike summit. Like the G20 Summit, but more focussed on mountain biking... Trail advocacy, event management, industry, media, land management and networking all went down in a fine gathering of the key playing in the MTB community.
The launch of the Australian Alpine Epic Trail coincided with the inaugural Australian Mountain Bike Summit. Like the G20 Summit, but more focussed on mountain biking… Trail advocacy, event management, industry, media, land management and networking all went down in a fine gathering of the key playing in the MTB community. The future is bright, and we were honoured to be involved and presenting in the Summit.
A visit to Buller can't be complete without a visit to the summit for a sunset beer.
A visit to Buller can’t be complete without a walk up to the summit for a sunset beer.

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Some hoppy goodness from the nearby town, Beechworth, Bridge Road Brewers.
The morning began with the old favourite trails that took us up high towards Mt Stirling. Dave from Albany, WA burns his altitude-trainied lungs in anticipation of what lays ahead in the fog.
The morning began with the old favourite trails that took us up towards Mt Stirling. Dave from Albany, WA burns his altitude-trained lungs in anticipation of what lies behind the curtains of fog.
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Patty Young from Specialized Australia begins the famous Stonefly climb.
Don't be fooled, there's a lot of climbing to earn the descent.
Don’t be fooled, there’s a lot of climbing to earn the descent.
Way out in the middle of nowhere, tubes were blasting riders up the climbs. Alpine rave, anyone?
Way out in the middle of nowhere, tunes were blasting riders up the climbs. Alpine rave, anyone?
IMBA's Joey Klein enjoying an alpine pink lady at the Stonefly summit. This is his 9th trip to Australia, and the Epic blew his mind.
IMBA’s Joey Klein enjoying a crisp pink lady at the Stonefly summit. This is his 9th trip to Australia, and the Epic blew his mind.
Telephone Box Junction is not only a place to begin or finish a ride, with public road access closest to the best bits of The Epic, there is also COFFEE!
Telephone Box Junction is not only a place to begin or finish a ride with public road access closest to the best bits of The Epic, there is also COFFEE!
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Coffee in the middle of nowhere should not be that good, right? Wrong. The Epicentre serves up a stellar muddy heart starter as we approached The Epic.
Pop your head into The Epicentre for a realllllly good coffee, organic food, bike repairs, local advice and a bit of goody shopping.
Pop your head into The Epicentre at the Telephone Box Junction for a realllllly good coffee, organic food, bike repairs, local advice and a bit of goody shopping.
The signs we were waiting for.
The signs we were waiting for.
Bike Buller surprised riders again with a remarkably remote juice stall.
Bike Buller surprised riders again with a remarkably remote pedal powered smoothie stall. Free!
Cheers for the juice, but we had to pedal the bike/blender ourselves? Sheeeesh...
Cheers for the smoothies, but we had to pedal the bike/blender ourselves? Sheeeesh…
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Beats water and and warm jelly snakes any day. Fresh fruit smoothies! Free!
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Free Epic smoothies!
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This is where our photos become a bit thin in quantity… The descent began and it became really quite hard to stop and shoot, please accept our apologies, a full report is coming soon though we promise.
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Feature packed, the Epic takes you through, past, around and over eye-poppingly gorgeous wilderness.
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In true World Trail style, the flowing descent rewards all your efforts that lay behind you.
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Imagine descending 7km of trail like this? Hardly any pedalling or braking, just dreamy flow.
When we couldn't yell any more, our bodies were exhausted, heads exploded, we were greeted by another remote surprise.
When we couldn’t yell any more, our bodies were exhausted, heads exploded, we were greeted by another remote surprise.
Free ice cream!
Free ice cream!
Never tasted better.
Never tasted better.
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Specialized’s Nick Van der Linden rolls past another disgustingly scenic and fun piece of trail towards the end.
The Delatite river roared beside the final section of the trail, crystal clear and lined with massive green ferns.
The Delatite river roars along beside the final section of the trail, crystal clear and lined with massive green ferns.
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We were a part of something special, first to ride on the Australian Alpine Epic Trail. Done, but not quite dusted.
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Brett and Aaron from Blue Dirt Mountain Biking were shuttling exhausted and muddy mountain bikers like mad back up to Buller from Mirimbah. Cheers, guys!
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Beats climbing. Well, climbing may well have been impossible by that stage. It’s exhausting to ride the full Epic!
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Ryan De la Rue from World Trail celebrates on his finest work yet, he’s responsible for many happy mountain bikers now.
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The rain pushed the celebrations inside, but one last surprise from the folk at Bike Buller, fireworks to cap off a mega amazing day.

The Australian Alpine Epic is open, get to it people!

Stay tuned for a complete story, and a seriously amazing video of Ryan from World Trail shredding the Epic soon.

http://bike.mtbuller.com.au

Jerome Clementz to Race the RockShox Enduro Challenge

Holy wheel of camembert, Mt Buller’s trails aren’t going to know what hit them!

Insane-fast Frenchman, 2013 EWS Overall Champ Jerome Clementz, is confirmed to race the opening round of the new RockShox Enduro Challenge at Buller! Come on now, Gravesy, you need to show this man who is boss on home turf.

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Read on below for the official word.


 

The level of racing at the RockShox Enduro Challenge Powered by SRAM in Mt Buller in February is set to be hot, with 2013 EWS Champion Jerome Clementz confirmed as a starter for the inaugural Enduro event at Mt Buller on February 1.  Working with Event promotors, Event Management Solutions Australia and SRAM Australia, Jerome has structured his 2015 pre season training around being able to attend this  event.

The 2013 EWS Champion had a tough 2014 sustaining an injury early in the year that put him out of contention for the 2014 series, so is looking to come back to challenge 2014 Champion Jared Graves at the opening EWS event in Rotorua in March.

A number of other Northern Hemisphere riders are looking to come join JC at the RockShox Enduro Challenge events in Mt Buller and Toowoomba.


Learn more, or just enter dammit, at: www.gravityenduro.com.au

And in case you needed any more motivation to head to Buller, watch this vid to get the flavour of the place:

 

 

Registrations Open for Australian MTB Summit at Mt Buller

Mt Buller will host the inaugural Australian Mountain Bike Summit on 4-5 December 2014, a new conference dedicated exclusively to the needs of the mountain bike industry. Presented by Bike Buller, the Summit will cover issues, emerging trends and opportunities that are relevant to individuals, groups and organisations who are either active in or looking to become more involved in mountain biking, so is set to become a critical industry event.

Over 20 speakers will deliver a range of keynote addresses, workshops and breakout sessions that will allow participants to hear from the specialists, share ideas and ask questions in a collaborative environment.

The two-day Australian Mountain Bike Summit will feature a range of local and international mountain bike experts, including Joey Klein, Trail Specialist from the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA), Joel Martinez, VP of Operations at Stevens Pass Bike Park (US), Glen Jacobs, Director at World Trail, and Shane Coppin, CEO at Mountain Bike Australia. In all, over 20 speakers will deliver a range of keynote addresses, workshops and breakout sessions that will allow participants to hear from the specialists, share ideas and ask questions in a collaborative environment.

“While there are a number of bike conferences available in the market at the moment, they tend to focus on road cycling, with only a small component dedicated to mountain biking,” said Amber Gardner, Director of Marketing at Mt Buller Resort Management. “Recognising the gap in the market, we’ve developed the Australian Mountain Bike Summit to bring together key industry players, as well as those looking to become active in this space, to learn about and discuss the key challenges and emerging opportunities currently impacting the mountain bike market.”

The Australian Mountain Bike Summit coincides with the 6 December launch of the Australian Alpine Epic trail at Mt Buller – the first IMBA accredited Epic trail in the Southern Hemisphere, recognised as an iconic, diverse and high-quality backcountry trail that offers a unique wilderness experience. The 40km trail will be launched as part of an Epic Festival weekend, featuring a great program of activities including the Radical Reels Film Festival, an Epic party including a pump track competition under lights, a Poker Ride and plenty more, offering something for all levels of riders.

The Australian Mountain Bike Summit coincides with the 6 December launch of the Australian Alpine Epic trail at Mt Buller – the first IMBA accredited Epic trail in the Southern Hemisphere.

“While the Australian Mountain Bike Summit will provide delegates with a number of platforms through which to learn and network, it will also offer delegates the opportunity to get out onto Mt Buller’s trails, either independently or as part of guided tours, allowing them to sample the world-class trail offering that the Mt Buller Bike Park has become so renowned for,” said Gardner. “Those who stay for the weekend will also be able to make history by being the first riders on the Australian Alpine Epic trail, marking a milestone occasion for Mt Buller as well as the Australian mountain bike industry – it’s one not be missed!”

Registration for the Australian Mountain Bike Summit is now open. Registration costs $499 per person, which covers the 2-day conference, a guided ride and a place at the Official Summit Drinks and Dinner functions.

For further information about the Australian Mountain Bike Summit, visit www.bikebuller.com.au or email [email protected] 

Media contact: Gillian Dobson Marketing & Communications Manager Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management T: 03 5777 6077 M: 0429 776 185 E: [email protected]

Bike Buller MTB Festival Gets Super-Sized for 2015

Rapid Ascent have just announced a massive expansion of the Bike Buller MTB Festival for 2015. To be held 7-9 March, the program of events now has 14 races across three days of awesome riding.

Director of Marketing, Sales and Business Development for Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management, Amber Gardner, is looking forward to the return of the popular event.

“Mt Buller has solidly cemented itself as a premier mountain biking destination, and we’re really excited to host an even bigger Bike Buller MTB Festival for 2015,” said Gardner.

“The Resort is now home to some of the best trails in the country, including the signature 10km XC trail Stonefly, Australia’s first flow down trail, Copperhead and set to open in December, the 40km Australian Alpine Epic, the very first IMBA Epic trail in the Southern Hemisphere.

“Sensational riding in this spectacular location, combined with plenty of fun activities for non- riders, makes for one seriously awesome weekend on top of the world at Mt Buller,” she said.

The three-day celebration of mountain biking will again coincide with the popular ‘Picnic in the Park’ food, wine and music festival held in the Mirimbah Park at the base of Mt Buller. There will also be a Bike Expo and plenty for non-riders to enjoy, including a range of exciting activities available on and around Mt Buller to suit all ages and interests.

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LONG WEEKEND SCHEDULE OF RACES

 

SATURDAY 7TH MARCH

Race 1 – The 50km Schwalbe Stirling Circuit
A spectacular XC circuit over Mt Stirling and back again including Stonefly, the Corn Hill trails and a chairlift up Mt Buller at the end.
Race 2 – The 35km Stonefly Circuit
A rewarding XC race to Mt Stirling and back on the phenomenal Stonefly trail with chairlift at the end
Race 3 – The Outlaw All Mountain Trophy – NEW
All-mountain racing on two of Mt Buller’s (intermediate level) DH tracks – Outlaw Express and Yellow Post. All riders complete 5 timed descents with an untimed chairlift back to the top, and your fastest 3 descents count.
Race 4 – Kids Village Ride – NEW
A fun ride for kids and off-road newbies with 5km and 10km options on friendly trails around the Mt Buller Village.
Race 5 – The Red Bull 16” Dual Slalom – NEW
Two riders going head to head down a grass dual-slalom track on Bourke Street – on 16” kids bikes! – conducted in an elimination format with a ‘winner takes all’ final to the roars of the crowd.
Race 6 – Kids Pump Track – NEW
A fun event for kids aged under 13yrs on the Pump Track – it’s their time to shine.
Race 7 – The Flow Pump Track Pursuit
Thrilling head to head racing on the pump track in a do-or-die elimination format. It will be a ‘winner takes all’ final in front of a massive crowd.

SUNDAY 8TH MARCH:

9.5km Trail Run
A spectacular trail running race along the scenic alpine walking and riding trails leading to the Mt Buller Summit and back again. Great for non-riders or those who want to mix it up.
Race 8 – The 4.5hr Brakeburner Enduro
A multi-lap enduro down a 7km XC/DH course to the base of the chairlift and back up again until the final 12km Super-D (Race 9) to the Picnic in the Park festival at the base of the mountain
Race 9 – Mt Buller Super D
An exhilarating 12km Super-D race from the top of Mt Buller all the way to the bottom – descending over 1100m in a single run. Tear down the Delatite River Trail to finish in the Picnic in the Park festival at the base of the mountain.
Race 10 – Kids Ride at Picnic in the Park
An (other) opportunity for kids to get out on their bikes with a fun little ride in the Picnic in the Park festival at Mirimbah. Balance bikes, trikes and little ones all welcome.

MONDAY 9TH MARCH:

Race 11 – The 22km Corn Hill Crankfest XC
A challenging XC race on the flowing singletrack around the Mt Buller Village and neighbouring Cornhill trails.
Race 12 – The Adidas Eyewear 20km Gravity Enduro – NEW
A gravity enduro around the most popular Mt Buller and Cornhill trails with 5 timed descents interspersed with untimed climbs and transit stages.
Race 13 – The Buller Cup – NEW
Two timed descents on the legendary ABOM DH track with chairlift return back to the top – but there’s a twist… the winner is the rider with the two closest descent times. Anyone can win – fast or slow!
Race 14 – The ABOM Downhill – NEW
A single timed descent down the ABOM DH track from top to bottom. Fastest wins!

 

Entries are now open for the 2015 Bike Buller MTB Festival presented by Orbea at www.BIKEBULLER.com

RockShox Enduro Challenge Powered By SRAM – Australian Dates Announced

Event Management Solutions Australia, Australia’s leading event promoters of the hugely successful SEQ Gravity Enduro Series is taking their Enduro format on a road trip this February. Starting in Mt Buller on February 1 the ROCKSHOX ENDURO CHALLENGE POWERED BY SRAM will see riders tackling a challenging series of stages with a combination of self powered and assisted liaison stages

Taking on some of the best trails that the Mt Buller resort has to offer with a minimum of 5 different competitive stages, both the technical skill and physical endurance will be tested. With the addition of live music at the finish and a full day of practice on the Saturday, it will be a full weekend of Enduro riding.

Five weeks later will see riders head to Queensland to take on the best that Toowoomba has to offer on Sunday March 8. In the backyard of EWS king pin Jared Graves, participants will be able to race on the trails that Graves trains on. Venue of recent Qld Enduro Championships and the 2104 Oceania Championships, Jubilee Park will give those visiting from out of Qld a taste of some loose and fast racing

Photos from Round Three of the SEQ Gravity Enduro, Mt Joyce 15-06-2014.

Supported by RockShox and Powered by SRAM with Giant Bicycles as exclusive bike partner there will be over $10 000 in cash and product prizes on offer for both the pinners and the punters with heaps of random draw prizes for all involved from SRAM and RockShox, plus a bike from Giant.

EMS Australia has been developing (Gravity) Enduro events since 2009, fine tuning the delivery methods, including scheduling and timing aspects of the day to ensure that riders and spectators alike are treated to an enjoyable day of Mountain Biking. Recent learnings from the Enduro World Series have enabled us to further enhance this experience.

Utilising a new touchless timing system, riders will be able to view, stage and overall times as soon as they have completed all stages.

Full details and website will be released in September.

For Sponsorship and media enquiries please do not hesitate to contact

Ian Harwood

Managing Director

Event Management Solutions Australia

[email protected]

07 3139 0397 or 0404 326 169

Bike Buller: Holy Sh*t My Milkshake

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“Holy shit my milkshake!”

Decoding Will’s particular blend of babbled enthusiasm, I know that the Delatite River Trail has lived up expectations and has left him, as we promised, as frothy and shaken up as any good vanilla ‘shake should be. Thinking back to my first ever run down the Delatite, I can recall how he must be feeling – the manic speed of it all, the stomach clenching fear as you get off the ride line and big rocks start flicking your wheels about, the disbelief at just how long it keeps it on descending. And finally a mixture of relief at having survived unscathed, and desire to just do it all again RIGHT NOW.

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Grinning at Will’s excitement, and with the alpine sun scorching in a perfect sky, dust in my nostrils and one of my favourite trails in the whole world ahead of me, I remember once again why I love coming to Bike Buller. This event is one of the best, an event for true mountain bikers, one that rewards a blend of skills, fitness and insanity, not just the strongest legs.

Continue reading “Bike Buller: Holy Sh*t My Milkshake”

Must-Ride: Mt Buller, Victoria

Over the past half dozen years, Mt Buller has really stepped up the game in Australian mountain biking. Working with trail building powerhouse World Trail, the Buller team has doggedly pursued an audaciously ambitious plan to craft the slopes of Mt Buller, Mt Stirling and surrounds into an absolutely stunning network of trails.

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Riding in Buller is simply amazing. Far from your normal trail centre experience (park the car, ride a loop, go home) Buller offers something far more substantial, immersive and rewarding. The hills are huge, the distances big, the trails challenging – this is mountain biking as it should be.

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As Buller’s reputation has spread and as the rider numbers have increased each year, so to have the facilities in the village to support the influx. More and more accommodation options have flung open their doors, there’s quality bike rental, guiding, great food and coffee.

We’ve showcased just a sample of Buller’s wares here, but there’s plenty more to explore, and come late 2014 there’ll be another 40km once the Epic trail opens!  Enjoy the video, soak in the glory of the photos below and don’t hesitate to plan your own road trip to Buller.

Get all the low down right here.

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Sunsets from the summit, just behind the village, are unmissable.

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The new Gang Gangs climb makes the return loop to the village much nicer than in years past.
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Perfect turns on Copperhead.
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Misty Twist, definitely a favourite.
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The summit of Stirling is a rewarding climb, the views are sensational and gives you a real sense of just how much terrain the Buller trail area covers.

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The Delatite River Trail.

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There’s even a Buller app with trail maps, trail conditions and more.

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The trig station on top of Cornhill has become a bike sculpture. Some nice XTR chain rings on there actually!
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Descending Cornhill.
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Quality on-trail signage.
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Wild flower season in Buller.

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Following Ryan on Misty Twist.

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Shuttles, bike rental and servicing and food. What more can you ask for?

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STONEFLY. How can one trail have Australia’s nicest climb and one of the best descents too?

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More Stonefly goodness.
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Insert sound of your brain exploding in joy here.
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We lost count of the number of bridges across the river on the Delatite River Trail – maybe 13? Amazing trail building.
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Text book singletrack perfection.


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More Delatite. More awesomeness.
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Soaking away your cares at Merimbah.
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Riding the thermals.

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Tested: Specialized Camber Expert Carbon Evo 29

This bike was never intended to be a review item for us here at Flow, but after a three-day love-in with the Camber Evo whilst filming for our next Flow Nation video in Mt Buller, we had to let you in on this bike’s dirty little secrets. A gentleman always tells.

When planning our trip to Mt Buller, the conversation soon turned to selecting the best tool for the job. A bike worthy of tackling Buller’s rocky, steep and fast trails, something that wouldn’t flinch at three back-to-back eight-hour days in the saddle. Given that Specialized have close ties to Mt Buller, a bike from the big S made sense. But which one?

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If you’d asked us the same question three months ago, we probably would have opted for a Stumpjumper FSR 29er. But having recently spent some time on the Camber series, we weren’t so sure. The Camber truly exceeded our expectations as an all-rounder. In the end, we decided on a middle ground and chose to ride the 2014 Camber Expert Carbon Evo 29.

Build:

We won’t dwell on the build too much, as this bike shares many of the same construction features we noted in our review of the S-Works Camber here. It’s a truly awesome piece of work. What makes this bike different from the regular Camber line up is the Evo tag.

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The Evo framset uses a different rear shock mount/link to the regular Camber frame, which slackens the frame by a degree and delivers 10mm more travel.

Essentially the Evo label means that Specialized have given the bike some muscle, some grunt. The geometry is a degree slacker than the regular Camber, with 10mm more travel (120mm front and rear), there’s a beefier fork, and the bars are and tyres are wider too. In other words, it reflects the kind of tweaks that an advanced rider might make to the bike in order to boost its performance in technical terrain. And with Buller’s mix of tough climbs and ludicrously fast descents (think the Delatite River Trail… 60km/h easy), this bike really ticks the boxes.

Spec:

When a bike leads with the Rockshox Pike, it’s starting on the right foot. Chopped down to stocky 120mm, this is a seriously stout fork and we can’t think of a better option up front at the moment. It’s even relatively light in spite of its 35mm legs. Rear bounce in handled by a lustrous FOX Float CTD Factory shock that is further enhanced with the foolproof Auto Sag system.

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The best suspension product of the last 12 months? Yes.

The SRAM theme continues with a XO1 drivetrain, the 11-speed 10-42 tooth cassette paired with a 32 tooth ring. This gear range was enough to get us up the steepest Buller climbs while carrying heavy packs and gave enough top-end speed for the fastest fire road descents too. We didn’t drop the chain once or miss a single shift.

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An X01 drivetrain running with custom SRAM carbon cranks,

The Camber Expert Carbon Evo rolls on a set of hoops that even Serena Williams would be envious of. Wide Roval Traverse rims are fat enough to keep the whopping 2.3 Butcher and Ground Control tyres stable in the corners and the bike comes ready for tubeless conversion – just add sealant and atmosphere.

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Formula’s T1 brakes are light and stayed quiet in the dusty conditions.

Formula’s T1S brakes wouldn’t be our first choice, but they wouldn’t be our last either. Their feel takes a bit of getting used to, as the engagement is more vague than a Shimano or Avid brake, and they do seem to heat up a bit. That said, they look fantastic and are very light, and the effortless lever action is really nice.

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Clockwise from top left: The XO1 mech is big, but we’ve never damaged one. A Formula made clamp combines the shifter and brake lever neatly. Specialized’s own Command Post has a very effective little lever that actually forms the clamp for the lock on grip. You have control over both lever reach and brake engagement point with the Formula T1S levers.

Ride:

The Camber Expert Carbon Evo hunts out grip like a boozer searches for a kebab. In the dust of Buller it was pretty inspiring really; just lean it on in and the Camber would worry about all that pesky traction stuff. A combination of excellent big-volume tubeless tyres and near frictionless suspension gives the Camber the kind of stickiness that you expected from bikes with more travel.

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The IR (internal routing) version of the Command Post is significantly lighter to operate than the previous version of Command Post.

After a few hours on the trail we noticed that we hadn’t yet used full travel on either the fork or shock. This came as surprise as the bike certainly didn’t feel too stiff. We dropped the fork pressure 15psi and reset the rear shock’s Auto Sag a couple of times and the transformation was immediate. Suddenly the Camber went from ‘very smooth’ to ‘buttered Teflon’. Both the fork and shock have a progressive spring rate that lets you really use every millimetre of the bike’s travel without smacking the bottom-out bumpers. Charge hard and the Camber won’t make excuses.

We’ve mentioned the bike’s great cornering abilities above, but we do think a small setup change could make it even better.  With its large amount of back-sweep, we found the Camber’s handlebar a bit too lethargic for such a confident bike. We’d have preferred a bar that pulled us over the front a bit more to really drive that Butcher tyre into the ground even harder.

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The stem feels perfect at 65mm, but for our tastes the back-sweep on the 750mm bar is too extreme.

When compared to the non-Evo Camber, the climbing position is a smidge more relaxed and upright. You tend to go at the climbs one gear lower, with confidence that the huge amounts of traction, as opposed to sheer momentum, will get you up the steepest and loosest pinches. On tight switch backs, the slacker head angle and rather long chain stays (451mm) ask that you take a wide entry or you risk the front wheel pushing or lifting. Of course the upside of the overall bike length is stability when you’re bombing the descents.

Overall:

The Camber Expert Carbon Evo was a perfect choice for Mt Buller’s trails. This bike makes line selection and cornering technique an afterthought, without punishing your legs the way a longer-travel bike would. For long days or rides into the unknown, the Camber Evo’s ability to fill in that gap where the unexpected happens or the talent evaporates makes it a fine steed indeed. Grippingly good stuff.

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Test rider: Chris Southwood

Height: 172cm

Weight: 63kg

Tested at: Mt Buller, Victoria

Setup changes made: None, completely stock bike. 

Flow Nation: Mt Buller, Day 3

Stonefly has been named as Australia’s best trail many times, no wonder why.

This single track loop is the crown in the jewel of the incredible trail network around Mt Buller. World Trail have created a masterpiece, a truly wonderful experience in the form of a single track climb and descent that blurs the line between a scenic tour and a real thrill.

Check out first and second days in Buller here.

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Stonefly takes you through the full range of vegetation that Buller has to offer, from green, fern-filled rainforest, to open woodland and all the way up to alpine above tree line.

It’s quite an undertaking to ride Stonefly, it climbs up alongside the summit of the mighty Mt Stirling, the other big whopping mountain you can see clearly from the Mt Buller village. But although it may sound a bit backwards, we believe the climb is as good – if not better – than the descent back down. It’s not one of those climbs that grinds up, and up and up, it has been lovingly built to take in the best parts of the climb, and provides the rider with many moments to rest and recover.

From the greenest of green ferns, to open gum tree woods dripping with bark and up higher into the ghost-white alpine forests, the trail also crosses bubbling stream and waterfalls with delicious cold water. It’s a trail built to last, with extensive armouring and a great mixture of natural and imported features to help the delicate terrain withstand years of happy tyres humming along.

When you make it to the top, it’s time to make the call – slog the 1.5km diversion to the summit of Mt Stirling – or begin the ball tearing descent down Stonefly straight away. You’d be crazy not to visit the top at least once, the views are gargantuan, so vast, it makes the whole Buller experience a very special one, with views of where you have been, going and where the Epic Trail is under construction. Sit under the lone tree, an old wiry gum that must have made it through the wildest of conditions over hundreds of years.

And when you get back to the post the signals the start of the Stonefly descent, you’ve got a lot to be excited about, so much to look forward to lies ahead!

The descent is fast, and bloody exciting. By the time you get rolling, you don’t really slow down until the bottom. Built by riders who love to shred fast, the flowing singletrack makes the most out of the hard-earned elevation.

Riding behind someone accentuates the flowiness of the trail, when you turn one way, the rider ahead turns the other, and it repeats over and over again. The corners are bliss, and there are plenty of sneaky lines to jump next time, or if you’re a bit reckless, go for it.

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Large parts of the terrain around Buller have been logged, way back in the early 1900s. Many of the original bench cuts put in by the loggers are still visible and sometimes form backbone for the new trails.
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The Mt Stirling summit isn’t actually part of the Stonefly loop, but it’s only a 700-metre diversion. It’s a real grunt of a climb to the peak, but the view is definitely worth it.
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The views from the Stirling summit are incredible.

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That’s the Buller village, way, way in the distance. To ride the full loop of Stonefly from the village is a decent old undertaking, so leave yourself three to four hours.
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The lone tree on the Stirling summit. Who knows how long this fella has been up here fighting the elements.

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It’s a great time of year to be in Buller, with all the wild flowers out the trails look fantastic.
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Letting it all hang out on the Stonefly descent. There’s a reason so many people rate this as the best trail bike descent in the country – you forget the climb pretty damn quickly!

Flow Nation: Mt Buller, Day 2

On day 1 in Mt Buller, we got chatting with Norm Douglas, a fella who spends a lot of time up here. His favourite ride? “The Delatite River Trail,” he said, “it’s got something for everybody.” And so taking that recommendation on board, that’s where we pointed ourselves for our second day on the Buller trails.

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The Buller team have developed a great smart phone app to help you get the most out of your time on the trails. It has trail maps, trail info and loads more – definitely worth the download (it’s free).

As you begin the long, winding drive up the mountain to the peak of Buller, you pass a beautiful park and camping ground at Mirimbah; this is where the Delatite River Trail exits, right at the very base of the hill. And its start? Well that’s way, way, way up the mountain – this is a long, generous run, the likes of which are almost unknown in Australia.

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The sky-high eucalypts that surround the Delatite River trail are beautiful, just don’t hit one.

There are many, many aspects that make the Delatite a ride that is guaranteed to stick in your memory. There’s the sheer speeds you reach, fast enough to leave you short of gears; the lingering threat of potential carnage should you stray off the ride line in the rubble strewn fireroad fringe; the towering gums that stretch out of the gullies; the thirteen bridges that span the bubbling waters of the Delatite River… But for us, it’s the way the Delatite Trail just keeps on giving which really stands out. Just when you’re 100% certain you’ve reached bottom, the trail begins descending once again, and you’ve just got to laugh – “it’s still going!”

A dip in the river and a coffee at the excellent Mirimbah store is the perfect way to finish it all off before jumping in the shuttle bus back to the village. Paradise, or what?

Our afternoon was spent on a very different trail, Copperhead. Where the Delatite is raw and natural, Copperhead is a manmade, sculpted flow trail that snakes its way down the ski runs. It’s the ideal trail bike friendly accompaniment to International, Buller’s downhill race track. Berms aplenty, massive corners and a surface that keeps you on your toes, Copperhead doesn’t need a bike with lots of travel for you to have a good time. it’s also the ideal trail for when your legs are blown and the thought of riding back up is enough to send you to the pub.

Tomorrow, we’re taking on Stonefly, a trail we’d have to rate as one of the best in the country.

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World Trail’s Ryan De La Rue joined us on the trails again today. He carries a telescoping fishing rod in his pack – what a legend! He normally bags a trout or two on every outing, but they weren’t biting today.
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There are 13 of these bridges that span the Delatite as you hammer towards Mirimbah. Talk about iconic.
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A quick foot spa in the refreshing (cold) waters of the river before jumping into the shuttle bus.
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Copperhead lets you make the most of the chairlift for some quick vertical, even if you’re not riding a downhill bike.

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MAGICMAGICMAGICMAGIC!


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Flow Nation: Mt Buller, Day 1

It’s been a good half dozen years now since the Mt Buller team embarked on mission to become Australia’s leading alpine mountain bike destination. No doubt, it’s a mission well accomplished.

We’ve been coming to Mt Buller, making the solid drive down the Hume, for a long while now. Originally, back in the nineties and early two-thousands, it was the downhill track that drew us here. But now it’s the staggering quality and quantity of the Buller cross country trails that keeps us coming back.

Every time we’ve returned to Buller since 2007, we’ve been surprised by the pace of the trail development. And we’re not just talking a few new sections of trail here and there, but massive projects – huge, beautiful loops like Stonefly, or lifted flow trails like Copperhead. This time around, Buller’s embarking on an even bigger undertaking, a 40km IMBA-recognised ‘epic’ trail. The IMBA Epic tag isn’t one that’s given out lightly, and when this trail is completed it’ll be the first of its kind in Australia.

But that’s in the future, and for now we’ve got three days to soak up everything that Buller has to offer. Here’s a taste of our first day on the trails; come back tomorrow for more, and hold tight for a Flow Nation video soon too.

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The scrappy fireroad descent that once linked the village to the rest of the Buller trail network is long gone. In its place is the new Split Rock trail, a punchy, rocky, bermed trail. Fantastic stuff.
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If you’re ever looking for a reason to stay the night in Buller after a day on the trails, this is it. The sunsets from the summit will blow your mind.
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With the wild flowers out at the moment, Buller is prettier than ever. Pity about the rider.

 

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Trail builder Ryan De La Rue showed us around the trails this afternoon, as we tried to keep up. This is the view we saw a lot of.

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Climbing back up the village was once a serious mission, but a new, mellow singletrack now makes the ascent a pleasure. In places where the terrain is impassable, bridges have been brought in to get you through.

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Warm days, dusty trails. Feels like summer!
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Norm and Jess Douglas, of Forrest fame, have recently opened up The Corner Store in the Buller village. It’s a great little hangout, with excellent coffee and food, and really fun vibe. It’s cool to have a place like this in town.

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World Trail’s Ryan De La Rue, a super relaxed mountain man. When he’s not building trails, he’s planning his next backcountry adventure or making the most of the mountain lifestyle.
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Misty Twist is looking, and riding, better than ever. The trail has formed into a perfect flow line, 12-inches wide, carving through the wildflowers.
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Hooking in at the peak of the Cornhill descent.

Mt Buller To Celebrate Summer Season Opening With Films, Food And Fun On The Trails

The season of mountain biking and summer fun will officially kick off at Mt Buller on Saturday 30 November, with the Resort hosting several events to mark the beginning of what is set to be a sensational summer in the High Country.

Mt Buller’s entire cross-country mountain bike trail network will be open, after several months of trail clearing and maintenance following the snow season. Mountain bikers of all ages and abilities can take part in a free Peak to Park Poker Ride, a participatory event where riders collect five playing cards from designated checkpoints on the trails between Mt Buller and Mirimbah Park. At the end of the ride, the participant with the best hand will be rewarded with a sensational prize – a brand new 2013 Specialized mountain bike.

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Saturday evening sees the stunning Mirimbah Park transform into a twilight cinema, complete with local food, wine and beer stalls. Once the sun sets, visitors will be entertained with over two hours of adventure action films from the Banff Mountain Film Festival, with a collection of awe-inspiring films about skiing, snowboarding, rock climbing, mountain biking, kayaking and more.

Director of Marketing, Sales and Business Development for Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management, Amber Gardner, is looking forward to launching into the summer season. “This is summer is set to be huge here at Mt Buller, and we’re celebrating the official launch of the season in style with events for everyone. The Peak to Park Poker Ride is a great way for riders of all levels to get out there and enjoy our world-class mountain bike trails with the focus on fun, and the film festival is sure to be a fantastic night under the stars with a collection of great films from the ever-popular Banff Mountain Film Festival.

“The coming summer looks like it will be the biggest one yet, with a huge calendar of events planned across all interests, including mountain biking, road cycling, trail running, food and wine, motor racing and much more. Join us on top of the world at Mt Buller for a cool change this summer!”

Mt Buller has a range of accommodation options available, starting at just $45 per person. For further information on the Summer Season Opening Weekend and to view accommodation, visit mtbuller.com.au.

Mt Buller summer season opening weekend

November 30-December 1

  • Peak to Park Poker Ride – Registration at Alpine Central, 12pm. Starts Mt Buller Summit 2pm. Free entry.
  • Rides & Reels Film Festival – Mirimbah Park, 4pm (movie starts 8.30pm). Entry $20 adults, $10 kids (age 8 – 17). Tickets now on sale through 03 5777 6077.

More Shuttles at Buller

Mt Buller will have a downhill mountain bike shuttle operating for the remainder of the summer season, commencing on 2 March.

Shannon from All Terrain Cycles has bitten the bullet and committed to running a shuttle right through until the end of May – so spread the word and help support our local operator!

http://www.mtbuller.com.au/Summer/Bike-Buller/Downhill-mountain-bike-shuttle

Mt Buller’s downhill trails have traditionally only been available when the Northside Express Chairlift has been in operation (Boxing Day until the end of January).

In summer 2013, All Terrain Cycles will operate a downhill shuttle service, which means you’ll be able to ride the downhill network right through until April.

DATES

The downhill shuttle will operator on the following weekends:

  • March 2-3
  • March 16-17
  • Easter long weekend: March 30, 31 and April 1
  • April 6-7
  • April 13-14

COST

Day pass: $45
Two Day pass: $85
3 day pass (Easter): $125

TIMES

Operation of shuttles is from 10am to 4pm (half hour driver lunch break 12.30pm – 1pm)

TICKETS

Shuttle passes can be purchased from the All Terrain Cycles Mt Buller store only (within Cow Camp Plaza in the Village Square); no one will get a shuttle without a pre-purchased pass. When purchasing a pass you will need to sign a waiver form and must be over 18 years of age.

ATC will be providing a qualified first aider during the shuttle operating times, if you or your friends need medical assistance contact the bus driver or ATC Mt Buller store on 03 5777 6082.

For every rider who purchases a shuttle pass $1 will go into a downhill trail maintenance fund, so your money will go back into the trails you love riding at Mt Buller.

ATC Mt Buller opening hours: Saturday and Sundays 9am – 5pm

For further information regarding the All Terrain Cycles downhill shuttle service please email [email protected] or call 03 5775 2724.

Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management Announces ‘Epic’ Mountain Bike Trail Project

Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management has announced an exciting new project for the region, with the construction of a mountain bike trail that is set to become Australia’s first International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) EPIC mountain bike trail. The project is a partnership between the Australian Alps National Landscape Committee Inc, Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management and the Australian Government through the T-QUAL Strategic Tourism Investment Grants program.

The Mt Buller Mt Stirling IMBA EPIC Mountain Bike Trail project involves the construction of a 40.39km trail that will offer visitors to the region a long distance, cross-country descending ride, providing stunning views across the Victorian High Country. The proposed trail crosses terrain within the Mt Buller and Mt Stirling Resorts (managed by Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management), Mansfield State Forest (managed by DSE) and the Mt Russell Education Area (managed by Parks Victoria).

The EPIC Mountain Bike Trail project builds on the success of Mt Buller’s comprehensive network of mountain bike trails, which has steadily been developed over the past six years and has seen the Resort become a premier mountain biking destination. This commitment to developing quality mountain bike trails has led to Mt Buller recently being crowned Australia’s first IMBA Ride Center, meaning the Resort joins a select group of mountain biking destinations around the world that represent IMBA’s Model Trail recognition for large-scale mountain bike facilities that offer something for every rider. If EPIC status is attained for the Mt Buller Mt Stirling EPIC Mountain Bike Trail project, it will be one of the few trails outside of North America to receive this endorsement, meaning that it is recognised as a world-class trail that offers an iconic, diverse and high-quality backcountry ride experience.

T-QUAL Strategic Tourism Investment Grants aim to benefit the tourism industry by providing targeted investment of up to $1 million (+ GST) for nationally significant, innovative projects.

The Australian Alps is one of 13 National Landscapes across Australia sharing in $1 million funding under the Australia’s National Landscapes Strategic Tourism Investment Grant. The Commonwealth’s funding contribution of $125,000 (+GST) for the EPIC Mountain Bike Trail project has been matched by $125,000 (+GST) from Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management.

The Australia’s National Landscapes program is a partnership between Parks Australia and Tourism Australia that aims to achieve conservation, social and economic outcomes for Australia and its regions via the promotion of iconic nature based tourism experiences to the global Experience Seekertourism market. The EPIC Mountain Bike Trail project was identified as a priority project in the 2010 Australian Alps National Landscapes Tourism Strategy.

Speaking at the launch of the EPIC Mountain Bike Trail project in Melbourne last night, Mt Buller Mt Stirling Resort Management Chief Executive Officer, John Huber, said the construction of this new trail would benefit the region and provide a boost to tourism.

“The EPIC Mountain Bike Trail project will present another quality cycle tourism drawcard for the Mansfield-Mt Buller region, and will complement the Goulburn River High Country Rail Trail experience and the purpose-built singletrack mountain biking product currently offered at Mt Buller and Mt Stirling.

“This iconic trail will showcase the stunning landscape of the High Country, embrace the local environment and provide a world-class backcountry ride experience that will be unlike anything else in Australia. It is very exciting to be involved in such a project and we are grateful of the assistance provided by the Australian Government through T-QUAL Strategic Tourism Investment Grants and the Australia’s National Landscapes program.”

IMBA Australia’s National Director, Nick Bowman, said Mt Buller is leading the way in mountain bike trail development. “The team at Mt Buller is showing great drive and determination to get this trail on the ground. It is fantastic that Resort Management is successfully pushing the boundaries of what can be provided for mountain bike riders in Australia. They are indeed setting a new standard in Australia trail network development.”

For further information on Mt Buller’s comprehensive network of trails, visit mtbuller.com.au.

For further information on Australia’s National Landscapes program visit:

Australian National Series Round 1 Results

Subaru Gravity Cup – Downhill:

Men:

Sam Hill 3:22.02
Chris Kovarik 3:23.68
Connor Fearon 3:24.08
Ben Cory 3:26.31
Graeme Mudd 3:27.66

Women:

Caroline Buchanan 4:06.42
Claire Buchar 4:07.14
Lisa Mathison 4:16.32
Madeline Taylor 4:23.80
Shelly Flood 4:42.75

Subaru All-Mountain Cup – XCO:

Men:

Chris Jongewaard 1:41:19.2
Jack Haig 1:41:41.2
Shaun Lewis 1:44:34.5
Andrew Blair 1:44:39.4
Luke Fetch 1:45:32.8

Women:

Peta Mullens 1:46:01.4
Nathalie Schneitter 1:50:02.4
Tory Thomas 1:50:31.5
Katherine O’Shea 1:51:53.5
Melissa Anset 1:57:19.8

Mt Buller Video Collection

Filmed and edited by JL Media
Song: Weapons of Mass Distortion – Crystal Method
Follow the Kona Factory team – https://www.facebook.com/KonaFactoryTeamAU
Follow JL media – https://www.facebook.com/jlucasmedia

Yeti cycles ride Jack Moir's weekend at Mt Buller for the first Australian Gravity Cup of 2013
Filmed and edited By Jake Lucas
Additional shots provided by Joe Killen
Song: Echo – Luke Dzierzek


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