Australia’s backland is intersected with unsealed roads and trails that offer some of the world’s best mountain biking adventures. For the majority of these trails you need to be well armed with equipment, mountain biking experience, and time. Although some of them are also suited for absolute beginners. Here are our favourites.
Kakadu National Park, NT
The flat terrain of the Northern Territory is ideal for mountain biking through. This makes riding down the highways a popular sport here. However, riding on the sealed roads, you will not see much. To really explore the Kakadu National Park and to reach the most interesting sights, you will have to get into the dirt. Koolpin Gorge, Gunlom, Maguk, and Twin Falls are well off the road. Take the adrenaline up a notch by paying a visit to the crocs at Cahill’s Crossing. Be extremely careful, though. Those warning signs were put there for a reason.
Cape York, QLD
Stunning views, changing vegetation, from arid savannah to tropical rainforests, rich birdlife, and beach trails. Or simply – Cape York. This is one of the most amazing and most challenging trails in Australia. The terrain is pretty hilly, the heat can be unbearable, and the distances a bit frightening. You might need to set aside a couple of weeks for this adventure. But it is worth it.
Tasmanian Trail, TAS
If you are not as fit as a fiddle, you better skip this roller coaster of a ride. It is a total body workout all day long. This trail through the heart of Tasmania includes a lot of steep hills, unsealed roads, and fire trails. There is some heavy pedalling and an occasional push-a-thon involved, and do not be surprised if you find yourself boulder hopping at some point. Also, get ready to get wet in one of the numerous creeks and bridgeless river crossings.
Narrow Neck, NSW
North South Wales has a lot to provide for Australian first-timers of all tastes. As it goes, adventure travellers can find the cream of the crop here. One of the best Blue Mountain trails, the Narrow Neck trail will take you deep into the wilderness of the park. The ride is suitable for novices as well as seasoned cyclists and involves just the right amount of steep climbs to raise your adrenaline. The views are breathtaking, and there are photo opportunities waiting for you at every turn. The scenery is changing from open forest to heath and swamplands. Do not miss a chance to enjoy spectacular views over Lake Burragorang.
Munda Biddi Trail, WA
The Munda Biddi trail is not a family mountain biking tour since it is fairly physically demanding. Prepare for a lot of sweating and hardship. You should not be heavily loaded, and make sure your bike has fat tyres. The terrain is generally undulating, and there are some really difficult gravelly and sandy track sections, which are at times impossible to ride over. But then, there are also long stretches of flat and downhill roads to enjoy. The trail can be a bucketload of fun as long as you do not underestimate it.
Which trail would you hit first if you had the choice?