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Tasmania eyes mountain bike tourism with three new trails

Jim Fischer's picture
Mountain biking Australia. Cycle Traveller

A development group in northern Tasmania is targeting the mountain bike tourism market as a means of boosting economic growth in the region. The Northern Tasmania Development group, which covers eight councils in the region, has released a report that details the benefits new mountain biking trails would bring, including a significant boost in tourist numbers and associated services.

“An assessment of market demand showed that participation in mountain bike riding is increasing in Australia at a significant rate,” the NTD said.

“Tasmania’s profile as a mountain biking destination is increasing and there is further scope for more trails and mountain biking experiences.”

The report found that three new mountain bike trails at Hollybank, Cascade Forest and Blue Tier would add a total 93km to existing tracks and help the region cement its name as an iconic mountain bike destination.

The tracks would cover a range of skills levels and include point trails, loop trails as well as a skills park.

An expanded mountain bike network is predicted to attract an additional 15,143 visitors to the region by 2018. These visitors, who would have otherwise not come to the region, would in turn spend a combined $15.7 million and create 94 full-time jobs.

“Mountain bike tourism is now well recognised as a niche tourism product in Canada and New Zealand,” the report said. “A look at what is going on in the most established mountain bike communities like Whistler (in Canada), Rotorua (in New Zealand) and networks like the 7Stanes (in Scotland), as well as home-grown examples like Melrose in South Australia can provide valuable lessons for developing mountain bike riding in Northern Tasmania.”

The councils covered by the NTD include Break O'Day, Dorset, Flinders, George Town, Launceston, Meander Valley, Northern Midlands and West Tamar.

Image: Mountain bikers. (Source: Visions Victoria)

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