Ever wanted to take your bike riding to the next level? The recently enhanced Thredbo Valley Track (TVT), in Kosciuszko National Park, is a beginner-friendly intro into the thrill of mountain biking. Novice or advanced, it’s just about unmatched when it comes to biking fun through some of Australia’s highest terrain.
We all know the Snowies have a rep for snow sports, but amongst those in the know it’s always been a hotspot for mountain-bike riding; especially in December when the mountain-biking Cannonball Festival fires up with downhill races and big air comps at Thredbo Resort. The recently enhanced TVT is also the perfect intro if you and your mates want to start down the path of mountain biking.
Got a new bike for Christmas? Perfect. If not, bike, gear and helmet hire is available from Lake Crackenback Resort for around $65 per half day. Thredbo Resort is another option to get you geared up, and you’ll see other places on the ground in Jindabyne that rent gear. To find the bike trail, head to the lake, five hours drive from Sydney or 20 minutes from Thredbo. Once there, a shuttle bus takes you up the mountain to Thredbo and the start of the ride. Confident riders can tackle it solo or even better in a group. Otherwise, a guided tour from Thredbo Village is a great way to get to grips with your technique and keep your grip with the path!
Pro tip: You can also start the trail from Lake Crackenback and ride up towards Thredbo. Be warned – we recommend beginners start from Thredbo for a reason. The trail is way more of an uphill battle this way through.
The trail weaves 17km downhill back towards Lake Crackenback between huge granite boulders and towering old gums. Starting at the top, you’ll spend most of the three hour ride curving down the sides of the valley. The trail is shared, so expect to pass the occasional trout-carrying fisherman, enthusiastic hiker or riders coming the other way. Riding the hard-packed rocky path will test your thighs and backside (saddle soreness is real), but the gravel offers a great surface to test your mad skills, and custom-built suspension bridges will take you over the river running below you. The odd steep uphill and switchback will keep advanced riders happy.
How you tackle the trail is completely up to you and your crew. Just remember it’s a shared use track so take care, there may be walkers, children and other people around. Keen and fit? There’s always the option to take the 40km round trip. Whatever you choose, finishing at Lake Crackenback will take you to ‘The Alpine Larder’ and its mammoth steak sandwich. It’s a top way to revive after a dusty ride.
Fancy yourself a speed junkie? The Snowies Mountain Bike Festival is an annual festival at the end of November. With six stages over three days, it’s open for entrants to tackle solo or as part of a team, depending on how many ways you want to split the $5,000 prize purse. Or you can simply cheer on the top-notch riding. The Thredbo Valley Trail offers an approachable, open trail to start your journey from zero to hero.