Mountainbiking Brisbanites are lucky when it comes to trails.
Mountainbiking Brisbanites are lucky when it comes to trails. If you ever visit a Brisbane mountainbiker in their natural habitat, you may well be lucky enough to get a peek at some of the amazing trail networks we have on our doorstep. Unlike major cities such as Melbourne and Sydney, just a few kilometres from the Brisbane city lay gravel, trees, rocks and singletrack delights.
Bunyaville and Ironbark
‘Bunya’ trails are approximately 12km north of the city, and can be split into three sections: the first lies between Collins Road and Jinker Track (off Old North Road) and is the closest part to access from the CBD; the second part is between the Jinker Track and Bunya/ Dugandan Road; and the third lies over Dugandan Road. Parking is available at James Drysdale Recreation reserve or along Jinker Track, in the midst of the trail network.
Just a short bitumen traverse from Bunya trails (along Bunya Road to Linkwood Road and to the end) brings you to top of the compact Ironbark Trails. Ironbark is also accessible from Samford Road. The bottom trailhead is approximately 2km past the Ferny Grove train station.
Typical Australian bush and a gritty rocky surface makes Bunya and Ironbark a little different to other trail networks in South East Queensland. While not excessively technical, the sketchy trail surface and many built trail features will keep you on your toes whether you are a beginner or advanced rider.
An XC or trailbike, the usual spares, food and riding gear are a few necessities. Pack for the amount of time you expect to spend out there.
The whole of Bunya can be covered in around a 25km loop, encompassing fire-roads and singletrack. Travelling to and from Ironbark adds 5km, and from there you can add another 12km of predominately fire-road with sections of singletrack.
The trails periodically undergo ‘controlled burns’, which is advertised at major trailheads along Jinker Track in the weeks prior. Riding after the controlled burn allows a seldom seen view of the trails snaking around the landscape unobscured by bush.
Best Time of Year
Anytime! Though riding in the peak of day in summer is a steamy affair. Bunyaville and Ironbark hold up quite well in the wet.
Gap Creek Trail Network
The main trailhead is off Gap Creek Road, Kenmore Hills, and has picnic, water and toilet facilities, as well as a recently developed skills park area. When driving, you can access Gap Creek Road via The Gap or Kenmore. Gap Trails can be accessed on the bike via the Mt Coot-tha Road climb (Sir Samuel Griffith Drive), with the three- sisters fire-road opposite Channel 9, pinging you down to the top of Dingo Trail.
With a wide range of trail options, from the easy, green ‘Rocket Frog’ to the black diamond (but very achievable on a hardtail) ‘Pipeline’, Gap Creek is a melting pot for cyclists of all abilities.
An XC or trailbike, spares, food and riding gear are the few necessities.
To do all the trails including those on the northern side of Gap Creek Road, you will be looking at around 24km of riding, with a good deal of elevation gain.
Gap Creek trails are well built, but they don’t drain as well as the Bunya/Ironbark network, so avoiding the singletrack in the wet is recommended. However, after a good drop the soil packs down to the closest thing that Brisbane has to hero dirt.
Best Time of Year
It gets pretty frosty (by Brisbane standards) in the valley of the main trailhead in winter, and likewise it’s hot and steamy, but definitely not sexy, riding in the peak heat of summer. Riding through winter days, autumn and spring is optimal.
Daisy Hill and Cornubia
Heading south from Brisbane CBD along the Pacific Motorway, take Exit 19, Rochedale Road, and follow the road towards Springwood. Follow Springwood Road to the end, and turn left onto Daisy Hill Road.
Follow this to the end which lands you at the parking in the Upper Day Use area. Alternatively, take the Underwood Road exit, following Underwood Road to where the sporting fields, dog park and BMX track is. The trails can be accessed opposite the BMX track.
Cornubia trails are accessed from Kimberley Drive, Shailer Park, only a short ride from the Nirvana end of Daisy Hill.
Trail favourites such as Stonehenge and Nirvana are enough to keep a more advanced rider on their toes when ridden with a bit of grunt. However, Daisy Hill has often been described as a great place to introduce newbies to riding, due to it’s relatively flat profile and straightforward trail features.
Cornubia trails, though close to Daisy, are more technical and challenging, featuring steeper, rougher trails and more technical trail features.
Bikes, spares and food are a few essentials.
To do a total Daisy loop is around sixteen to eighteen kilometres of singletrack, and Cornubia has another 13km of trails.
Daisy Hill has a labyrinth of trails, which are once again very popular on the weekends and through peak use times.
Best Time of Year
Daisy Hill is not the place to head in the wet, as its trail surface and lack of elevation turns the northern part of the trails into a slop-like chocolate swamp, but less tasty.