After a few weeks of cold and wet weather in Melbourne, it was nice to finally go on a Saturday training ride under clear skies and a beautiful 15 degrees. While the ski and snowboard fanatics of Victoria get their rush on the slopes of Mt Buller, I went to the nearby town of Mansfield to ride at the Rifle Butts MTB Park.
Mansfield is located about 200 km north-east of Melbourne, a 2.5 hour drive well known by everyone that goes to the Victorian snowfields every year. The Rifle Butts MTB park can be found just out of town along the Rifle Butts dirt road. The trails are built and very well maintained by the the Mansfield Mt Buller Cycling Club (MMBCC) and all through summer, the club uses the park for their Monday evening Summer Dirt Crits.
There’s nine different trails in the park, all loops that link together for hours of fun on the side of the hill and over the top. Trails have names like ‘Bogans’ Beginnings’, ‘Fourteen Farts’, ‘Ants Pants’ and my favourite ‘Rubbish Run’.
Difficulty ranges from easy to intermediate and for the Rifle Butts MTB Park the rule is that how higher on the hill you go, the more technical it gets. At the base of the hill you’ll find mostly flat loops with a few jumps and switchback corners. On the top there’s boulders to negotiate and quit a few rocky drops.
Most technical loop is the Rubbish Run, named after the tip just next to the park. It takes you down from the top to the base in about 10 downhill switchback corners, crossing the main vehicle access road seven times.
All trails start at the information board on the car park. There’s no fee for using the park but the club does ask to write you name and time in and out in the logbook by the information board.
During the summer months, the Mansfield Mt Buller Cycling Club organises Kids and Adults Dirt Crits at the park every Monday evening. The Kids Dirt Crits are all about fun and teaching the kids what mountain biking is all about. The Adult Dirt Crits are usually organised as a handicapped race making it very exciting for the spectators because you never know who’s going to take the win!
MMBCC is a very family orientated club and they even encourage their promising young riders with their rider development grant designed to encourage and support the development of promising young riders in any of the club’s cycling disciplines (road, mountain-biking or BMX).
For more information have a look at the MMBCC website or send me an email on firstname.lastname@example.org if you wanna join me for a ride!