One of the hardest things about visiting somewhere new for a riding holiday, or training ahead of an event, is finding the trails! You can be tantalisingly close, and just miss them. Or even worse, you might find them, but always wonder – did you ride the best trails? Of course, if you ride with a friend, or bump into a local – the experience is likely to be a lot better.
Mountain bike riders exploring the Cairns and Great Barrier Reef region will be able to locate buddies on any of the 700km network of Ride Cairns trails with a smart phone app launched today.
Tourism Tropical North Queensland (TTNQ) Chief Executive Officer Alex de Waal said the app would give mountain bike riders a new way to connect by allowing riders to track where they were on a trail, view a live trail map showing their friends’ locations and add photos and achievements.
“The Ride Cairns app will build a stronger community for mountain bike riders, trail managers and clubs allowing them to take ownership of the trails and help raise the profile of mountain biking in Cairns & Great Barrier Reef,” he said.
“More than 700km of trails have been logged for Smithfield Regional Park, Atherton Forest Mountain Bike Park, Davies Creek Mountain Bike Park and the dual-use national park trails throughout the Atherton Tablelands, Cassowary Coast and Port Douglas region as part of the Ride Cairns destination marketing campaign.
This is a big step in making Cairns and the surrounding regions a ‘must ride’ mountain bike destination. The quality of trails cannot be disputed, but beyond the mountain bike parks of Smithfield and Atherton, more knowledge is required, especially to figure out how to make some great long distance routes, or how to accces some of the great views and hidden waterfalls. The Ride Cairns app bridges the gap.
World champion mountain biker Tracey Hannah gave the Ride Cairns app the thumbs up saying it would be great to connect with her riding buddies while she was out on the trails.
“There really is something for everyone among the network of Ride Cairns trails which include challenging tracks suitable for my training for world events right down to easy trails where families can enjoy a leisurely ride,” she said.
Mr de Waal said the data gathered by the app would allow Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service and mountain biking clubs to look at trail usage to better determine the future development of their trails and schedule maintenance.
“In the future we envisage adding safety features such as SOS notifications for riders in need of assistance and information on how to access the quickest evacuation point for emergency services,” he said.
The launch of the app coincides with a newly released video of dual Olympian Courtney Atkinson tackling the recent RRR (Rural, Rainforest and Reef) Mountain Bike Challenge while exploring Cairns & Great Barrier Reef.
The video can be seen at ridecairns.com and is being circulated by video partner USM, Courtney Atkinson and various online mountain biking sites.