Last month a group of thirty from the Queenstown Pedallers headed through the gorge to the new Lake Dunstan Trail and biked a 32km section from Cromwell to Clyde. They collected a donation of $5 per person from the group and have donated the $150 total to the Queenstown Trails Trust. We absolutely love this passionate and energetic group of riders, and we are thrilled with their kind donation. Read about their Lake Dunstan adventure below...
On a cool grey morning thirty riders from the Queenstown Pedallers assembled, loaded our bikes on trailers and set off to Bannockburn to ride the new Dunstan Trail. Big thanks to Nigel and Roger for the transport, and to the drivers.
By the time we got to the Bannockburn Bridge the sun had come out and with none of the forecast wind, we had a superb Central Otago day to enjoy our trip. The track was terrific, though there were a few quite narrow places where it was wise to dismount if you met on-coming people.
The designers have not just made a track to get from Point A to B but have created lots of interesting features, like a miniature Clay Cliffs, and a variety of zigzag climbs which could be a little taxing to a novice. However we all found the track itself wide and smooth and easy to ride. What was not so enjoyable was the number of ‘segment racers’ speeding past us, presumably trying to get their fastest time. With all the tight and blind corners, it is not a track suitable for this behaviour and could be a deterrent for some.
At the bottom of Cairnmuir Ladder what should be there but a coffee boat! Of course we stopped and enjoyed the coffee. Muffins were also available. These tracks have been promoted as a stimulus for job creation and it’s great to see that in action. The caffeine hit was useful for the zigzag climb up the ladder to the picturesque views from the top!
Once we could see the Clyde Dam, the track was fairly straight forward. The cars on the other side of the lake seemed like Dinky Toys in another world, providing an interesting perspective of ‘scenes from the other side’.
From Bannockburn we cycled 35kms to Clyde where we enjoyed lunch at The Post Office Cafe. All in all a great day and I’m sure many of us will be back to do it again, with maybe a round trip next time. This is, so far, the jewel in the Central Trails crown. Can’t wait to add the Kawarau Gorge Trail.