Queenstown’s Rabbit Ridge Bike Resort got the thumbs up at the soft launch on Saturday 27 April when members of the local biking community got to check out the newly-constructed trails.
Some last minute rain ensured the trails were ‘bedded in’ and locals of all ages and experiences took to the trails with vigour.
From experienced downhill bikers to families with children, everyone enjoyed the opportunity to test trails including the beginner ‘Bunny’ trail and intermediate Donnas Dually track.
The invitation-only event saw bikers, bike shop owners and front line staff experience the resort for the first time. Rabbit Ridge is a joint venture by local bike business Around the Basin and Gibbston Valley Winery and will be the area’s only year-round dedicated and serviced bike resort.
Rabbit Ridge Manager Steve Norton said it was great to finally see the local biking community being “thrilled” to have more local terrain to discover.
“It will take some time for the trails to settle in but in the meantime there is some great riding to be had out here,” he said.
Tours of Rabbit Ridge will be available from Monday (April 29 2013) and include return transport from Queenstown, shuttles to the top of the bike resort, refreshments on site and some include coaching from experienced bikers.
Gibbston Valley Winery CEO Greg Hunt officially launched the resort and said he had ‘quickly come up to speed’ on what makes a good bike resort.
“When I first showed the guys (Steve and John) the land I was pleasantly surprised when they said it was exceptionally well suited for a bike resort,” said Mr Hunt.
“The terrain, views and proximity to Queenstown make it perfect and it’s great to see all their hard work pay off. The trails are a fantastic addition to the local biking scene.
“I have to give John and Steve full credit for their vision and what they have created to date on the station.”
Ultimately Rabbit Ridge will feature 30km of tracks suitable for all levels of riders and initial trails include a new bike trail linking the resort with Gibbston Valley Winery.
While perfect for families and entry level bikers, it also has more challenging trails for experienced riders, all set in a spectacular remote setting.
Locals eagerly wanting to try out the new resort will be able to ride the trails on Free Locals Days scheduled for the first Saturday of every month, starting May 4.
A grand opening is planned for September when the park will be officially opened to the public when trails are fully constructed and bedded in.
“The trails mark just the tip of the iceberg for what’s planned here and eventually it will be a fully-functioning bike resort with accommodation, a café as well as other activities such as hiking, rock climbing, fly fishing, archery and many others suitable to this environment,” Mr Hunt added.
About Gibbston Valley Winery
Gibbston Valley Winery is a pioneer in the wine industry in Central Otago and is home to New Zealand’s largest and innovative wine cave, available for wine tours, private functions, weddings and special occasions, the new Barrel Room for C&I functions and weddings, and a retail outlet. The multi award-winning winery expanded in December 2012 when it opened the Vintners Kitchen experience and General Store at the Gibbston winery, and the Tasting Room in Arrowtown.
About Rabbit Ridge Bike Resort and Around the Basin
Rabbit Ridge Resort is managed by Steve Norton from Around the Basin in conjunction with Gibbston Valley Winery. Around the Basin Ltd offers supported and guided cycle adventures as well as a cycle shuttle service within the Wakatipu Basin and Southern Lakes regions including the Rabbit Ridge Bike Park Around the Basin (ATB) caters for beginner and intermediate riders wanting a quality cycling experience in one of the most beautiful areas of New Zealand, renowned for its spectacular scenery. Packages for guided riding experiences will be available from Monday April 29 2013. Bookings can be made at www.rabbitridge.co.nz