Gateway to Heaven

5 September, 2017

For those who travel to 'find' themselves, mountain biking in Tropical North Queensland promises an epic journey of self-discovery on and off the world's highest profile rainforest trails.

An experience guaranteed to leave you shouting: “I've been to Paradise and I've been to me!” in the only corner of the globe where two World Heritage-listed icons meet – the Wet Tropics Rainforest (including the Daintree) and Great Barrier Reef.

For the uninitiated, mountain biking in Tropical North Queensland is the closest thing to a 'religious experience'. Ecstatic mindfulness at mind blowing levels.

The kind found only on a mountain bike (MTB), when living in the moment means every nanosecond; blissfully unburdened of any conscious thought, bar the unadulterated thrill of being alive and staying on said bike.

Boasting a network of more than 7,000km of documented MTB trails, catering to all levels (from first-timers to pro-riders) and traversing some of the most spectacular scenery on the planet, the only conundrum is just where to start! Visit Ride Cairns to browse all options, from Cairns to Kuranda, the Atherton Tablelands, Cassowary Coast, Port Douglas and Daintree.

What's more, while in Paradise, having been 'to me', you can still sip champagne on a yacht, move like Harlow in Queensland's Monte Carlo (Port Douglas), bathe in a waterfall plunge pool (Mother Nature's way) or lose yourself in a myriad of other après-MTB activities.

Think treehouse luxe in ancient rainforest (the world's oldest – home to the highest concentration of plants once munched by dinosaurs and stomping ground of modern-day dino, the flightless southern cassowary) and awe-inspiring reef (the Great Barrier Reef, only the world's largest living structure, visible from outer space).

One thing's for sure: if mountain biking is the new skiing, après-ski has nothing on après-MTB in the tropics! Click here to find out why…

*In the last edition of Queensland Stories we introduced King of the Mountain (Bikers), seventh-generation Cairns local, Glen Jacobs – the mastermind behind every MTB world cup, world championship and Olympic course in Australia and hundreds of recreational tracks and trails in more than 20 countries.

Check out his work this week as the world tunes in to watch the best pro mountain bikers compete in the 2017 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships (5-10 September) at Smithfield Mountain Bike Park in Cairns.

Better still, start planning your own rad MTB adventure through Tropical North Queensland.

Unlike other high-profile adventure activities — say, skiing, for example — mountain bike trails are designed pretty much so that beginners have the chance to 'shred it' with (and learn from) the best, including pro riders who can often be found on Tropical North Queensland's trail network.


Word Count: 452


Author: Shelley Thomas

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