By LUCY WORMALD
Plans for a new $41,000 bike jump park, south of Queenstown’s Lake Hayes Estate, are gathering momentum.
Led by the Lake Hayes Estate and Shotover Country Community Association, the park will provide an inclusive facility for mountain bikers, with a focus on accessibility for youth and developing riders.
Come spring, a series of jump lines will be constructed on the Crown-owned plot at the end of Widgeon Place and Alpine Avenue from excess fill donated by Queenstown Commercial Ltd, which is developing part of the site into stormwater wetlands.
Association board member Jenny Carter, the brains behind the idea, says locals are putting their hands up to get among everything from planning to construction.
‘‘[At] the last community meeting we had really keen bikers who are knowledgeable about design … and we’ve got a couple of guys who are interested in helping that are digger drivers, so they’ll hopefully be able to form a lot of the earthworks, and then the designer will come in and finish it off.’’
Rotorua-based firm Southstar Trails, which designs and constructs mountain bike tracks and parks, is supporting the design process and is eager to incorporate ideas from locals, Carter says.
While the immediate goal’s to create five jump lines ranging in difficulty from ‘‘easy rollers’’ for kids and beginners to table tops up to two metres high for more experienced riders, the ultimate vision’s a biking hub.
‘‘In addition to the jump lines, [we may] potentially [add] a dual slalom track and a technical area similar to Buckland [Trail] up at 7 Mile,’’ Carter says.
Queenstown Mountain Bike Club committee member Donna Meek says the park could be the missing piece of the puzzle in Queenstown’s biking infrastructure, offering a training ground for skill development.
‘‘There’s very little [trail-building] for kids, so this is quite special and unique.’’
She’s also keen to get pro riders to work with juniors at the park to better develop the grassroots side of the sport.
Fundraising for the Kawarau Jump Park project is now underway —donations can be made via Givealittle: bit.ly/3weoTyo