Calling all Grant Writing MTB lovers!
- Created on Sunday, 21 June 2020 09:31
- Written by Marcus
- Hits: 135
Have you ever had the wild thought, while riding your trusty MTB down that favourite local trail…
“Geez, this place could do with a bit of trail signage, I wonder if Gippsland MTB would like me to help out with writing grants? That way the Club could continue to improve the trails, equipment, and provide some skills and training”.
I am here to tell you the answer is YES!
We are looking for someone who loves MTB, has some skills in completing application forms and liaising with local businesses, other club members and bike park leaders to pull together the information needed for each grant application.
Community grants across the various local councils are now open and GMTB has a long list of exciting projects that we would love to seek funding for. The current issue for the Club is that there are simply too many tasks to cover within our core group of passionate and committed volunteers in this extraordinary time of MTB expansion across Gippsland.
GMTB Membership - What’s in it for me?
- Created on Saturday, 16 May 2020 10:03
- Written by Marcus
- Hits: 164
Over the recent weeks, I have watched an explosion of riders enjoying the footpaths and trails around the Traralgon district. The same applies to the numbers of riders enjoying the Traralgon Pines on weekends and in the mornings and afternoons, getting that important exercise in for the day. I’ve loved seeing how many people enjoy time on a bike; families riding together, fathers taking their children on mountain bike trails, mothers walking the family dog while the kids zoom around on their two-wheeled adventure machines. It is all great stuff.
This got me thinking about the value Gippsland MTB provides its members, more importantly, that simple idea of “what’s in it for me” when our members are considering renewing their annual membership or to that person who has just discovered how freaking good MTB riding actually is.
Without writing a 10 page essay, I think one of the simplest ways of explaining what you get in return for your membership is a passionate team of volunteers advocating for better and more of everything MTB in Gippsland. Simple as that. But let me go into a bit more detail now. A portion of the MTB club committee is passionate about events, they put in a huge effort to run the events each year that many riders from near and far come to enjoy. These events range from the spectacular Mt Baw Baw DH race through to the local 3hr enduros held across Erica, Tralagon Pines and Blores Hill, not to mention the social rides held to encourage new riders to join in the fun. Without this team of volunteers, the events/social rides simply do not exist.
But as a club we know not every rider is interested in competing, that is the great thing about MTB.
You have another portion of the club that is advocating for expanded trails, improvements to the existing trails, funding to support our events and advocating for MTB within local council and tourism bodies. This hard work translates into more locations to ride, better facilities, more MTB tourists to our region and the flow-on effects to the wider community.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed the events and social rides so far this year, the club has not stopped its important work. Planning is underway to improve trail drainage at Blores Hill, event planning partnership is being explored with a new event provider, check out rockytrailentertainment.com and the exciting and brand new Haunted Hills Bike Park is almost ready to turn dirt. If you pause for a moment and look at what is going on in the MTB space, it truly is a list to be proud of and excited about!
So from the GMTB Club to its members, we thank you for your continued support. If you are yet to decide if you should renew your membership I hope my words today have convinced you to renew and get behind us and the amazing things the club has and continues to do. Finally, to riders thinking of joining the fray, we encourage and welcome all new members, know that your membership is far more than a number and a transaction, it is a real show of support that MTB in Gippsland is important and has a bright future.
Hope to see you out on the trails soon.
Gippsland Tracks & Trails Feasibility Study Update: May 2020
- Created on Sunday, 03 May 2020 10:38
- Written by Johno
- Hits: 1519
Late last year, funding was secured from Destination Gippsland to proceed with feasibility studies for the Central Gippsland MTB Hub and Baw Baw Epic Trail. TRC Tourism has been engaged to undertake these consulting projects.
The feasibilities field work and workshops have now been completed and work on the economic impact assessments has commenced. Gippsland MTB Inc has had considerable input into the work so far with a big effort from our committee and identified bike park leaders. Thank you to all involved.
Baw Baw ‘Epic Trail’
The current concept is for a 100km+ trail from Mt Baw Baw that passes through East Tyers Camp, Tyers Junction, Erica, Rawson, Walhalla, Brunton’s Bridge, Somewhere Good and finishing at Glengarry. This would be a multi layered product with any number of ride and shuttle opportunities.
Central Gippsland MTB Hub
This feasibility envisages the upgrade of seven potentially significant MTB parks to establish a distinct G7 MTB Hub. This includes Haunted Hills, Maryvale Pines, Somewhere Good, Blores Hill, Avon-Mt Hedrick, Erica and Mt Baw Baw. These parks are all within close proximity yet provide a diverse range of riding experiences and landscapes.
2020 GMTB Major Events Update: May 2020
- Created on Sunday, 26 April 2020 12:22
- Written by Bainsey
- Hits: 1722
To our members and lovers of MTB events in Gippsland.
The organisers of the VES have decided not to run a series for 2020. This means no 6-hour event usually held around mid-year at Blores Hill. This decision was made prior to the current situation (Covid-19) due to the falling participant numbers and land access issues for other events.
Although it is disappointing news to lose a staple event for the GMTB calendar, the club has begun talks with a private event organiser, Rocky Trail Entertainment, to run an event like the VES 6 Hour with some minor changes later in the year or next year (depending on Covid-19 restrictions).
For GMTB, this partnership will be a trial with Rocky Trail Entertainment. Depending on its success and event turn out it may continue to other club events. This partnership will take the pressure off the club committee and in future they may be a part of a state series.
With the view to expand the rider base across Australia, Rocky Trail Entertainment already run some major events like the Shimano MTB Grand Prix, Fox Super Flow, AMB 100 and is looking to expand from NSW, ACT, QLD into Victoria. Their focus is not just mountain bike events; they provide Public Relations and Strategic Marketing Support through there in-house PR agency. GMTB has high hopes that their experience will help drive up participants and really put the Gippsland events on the map!
For this new model of event organisation, GMTB is to provide a great venue (tick) and trail maintenance (tick) prior to the race, they do the rest!
We are looking forward to working with them to progress (and grow) mountain bike events in our area.
Visit the web page to read about the many events they already run.
Separately, while the restrictions around social gathering remains in place, the club has suspended all events and social rides at this point. But rest assured, we are closely watching Government Restrictions and the moment they lift we will get straight back into planning events and social rides.
GS3 - Gippsland Smart Specialisation Strategy: May 2020
- Created on Sunday, 26 April 2020 11:39
- Written by Kingy
- Hits: 1451
Gippsland MTB has been directly engaged as a representative within the GS3 Project which is all about designing a place-based and long-term strategic approach for our region to become a more prosperous, sustainable economy and cohesive community. The GS3 Project is being led by the Latrobe Valley Authority and is being facilitated by Professor Bruce Wilson from RMIT University alongside Melbourne University. Over the last few months GMTB has been involved in a series of entrepreneurial, corridor, technology, innovation and business modelling discovery workshops. These bring together government, business, research, education and the wider community (us!) to assist in the design of a shared vision for the future competitiveness and social health and wellbeing of the Gippsland region. Click by the LVA and check it out! https://lva.vic.gov.au/business/gippslands-smart-specialisation-strategy
You may be asking yourself this, so let’s delve into a bit of background…
“…In August 2019, the Latrobe Valley Authority and Destination Gippsland agreed to collaborate in exploring opportunities for innovation in the visitor economy sector in Gippsland. It was agreed that this exploration would focus on the work undertaken by Destination Gippsland in developing its Destination Management Plan (DMP), particularly as it related to Tracks and Trails…”
David Elder was recently appointed to the Visitor Economy Smart Specialisation Strategy role at Destination Gippsland and has been our ‘go to guy’ to assist the GMTB vision of making Gippsland “A mecca for mountain biking” a reality. Through the Tracks and Trails Feasibility Study, the Destination Gippsland DMP and collaboration within the Gippsland Local Government Network, there is informed realisation of the opportunities that the Tracks and Trail networks that we venture out to ride for recreation and relaxation, are of themselves, worthwhile investing in for our future economic, health and social wellbeing. Fusing technology such as the Apps that we use during our rides and activities and structuring new design, construction and maintenance of these tracks and trails, including services for riders that could generate new innovations, income and jobs in Gippsland. What an amazing opportunity right here in Gippsland! Born of the places we’ve been exploring on bikes all of our lives!
Being involved in these collaborative discussions and putting our mountain biking passion at the forefront and driving our combined interest in riding our bikes right across Gippsland has always been our mission since we incorporated in 2008. Look at how far we have come! Haunted Hills Bike Park is to be constructed soon, Maryvale Pines is seeing an explosion in rider numbers, Erica trails are well maintained, riding super sweet and flowy, Blores Hill can be ridden all year round, Avon Wilderness is calling for your next back country adventure, Glengarry is simply ‘Somewhere Good’ to take your friends to explore, and Mt Baw Baw promises to be an epic journey in itself as that feasibility work continues to progress with consultants from TRC Tourism. Check them out here: https://www.trctourism.com/
The GS3 Project is continuing amid current COVID-19 conditions, and there are many questions still to be answered and much work is required. We’re excited by this work as it will help to drive what mountain biking may look like for Gippsland in the future. It’s a great journey to be a part of and we’re all keen to get out there more than ever to ride our bikes all over Gippsland!
“We’ll see you rolling along our ‘wonderland’ of Tracks and Trails in Gippsland soon!”
Haunted Hills Bike Park Update: April 2020
- Created on Sunday, 26 April 2020 09:06
- Written by Marcus
- Hits: 1577
Still Wheelie Excited! HHBP Closer To Beginning Construction
By Marcus Baker
Haunted Hills Bike Park Committee
Since the exciting update provided in December 2019 at lot has been happening, both in the MTB space as well as all our lives being turned upside down with the outbreak of Covid-19.
To try and tell a long and detailed story very quickly and without all the technical details, the previous update explained the planning and engineering works our good friends at Beveridge Williams were doing, in support of our Contractor at TrailScapes. This process uncovered some budget issues which we all had to work hard on to resolve, our budget is set in stone and unlike building our own home, we couldn’t simply ask the bank (or the parents) for a few more bucks to fulfill our dreams. This meant the entire team had to come together and devise a way of delivering the best product we possibly could…but within the budget we had.
At this point can we throw a thank you or two out there, To Latrobe City Council and their planning team, to HCM Constructions, Beveridge Williams and of course our key contractor, TrailScapes who are relentlessly trying to deliver on our bike park aspiration.
Long story short, we are now getting very close to resolving our budget issues, amending and gaining approval of our planning permit (the golden tick of approval needed to kick off works) and get this project underway. The process has been a lot like the climb to the top of Blores Hill to tackle Matilda D, slow and gradual, a bit of journey, but the pinnacle is well worth the effort.
The Steering committee are continuing to investigate in the funding space for the wheelie exciting stage 2 of the Haunted Hills Bike Park. The connections that Gippsland MTB has as well as the Steering Committee will be of massive benefit as we continue to pursue further funding. All we can say here is watch this space, the work is being put in and we are confident before long of some more exciting news!
Finally, the branding of the Haunted Hills Bike Park took a back seat while we tackled the budget challenges but is now being busily worked on by The View From Here team. We are very very very excited to release that in the near future once completed. The branding should lend itself to awesome merchandise and signage. Special thanks to Destination Gippsland for guidance on the branding exercise. Just another example of local legends helping a local club deliver a community asset for locals (but we will happily share it with everyone else too).
Although Covid-19’s unwelcome arrival has not helped the process we have gone through, it has been awesome to see the number of MTB riders on locals trails keeping fit and healthy. Especially encouraging has been the kids and teens hitting the trails. If this virus has taught us anything, it is that exercise is super important and having facilities to utilize is gold.
Stay safe, take care of each other and next time we chat, it will be to tell you we are digging!
GMTB 2020 Club Rides Cancelled
- Created on Thursday, 26 March 2020 17:35
- Written by Graeme
- Hits: 1723
Gippsland MTB has decided not to host any club rides until further notice, this will be until the social distancing has been lifted. The health and welbeing of our participants, club members, ride leaders and the community is a priority.
Hopefully by us doing our part we can help reduce the numbers and flatten the curve. This has not been an easy decision as the club social rides are a part of many of our weekly routines.
If you do decide to ride, respect others space and know that this is not the time for setting new PR's or KOMs. This is a great time to back it off and to not give medical services any additional work.
Also, go out and support your local bike shop. They have been here to help keep us all on the trails, but like many of small businesses they are in for a tough time. They deserve our support to make sure that are still there to when we do get back out on the trails again.
Stay safe and ride responsibly.