If you’re not familiar with the Noosa Trail Network then prepare to be let into one of the Noosa Shire’s best kept secrets. These beautiful trails which snake through the forests around Tewantin, Cooroy, Pomona, and even as far afield as Cooran and Kin Kin, really are a wonderful resource that not everyone seems to know about.
I like to explore the trails on my mountain bike but they are just as popular with horse riders and bushwalkers. If you’re keen on mountain biking, rest assured that you don’t have to be an expert rider to enjoy these trails. I’m into rides that get the heartbeat up without being too “technical” or dangerous and many of the trails are perfectly suited to this kind of riding. As an indication, I often ride with my wife and 8-year-old son (neither of whom you would classify as “daredevils”!), and they really enjoy the rides as well. There are some exciting downhill runs which everyone loves, but be warned – what goes down must go up again – in other words, a long descent usually means some hard pedalling on the other side. For me, this is the perfect mix of fun and exercise – but probably the best thing about being on the trails is the peace and quiet. I am constantly amazed at how few people use the trails – with no 4WD’s or motorbikes permitted, it is the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle.
The Noosa Trail Network consists of eight official trails with names like “Mac n’ Back” (Lake MacDonald to Pomona) and Cooroy Wanderer. Of course, you can also combine trails by going out on one and back on another as they often cross over each other. The trails are all well sign-posted with numbers displayed along the way, however, I would advise everyone to pick up a copy of the Noosa Trail Network brochure (from any tourist information centre or download from the Noosa Council website www.noosa.qld.gov.au) as it includes a very useful map. The brochure also shows the profiles of each trail so that you can see the gradients involved and there are suggestions of various routes, ranging from 1km to over 60km – so, something for everyone.
At the link above you’ll also find a Noosa Network Trail Guide which gives a short history of the trails, along with some interesting facts regarding the fauna and flora you’re likely to come across. Well worth a look!
Incidentally, for those experienced riders looking for more thrills, I would recommend Woorai Forest in Tewantin which has 25km of adrenaline-pumping fast tracks, including some steep, quite technical downhill runs with names like Bloodwood and Keelback. This is a beautifully scenic ancient indigenous forest but a lot of the tracks are not for the faint-hearted!
I constantly remind myself how lucky we are to have these trails right here on our doorstep. This is the stuff of dreams for most city-dwellers and I’m determined never to become blasé about it. Maybe I’ll see you on the trails!
- Take your phone – in case you have a problem – and for photos.
- Take water and a snack (like bananas) for an energy booster.
- Close all gates behind you – the trails often border on farmland.
- Take all rubbish with you – including banana peels –keep the trails pristine!
- Respect others – if on a bike, be considerate of horse riders and bushwalkers.