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Top Mountain Bike Tracks in Hobart

Point of Order 1.

Hobart is the western side of the River Derwent between MONA in the north and my place in Taroona in the south, despite what the resident of the Envious Shore think. I’ve included this non Hobart track on my list of Top Tracks in Hobart because I think its awesome and its not giving away one of my local tracks.

Point of Order 2.

For non-Hobartians The Envious Shore is the eastern side of the river where they drink instant coffee and eat mixed grills and fisherman’s baskets at restaurants where everything is garnished with 2 springs of parsley.  They live in lemon and cream weatherboard houses with smokey brown and orange kitchens, wash and polish their Commodores every weekend wearing chesty bond singlets and stubbies shorts.  They enjoy stunning views of the western shore and tell themselves they live on the better side of the river just because they get 5 minutes of extra sunshine during the very height of daylight savings.

Mr. Slippy Fist

Have you ever ridden a gentle, even boring, trail through a steep, pretty gully and thought “I wish they’d just let the trail barrel off the sides of the gully like a roller coaster?”. So did the guys who built Mr Slippy Fist.

I’d heard about this track on the Envious Shore for a few years but hadn’t ridden it because I try really hard not to cross the bridge and my mate Harmers had smashed himself up pretty bad on this track and I was a little bit spooked.  Eventually my riding bunch mutinied, ignored my cast in-stone commandment ( “IM NOT RIDING OVER THERE” )  and organised a ride on the wrong side of the river ( which was for the most part flat, gravelly and boring ).  Towards the end of this mis-adventure we rode under a goat track ( I think its called the East Derwent Hwy )  through a dank, smelly tunnel that was so putrid even the trolls had moved on.  We rode up a suburban fire trail strewn with dumped garbage ( apparently the Eastern Shore rates notice has an option to save $50p.a. if you elect ROADSIDE DUMPING as your preferred method of garbage disposal ) which surprisingly turned into some tight single track as we climbed up and up.  At the top our leader Drew corralled us and delivered his preparatory speech.  I was expecting the usual Eastern Shore safety briefing

” Ride for your life, don’t stop for the fallen and no matter what happens don’t look back” but instead he gave us some useful advice.

“For those who haven’t ridden this track before its steep and fast with blind turns but don’t hesitate, you can trust this track.  Its awesome.” And, strangely for Drew, without another word he took off.  The track dived for the bottom of the gully where it shot up the other side where it made a weightless over your shoulder turn back to the gully bottom again, where it shot straight back up the other side. Wow, wow wow. Over and over we plunged down and leapt up all the way to the end of the gully.  We panted and stared at each other with big grins on our faces and then simultaneously shouted “AGAIN”.  It was like a Roller Coaster as you got thrust into the bottom of the gully before your stomach leapt for your wide open mouth at the top of the gully walls.  It was narrow and tight and fast and exciting. To the best of my knowledge Mr Slippy Fist is a pirate trail built on crown land, no committee or ISO standards or IMBA guidelines were consulted on this masterpiece of exciting trail building.  This is how gully tracks should be built and this is why I ride mountain bikes.   I may even cross the river to The Envious Shore just to ride Mr Slippy Fist again…one day.

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