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Accessible and inclusive trail work in Rotorua

Updated: Jan 30

Here at #AdaptMTB we are working with mountain bike parks to improve accessibility and to make considerations in their trail design that accommodate the needs of adaptive mountain bike riders.

#AdaptMTB’s Burty, a local to Whakarewarewa Rotorua, has first-hand knowledge of the adaptations needed for adaptive bikes and trikes. He’s been a trail maintenance volley for years but since his involvement with adaptive mountain biking, he now sees the trails he rides with an inclusive lens. We’d say he has a mental directory of all the trails in Rotorua, and a subcategory of the trails which could already be considered adaptive-friendly and he's working hard to add more.

The backstory: Burty was out a few months ago with Lasher riders Tiffiney Perry and Brendon Stratton when they decided to try Be Rude Not To. Burty knew it would be tight but that wasn't going to deter them. Well, they found there were a few difficult spots, one of which had an A-line with a drop-off that caused the Lasher to belly out and a B-line too narrow to allow the wider frame through. After some huffing and puffing, riders were assisted over the A-line which was not a graceful process. A drop of about 300mm in height, it was a physical effort for Burty and a test of equipment and nerves for Tiff and Brendon.

So recently Burty headed out with the trail’s adoptee Toby (Grahame Stovold) to modify this section and reported back what they did and how it went.

After some careful consideration they decided the way forward was making the B-line wider and clearing the exit of stumps. Gathering suitable pungas to establish a retaining wall and backfilling with a good layer of the gold dirt, then removing the off-set stumps and some roots from the large stump in the middle of the trail gave the B-line the width required for a trike to get through.

We look forward to hearing from Tiff, Brendon or any other trike riders how they go on this trail next time they’re out.

If you are a park wanting advice on building accessibility and inclusion into your trail design, get in touch! We’re here and keen to support you to do so.



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