Mountain biking on track for big things

Mountain biking is tipped to reach new heights in the Mackay region.

The potential of the region to become a signature mountain biking destination has been highlighted in a strategy prepared for council.

The possibility of developing a nationally and internationally significant mountain bike park based around Eungella and Finch Hatton is part of that strategy.

An ordinary meeting of council today endorsed the Mackay Region Mountain Bike Strategy, prepared by Otium Planning Group in partnership with World Trail.

As a part of the strategy, council’s Economic Development program will begin preparation of a business case and feasibility study for a mountain bike park in the upper Pioneer Valley.

Mayor Greg Williamson said the strategy estimated such a bike park around Eungella and Finch Hatton could attract up to 18,000 extra visitors a year.

He said the estimated direct economic benefit from such a surge in visitation was more than $6 million for the region’s economy.

“The strategy identified gaps in the Queensland and Australian mountain biking markets and how the Mackay region is ideally suited to fill those needs.

“Our main advantages, particularly in the Eungella-Finch Hatton area, include the stunning natural environment and excellent elevation.

“There is also substantial trail land available in that area and it would suit all mountain biking disciplines and levels.”

Any developments of infrastructure will be subject to future funding submissions and council budget considerations.

The Mackay Region Mountain Bike Strategy was one of two strategies endorsed by today’s ordinary meeting.

The Mackay Sport and Recreation Strategy (2018-2028) was also adopted.