FLOW Mountain Bike Presents: Blue Derby’s New Trails – The Blue Tier & Big Chook
In only a few months, this has become one of the most hyped-up, talked-about and photographed trails in Australia. Rightly so, The Blue Tier is worth every piece of fuss.
We’re referring to the freshly built 20km singletrack descent through the lushest, greenest, mossiest Tasmanian Wilderness you’ll ever see.
Though it’s not only the beauty of the place that will get your blood pumping, it’s that incredible feeling when you lose yourself in the fuzzy flow zone as you duck and weave through a trail that’s been built with utmost care and love.
Starting way up high on the Blue Tier plateau, 600m above sea level on a magnificent sub-alpine clearing where the thriving mining town Poimena once stood, you’ll see a tall timber archway signalling a dramatic beginning of a pretty exceptional experience.
Where, what, how?
The Blue Tier is a 20km predominantly descending trail about half an hours drive out of Derby towards the coast. It’s graded as an intermediate (blue grade) trails, suitable for a reasonably competent mountain biker. But for those with a penchant to ride hard, hit gaps and carry loads of speed there is a myriad of alternate lines to try, some were way over our heads, we’ll save that for next time.
The Big Chook bit.
The trail within the trail, Big Chook makes up the second half of the Blue Tier Descent with a slightly different flavour. It’s more fast paced and can be ridden a lot harder with huge berms and swooping rollers to keep up the stoke.
So, it’s a shuttle to the top followed by finishing with a hard earned break at the pub, you’re me kidding, right?
It’s best to shuttle up to the top (or ride up if you’re completely insane) with a Derby tour operator – we recommend the legends at Vertigo MTB – and finish the Blue Tier/Big Chook descent with a hard-earned break at the Weldborough Pub under the pleasant shady outdoor beer garden. The coffee is great, craft beer a-plenty and the steak sandwich will satisfy a mighty hunger.
Up the other side to Atlas.
If you’re travelling to Derby to ride, the Blue Tier and Atlas double are an absolute must, the trails closer to town are amazing, but nothing matches the feeling of shuttling up so high, descending for so long and then shuttling up again to descend back to Derby town. It’s the ultimate day out, one you’ll always remember.
Atlas is an entirely different beast, it’s longer, rougher and a whole lot rockier. Built by the similar crew from World Trail, it has worn in and matured into a super-engaging trail with oodles of line choices, and also plenty of potential to eject you off your bike if you’re not careful.