New South Wales
Mountain bike tracks hidden in bushland at North Wahroonga are the perfect spot for a family cycling experience. Pedal down a race track, practice jumps or develop your off-road skills. And after the adrenaline rush, head to the nearby children’s playground to recover. NSM Discoverer Clare Mathie and her two children took up the challenge.
As the girls and I walked down a gravel pathway towards Jubes Mountain Bike Park we stopped to examine a map and read a nearby warning sign which stated “THIS IS CONSIDERED A HIGH RISK ACTIVITY.”
Alice – my gung ho eight-year-old – exclaimed with delight “Mum, I love doing dangerous things.” Her older sister Lucy looked on with trepidation but was clearly keen not to be shown-up by her younger sister.
Carved into the red dirt of a hill are three different areas of the park which backs onto Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park.
The Single Track
This is a one-way track that’s about 800-metres long that zig-zags its way down the hillside. It’s narrow and rocky and has jumps, dips, and banked corners plus two obstacles which experienced riders use to perform challenging tricks.
The Pump Track
This area has shaped jumps that are made of mounds of dirt. Riders use their body’s momentum to “pump” through the course pulling their bike up and down over the mounds. There are different levels of difficulty within the track.
The Skills Zone
This area has been designed to improve riders’ off-road cycling ability. There are seven wooden slat bridges of various heights, lengths and widths plus several rock formations and logs. These will test the skills of beginners and experienced riders.
Now, my girls love riding their bikes but usually on a smooth cycling path at a park so were novices on a first time off-road adventure.
Alice had no fear and hurtled downwards on the single track at speed slowing only to navigate tight corners and multiple dirt mound jumps. She rode over them but with more practice, I reckon her bike would have been airborne.
There was also a Dad on his bike with his toddler riding fast behind him on a balance bike!
Lucy preferred to tackle the pump track. She was cautious at first and it took time to get the hang of gliding over the dirt mounds – shifting her weight to help keep up her momentum on her bike.
They both tried the different obstacles in the skills zone. But, they were a little scared about riding across the raised wooden bridges and as beginners it proved too hard to master on our first visit.
Children and adults of all skill levels and ages would have fun at the park. My girls took more than a few tumbles and ended up covered in red dirt but after two hours of riding were still smiling.
Bring sunscreen as there’s limited shade and while there’s a bubbler it’d be best to bring plenty of water to drink.
It’s a short walk past a soccer oval and baseball field –the home of the Ku-ring-gai Stealers Baseball Club – to Golden Jubilee playground.
The feature of the playground is a mini-city called Junior Jubes.
It includes a pretend bank, hospital, restaurant, ice cream truck and a petrol bowser plus there’s a rubber soft fall cycle way which includes road signs, traffic lights and a pedestrian crossing inside a white picket fence.
There’s plenty of room in the mini-city for imaginative play particularly for toddlers and early primary aged children.
There are also two double-sided park benches where parents can sit.
The other play equipment includes:
Older children – like my two girls – spent most of their time on the climbing frame and slide as the other equipment suited younger children.
The playground is surrounded by trees but there wasn’t a lot of shade. It’s not fenced either but is in a quiet suburban street. There are toilets at the baseball field.