TACKS DRY UP: Southern Downs Mountain Biking club have been forced from the mountain due to park closures amid virus threat.
TACKS DRY UP: Southern Downs Mountain Biking club have been forced from the mountain due to park closures amid virus threat.

Biking club forced out amid virus concern

MOUNTAIN BIKING: Like many recreational sporting clubs across the region, Southern Downs Mountain Bike Club have been forced to shut their tracks due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The decision came as Southern Downs Regional Council announced the closure to all public parks, effective immediately.

Mountain Bike club secretary Emma Rhymer said the decision was disappointing, but one club members could understand.

“If they shut all of the walking and riding track on Mt Marlay, it’s a form of exercise and we have people doing both,” she said.

“We do understand the decision and why it has been taken, it’s just interesting times.

“It’s still a form of exercise and, particularly these days, a lot of people were doing it on their own or well separated.”

Unable to continue training, Rhymer said members would have to be creative with the ways in which they maintained their skills during the standstill.

“It’s difficult – you can do what you can in your yard as far as skills go,” she said.

“On the road, you can get the fitness, but the terrain is quite different.

“Hopefully it doesn’t last too long because I’m sure everyone’s skills will be quite rusty when we come back.”

Not only dealing with the closure of their Mt Marlay course, construction on the new black diamond trail has been temporarily stopped.

“The trail will take a while to be built because of the terrain, it’s not easy to build on,” she said.

“The guys who are doing it are very excited because they’ve seen the trails that were already there.”

While councils in other regions have allowed trails to remain open, Rhymer was in full support of the Southern Downs decision.

“The advice is still to only ride locally as much as possible, but it is limited what we can do locally,” she said.

“Everyone is in uncharted territory and everyone has to get through this together.

“We accept and abide by the council decision because really, they’re looking at the bigger picture.”



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