Forrest: The Mountain Bike Capital of Victoria
Forrest is situated in the very heart of Victoria’s Great Otway National Park. It is a small community which boasts a very vibrant social fabric involving all sorts of communal activities and activities for tourists. Probably the most notable is its wide range of Mountain Bike trails. These mountain bike trails are rated as the best in Australia and cover more than sixty kilometres spidering their way through the hills surrounding this small town of Forrest.
Just a few short years ago Forrest was a typical, small country town. A delight to visit but not a great deal going on to put it on the map. Things have definitely changed. Forrest is now well and truly on the map with numerous festivals throughout the year. The Forrest Festival which is now in its third year, takes place in November and December. This festival is unique in that it enables your ‘average’ mountain bike rider to compete on a professional circuit but not in the true sense of the word. Competitors in this race compete against their friends and riders of similar ability. This is a great way to experience MTB racing without having to be a true professional racer. Of course, faster riders are also catered for in this event but it mostly caters to the non professional rider.
If you’re not interested in competing there is no need to worry. Just visit Forrest at your leisure and take advantage of the extensive MTB trail network. At present there are 16 different trails to choose from. These trails vary greatly in difficulty and range from beginner to intermediate to total professional. You can opt to ride alone, ride with friends or perhaps you might like to take the whole family along. Whatever you decide there is a trail for you.
When you are riding you will need to take appropriate care and take all caution for everyone’s safety and ride responsibly. You may need to gain permits for some trails, you should leave the trails as you find them, never put anyone at risk and obey all signs, especially speed signs. You will also need to yield to faster riders and do your best to inform others of your impending advance. A bell ring is a good way to do this. In short, safety is paramount on these trails and it is your responsibility to ride safe and be courteous to all other riders.
Forrest is by all means the best venue for mountain bike trail riding but there are lots more options available throughout the Otway Ranges and along the Great Ocean Road so don’t forget your bike when you head off on holidays. Happy mountain biking.