An ever-increasing awareness of Central Otago as a biking hub, coupled with an upsurge in cycling as a recreational pursuit, is leading to predictions of a bumper spring and summer on the trails in the region by bike company specialist Bike It Now!
The company operates two stores – in Clyde and Cromwell – along with a range of support services for the trails and co-owner Duncan Randall says they are fielding enquiries from Kiwis all over the country keen to experience cycling in Central Otago.
“We are expecting a busy spring once New Zealanders start travelling again and we are blown away by the forward bookings for summer, in fact right up until May next year. While the Lake Dunstan Trail is an obvious drawcard other established trails are just as popular and offer a different perspective of the area.”
He says the opening of the 55km trail earlier in the year contributed to a record winter for his company but the long-established Otago Central Rail Trail is still the benchmark and people at all levels of fitness can enjoy it.
“Similarly the Roxburgh River and Clutha Gold trails are attracting a lot of riders. Together they offer a diverse range of scenery, with rocky gorges, fruit growing areas and rolling farmland. Kiwis in particular love the variety all these trails offer.”
Bike It Now! provides shuttle services, including from Queenstown to the main Central Otago trails carrying people, bikes and transferring luggage. A daily shuttle service is also provided to and from the Lake Dunstan Trail.
“Our stores are also a one-stop-shop providing hire bikes and new bike sales, as well as servicing and repairs through our retail workshop,” says Duncan. “We are ideally situated at both ends of the Lake Dunstan Trail to meet all the needs of local and visiting cyclists.”
The company stocks several high-profile bike brands both manual and electric. They include Specialized, trek, Merida, Scott, Marin, Avanti, Sinch, Haibike and Austrian e-bikes made by KTM.
Duncan says sourcing new stock is challenging and has been since the first Covid-19 lockdown in March 2020.
“Globally the situation is not improving as factories are unable to produce the amount of bikes and accessories required due to the uptake in recreational cycling all over the world. Our advice is for people who want a new bike, be it a full suspension trail bike, kid’s model or electric they should register with our store and at least be on the list if the right option becomes available. This applies particularly pre- Christmas.”