Mt Owen

Trip reports, stories, track notes. Multiple/large photos are OK in this forum.
Forum rules
Posting large/multiple images in this forum is OK. Please start topic titles with the name of the location or track.

For topics focussed on photos rather than the trip, please consider posting in the 'Gallery' forum instead.

This forum is for posting information about trips you have done, not for requesting information about a track or area.

Mt Owen

Postby bluewombat » Wed 01 Sep, 2021 8:46 pm

A quick note on Mt Owen. The West Coast Council are turning Mt Owen into a mountain bike park (just as nature is showing some signs of recovery). The commonly used walking track up to the summit (leaving from the end of the Horsetail Falls walkway and following the poles to the top) is being turned into a dual access track ie mountain bikes coming down, walkers going up. It sounds like there will be some sections where the two groups are separated and some where they are not. Given the steepness of this track, the cyclists are likely to be coming down fast, no nice twisty bits with berms to slow them down. I am not sure who thought this was a good idea but there you are. Whilst many of the MTB tracks are already complete, this one is still under construction, so if you wish to head up Owen via this track, I would suggest you do it in the near future. For those considering using the Telstra access road, I was informed recently that this was a locked gate and walking up it was discouraged. The views from the top of Owen are pretty spectacular in all directions and there is a stark beauty to the summit plateau
cheers
BW
Even a long life is short
HPB
User avatar
bluewombat
Athrotaxis cupressoides
Athrotaxis cupressoides
 
Posts: 278
Joined: Sun 10 Feb, 2008 3:55 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby north-north-west » Thu 02 Sep, 2021 6:46 am

I'm starting to really dislike MTBers.
"Mit der Dummheit kämpfen Götter selbst vergebens."
User avatar
north-north-west
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 13577
Joined: Thu 14 May, 2009 7:36 pm
Location: The Asylum
ASSOCIATED ORGANISATIONS: Social Misfits Anonymous
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby potato » Thu 02 Sep, 2021 1:17 pm

north-north-west wrote:I'm starting to really dislike MTBers.


They are an extremely entitled mob.
potato
Athrotaxis cupressoides
Athrotaxis cupressoides
 
Posts: 315
Joined: Thu 28 Jan, 2016 1:06 pm
Region: Tasmania
Gender: Male

Re: Mt Owen

Postby rangersac » Fri 03 Sep, 2021 8:20 am

If you want to sling mud I'd be slinging it in the direction of West Coast Council for pushing this, as clearly they are keen for a slice of economic $$ seen at other locations around the state. It's a bit like saying bush walkers are entitled because the three capes track got built!
rangersac
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 84
Joined: Mon 16 Apr, 2018 9:01 am
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby potato » Fri 03 Sep, 2021 9:30 am

Well aware of that, they want another Derby.

I think few here wanted the capes track.
potato
Athrotaxis cupressoides
Athrotaxis cupressoides
 
Posts: 315
Joined: Thu 28 Jan, 2016 1:06 pm
Region: Tasmania
Gender: Male

Re: Mt Owen

Postby north-north-west » Fri 03 Sep, 2021 10:26 am

(Two out of) Three Capes is not a bushwalkers track. It's for wannabes, numpties and cashed-up bucket-listers.
"Mit der Dummheit kämpfen Götter selbst vergebens."
User avatar
north-north-west
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 13577
Joined: Thu 14 May, 2009 7:36 pm
Location: The Asylum
ASSOCIATED ORGANISATIONS: Social Misfits Anonymous
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby rangersac » Fri 03 Sep, 2021 3:13 pm

My point is that neither three capes nor Mt Owen were built at the behest of enthusiasts from either the bushwalking or MTBing tribes. They are/ were purely economic developments pushed by authorities. So perhaps direct the opprobrium to the correct postcode rather than drawing a questionable view about a group of people who undertake a hobby?
rangersac
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 84
Joined: Mon 16 Apr, 2018 9:01 am
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Nuts » Sat 04 Sep, 2021 12:14 pm

Yes, and would be Tyndall plateau too, if nobody spoke up (and forestry and mining). But yes, bikers aren't the culprit (perhaps fair game if they defend unnecessary damage..) Managers take the easiest options, encouraged by politicians who seek popularity. And that might include from tourism generally, given our recent re-learning about it's substance as an alternative 'industry'.

Anyway.. I'm big on using damaged land, but with options that are made to fit, rather than altering much.
There are lot's more opportunities, there's even a bike touring crowd that are relegated to dangerous roads in Tassie. Largely untapped. I'm sure there is something there for the west coast (including Queenstown ). The sort of money the government (and bikers) are flinging around could do so much, with imagination.

Had an interesting conversation recently about plans to construct an overnight touring route around the Great Lake. To the 'high water mark', the damage exists.
Wet and Wild! not 'Wet 'n' Wild'
User avatar
Nuts
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 8514
Joined: Sat 05 Apr, 2008 12:22 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby TentPeg » Sat 04 Sep, 2021 5:24 pm

This site continues to attract inappropriate comment or content.

It took 30 seconds searching to find the details of the Mount Owen trails.
It took 30 seconds searching to find the map of the various trails that are open or planned.
It took 30 seconds to find details of the trail designers - Dirt Art P/L - who also designed the Derby trails.
It took 30 seconds to find the expressions of interest call to operate a bus shuttle service on the gated road for bikes to where most of the trails start on North Owen Spur.

For those who remember Derby of only a few years ago - it was slowly turning into a ghost town. These days it is thriving. If bushwalking was the salvation of the west coast economy then it seems that Charles Witham completely wasted his time all those years ago.

So, no appropriate research and no time spent = self biased supposition.

And then others pile on top with similarly biased profiling of groups of people they 'don't like'.

So MTBers are now categorised as "extremely entitled" and walkers on the Three Capes Track are "wannabies, numpties and cashed -up bucket listers".

A good friend of mine once said to me "What you say of others says more about you than about them".

I would respectfully suggest that quote would be a good bit of food for thought.........
TentPeg
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 50
Joined: Sun 29 Jan, 2017 7:23 am
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Nuts » Sat 04 Sep, 2021 6:17 pm

Ghost Town tours, now there's a fresh idea! :)

Must admit, I was wading through the council minutes and got sidetracked looking for the latest on Tyndalls proposals.. which, from the start kind of hinted at the level of care, as a standard for proposals by WCC. Also admit, I have little interest in our access V's theirs. MTB'ers will have their old school devotees against E-bikes and so it goes..

When it comes to my tax contribution I'd rather see alternative economies catering for a transition from reliance on old growth or monoculture forestry and mine expansion. The hard, meaningful stuff, y'know.
Wet and Wild! not 'Wet 'n' Wild'
User avatar
Nuts
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 8514
Joined: Sat 05 Apr, 2008 12:22 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Grover » Sat 04 Sep, 2021 6:39 pm

Very well said Tent Peg. Usual suspects as always makes this a toxic place
Grover
Nothofagus gunnii
Nothofagus gunnii
 
Posts: 14
Joined: Sat 22 Oct, 2016 8:28 pm
Region: Australia

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Nuts » Sun 05 Sep, 2021 11:06 am

It fascinates me that social media seems to have us revert to kindy levels of tolerance.

A former P&W colleague would label anyone a whinger that questioned some superior management decision for which they agreed. No discussion or alternate view, whinger..

Mah. It seems that the summit trails will get far less use? A reference for the shared trail sections & concerns would help?
(anything in your extensive research Tent Peg? :mrgreen: )

The topic is very specific (and I probably should back away). The broader WC plans seem promising, and limited/ in their place. But I'm interested, more broadly here, for example, in the parallels & influence ski resorts have built. And the proponents of the future when eg. heli-biking is the latest push, and/or adjacent to popular (if not within) real wilderness. Sure there's money to be made from the 'man-child' market, like NZ or USA. But picture a situation where the demand drops, and, like new walking track projects, what progress has been achieved (or wilderness not protected) with the funding.
Wet and Wild! not 'Wet 'n' Wild'
User avatar
Nuts
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 8514
Joined: Sat 05 Apr, 2008 12:22 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby doogs » Sun 05 Sep, 2021 12:46 pm

I don't mind the idea of the MTB park there. It's degraded land and from my understanding it's not likely to improve much in the short term. The West Coast will be able to benefit from the extra visitors with a move to more recreational and tourist based incomes rather than the old forestry and mining jobs.
Besides, if you look at how the MTBers have lobbied to stop forestry clear felling around Blue Tier, I feel they can be an asset to help land protection.
Do you want to build a snowman?
User avatar
doogs
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 3632
Joined: Mon 11 Oct, 2010 4:32 pm
Region: Tasmania
Gender: Male

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Azza » Mon 06 Sep, 2021 12:40 pm

The MTB community has done a lot of lobbying to secure funding and put forward proposals for these kinds of projects and a lot of design and effort goes into dealing with the environmental issues.
Its not perfect but they've bother to do something rather than complain about the other groups.

The dirt bike community complain about being pushed out by the Mountain Bikers - their claim is they were here first.. But expect to be able to cause destruction and not be accountable.
The walkers complain about sharing trails with MTB's, I get it.. I have young kids and I'm not always happy with lack of awareness some MTB's have for other trail users particularly around safety.

But there are ways to co-exist.
There is also a massive overlap between families that Hike and families that Mountain bike - now days they are the same people and they care about the environment.
I grew up with Hiking more than biking but I think the future generations are going to be a lot more biking orientated.

The mountain bikers are the crowd with the organisation, enthusiasm, $$$ and willingness to lobby and support these developments through the "proper channels" - rather than claim entitlement.

The hiking thing unfortunately seems to be hell bent on exploiting Wilderness and protected areas.

Mt Owen and the area has already been well trashed, these trails may actually bring in some proper $$$ for conservation work.
User avatar
Azza
Phyllocladus aspleniifolius
Phyllocladus aspleniifolius
 
Posts: 972
Joined: Thu 06 Mar, 2008 11:26 am

Re: Mt Owen

Postby TentPeg » Tue 07 Sep, 2021 8:51 am

Nuts wrote:It seems that the summit trails will get far less use? A reference for the shared trail sections & concerns would help?
(anything in your extensive research Tent Peg? :mrgreen: )


My quick scan of the trails and proposal ran in parallel with what I expected. The dual use areas are the uphill sections - mainly being the gated road. This is similar to the theory in Maydena. Those with e-bikes will ride up the hill to the track head. Those without battery power will get the shuttle bus. Either presents little if no danger to anyone choosing that way to get to the summit on foot.

Pre-Covid the trails at Derby hosted annual events for the World Enduro Mountain Bike Series in '17, '18 and '19. That's some serious tourism potential. You only have to be in Campbell Town on a Sunday afternoon or Monday of a long weekend to see significant numbers of bikes strapped to cars as they head home from a weekend up there. The West Coast trails will no doubt put a significant level of cash flow back into Queenstown. Some of the buildings may even get repaired - here's hoping for them.
TentPeg
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 50
Joined: Sun 29 Jan, 2017 7:23 am
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby potato » Tue 07 Sep, 2021 9:52 am

Ah yes, the economics are good for those who can afford it. Lets not talk about those who have been out priced of Derby or Maydena.

I do wonder where all of this great economic development will end. I can't wait to ride my $10k ebike up to Tahune Hut or around the 3 capes... maybe a quick ride out to South Cape Rivulet - fully supported with cheese and wine.
potato
Athrotaxis cupressoides
Athrotaxis cupressoides
 
Posts: 315
Joined: Thu 28 Jan, 2016 1:06 pm
Region: Tasmania
Gender: Male

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Nuts » Tue 07 Sep, 2021 10:23 am

OK :) , fair calls, I'd like to hear more of bluewombat's concerns, as they seem like they come from some planning knowledge. Mainly coz I spent some time trying to decipher those maps and the proposal.

Not a solution (for primary products), but an alternate economy? At some future stage, merging with endless growth. I have seen the DA manager defensive about locally built trails, here in the NW, through native reserves (far less damaged than Qtwn hills). But all good. So far so good. At the very least we Tasweigans need an economy of sorts.

Like protesting, 'doing something' conservation wise if there's a positive conservation outcome. I ride my bike most days now, some car drivers hate bikes on roads, the support for bike path extensions could be enormous but bikers desires disparate for their own needs. I've always had a dirt motorbike, there's obviously some hate for that mob. Which probably wont stop when motorbikes become silent. Not that this crowd is any less capable of being appropriately managed & catered for in reserves. I guess their access is a step closer to being validated?
Wet and Wild! not 'Wet 'n' Wild'
User avatar
Nuts
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 8514
Joined: Sat 05 Apr, 2008 12:22 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby bluewombat » Tue 07 Sep, 2021 5:42 pm

I did not post to complain about MTB trails on Mt Owen or to create division. I posted to inform people that what has been a traditional walking track up the mountain (established in the 1930s and refurbished by community volunteers as recently as 2015 according to signage on the walk) is to become at least in part dual usage. I was given this information in person by the trackies marking and working on the track as I was walking up, I have not looked at plans or proposals. They told me this particular track will be double black diamond for the MTBs (it would not be possible to ride up this track the only way will be down). I further suggested that if walkers want to go up Mt Owen (while it is still 'walkers only', the track is not completed for MTBs) now would be the time. I do have safety concerns in any situation where fast things are travelling near slow things and as such I would reiterate that I feel now would be a good time to walk this historic track.
Even a long life is short
HPB
User avatar
bluewombat
Athrotaxis cupressoides
Athrotaxis cupressoides
 
Posts: 278
Joined: Sun 10 Feb, 2008 3:55 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Nuts » Wed 08 Sep, 2021 11:53 am

It is marked as a downhill section 'dbl black diamond' trail that appears to align with the nth spur track. Sounds like they try to work in with the concerns of walkers from previous comments, so maybe it's much wider in the shared sections, only flatter (or something). So, I've asked the manager, he may have some further info to offer, or come on here, we'll see. I've worked as a walking guide, some walkers are shaken by runners, or even faster walkers passing. No strong opinion but generally sway towards the fact that it's not people walking at a walking pace affecting others experiences.

Screen Shot 2021-09-08 at 11.30.35 am.png
Screen Shot 2021-09-08 at 11.30.35 am.png (453.69 KiB) Viewed 1199 times
Wet and Wild! not 'Wet 'n' Wild'
User avatar
Nuts
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 8514
Joined: Sat 05 Apr, 2008 12:22 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Azza » Thu 09 Sep, 2021 10:31 am

I never knew about that track, If I had I wouldn't have walked up the road..
https://mtb.westcoasttas.com.au/ride/owen/
Red is the colour used to identify Double Black.
These types of double black trails are typical built as a drawn card to attract the serious riders / professionals with serious consequence if you mess up. Hence the name "Natural Selection"
We're talking massive gap jumps, drops, widow making features. Not something for the casual rider.
They will absolute 100% not allow shared or uphill traffic on a double black trail.. looking at the map, is the walking track actually aligned with what they are calling Waterfall?

I think the current thinking in trail design (At least with the HCC and Mt Wellington) is to seperate climbing and downhill trails.
I happily co-exist both hiking and riding with trail runners, hikers, other riders.. Although I did see a local trail running group with 50 or so people hitting the trails.
Makes the annoyance of the odd Mountain Biker or two seems pretty insignificant...
User avatar
Azza
Phyllocladus aspleniifolius
Phyllocladus aspleniifolius
 
Posts: 972
Joined: Thu 06 Mar, 2008 11:26 am

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Nuts » Thu 09 Sep, 2021 11:04 am

Yeah, this side:

Screen Shot 2021-09-09 at 11.04.24 am.png
Screen Shot 2021-09-09 at 11.04.24 am.png (492.13 KiB) Viewed 1009 times


I assumed the designated Dble Black tracks were black.. and a newer walking track on the old road from the valley (which admittedly makes little sense).
Wet and Wild! not 'Wet 'n' Wild'
User avatar
Nuts
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 8514
Joined: Sat 05 Apr, 2008 12:22 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby Nuts » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 9:56 am

Nothing from DA. Response from West Coast Council:

"The existing walking track is for a large part not impacted by the MTB trails. There is a small portion of the trail, near the beginning at Horsetail falls that is being upgraded into a shared track. The works to improve the track have included widening to an appropriate share pathway size and insuring sightlines are suitable. It has been assessed and should pose no risk to safety"
Wet and Wild! not 'Wet 'n' Wild'
User avatar
Nuts
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 8514
Joined: Sat 05 Apr, 2008 12:22 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Mt Owen

Postby danman » Tue 14 Sep, 2021 7:38 pm

bluewombat wrote:I did not post to complain about MTB trails on Mt Owen or to create division. I posted to inform people that what has been a traditional walking track up the mountain (established in the 1930s and refurbished by community volunteers as recently as 2015 according to signage on the walk) is to become at least in part dual usage. I was given this information in person by the trackies marking and working on the track as I was walking up, I have not looked at plans or proposals. They told me this particular track will be double black diamond for the MTBs (it would not be possible to ride up this track the only way will be down). I further suggested that if walkers want to go up Mt Owen (while it is still 'walkers only', the track is not completed for MTBs) now would be the time. I do have safety concerns in any situation where fast things are travelling near slow things and as such I would reiterate that I feel now would be a good time to walk this historic track.


I've only been up there once but I thought it was quite a nice route, following the old king billy poles. Nearer the summit I remember it being more of a boulder scramble, so I can't see MTBs coming down there, but the ridge down towards the top of horsetail falls perhaps. I wouldn't expect huge volumes of riders coming down a double black diamond track, unless there's some event on which will only be once or twice a year I'd imagine.

With the difficulty of the terrain, I don't think most riders will be tearing down red bull style and as long as walkers are keeping an eye out there shouldn't be a problem, unless they specifically decide to keep walkers off it.
danman
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Sun 03 Apr, 2016 9:42 pm
Region: Tasmania
Gender: Male


Return to TAS Trip Reports & Track Notes

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests