A World of Trails : Derby, Tasmania

When we think of ride destinations and mountain biking holidays, we think of majestic mountains surrounding a beautiful township with epic trails full of loam. Derby is exactly that, a majestic place that has been dreamed up by the mountain biking gods and executed by a group of driven individuals. Nowhere have we seen a set up quite like Derby anywhere in Australia and we thought we’d pass on the good news to our mountain biking readers….


Beautiful Blue Derby Trail head – Photo by Mike Branch

Located approximately 95 km from Launceston in Tasmania’s North East, Derby is a beautiful town nestled on the banks of the Ringarooma River. Once a booming mining town, Derby has seen its fair share of prosperity but in recent times it was a town without much industry. That was until recently, in 2015 the Blue Derby mountain bike trail network opened and a new life was breathed into the air in Derby. An idyllic location surrounded by lush green hills full of steep rock, green ferns, red hero dirt and now boasting over 85km of purpose-built mountain bike trails.

Railing the corners of Return to Sender – Photo by Mike Branch

Getting to Derby

If you are not local to Tasmania, the easiest way to get to Derby is via Launceston. With Jetstar, Virgin and Qantas all providing flights from Sydney and Melbourne; Jetstar is the only airline flying direct from Brisbane. Once you land in Launceston the best way to travel the last leg is by road, you can either hire a car at the airport or book a trip with Premium Mountain Bike Transfers.

The rocky road down Trouty – Photo by Nathan Kennedy (Diall’d Industries)

Where to stay

There is now no shortage of places to stay in Derby but the trick is to get in early. Make sure you book well in advance as bookings can fill up fast, particularly around events. The following spots are our picks when staying in Derby:

The Postmasters Lodge: offering twin share accommodation with all the creature comforts and as the name suggests, it’s the old post office.

The Derby Gravity Shack: 2 bedrooms house, sleeps six and located right at the bottom of ‘return to sender’.

The Dorset Hotel: The only place to go for a good beer after a ride and good old fashioned pub food. Single rooms start at $50 a night.

Derby Gravity Lodge
Derby Gravity Shack

There are plenty of options in Derby and Airbnb is a great place to start looking for accommodation on your mtb trip.

The iconic bridge from town onto some recently opened trails

A World of Trails

The growing network of trails in Derby now boasts over 85 km of purpose-built one-way trails for all riders. The difficulty levels provide for beginners through expert and the quality of trails is amazing. World Trail are responsible for the carving into the earth that has resulted in such epic ride experiences, with more trails planned in the future.

No Shortage of speed or air at Derby – Photo by Mike Branch

Must do trails are the blue tier – atlas ride, ‘Trouty’, ‘Return to Sender’, ‘Air ya Garn’ and for the adventurous skilled riders…. ‘Detonate’ and ‘Shearpin’. With that said, there are so many awesome trails adorning the hills of Derby that you are spoilt for choice. No matter what your skill level or discipline, Derby delivers on all counts and will be sure to provide and epic trip.

Tucking into the shadows of Blue Derby – Photo by Nathan Kennedy (Diall’d Industries)

Shuttle and Tour Services

By far one of the best ways to see the derby trails is by shuttle, more runs less pedalling and a load of fun. There are three operators in Derby running shuttles and all are similarly priced with Vertigo running the biggest operation.


The easiest way to find your way around the derby trails is with trailforks, but the phone service can be hit and miss, so if you are chasing a map, click on the trail map link below.

Trail map here

When it comes to mountain biking ride destinations, none compare to Derby anywhere in Australia. A well thought out, developed and promoted mountain biking destination that delivers bang for buck on all accounts. If you haven’t ventured to Derby yet, there is no time like the present and Brakes Wide Open will certainly be making it a regular fixture on our riding calendar.

The Derby pump track is a great place to unwind after a day on the trails

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