Awaba Mountain Bike Park Build Day – Sunday 21 June 2020

Don’t forget to “Reserve your spot” on the Facebook Event Post for the Build Day this coming Sunday to help us with planning (if you can) – if you had already done it for last Sunday this has been cancelled and you will need to go on and do it again.

As the Covid-19 restrictions start to ease HMBA have decided that it is time to put some love back into the Park – after all, it has given so many of us a welcome break from the indoors over the past few months of isolation. So we are going to tackle a few things that need fixing and put in something that has been long desired by many riders and long planned out in the minds of our lead trail coordinators. You don’t even have to be a HMBA member to come along and help out.

The projects are dependent on the weather in the lead-up to the event, but we hope to achieve the following:
– put in a B-line for “The Chute”
– repair the decking on the “Ground Effects Bridge”
– repair the decking on the timber bridge in the lead up to the tunnel
– repair / reshape / rejig “Rocky Corner” and “Skids for Kids”
– finish off some safety work around the Tunnel.

To help us with group planning we are asking that all volunteers wishing to attend complete the ‘confirmation’ section and answer the questions – we may need to look at limiting numbers and it would be great to know how many we can expect on the day – whilst we do encourage children to participate in our build days, and understand that there are times when you have to bring them with you, we do need to watch our numbers this time around so we would prefer to allocate spaces to persons capable of trail building, including raking of ground, digging of dirt, carrying of rocks and bridge decking, etc;

When: Sunday 21 June 2020 – arrive from 7.00am, build day to commence at 7.30am, concluding at approx. 12.00pm

Where: Awaba Mountain Bike Park – following a brief health screening at the main Park entrance gate participants will be directed to one of the carpark areas within the park

Special Provisions: HMBA will be adhering to the NSW State Government Regulations / Rules in relation to the current Covid-19 pandemic. As at 18/06/20, this will include allowing a maximum group size of 20 people gathering in outdoor areas. Other considerations will include:
• Health screening by HMBA Committee Member at the park entrance – Volunteers will not be allowed to participate if they report any signs or symptoms of flu or fever, or have been exposed to a know Covid-19 patient (please don’t turn up if this describes you).
• Volunteers are encouraged to bring their own hand sanitiser – Project Leaders will be supplied with hand sanitiser to distribute if required
• Volunteers are encouraged to bring their own tools, including metal rakes, McCleods, chippers, etc. The Club has only a limited supply of tools.
• There will be no sharing of tools or equipment between volunteers (unless they are from the same household).
• Social distancing will be practiced when traveling to the project location or during completion of project tasks. Volunteers will be responsible for ensuring that they adhere to the relevant guidelines.
• Specific sections of the Trail Network may need to be closed to members of the general public for social mountain bike riding during the trail building event. This temporary track closures will be communicated via signage at the Park, Facebook, Email and Website in the fortnight leading up to the event.

WHAT TO BRING: Yourself, friends and family equipped with the following-
HMBA Trail Crew Shirt (if you have one)
Sturdy footwear and suitable clothing and gloves.
Water to drink.
Hat and Sun Screen



“Faulk Line” Adaptive Junior DH Trail Opening

HMBA were disappointed that our event was cancelled last Sunday – not just because of the Presentation Day, AGM and Racing / riding that we missed out on, but also because we didn’t get to officially open our new gravity trail.
But it seems cruel to make you all wait for an official event until you are able to find it to ride it – so say hello to “Faulk Line”.
When your mountain bike park is located on the side of the Watagan Mountains range in a steeply wooded corner of the Olney State Forest it seems crazy not to have a few trails that go down the hill, and after our “Monkey” this new trail is the first in a network of new ‘flow-type’ trails destined for the HMBA home. We are so lucky to have the blessing of our landowner Visit NSW State Forests to develop these new trails on land that is really only on ‘loan’ to us.
“Faulk Line” is our Adaptive / Junior Downhill Gravity Trail that opens up the experience of steep, fast and flowing trail to a broad range of riders from the mountain bike community. It is a wide trail bed that follows the contours of the mountainside, swooping and dipping from its start location off Mount Faulk Rd all the way down to the main XC Trail Head Container – once you have ridden it you will appreciate the time it has taken to finish this trail given some of the challenging terrain that it needed to negotiate (let alone the weather). To ride it simply head back out of the park along our entrance road (Jenkins Rd) and make a right turn into Mount Faulk Road – ride up for about 1km and then turn right again into the access trail (signage to be installed soon) – head out to the platform and get ready to smile!
Trail like this don’t build themselves and thanks must go out to the multitude of people that volunteered their time to finish what was initially cut in by Synergy Trails under the watchful eye of our club stalwarts Coleen, Dallas and Rick. A big shout-out too to John and Megan from Tamaden Constructions for their work on the steel platforms and ramps – once you see this you will be impressed. Not to forget Andrew who helped to secure the grant to allow this all to happen.
✴✴✴️WARNING✴✴✴️ – HMBA hope we only need to say this once – “Faulk Line” is a DESCENDING ONLY trail and must not be ridden upwards at any time – it is a high speed trail and the possibility and potential seriousness of any crashes involving ascending riders is high – this applies to all riders, including those on eMTB’s – adhere to the trail warning signs.
Proudly funded by the NSW Government in association with Lake Macquarie City Council and Hunter Mountain Biking Association.

Awaba Mountain Bike Park Project – Car Park upgrade

So just why is the main car park closed – well the following pictures should answer that question.
As part of the overall Awaba Mountain Bike Park project the Club needs to deliver some important improvements to the infrastructure to better set up the venue for years to come. When the car park is finished it will be less prone to erosion problems, provide improved preservation and encouragement of the native foliage around it, and allow for a more structured parking plan. Future major events will also benefit from this upgrade, including increased (level) room for competitors to use as pit area, etc.
To help us achieve the best final outcome we really need people to stay off the area until the koppers logs and top dressing of gravel are done in the next two weeks. To help with this we have provided an alternate way to access the trail head – follow the bunting and arrows.
Along with the Down Hill finish area this upgraded car park will present well to new users visiting the Awaba trails, and will showcase what the ultimate goal is with the whole park. In the meantime we are also continuing work on the new trails – an update on these will be provided soon.

So where to now with the $450k Grant?

Well now that the dust has settled from the big announcement (a $450k grant for Awaba MTB Park if you are only just waking up from your winter hibernation) we are sure that there are plenty of questions out there about what we will be building and when it will all be done. Rest assured that our volunteer Committee are now hard at work sorting out all the details and this will be communicated to all the eager Club members and riders out there as soon as possible. In fact we are hoping that we can provide a bit more detail of how this project will unfold in early November.

But for now we need everyone to be patient and enjoy the Park as it currently is – we even fixed up the worn-out old Murderhorn for you just to keep you excited about what lays in store.
And before everyone gets carried away with their own personal game of “Fantasy Bike Park Build” here are a few important things to consider about this grant:
– the project will be completed in stages – we will not be given all of the money up front but will need to achieve specific milestones along the way to receive “progress payments” to allow us to achieve the full vision
– we will be engaging professional contractors to assist with key components of the project but will still be needing a huge volunteer input to allow us to develop all of the proposed trails, which you might be glad to hear are predominantly “gravity” focussed with plenty of “flow”
– there will be a massive improvement in accessibility to allow more members of the broader community to access the trail network – this means further refinement of the access roads and Carparks, installation of shade shelters, tables and other amenities, and increased signage, as well as trails for junior development and Adaptive MTBs
– above all this project will open up a load of options for further future expansion of the Park – the Road Gap Rd that many of you have already assisted with clearing will provide multiple high access points for other descending trails
– on the flip side this project is not about chewing up every single cent to build just one machine-built flow trail with 6′ berms and massive tabletops – this is about building a more diverse park that is in line with the current trends of MTB’ing, provides a broad range of offroad experiences to an ever increasing crowd base and fits within the beauty of the natural environment we have at Awaba.
It is our intention to keep everyone regularly informed of our progress with this project – stay tuned for some exciting updates within the next few weeks.

Trail Building Day – Sunday 7th October


WHEN: Sunday morning – 7th October at 7:30am.

WHERE: Meet in the carpark at Awaba.

WHAT: Whilst it might not be strictly a yellow brick road, the proposed trail activities today will allow all riders to take a safe journey to a place of much happiness!

If we get enough Volunteers we will also continue to push through with the Road Gap Rd as part of the gravity trail development project.

WHO: Everyone is welcome!


Sturdy footwear and suitable clothing and gloves.

Water to drink.

Sun Screen

Digging tools – metal rakes and McLeods are the best options if you have them

Friends and family equipped with all of the above!

HMBA Update – a bright future for Awaba and beyond

Hunter Mountain Bike Association memberships continue to grow as the sport of mountain biking enjoys greater participation both locally and globally. With this popularity comes the opportunity to develop existing trails and facilities to better cater for core groups, attract new riders and entice visitors from other regions. Our elected representatives from local and state government agencies, along with awesome landowners like Forestry Corporation of NSW, have responded by providing development opportunities. This common goal caters for organic growth, prepares for the expected higher demand and provides recreational assets for a growing community accessible sport.

From its inception HMBA has always provided its members with exceptional representation, leadership and governance. It has a record of capitalising on opportunity and being on the front foot when changes in the sport affect the members – a reputation that the current committee strives to uphold. Recently the draft 10 year trail Master Plan was released and discussions with Lake Macquarie City Council and Forestry Corporation began to focus on a range of improvements to the Awaba MTB Park. These discussions included the establishment of the Road Gap Trail, the Flow Trail, the Intermediate level Down Hill Trail, an extension to the Adaptive Trail, upgrade of the access road and an upgrade of the car park. While all this potential development is pending, the club has been maintaining the existing trail network and continued to provide its members with racing opportunities throughout the Hunter region.

The club’s members are seen participating in the sport of mountain biking all over Australia and around the world, and in doing so bring back enthusiasm and ideas. On the back of this the club has now expanded its mountain bike advocacy to other local regions and community sectors. Club members are at the forefront with developments in the Port Stephens area (Gan Gan and Wallaroo), Kurri Kurri and Singleton; officiate at a senior level in MTBA and UCI sanctioned events; have gone into the community as coaches; advocate for the inclusion of people with a disability; and accept invitations from national bodies to take committee positions for the benefit of the sport.

Through its members the club is recognised by the sport’s peak national body, MTBA, and the Olney State Forest land owner, Forestry Corporation of NSW, as a model example for other MTB clubs to follow.  Aside from receiving the 2017 MTBA National “Friends of the Trail” Award and drawing up to 500 riders per week to the Park, this recognition provides an excellent platform to attract development funding from state based authorities and the private sector. On this front, the club has an expectation that it will be successful in being granted funds for the trail and car park development and will see those improvements completed in early 2019. On the back of this, discussions between Lake Macquarie City Council and Destination NSW have matured to the point where we also have an expectation of a tripartite agreement for funding large events at Awaba MTB Park over the next three years (2019 to 2021).

In addition to government based funding, the club has been liaising with Lake Macquarie City Council’s economic development company, Dantia, in collaboration with Forestry Corporation of NSW to facilitate potential for local businesses to benefit from what is expected to be an a new, State-significant, Outdoor Adventure hub. The Awaba MTB Park is located in a wilderness area that provides a range of outdoor activities including, but not limited to, abseiling, bush walking, trail running, orienteering, rock climbing, 4X4, and motorcycle trail riding. These activities attract commercial operators and investors. The potential for associated food and accommodation offerings is attracting interest from the private sector. Aside from being HMBA club members, you are all members of the private sector and these opportunities are available to us all.

It is at this point where we can now provide our members with opportunity to voluntarily and commercially participate in, and benefit from, the expansion of Awaba and the Outdoor Adventure Hub.  We would like to accept expressions of interest from active club members who may be able to offer the skills required to assist with the development of Awaba – the skills required include land clearing, earth moving, road building, bridge building, power and water supply, social media, engineering, survey, tree lopping, mulching, landscaping, building supplies, sign writing, bus hire, amenities (Dunny) hire, Solar power, general building and of course, opportunity for all to ‘carry heavy things’. Some of these skills and services will also be required for other developments in the area and in this regard the club can facilitate advertising and is always open to sponsorship from those members whose businesses would benefit from some exposure and association with outdoor adventure types.  Please use the website contact page or send an email to

So, from the current HMBA committee we extend our thanks to those who have gone before us and the members who are with us today for making this club the awesome entity it is. We look forward to working with you all, and welcoming new members to share these exciting times.

See you on the trails.

HMBA Trail Building Day Report – 01/07/18

What a day – lots of HMBA club members out and about with build works going on at Awaba and a special crew travelling to the Ourimbah Superflow to get the low down from the Rocky Trail Entertainment crew on the new HMBA timing system (yes, we have invested in a new computer and RFID timing system – more details soon).

At the build day we had over 30 willing and able volunteers braving the chilly conditions to make a huge impact on the Park. The rickety Mawks bridge is rickety no more with a brilliant makeover (and we do mean brilliant – check out the yellow deck!) – thanks bridge crew.
And on the upper reaches an equally massive effort clearing and grubbing on one of the planned new developments – the awesome Road Gap trail – this work was above the proposed finish area, so join the dots and figure out what this means for one of the club’s future directions!
Thanks to everyone who came and thanks to two of our favourite sponsors – Wyee Transport for donating the truck for the day and Carrolls Timber and Hardware for another load of building materials.

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HMBA Trail Building Day – Sunday 1st July

This weekend we will be undertaking another of our trail building days – these are always good fun and give you plenty of good karma, so come along and be part of what makes this club great!
WHEN: Sunday morning – 1st July at 7:30am.
WHERE: Meet in the main carpark at Awaba.
WHAT: This will all depend on the numbers that we get attending.  We hope to be able to commence clearing some new areas in an ‘elevated’ section of the park as well as some work on the XC trail network.
WHO: Everyone is welcome! As the picture says, these trails don’t build themselves so if you ride in the park then come along and put something back in.
Sturdy footwear and suitable clothing and gloves.
Water to drink.
Sun Screen
Digging tools – metal rakes and McLeods.
Friends and family equipped with all of the above!