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Level: Intermediate
Length: 3 mi (4.8 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Loop
Elevation: +137/ -137 ft
Total: 4 riders

Mountain Biking Bannockburn Sluicings

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#121 of 387 mountain bike trails in New Zealand
#7,696 in the world

Desperate to escape grinding poverty and strike it rich, mass migrations of the hopeful in the 1800s rushed to the latest gold discoveries to stake their claims all over the globe in places as far flung as Mariposa, Kalgoorlie and Bannockburn.

Alluvial gold was discovered in thick layers of consolidated gravel in 1862 in Bannockburn - an arid, isolated place, but miners came in their thousands as more and more gold was discovered around Central Otago from Lawrence to Arrowtown.

A 4km walker-biker track now loops around the Bannockburn Sluicings Historic Reserve where a unworldly landscape of schist boulders, vertical bluffs and ruins is all that remains of the monumental earthworks of the miners who used picks, shovels and sluices - high pressure water blasters...

This is a great little outing for riders interested in history, heritage, gold and geology. It's not an easy trail but with a bit of pushing here and there it's suitable for intermediate riders. There are lots of information boards and photo opportunities. For a longer more challenging ride on the same theme try the Carricktown Loop.

The Bannockburn miners were generally disappointed as the gold was limited and soon ran out. Nowadays viticulturists are mining this gravel-soil and Bannockburn pinot noir is superb.

First added by Jim Cummings on Apr 2, 2017. Last updated May 7, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: unknown
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: unknown
  • Fat bike grooming: unknown
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
Bannockburn is well signposted from Cromwell. Take the first turn on your right after you cross the Kawarau River where it runs into Lake Dunstan. You'll be on Felton Road and in about a kilometre you'll come to the carpark signed "Bannockburn Sluicings Historic Reserve".

Bannockburn Sluicings Trail map

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julie25 (on Jan 4, 2019)
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Trail conditions

Dry (on Jan 4, 2019)
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Mountain Bike Trails Near Cromwell, New Zealand

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Intermediate | 21 mi

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