Level: Intermediate
Length: 25 mi (40.2 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Out & Back
Elevation: +1,679/1 ft
Total: 5 riders

Mountain Biking Tarnbrae Track

⚠ Heads up: Trail access may be temporarily restricted due to COVID-19.
***   Add a review
#167 of 415 mountain bike trails in New Zealand
#8878 in the world

The Tarnbrae Track is a back-country ride on a wide, well formed trail - some purpose built; some four wheel drive track. The gradient is controlled and gentle and the trail surface is dirt, gravel or stony - good but usually jittery or bumpy, depending on where you are.

The track starts at Lake Ohau and steadily climbs 350 metres over 11km. Then it descends 200 metres over the following 8km to Qualburn Road.

It forms a part of the 300km "Alps 2 Ocean" trail that goes from Mount Cook to the coast at Oamaru. At Qualburn Road it's worth turning right and riding the two kilometres to the historic sheep shearing shed dating back to the 1920s.

As an out-and-back ride the Tarnbrae Track gives you two good workouts and two good downhill blats. The ride back down from the high point to Lake Ohau is a feast of gentle corners - off camber and jittery - all the way heading straight for the jagged peaks of New Zealand's highest mountains.

It's a very scenic ride with magnificent mountain vistas to the north, gorgeous Lake Ohau, and alpine meadows to the east. For a few short periods the trails goes through beech forest. Take care not to run into wandering hobbits.

It is described here as an out-and-back ride from Lake Ohau. Even better ways to ride it would be as part of the Alps 2 Ocean Trail or as a shuttle from Omarama.

Before you go
  • No Drinking water
  • No E-bikes permitted
  • Fat biking allowed in winter
  • No Fee required
  • No Lift service
  • No Night riding allowed
  • No Pump track
  • Restrooms
Getting there
From Twizel head south on highway 8 for about 10km, the turn right into Lake Ohau Road and follow it to the car park at Lake Ohau Lodge.
Have you ridden this trail? Help improve this information.
I rode it!   Add to another list

Tarnbrae Track Trail map

Add to or improve this map // Place this map on your website

Local Info

Club Sponsor


Local Bike Shop


Trail checkins

arbysauce (Mar 5, 2017)
What's this?

Upcoming Events

Add one

Trail conditions

Camping & Lodging

Coming soon!

Tarnbrae Track videos

Add a video
We don't have any videos of this trail yet. Add one here.

Mountain Bike Trails Near Twizel, New Zealand

Intermediate | 16 mi
Intermediate | 13 mi
Advanced | 11 mi

Rider questions

Add a review



  • Jim Cummings

    If you're fit and don't mind the jittery stony surface you'll enjoy this ride - it's fun. The panoramas are to-die-for and the downhill runs seem longer than the uphill climbs!

    Reply | Thank | Edit