Tucked away in the Kuranda hills north of Cairns is a trail with a special place in the hearts of Tropical North Queensland mountain bikers – Kuranda Downhill Trail.
Claimed to be Australia’s first proper downhill mountain-bike trail, Kuranda DH started as a rough-and-ready downhill blast for a small group of Cairns mountain bikers before becoming the region’s first officially recognised recreational DH trail outside of Smithfield Mountain Bike Park.
Today it is recognised as the breeding ground of Australia’s top downhill stars and one of the best-shuttled runs in Cairns, its name known by mountain bikers across the world.
Since Kuranda DH came into being, countless other mountain-biking trails and parks have popped up across the region but this classic old trail retains its legendary status, with local riders working tirelessly to maintain, update and diversify it – you might just see trail-building tools casually placed by the track, waiting for the next good citizen to do their bit.
To get to Kuranda DH head north out of Cairns on the Captain Cook Highway, make the left turn onto the Kennedy Highway in Smithfield and follow it up the Kuranda Range. The lookout is a few kilometres up the road and has a small parking area.