While the closure of the Majura Pines for harvesting purposes was a recreational inconvenience for all users and resulted in the temporary loss of a number of bike tracks it has created some new opportunities.
In a post harvesting inspection with Forests ACT and the Majura Trails Alliance ACTEA discovered that some trails created since 2015 were very close to the equestrian routes along the fire trails and that, elsewhere, there was no appropriate warning to cyclists when they were about to cross equestrian trails. The Trails Alliance has responded extremely positively to equestrian concerns so we will see some changes. When these are made the Alliance will do a website, social media, email etc post to better educate users.
There are a couple of places on the central fire trail where the bike tracks have been truncated by harvesting and cyclists are forced to use the equestrian trail to reconnect with bike tracks. There is active work going on to clear harvest debris and it is anticipated that bike track connections will be reinstated in the next couple of weeks.
Proximity of Bike Tracks to Equestrian Trails
The Trails Alliance has undertaken to divert trails away from the equestrian trails where they run unnecessarily close to them.
While the majority of bike tracks are confined to the forest between fire trails there are 4 places on the mountain where bike and horse paths do cross. These crossing points will now be marked with the triangular ‘share the trail’ logo used at Stromlo Forest Park.
The Alliance is working with Parks & Conservation to get these in place as soon as possible.
The official map of Majura Pines trails is considerably out of date and the most accurate representation of trails is the downloadable one on the Majura Pines Alliance website at http://majurapines.org/maps/Majura_Pines_trails.pdf. This map now includes the yield logo and marked locations of the equestrian-bike crossing points. The Alliance will update this map as the trail works progress.
Share the Trails Messaging
The “Trails” page of the Alliance website at http://www.majurapines.org/trails.php now includes the following Sharing the Trail text from the original trail head signs.
Sharing the Trails
A range of activities including walking, dog walking, trail running, orienteering, horse riding and mountain bike riding are available at Majura Pines. You are very likely to encounter all of these users as well as maintenance vehicles so please familiarise yourself with the trail etiquette. Courtesy is the best safety on the trail. Communicate with your fellow trail users to ensure everyone’s safety.
The central spine of Monterey Road, along with the boundary vehicle tracks, provide pleasant riding experiences through the pines. Cavalettis are located at the main entry points.
At a number of locations the mountain bike trails cross the equestrian trails. If you encounter a horse, remember:
- Horse riders have the right of way over other users on trails; walkers have next priority and then cyclists
- Cyclists, walkers and runners should stop and ask permission to pass, allowing horse riders time to position their horses for safety
- Maintain a minimum one metre distance from the horse
- Avoid frightening the horse by making sudden or large movements or ringing a bike bell
- Dogs should be kept under control near horses
- Do not touch a horse without the owner’s permission
Walking and running
Walkers, runners and orienteering users can utilise the vehicle tracks, bidirectional cross-country mountain bike trails or go cross country between the trees. Take care on the vehicle tracks in the south-western corner of the Majura Pines where downhill trails cross vehicle tracks. Mountain bike riders descend at high speed on these downhill trails.
Dogs at Majura Pines
Dogs are allowed off-leash. People with dogs must keep other users in mind and ensure your dogs remain under control at all times. All dog droppings in public places must be removed by the dog keeper. All dogs must be on-leash when in the adjacent nature reserves.