Paluma Push Courses
The courses consist of dirt roads, old 4WD tracks, single technical track through the rainforest, sections of cow pad single track with climbs and lots of fun downhills.
Recreational Class Course
This course is recommended for the novice to intermediate riders.
If this is your first Paluma Push and especially if you are new to mountain biking then the 42km course is for you.
Ride from Paluma to the Dam, across the dam wall out to Hidden Valley Station via the State forest fire roads and then single track through the spectacular Hidden Valley complete with river crossing arriving at Hidden Valley Cabins.
Intermediate Class Course
The intermediate course is basically the recreation course with the Paluma Dam loop and an awesome forest single track loop 5 km after the dam. If you've done the Paluma Push before and maybe you are looking for a bit more of a mountain bike challenge but not quite up to the competition 70km course then the intermediate course is for you. It is great fun for just an extra 13 km.
Competition Class Course
This course has extra technical sections, solid long climbs and descents to make it more of a challenge and is recommended for the more experienced and fitter rider. Base on the 53km course, there is an extra loop that will make you work, cry and smile all on the same day. It’s hard but it is a fantastic ride.
The 2018 course will largely resemble the course from 2017 but this year it will definitely hit the 70 km marathon length. Provided there is no big rain event late in the wet season that causes a lot of damage we will pretty much use last year’s course. The course will be marked well in the valley so no riders should go astray.
General Course Info
NOTE: Sections of the course between checkpoint three to the end are in private property. Do not ride those private property sections before or after the race. Rockwheelers has special access to use the private property areas on race day and for volunteers leading up to the race.
The graziers/private property owners notice riders going up only in ones and two's. They don't like it and unauthorized access jeopardizes Rockwheelers' access to the area to be able to stage the Push. The safest bet for your course preview ride is to ride the road up to the dam and do the dam loop which is open to the public.
The conditions along the course are variable but being in July it’s traditionally a glorious North Queensland winter, cool and sometimes misty at the start in Paluma and dry and warmer conditions as riders approach Hidden Valley. Ultimately, conditions can depend on the amount of rain the area gets in the summer wet season and any out of season rain up to race day. A good summer wet season makes for a couple of interesting creek crossings. An exceptionally good wet season makes them even more interesting.
There are 6 checkpoints along the route all with radio contact to each other and Paluma and Hidden Valley. The courses are cleared by sweep riders so if you have a breakdown you won’t be left out there for too long. Slower riders may be directed towards the finish line to ensure all riders have finished the course in about 5 hours.
The first 5km along the bitumen road is part of the race. But by all means, use this time for a good warm-up. At each checkpoint, Recreational and Competitive classes take different routes and these turns are clearly marked.
Take note of all safety signage/warnings on the course, please. They are there for very good reasons. If it says caution slowdown then do so. These signs help reduce injuries and get you to the finish line in one piece.
THIS IS A MOUNTAIN BIKE RACE AND THAT MOUNTAIN BIKING HAS INHERENT RISKS