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Mystic Mountain Bike Park in Doubt

Bright’s Mystic Mountain Bike Park offers up a totally unique experience for riders - not only is it one of the most diverse MTB parks in the country, it’s also uniquely located within an active regenerative pine plantation run by HVP Plantations.

Not-for-profit community group Alpine Community Plantation (ACP) operates Mystic Park. ACP is made up of representatives from the park’s key stakeholder groups - HVP Plantations, Alpine Shire Council, the Alpine Cycling Club, the North East Victoria Hang Gliding Club and the Bright & District Chamber of Commerce.

In July 2022 ACP released a public statement indicating that the park is at risk of closing due to a range of factors.

Mystic Park has grown further and faster than ACP’s original remit, and its popularity continues to increase with riders from across the country.

This is both an opportunity and a challenge. The park’s popularity means that a new operational approach is needed to ensure its viability and safety.

The original model of operation - which provides free access to the park for riders - is no longer a viable way to operate the park.

Mystic Park has become a must-ride for locals and visitors alike. With this increase in popularity comes its own set of challenges:

  • Trail maintenance costs continue to increase due to the increased usage

  • Signage around the park needs to clearly identify code of conduct for riders and users of the park

  • Wayfinding needs to be improved and clearly display the grade of the trail

  • All other associated risks of mountain biking need to be addressed.

WHAT'S NEXT?

The groundswell of response from the community, business, event operators and visitors following ACP’s announcement in July has highlighted the need for organisations and community groups to work together towards a strong future for Mystic Park. ACP together with Alpine Shire Council, HVP and other key stakeholders are working together to find a solution for the challenges so that the park can continue to operate as a vibrant and exciting asset. But we’re not there yet. There’s still plenty of work to be done. ACP is facing very real challenges in operating the park - an increase in use over the years has also meant an increase in management and maintenance costs and growing requirements for risk management. We don’t want to see Mystic Park permanently closed. We’re confident there is a way to address these challenges in the short term, and a longer-term approach that will meet the needs of our community, visitors, HVP and ACP. Everyone is working together to address current risks and investigate a more sustainable model of management. Alpine Shire Council has provided a staffing resource to work with key stakeholders to investigate a viable way forward and work through these challenges. We will soon be able to provide information and direction to our community on the short-term future of the park, while we work to investigate and plan a model of operation that will secure a long-term future. Check back to this page for updates and keep an eye on our social media. We are committed to keeping the community informed on the future of this incredible asset. In the meantime, your patience and support are much appreciated.


ABOUT MYSTIC PARK

Mystic Park has become one of the most popular mountain biking destinations in Australia. Hand built by the local community - for the community - the park consists of over 50km of trails to suit all abilities from those new to the sport, through to expert riders. The park has also held the National Championships and includes the World Cup Downhill and Mystic Downhill Trails and features trails that are considered by some to be the most unique and exciting in Australia. Mystic Park attracts around 58,000 visitors to the Alpine Shire each year, contributing approximately $27.1 million to the local economy, 227 local jobs and an economic output of $66.1 million. Mountain biking is now one of the fastest growing recreational activities globally, with Australia recording an increase in participation by more than 60% in the last five years. Victoria’s High Country has been identified as a high priority in being able to address critical gaps and cater for the growing demand for mountain biking. Bright has also been highlighted as one of the top 3 mountain bike destinations or family mountain bike holidays in Victoria

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