Singletrack Club


Saturday March 9 2013

Mt Vulcan, Omihi, North Canterbury

Course  &  Schedule Entry  |  Race Reports  |  Photos  |  Results

THIS IS OUR LAST VULCANISER, so make the most of the opportunity to get to this special piece of track.  It is also the 10th race we have held on the course.

NEW FOR 2013 – a hillclimb only option, and a run option!  Please tell any running friends you have about the run option.

Keep up-to-date with our Facebook event page


Registration open from 11.00 – 12.00
Race start 12.30
Ride start 12.33
Run/Walk start 12.35
Prizegiving 3.00

Register on arrival then drive on to the carparking area, a further 200 m up the road.  The start line (and briefing) will be near the car park.

The Course

The Vulcaniser course is located in very picturesque countryside overlooking the coast with views across Pegasus Bay towards Banks Peninsula, to the Southern Alps and along the North Canterbury coast towards Motunau Island and was used in the Waipara round of the 2006 Community Trust National Series and 2008 South Island Cup.



All competitors will begin at the woolshed.  Jackets, water, food etc can be put in the car going to the top for you to access on completion of your race/ride/run

HILLCLIMB (BIKE/RUN/WALK) – approx 4 km with an altitude gain of about 175 m
Those doing the hillclimb only (timed or not) will ride/run to the top of the hill in the Boars Nest (blue line on topo map).  The hillclimb gradient is okay overall but it has a two steep pitches at the end and some people may find it easier to walk the last few metres.  But the view from the top is worth every step/pedal stroke.   When you have completed your hillclimb you are free to return to the car park at your leisure but you may like to watch those doing the multi-lap race and if you still have the energy it is lovely getting in to the native bush sections.  If you are running or walking to get back to your car this means a further run or walk of almost 5 km unless you can catch a ride with a spectator.

Competitors will ride uphill approx 4 km on the farm gravel and grass track to the top of the hill in the Boars Nest (blue line on topo map).  The hillclimb gradient is okay overall but it has a two steep pitches at the end.  But the view from the top is worth every step/pedal stroke.   From this point continue on with the course (red line on sattelite image) as follows:

The singletrack loop begins with a steep singletrack descent then through a gate and a couple of short forest sections to a long piece of doubletrack through scrub and forest. From here you enter the Slimline, a fantastic twisty off camber section of singletrack that heads down, down, down to the creek, then a flowing singletrack climb up the other side of the valley on Lover’s Lane that traverses through manuka and broadleaf forest. A few more undulations and you’ll find yourself riding up a semi-open spur singletrack back to the gateway you passed through earlier. Over the brow of the saddle and it is back into the very cool Boar’s Nest downhill section through more manuka and broadleaf forest. There is then a steady climb for about 200m up a 4WD track before heading into the forest on the Trimble Track, a steady singletrack climb through manuka and scrub. NEW: Riders will then follow the 4WD track to the top of the hill then ride down the other side (instead of riding on the Traverse Track).  This completes the circuit where you’ll have a big grin and be hanging out for more of that singletrack on your next lap!

Each 5 km lap has an altitude gain of about 350m and due to the energy-sapping terrain, takes the fastest riders about 22 minutes to get around. The course is quite challenging at race-pace due to the narrow twisty forest singletrack and constant change from uphill to downhill and back again, which gives little opportunity to rest your legs. It is the sort of course that requires you to stay very alert and that challenges you both physically and mentally, but is very fun to ride. Around 3km of the course is hand-built MTB singletrack, mostly through native forest and scrub.  Do not be lulled in to thinking this course is easy because of it’s comparitive short length.

When you have completed your laps you are free to return to the car park at your leisure (the ride down is fun).

First graph shows profile of hillclimb.  Second graph shows singletrack loop  

Video footage of the course (approx 6MB) can be viewed here –

Course modification in case of bad weather

The singletrack gets very slippery in wet weather so due to the challenging terrain to treat injured riders in that environement, if the organisers deem the singletrack track unsafe all riders will just do the hillclimb (or other variation using 4WD tracks).

How to get there

The race is being held at Mt Vulcan Station. Head north from Christchurch. Turn right off SH1 into Reeces Rd (by the school) at Omihi about 10km north of the Waipara junction. Watch out for livestock on Reeces Rd.  Travel up this road for 11km to the woolshed where the start area and prizegiving will be.   Allow approx. 1 hour from the north edge of Christchurch. View Vulcaniser on a  map  –  click on the (-) to zoom out.

What should you take?

Obviously whatever you need for the race/ride/run/walk (bike, helmet, shoes, fluid and food etc) but you may also like to bring a flask to make hot drinks, a solar shower to rinse off after your race, extra food to eat.  I’m letting you know this because at this stage we have no plans for selling any food or hot drinks on site and it is about 20km to the nearest shop!


Spectators are very welcome at this event and are free to watch the action. However, you must ensure you stay out of the way of competitors and all children must be closely supervised as there are the hazards you would expect on a farm (water troughs, barbed wire, animal poo, animals etc).  If the weather is suitable and you would like to watch the race from the top of the hill you can drive up the farm road, but you will need to leave at least 20 minutes before the race start and you will not be able to drive back down until probably at least 45 minutes after race start (after last rider/runner/walker has finished) .  This road is NOT SUITABLE for cars with low ground clearance.  The course has some excellent viewing spots and photographic opportunites, especially with the numerous forest sections. It is recommended that all spectators have good footwear and warm clothing as there is often a cool sea breeze and lots of thistles. There may also be lots of grass seed heads so if you don’t want them through your socks you may prefer  to wear sandals or gaiters.  As this is a working farm dogs must be on a leash and under control.

Continue to entry information