A grand circuit of the southern Eyre Mountains that starts along the shore of Lake Wakatipu before entering the remote highlands of the Von Valley, past the scenic forest lined Mavora Lakes, through farmside villages to once again return to the shores of Lake Wakatipu.
The trail is suitable for intermediate riders with generally a good trail surface with one significant hill in the Von. The trail is best ridden in the warmer months of the year. The sections that can be experienced as day trips or combined into a multi-day circuit.
The Around the Mountains Cycle Trail is a journey skirting the Eyre Mountains with both trailheads on the shores of Lake Wakatipu. The trail is divided into five sections (plus a boat trip for access) that can be undertaken as separate section day trips or a 3-5 day circuit.
Toilets, accommodation and services are only located in the small rural towns along the trail. The trail is generally well signposted from Centre Hill eastward. The trail is 3km (return) shorter if you choose to miss the side trail to Lumsden.
Many riders depart from Queenstown on the TSS Earnslaw and cross the lake to Walter Peak Station. If travelling clockwise, ensure you book the boat in advance as there is no cellular coverage in the Von Valley. Which way around you travel depends on how you want to attack the hills, the boat journey schedules, and the predominant wind direction (westerly). The Mavora Lakes Road is very busy over the holiday periods and can be dusty during dry spells.
The trail is suitable for most riders, with the intermediate grading due to the Von Hill descent/climb and road sections. The trail generally has a good surface and is best ridden in the warmer months. The trail width varies from single file trail to two abreast, to low volume public roads.
Half of the trail is off-road, with a gravel formation and mostly gentle gradients. Despite being a public road, the section of trail in the Von Valley is remote, elevated, and exposed. Always take warm and wet weather clothing irrespective of the time of the year.