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Gang of Four, Canterbury

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Gang of FourBeginner - Intermediate

Submitted by Matt Doherty

Info Info

Trail Information

15.70km

570m

570m

 

Canterbury

Christchurch

Urban fringe

Loop

Undulating, small hills only

Native bush
Open farmlands
Open tussock/grasslands

Beginner - Intermediate

:.45 (Slow)
1:45 (Moderate)
1:15 (Fast)

-10.3%

+10.9%

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Description

4 short loops all starting from the same point, each getting a little more technical. Each loop is also nicer than the one before it.

Loop 1 - Open farmland singletrack with a bit of a grunt. Head back along the summit road for 300meters, before the cattle stop turn left into John Brittain reserve and do an anti clockwise loop around the reserve (run parallel with the summit & then Mt Pleasant road for the first 2 sections then roughly follow the pylons along the bottom section) There is a nice wee rocky section before the steep climb back up to the sumit road. When back up at the top, retrace your steps back to the start point. This loop is what gave the overall enjoyment score a 4 instead of 5

Loop 2 - Singletrack climb to trig with a bit of semi-technical on the return. Over the stile at the start and follow the GRAVEL mtb singetrack in front of you which bends round to the left. Follow this as it winds up the hill to a gravel road. Turn right at the road and on for 100m to the trig point just above the track. Have a look over the cliff from the trig (The 4th loop traverses below the 2nd bluff below you). From the trig pick up the track & carry on in the same direction, over the fence and follow the sweet slightly rocky descent to a farm track. Left at the farm track for a couple of hundred meters then pick up the mtb track on the LEFT. Follow this back to the road. At the road head up hill past Mt Pleasant road then into John Brittan reserve on the right hand side. stay on the left hand side track which runs alongside the reserve until you are back on the summit road in a km or so. Cross the road & jump the fence, follow the bike track up to the junction then RIGHT and back to the start.

Loop 3 - Short but technical loop round the gondola. From the stile head forwards & slightly right onto the Major Hornbrook track, as you start to drop keep an eye to the right and after a few meters pick up the Cavandish Bluffs track. Follow this until it joins the Gondola track where you should turn right. Head up past the gondola and descend back down to the start point.

Loop 4 - More technical singletrack. From the stile veer left on the Crater Rim Track round to the harbour side of the hill and behind the big red cliffs. This is a slippery gnarly trail for a beginner but there are a few tree handles when you need them & patches of gorse when you don't. There are also a couple of cairns showing you the way when the going gets a little less obvious. At the end of this part of the loop you will come into some WW2 gun emplacements, turn left in the middle of these & follow the track to the farm gate. Turn left at the gate & head up to the trig & back to the start in the oposite direction of loop 2


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Features of interest

WW2Gun Emplacements
If you are lucky and early enough you may catch a rare sighting of the Lesser Spotted Pendle or Trick feeding behind the trig point on loop 2


Make Up of Run

Technical Single Track: 25%

Moderate Single Track: 35%

Easy Single Track: 30%

Farm Road / 4WD Track: 5%

Sealed Road: 5%


Route Data

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I did it!
  • Access

    Head up Mt Pleasant Rd to the Summit Rd. Turn right, cross a cattle stop, carry on for 300 meters & pull over at the saddle. The summit road was closed here to vehicles following the quakes. Start point for each of the 4 loops is at the stile on the uphill side of the road on this saddle.

    Parking as described in the Start Point Description.
    No public transport.

    14 km

    28 minutes

    Yes

    No

  • Staying Safe

    Easy.

    The first loop round John Brittan reserve has lots of different tracks in it. You won't get lost but it is easiest to do a circumnavigation if going anti clockwise round the reserve, the climb back up is more through the center of the reserve than along the side.

    Generally good.

    Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map.

    There is a water tap on the Summit Rd just downhill from the junction of Mt Pleasant Rd, which you will pass near the end of loop 2

    Cold & windy on the top. Very slippery after heavy rain round the dark side of the hill (Loops 3 & 4)

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