Mt Isobel Intermediate
Submitted by Matt Doherty
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Front country - easily accessible
Native bushPlantation/exotic forestOpen ridges/tops
Formerly known as the 'Izzy Stradlin CCW' run. Re-named Feb 2021
This route is part of the Further Faster Canterbury Hills Collection
Izzy Stradlin CCW - Counter clockwise loop of Mt Isobel using a couple of short & easy to follow mtb tracks to access the waterfall track up to the summit.
From the village follow the wide smooth trail up Conical Hill to the lookout, on a clear day you can just make out the trig that is your goal.
From the lookout take the top track past the picnic bench and follow the fast & flowy Eagles Nest, C Line & Swoop tracks to descend to the forest floor.
Turn left at the junction and after 100m cross Pawsons Rd and pick up the Jolliff Saddle trail where you climb to the 1st saddle a couple of minutes away. Turn left here (1 way track sign) and carry on up and over a small hill, when you get to the bottom turn left & cross the bridge then left on the forest road for 100m to the Waterfall Track.
This is the start of the major climb of the day, it starts of quite gentle & well formed but gets steeper & rougher the higher you go particularly once past the waterfall. On the way follow the signs for the waterfall & ignore the Spur Track. The waterfall is just a few meters off the main track but worth checking out.
Carry on up from the waterfall to the next intersection and veer right & up. Continue up to the saddle and veer right. From here it's around 1.5 -2 km following a poled route and a few cairns to the trig at the summit
From the summit it's a fantastic descent all the way down to the valley floor if your quads hold up. Retrace your steps back to the saddle, veering left & then straight on past the junction with the waterfall track and carry on until you come to the intersection at 2 gravel roads. Cross the smaller (Pawsons) road and jump onto the 1 way Tank Track (Mtb) - at the end of this track you will see an intersection of several tracks a few meters in front of you. Follow the one signed Conical hill lookout & return, from the top head back to Hanmer the way you started.
There are currently no members to show for this trail.
Features of interest
Nice waterfall on the way up. 360 views from the sumit. Lots of short n sweet bike trails to play on in the afternoon as if you go to Hanmer make sure you take your bike.
Make Up of Run
Technical Single Track: 35%
Moderate Single Track: 35%
Easy Single Track: 30%
Start from Hanmer Springs village center. With the pools on your left head up the hill in front of you towards Conical Hill which is the true start of the trail, any tarseal before you hit the trail is a warm up.
Pleanty of parking in Hanmer Springs village.
Pretty straightforward really, although it could get tricky on the tops if it claggs out.
All of the mtb trails in the forest are on a brochure that costs a couple of bucks, all proceeds go to track building & maintanance. You can get a copy in Wildlife (shop on the right before the crossroads in Hanmer) & probably the information centre. Worthwhile having a copy as you can use it to figure out where you are & how to get to where you want to go if you get turned around. There is lots of new signage on most of the trails.
Thermal leggings, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Survival bag, Cellphone, Map, Crampons / microspikes (for winter conditions).
There is the waterfall but as that is on the way up I'd take what I need with me.
Can get muddy in winter. Expect snow at any level in winter. Can be strong cold winds up top.
Exposed up top, Annual race over the summit has previously been diverted over the saddle when the wind is too strong to stand up in.
Post run indulgence
No shortage of places in Hanmer
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See other runs nearby:
Fowlers Pass - St James
Mt Isobel Long Loop
Hanmer 10km loop
Hope Kiwi Half
Easy Rider & Conical Hill
Hanmer Old Forest Loop
St James Walkway
Doubtful Lake Man with Hope
A Tale of Two Peters
Nina Valley SH7 to Swingbridge
Doubting the Devil
Maling Fowler Pass Loop