Poppin’ the Kiwi
Quinn Hanley visits New Zealand
Words by @quinn_hanley1 | Photos by @sydneywainWright
Quinn Hanley is a Canadian rider who recently took his first trip down to New Zealand. If there was ever a place that could compete with the title of mountain bike mecca, we suspect New Zealand could be that place. After getting Quinn’s email full of photos we asked him to write a few words about his trip to introduce his photo essay. Looks like he succeeded in his quest to escape Canada’s cold, wet winter for a place slightly more enticing to the mountain biker’s mindset.
I’ve seen and heard insane things about the riding scene in Queenstown, NZ and have always wanted to go check it out for myself. After my second collarbone break of the 2017 season, I booked a flight down under to make up for the time off my bike. I figured after having to sit out so much of the ‘17 season I deserved a winter break to get some pre-season riding in.
I was blown away as soon as we landed in QT. The landscape looked like a rider’s dream…which it turned out to be. The trails were high grade and the jumps were even better. The crew at Skyline kills it on the trails, crushing out new berms every day and keeping the stoke high.
The “locals” are by far the funnest people I’ve ever ridden and chilled with. Every Wednesday after riding the park all day the crew got together and rode the best jumps ever at Wynyard Dreamtrack.
I was also lucky enough to meet a local Kiwi, Brad, who let me borrow his trail bike for the day, so I could pedal up to McGazza’s memorial. It sits at an amazing above Queenstown. From there, I rode down Salmon Run, a wet, rooty trail that made me feel right at home, except for those weird reversed brakes.
Back in town I quickly grew fond of the crew at Vertigo Bikes. If I had any issue with my bike I could walk in and get the best service and help! Definitely recommend stopping by if you’re in the area.
QT is the best… pretty sure it’s not a secret anymore, but I can’t wait to get back!