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The newly developing Roxburgh Gorge Cycle Trail will be a 34 kilometre trail starting in Alexandra following the Clutha Mata-au River through the Roxburgh Gorge to finish at the Roxburgh Dam. Very few people have travelled through the Roxburgh Gorge, yet this will change when this trail finally opens - giving access to the fantastic rock formations, historic stone cottages and sweeping views of the river and lake.
The ride down the river from Alexandra is a complete contrast to the ride up the river to Clyde. After leaving Alexandra the ride quickly enters a steep rocky gorge, with no other access than the old bridle path. A points the gorge rises above cyclists almost 350 metres on either side of the river.
Old Chinese miners huts built from local schist rock are carved into the gorge and cyclists will make their way through two eerily deserted gold mining villages as they wind down beside what are now the upper reaches of Lake Roxburgh. Riders will experience an immense feeling of loneliness in this rugged landscape that encompasses the visitor in in a timeless state.
The Gorge relents as you approach Roxburgh Dam and the steep rock walls give way to some farming and the swirling currents of the river ease into the still waters of the Lake Roxburgh.
The Roxburgh Gorge Trail can easily be linked with the Otago Rail Trail via Alexandra or the new Clutha Gold Trail (another of the new Great Rides) at Roxburgh. In total these trails create more than 250 kilometres of fabulous riding in the Central Otago region. The Roxburgh Gorge Trail is also one part of the Mighty Clutha River Trail which once finished will run from Lake Wanaka 338 kilometres south-east to the Pacific Ocean. Significant parts of this trail are already ride-able.