© NZPocketGuide.com
© NZPocketGuide.com

Mountain Bike Festival in Rotorua – Day 285

© NZPocketGuide.com

Day 285 on the Road

A Classic New Zealand Festival!

Today we’re checking out the famous mountain bike festival in Rotorua, Crankworx. If you like this video and want more NZ bucket list inspiration then simply head over to our epic YouTube Channel!

So today we’re going to New Zealand’s biggest mountain biking festival it’s called Crankworx and it’s happening right here in Rotorua.

After spending the night in the Rotorua Planet Backpackers we are heading to our first activity in Rotorua which is the Crankworx Festival. We are showing you guys something a little different to what we normally do we normally do activities but this time we’re going to show you what it’s like to go to a New Zealand festival.

The Crankworx Festival is the mountain biking festival happening in Rotorua every single year. it’s really where every single person which has anything to do with mountain biking in New Zealand gather together showcase the new stuff happening in the industry and also showcase their skills in heaps of variety of competitions.

Over 50 major mountain biking brands are packed into this mountain biking expo at the Crankworx Festival. We see all sorts of different products on display ans there’s also a lot of sunscreen.

The places to be in a festival in New Zealand is the sunscreen bar.

The Crankworx Festival when it comes to Rotorua always takes place at the bottom of the Skyline Gondola and that’s because there’s loads of really epic downhill mountain biking tracks that you can take once you get to the top of the gondola.

Because we are here for the final day of the festival most of the major events that we want to check out is more toward the end of the day so to fill up the time in between we decide to go up and check the Skyline Gondola.

So we noticed that the gondola goes up the whole festival so we decide to get the gondola go all the way up and check it out from above.

You know me, guys I usually plan everything super well and every single one of our activities when we go to places are put onto my spreadsheet and everything has a day but today Laura is really insisting and we’re going up the gondola ahead of schedule.

Yep you’re seeing things right. We are in a jelly bean store and there is a game where we are risking our taste buds.

Could be baby wipes or coconut. Lucky for me, I like both.

So Laura randomly did you get baby wipes or coconut?

I’d say, that’s baby wipes.

And mine is landing on buggers or pear.

Ah that’s definitely buggers.

Yeah, is it nice and salty?

It’s just not good.

Seriously this game is the weirdest things I have seen in New Zealand so far.

Laura has been fed baby wipes, I have been fed buggers, I think we’re done with jelly beans for a wee while. We’ll go try something else.

Laura do you want a coffee?

A chai latte please.


While Laura is having a boring chai latte I’m having an awesome hot chocolate before heading to the huge.

Alright since we made it all the way up the gondola we decided to just have a bit of fun and we’re just gonna quickly do a Luge before we go back down and keep on covering the event for you guys.

We will be doing the Luge as a full day activity a little bit later on during our stay in Rotorua but we just can’t help ourselves we were just so close to the Skyline and was so much fun if you guys remember we did Luge in Queenstown before and we just can’t wait to spend a whole day on those tracks. It was really a welcome addition to our day. Crankworx is a lot of fun but if you add a little bit of competition it makes it all over even better.

The traitor he left me. He left me all alone.

Don’t worry guys Laura is just being a sore loser.

But we are now finished with our nonsense and we are about to head back to Crankworx.

Alright so we had a little bit of fun. We ate some disgusting lollies, had a good coffee, we did ride the Luge, time for us to get back to reality and head back to Crankworx for some epic mountain biking demonstration.

Ok we should really get back down to the festival so we take the gondola back down to the festival where we see ice cream. it’s definitely important for us to get ourselves a snack before we sit down to today’s main event which is the Crankworx Rotorua Air DH this is a downhill mountain biking race where people basically compete to get the best time down one of the gnarliest downhill mountain biking tracks from the Skyline Gondola.

This mountain biking track goes right through some awesome redwood forest and there’s a lot of kickers along the way as well as other obstacles for the mountain bikers to get through and it’s amazing to watch these guys perform.

The race feels really casual as well, there’s no designated place where the spectators need to sit, we can just sit basically where ever the hell we want to watch these mountain bikers do their thing.

You’ll find that a lot of New Zealand festivals are like this with an outdoorsy theme, there’s a lot of festivals surrounding mountain biking, snowboarding, cycling, fishing, hunting running all sorts of different things and that is no surprise considering how outdoorsy New Zealand is.

It’s quite epic to see all those racers going through the track in the middle of this forest the track really doesn’t look easy there is a lot of jumps. there is a lot of bumps. It looks like a really tricky one and their all doing some really amazing timing.

And because most of those bikers are professionals and actually international mountain bikers they actually throw a few tricks when jumping which is really cool. i personally know really little about mountain biking but when I see a bunch of people having so much fun like I kind of really want to join in. Maybe I’m going to take up mountain biking next year.

But then I see this massive ramp right in the middle of the forest where it looks literally like a death trap for anyone that never mountain biked before so I just decide mountain biking is not going to be my thing because I value my life much more than I value speed in the forest.

We’re kind of moving along the way like every two riders we change our position so it’s a bit more fun you know.

After making it almost all the way on top of the forest to see this race through every different angle we are now making our way all the way down where the results are announced and where we can see the bikers finishing their race. It’s a really cool place because we see them with their teams and friends and family congratulating them at the end of this really epic race. It’s quite fun.

We’ve done a lot of mountain biking in New Zealand you saw us in Reefton you saw us in the South Island doing the Alp 2 Ocean, you saw us even just right here doing some mountain biking as well not so long ago but honestly we are no where near as good as those professionals and it’s really cool to see how far you can take such a sport.

So over all our experience in Crankworx was really eyeopening and a great way to start our Rotorua stay.

We kind of take a cheeky ride up the gondola anyway before we meant to before we were schedules to do it.

My spreadsheet!

Robin is peeling his face off at the thought of going off the spreadsheet. This is not what the spreadsheet says.