Frequently Asked Questions
The following information should answer all the questions you may have when booking a helibike trip through this site. If you can’t find the answer you’re looking for, please contact us.
If a trip includes a helicopter flight to carry your mountain bike to the start of a ride, it’s a heli-bike trip! Heli-biking allows you to do any of the following:
- Downhill. It can be for the downhill enthusiast who wants to fly to the top of a mountain and just ride down
- Accessibility. Or, it’s for the mountain biker who wants to get to a location that would be other wise inaccessible by bike either through lack of fitness or lack of vehicle access
- Variety. Or, for locations where you use the same track in and out, it allows you to fly in and bike out
- Adventure. Or, just to enjoy 2 adventure activities in one.
In Twizel, we are one of the very few Helibike Operators to use The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) approved helicopter bike racks, attached to the helicopter skids, which are specially designed to protect your bike from damage. We do not strop bikes (hang them beneath the helicopter from a rope).
Other bike transport includes a purpose built trailer and vehicle bike racks.
Yes, we allow you to take your own bike on our tours, providing it is of a suitable quality and well maintained. For safety, we will check it before allowing you on our trip. For our Helibike Tours, due to the terrain, we strongly advise that you use a full suspension mountain bike or, if you have a hard tail, that it is a 29er.
For our standard A2O Cycle Tours, we hire 29er front suspension mountain bikes with gel seats.
For all Helibike Tours, (Grand Greta, Omahau Downhill and A2O Alpine Adventure) you can hire full suspension mountain bikes, a GT Sensor Elite mountain bike with 130mm travel and 650b wheels or GT Sanction 2 with 26″ wheels.
We include the scenic helicopter flight, an experienced Mountain Bike Guide and any transport to and from the start and finish points. If required, for a small hire charge we also provide a quality mountain bike and helmet and gloves (see previous question).
- Clothes: Wear comfortable clothes you would be happy mountain biking in and sturdy footwear. The weather in New Zealand can change very quickly, even in the summer, so please bring a windproof/waterproof jacket, thermals (depending on the season and the weather forecast), sunscreen and sunglasses.
- Bike equipment: A full suspension mountain bike is highly recommended. These trails are quite rocky in places and a 26″ hard tail just isn’t as much fun unless you’re experienced. A 29er front suspension mountain bike is acceptable. Mountain Bike, Helmet, and gloves are essential. You can hire all these from us if you don’t have your own.
- Anything else? Twizel has notoriously low humidity so you’ll need to drink plenty of water. Pack plenty of water, food/snacks and, of course with scenery like this, your camera!
We use a grading system from 1 – Very Easy (smooth and flat and suitable for beginners) through to 6 – Elite/Expert (Trials skills needed, high risk level). Most of the rides advertised in this website are graded 2 to 3 which is suitable for most riders.
The helicopters we use have seats for up to 5 riders plus a guide. However, there is a strict weight limit for both the helicopter total load and the individual loading on our bike racks. If you have 5 people of above average weight and/or bikes with an average weight of over 15kg per bike, please advise us in advance. If you’re not sure, you must check. Helibike.com Ltd reserves the right to restrict load number to 4 people if you are over the Helicopter Line load weight. There will be no discount or refund for groups of less than 5 people.
We will instruct you on how to weigh your group and bikes at the time of booking. To meet our strict safety requirements, we will weigh you, your bikes and your equipment on the day to ensure you are under the agreed weight limits. Please don’t try and cheat, we cannot bend the rules so we’d hate you to have to leave someone behind. We will not discount the price if you have miscalculated the weight and are only able to take 4 people.
- Who do I pay and when? You can either pay in full through the website pre pay page, or, contact us to agree a trip date and pay a $200NZD deposit to confirm your trip. Any outstanding balance of payment will be made on the day, before departure.
- How do you send confirmation of my booking? You will get an e-mail containing all the information required for your trip. If you are unsure of any details, please don’t hesitate to contact us, we’re here to help you.
- What happens if I want to cancel? Helibike.com will offer a full refund if the trip is cancelled with 7 days notice. Within 7 days, if we cannot replace your place on the trip, you will forfeit the deposit.
- What happens if the trip is cancelled? If the trip is cancelled by us, we’ll try and rearrange your trip for another day. If this is not suitable for you, you will get a full refund.
- How long is the website price valid for? Due to factors outside our control, the published price of each trip may change without warning. The price will be confirmed and agreed with you at the time of booking.
The Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail is part of the New Zealand Government’s plan to have a network of easy grade cycleways along the length of New Zealand that will allow riders of all ages and abilities to explore New Zealand off road.
The Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail, or A2O Trail as is is commonly becoming known, is the longest and most varied trail in this cycleway network. Starting at Mt Cook Village in view of Aoraki Mt Cook (the highest mountain in New Zealand), the trail travels over 300km through the Southern Alps, along the Waitaki Valley and ends at the historic town of Oamaru by the Pacific Ocean.
Contact Helibike for more information…