Yarra junction to warburton

Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Cmm » Sat Mar 01, 2014 1:06 pm

Hi all

I am planning a ride from lilydale to mt donna.

trying to work out which way people usually get from yarra junction to warburton? Would prefer to stick the the roads but am unsure if warby hwy is the best/safest option.

Any input would be much appreciated
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by BNA » Sat Mar 01, 2014 1:15 pm

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Yarra junction to warburton

Postby cyclotaur » Sat Mar 01, 2014 1:15 pm

You can go the trail easily enough or take Lowes/Settlement/Railway/Station roads to Wesburn and the highway from there. Just be ready for abuse along Railway Rd as the locals think every cyclist should be on the parallel rail trail. The trail is pretty dusty ATM so if you are fussy you may prefer the roads.


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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Cmm » Sat Mar 01, 2014 2:10 pm

thanks cyclotaur. will check it out. may pack the ear plugs for railway rd :)
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby il padrone » Sat Mar 01, 2014 2:32 pm

Warburton Hwy - more hoons per kilometre. It's bogan-city out there :|

I've ridden the trail twice on my 20mm road slicks. No problems.
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Cmm » Sat Mar 01, 2014 2:49 pm

would it be better going to donna the other way?
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby cyclotaur » Sat Mar 01, 2014 3:18 pm

Cmm wrote:would it be better going to donna the other way?

If you don't mind the dirt/gravel road it's fine. In which case you won't mind riding the trail either way. The gravel road side is a bit sketchy at the moment but fine for ascending. Also not as steep as from the Warby side and, if you do the loop, you get a nice fast descent via Cement Creek and Warby back to Yarra Junction.

We went the other way yesterday (up via Warby, down the gravel to Don Rd) and it was a bit hairy descending the gravel (at speed !! :mrgreen: ) but there was a group of 8 or so strung out on the gravel ascent on a variety of bikes.
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Uncle Just » Sat Mar 01, 2014 4:43 pm

Not to mention two cars I encountered within minutes coming up the narrow gravel Donna Buang road leaving no room to pass. They barely slowed so I had to pull up rather quickly into the heaped gravel at the side. Thankfully good tyres, suspension and disc brakes kept me from going off the road. :roll:
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Cmm » Sat Mar 01, 2014 5:08 pm

So I am thinking I need to brave the abuse from the locals or go warby hwy or man up and hit the trail on the roadie lol
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Uncle Just » Sat Mar 01, 2014 5:29 pm

Use a combination perhaps and you'll be fine. I'd brave the road as described by cyclotaur due to all the dust on the trail then at Wesburn take the hwy. The railtrail from Millgrove to Warby is ashphalted but broken up a bit and uneven whereas the hwy is ok to Warby apart from the short section beside the river which has armco but no shoulder. I've ridden it many times and never had aggro.
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby clackers » Sun Mar 02, 2014 1:57 pm

You can also go Lilydale-Healesville-Panton Gap-Launching Place-Warburton-Donna for a challenging variation.
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby cerb » Mon Mar 03, 2014 9:19 am

Done the Warbaton Hwy once and would not recommend, or do it again. It's got no shoulder for much of the road, 100kmh speed limit, busy road with lots of trucks and it's single lane in each direction with relatively narrow lanes. Definitely suggest taking one of the other routes!

On the same ride (early last year) I ascended up the back side of Donna and came down the front side. The back side was fine to ride up on a road bike with 23's, but I guess this is pretty variable with the weather conditions and current condition of the road. It's a shallower climb too, so easier on the legs. Descending the front side of Donna on the tarmac was great fun, not so sure about descending the back side at speed though... sounds like asking for trouble?!
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Cmm » Mon Mar 03, 2014 9:46 am

Thanks for all the replies! I am either gonna go back roads or suck it up and hit the gravel!
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby cyclotaur » Mon Mar 03, 2014 10:18 am

cerb wrote:...Descending the front side of Donna on the tarmac was great fun, not so sure about descending the back side at speed though... sounds like asking for trouble?!

The gravel descent is pretty sketchy at the moment - a bit like riding on loose marbles in parts, as the aggregate has broken out of the basically dry roadbed over the summer. A few off camber corners proved quite exciting ..... :oops:

But a careful descent is feasible, although decent tyres are advisable. I generally use my CX wheels (with 35c tyres) for descending on the gravel side of Donna, although I've done the loop the other way on 28s, which are great for the gravel ascent, the tarmac descent to Warby and riding the trail back to Launching Place, or wherever you start from.

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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby clackers » Mon Mar 03, 2014 11:23 am

I normally use 28s on my CX, but still prefer ascending amongst the gravel/ruts and descending on the bitumen wherever possible.

Acheron Way is another example.
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby kb » Mon Mar 03, 2014 1:04 pm

Had a crack at Acheron Way a few weeks ago in the Cement Ck to Marysville direction. Not even sure if that is up or down..it had quite a bit of both and was definitely more sketchy than the back of Donna (2013/10). A CAAD10 with Fulcrum Racing 1s may not have been the ideal steed :-)

Gorgeous route though, likewise the Reefton Spur descent.
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby djw47 » Mon Mar 03, 2014 2:30 pm

Uncle Just wrote:Use a combination perhaps and you'll be fine. I'd brave the road as described by cyclotaur due to all the dust on the trail then at Wesburn take the hwy. The railtrail from Millgrove to Warby is ashphalted but broken up a bit and uneven whereas the hwy is ok to Warby apart from the short section beside the river which has armco but no shoulder. I've ridden it many times and never had aggro.


The highway from Millgrove to Warburton is probably the least bike friendly section of road on the entire highway imho. The rail trail is excellent, nicely maintained and smooth, albeit a bit dusty - there's really no obvious reason why anybody would choose the busy road over the trail. I've ridden the trail many times on a roadie and never had the slightest issue.
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Cmm » Mon Mar 03, 2014 3:29 pm

if going the trail is it just important to clean the bike and running gear when getting home?
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby cyclotaur » Mon Mar 03, 2014 3:37 pm

Cmm wrote:if going the trail is it just important to clean the bike and running gear when getting home?

That's it - some people who are a bit fussy with their road bikes will ride the road rather than the trail when it is dry and dusty. In fact I've just finished cleaning down my CX (amongst other maintenance tasks) from a ride on the Warby trail last Friday. That dust gets everywhere ....
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby dalai47 » Mon Mar 03, 2014 8:59 pm

cerb wrote:It's got no shoulder for much of the road, 100kmh speed limit


Actually the highest speed limit is 90 km/hr between Seville and Woori Yallock... Otherwise is a mix or 50-60-70-80 km/hr zones.
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Uncle Just » Tue Mar 04, 2014 3:56 pm

The highway from Millgrove to Warburton is probably the least bike friendly section of road on the entire highway imho. The rail trail is excellent, nicely maintained and smooth, albeit a bit dusty - there's really no obvious reason why anybody would choose the busy road over the trail. I've ridden the trail many times on a roadie and never had the slightest issue.


I'd disagree and say other sections such as from Seville to Woori Yallock are not as cyclist friendly due to their narrow width and unsealed shoulder coupled with a 90km/hr speed limit. I see many club cyclists heading to DB riding the hwy and I often did back in the day (we even raced on the hwy and surrounding roads in the 60/70s but age has made me a little more circumspect to ride the full length now.) Maybe the young guns like the hilly workout, the faster dust free surface in preference to the trail? No one likes an unnecessarily dusty drivetrain on their good bike nor getting cuts on their better tyres and the trail currently needs a good soaking due to the prolonged dry. If I ride from Lilydale to Warby or beyond I'll often take the trail on my CX or MTB. If riding my roadie from YJ to DB I may take the road and hwy. But I have, like you, ridden my roadie with 23s/25s on the trail many times, no problems. The armco section near Warburton is short and I'll ride out a bit from the edge more so as not to get squeezed. Never a problem with cars apart from the occasional issue mentioned by cyclotaur on Railway road.

I note on another thread you feel comfortable on the roads of the 'nongs and ride for the conditions whereas some have reservations about riding through there. It's often the perception of danger from cars etc, unless you've been unfortunate to suffer abuse or worse, that perhaps dictates whether we ride certain roads. I responded to the OP to give him an option for riding the YJ-W section based on many years of riding those roads. YMMV.
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Re: Yarra junction to warburton

Postby Cmm » Tue Mar 04, 2014 7:35 pm

Thanks for your input unkle just!

Yeah I ride the nongs practically every weekend and agree danger on roads is perception of each rider. I am sure if I lived in the valley and rode the area more often and had a better understanding of the local traffic there would be no issue. I think if I get out there ill go the roads to bypass the hwy this time (abuse from motorists comes with being a cyclist unfortunately) maybe in the future ill go hwy as it would be a beautiful ride!

On a side note I have seen cyclists on the black spur out the back of healsville I would never ride that but people do it!
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