Coastal NSW and QLD

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Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby DanielS » Thu Jan 24, 2013 3:10 pm

Hi all,

Looking for a bit of advice. I have time off in May and June this year and I'm planning to a do a bike tour. My current plan is to set off from Canberra (I live in Adelaide, but my sister lives in Canberra so I can leave my car there). I then plan to head north, possibly skirting around Sydney via Bathurst, then along the coast into Queensland. I'll see how far I get and probably fly back from Mackay or Cairns.

Okay, so I guess I'm looking for some feedback as to whether this rough plan sounds workable? I would love to do SE Victoria as well, but my feeling is that it will be too cold down there at that time of year. Hence the plan to head North.

Is the Pacific Highway terrible for cycling on? Are there many backroads that can be used instead?

Thanks in advance,

Daniel
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by BNA » Thu Jan 24, 2013 3:18 pm

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Re: Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby RonK » Thu Jan 24, 2013 3:18 pm

DanielS wrote:Hi all,

Looking for a bit of advice. I have time off in May and June this year and I'm planning to a do a bike tour. My current plan is to set off from Canberra (I live in Adelaide, but my sister lives in Canberra so I can leave my car there). I then plan to head north, possibly skirting around Sydney via Bathurst, then along the coast into Queensland. I'll see how far I get and probably fly back from Mackay or Cairns.

Okay, so I guess I'm looking for some feedback as to whether this rough plan sounds workable? I would love to do SE Victoria as well, but my feeling is that it will be too cold down there at that time of year. Hence the plan to head North.

Is the Pacific Highway terrible for cycling on? Are there many backroads that can be used instead?

Thanks in advance,

Daniel

The Pacific and Bruce highways (Highway 1) are not very bike friendly places. There are coastal side roads you can use in Northern NSW, but in QLD you will have to head inland, and I can promise you that it's likely to be cold there too. Once you leave the coast frosts are common in winter, but you may get away with it in May/June. Whatever, you'll still need to be prepared for cold weather.
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Re: Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby il padrone » Thu Jan 24, 2013 3:21 pm

Some years ago now, but over a 3 week period I rode the NSW coast from Sydney to the Qld border. Less than 30kms of this was along the Pacific Hwy (and that was some of the worst of the ride). There are plenty of route choice options whether along the coast or an inland route. My route is here.
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
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Re: Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby DanielS » Thu Jan 24, 2013 3:46 pm

Thanks il padrone, that map is fantastic!! Very handy.

Thanks RonK - I must admit my knowledge of Queensland weather just comes from attending a Brisbane conference in late June last year. There were people sunbathing in the park!
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Re: Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby RonK » Thu Jan 24, 2013 4:10 pm

DanielS wrote:Thanks il padrone, that map is fantastic!! Very handy.

Thanks RonK - I must admit my knowledge of Queensland weather just comes from attending a Brisbane conference in late June last year. There were people sunbathing in the park!


The sunbathers would have been Brit backpackers for sure.

So many are sucked in by the tourist ads. What is the slogan? "Beautiful one day, perfect the next". I'm sure it is if you are a mexican on holiday lounging by the pool in your swimmers.

But daytime temps are usually quite pleasant even when overnight temps are low. Even in Brisbane it can below below 10C at 6am and around 20C by 8am.

It's just a matter of being prepared for possible cold nights and frosty nights, otherwise I prefer cooler temps for cycling anyway.

I think I posted a QLD inland route in another thread. I'll see if I can find it.

Also there is an article on my blog describing the approaches to Brisbane - you may find it useful.
Last edited by RonK on Thu Jan 24, 2013 4:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby il padrone » Thu Jan 24, 2013 4:12 pm

DanielS wrote:Thanks il padrone, that map is fantastic!! Very handy.

No worries. If you are checking it out there are three places where I used ferries: Circular Quay to Manly; Palm Bach to Patonga across the Hawkesbury; and Port Macquarie to North Shore across the Hastings River.

Some of the very best roads: the Monkerai Rd north of Dungog, the climb from Wingham up to the Comboyne Plateau (a hard climb), the Point Plomer Track from North Shore to Crescent Head, Bellingen via Valery to Bonville on the Pacific Hwy, and the Tweed Range Rd up past The Pinnacle and through to near Lillian Rock.
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Re: Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby bagelonabike » Thu Jan 24, 2013 7:42 pm

Heya! I've been looking at this myself, some threads I found useful:

http://www.bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=59602
http://www.bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=52649
http://www.bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=6666
http://www.bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=42038

The general picture I'm getting is that on the coast its difficult to avoid the very busy main road, but it is do-able...
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Re: Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby DanielS » Thu Jan 24, 2013 8:26 pm

Thanks bagelonabike :)
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Re: Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby Uncle Just » Thu Jan 24, 2013 9:51 pm

Daniel there are many ways north that avoid the hwy. For example from Newcastle take the Stockton Ferry and head to Nelson Bay which is a lovely area. Take the ferry across to Tea Gardens and ride the Mungo Brush road and there is a track to Seal Rocks or Bungwahl a few kms from the Bombah Point ferry. Tuncurry and Forster are not far up the road and you can then turn inland for Taree via the Bucketts Way. Get on google maps and plot a route looking for the minor roads to take you into the Crowdy Bay NP to Laurieton. Follow the coastal road to Port Macquarie and do as IP suggests and take the Point Plomer track into Crescent Head. Further north I really liked riding the Orara Way from Coffs to Grafton. The Border Ranges into Qld are spectacular though hilly. A suggestion is to try and get get hold of the Lonely Planet East Coast ride described in Edition 1 for an overview and plot around sections they describe using the hwy. Inland at that time will be getting cold at night but the further north you go will get warmer esp by the sea.

It's a great ride, just don't rush it and pick a time that is not school holidays. And take your time to enjoy the beautiful beaches on the way.
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Re: Coastal NSW and QLD

Postby RonK » Thu Jan 24, 2013 10:02 pm

Uncle Just wrote:A suggestion is to try and get get hold of the Lonely Planet East Coast ride described in Edition 1 for an overview and plot around sections they describe using the hwy.

PM me your email address for a copy if you want it.
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