All about touring, whether you are a local or visiting from overseas.
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Have any of you got any recommendations for weekend trips starting from Sydney? Myself and a couple of mates are keen to start getting away from the city for the weekend on either 2 or 3 night trips, I am just not sure where to go, we used to live in Canberra and found it easy to get up into the hills in the Brindabella's, or up to Kosciusko. We have had a quick trip down through the royal, being a little dodgy and riding on the walking trails, which was a bunch of fun, and stealth camping. but where else should we go? would we be able to find a good round trip through the fire trails up in the blue mountains?
We are up for any suggestions for good trips, hills are fine, as they provide the view, and make things a bit more interesting than riding the flats. Let me know what think, any info will be greatly appreciated.
If you are looking at getting to the Blue Mtns, you could get the train to Lithgow and ride out to Newnes (which is an old abandon oil shale mine. Stunning scenery. You could also go out on the Bicentennial trail through Baal Bone Gap (the turn off is about 20kms before Newnes). There are some good hills to get up, but no traffic and fantastic scenery.
Another option is to take the train to Mittagong and riding out to Wombeyan Caves. The first 15kms from Mittagong is sealed, but after all dirt with little traffic. Link to blog: Mittagong to Dungog tour. I certainly had a great time touring out there on the dirt enjoying the fantastic scenery.
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I was hoping this thread would take off. Always looking for ideas. Anyway, here are some weekend (normally one night) trips I've done from Sydney:
* Glenbrook N.P - If you are set up to camp you can ride to Glenbrook N.P. and overnight there. Easy enough to get to get there from Sydney using either the wide shoulder of the m4, or (my preference although it is somewhat longer) via The Northern Rd, Emu Plains then the bridge at lapstone. Train is also an option. If your touring bike can handle some off-road (and your legs can handle the many hills) you can get to Woodford and then even to Wentworth Falls via fire-roads (The Oaks Firetrail and Anderson's/Ingar Firetrails) from inside the national park (if you are planning to do this one-way I'd probably catch the train to Wentworth Falls and ride back towards Sydney). You'll feel every ounce in your panniers on the climb back out from Glenbrook, which is not long but is quite steep in sections.
*Megalong Valley - Ride from Blackheath down Megalong Valley Rd. You could ride to Blackheath but I prefer to catch the train to avoid the
*Wiseman's Ferry - There are a few ways to approach this, but I usually make something of a loop of it. I head out to Windsor on the shared path/windsor rd, and head through Cattai to Wiseman's Ferry Rd, then Sackville Ferry Rd (you can stay on Wiseman's Ferry Rd, but Sackville Ferry Rd takes you to River Rd which is probably the nicest part of the whole ride. Then follow that along to Wiseman's Ferry. You can then return the next day the way you came, or you can head along the river on the north side and then ride back to Sydney via the Old Pacific Hwy or can take advantage of the train. The side trip out to St Alban's from WF is worthwhile. You can camp near WF (just on the north side of the river there is a campground, I can't remember the name), but staying at the Wiseman's Ferry Hotel can save you having to haul camping gear, plus you have access to good food and drink. Accom is very basic but relatively cheap (about 70-80 a night if I recall, for 2 people) and they let us keep our bikes in our room (upstairs inside the pub), plus the place has a bit of history about it. In the same area is the Great North Rd for mountain bikes, with camping options.
*South Coast - If you are keen you can ride south through Sutherland/Royal National Park to Wollongong but if you catch a train to Thirroul you can ride all the way to Kiama on an off-road/low traffic bike-route. Lots of food & accommodation options.
If you want any more info on any of these PM me and I'll extract a track for you from my gps.
Bumping an old thread....
I am pondering taking the 'bent out for the odd weekend.
I am currently not set up for camping on a bicycle, all my kit is motorcycle sized. So any overnight will need a pub or B&B.
I live close to the CBD so don't want to spend half the day getting out of town - somewhere I can take a train to is ideal.
I'm also a total wimp when it comes to climbing so without being a lot fitter I don't want something with a lot of up. (Down is fine but alas usually what goes down must come up unless there's another train line at the bottom!)
The south coast from Thirroul sounds interesting, are there north coastal possibilities from the Newcastle line?
I am looking at the tent thread with interest but I'd have to be really into this bicycle touring thing to spend the money on a light tent. So I want to try a few credit card tours first.
A mate and I did a nice round trip 2 weekends ago.
We started at Lithgow and headed down the Old Coach Rd down into the Wolgan Valley and camped overnight at Newnes. The next day we hoofed it up the Wolgan Rd, turned off onto Blackfellows Hand Track and back onto the State Mine Gully Rd for a leisurely roll back into Lithgow. Just over 100 km's of riding (I think) and a tops weekend.
Do you need a mtb for this, or would it be generally rideable on 35mm tires?
Check the Citirail network. Bikes are free outside of peak times and since your getting on a citirail train and not countrylink the bike doesn't have to be boxed. So from Norwa in the south to Scone up north and out to Lithgow. Any of those make great starting point.
Hi gregd. I did it on a rigid 29er mtb with 2.1 Maxxis Ikon tyres and found the going pretty easy. I suppose you could do it on 35's as the only really rocky bit is the Old Coach Rd. The State Mine Gully Rd and Glow Worm Tunnel Rd are both hardpack, and a there is a few bit's on Blackfellow's that is rocky. There's only one way to really find out...
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