Sunday, August 26, 2007

Good Motorcycle rides # 37

Riding north out of Brisbane there are a few ways to get here, my favourite way from the CBD is via Old Northern Rd, then Eatons Crosing Rd, then the excellent little twisty Clear Mt Rd, then onto Winn Rd and arrive past Samford on the road to Dayboro - which leading onto Mt Mee is the the well beaten path north other than the highway.

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Northern exposure

Wow what a great day after all that rain. I woke late and was surprised to see nothing but blue sky so quickly had some breakfast and because already 9.00am I decided to ride north.

I can see the attraction of the north, 15-20 minutes from the CBD and I am already enjoying good roads. However the down side of this proximity is I am sharing with alot of other bikes and cars compared to the south, and being close is also attractive for police, more on that later.

My route today was as follows:

From the CBD out via Alderley, Old Northern Rd, Fuel at Albany Creek.
Then Eatons crossing Rd, Clear Mountain Rd on to Dayboro.
Over Mt Mee, on to Woodford, up to Maleney and stop there for rest and coffee.

There are simple so many places to get a coffee in Maleny however if I can suggest one it would be the excellent Colin James Fromagerie/cafe in the main Maple st, number 26. After a cup of my favourite Di Bella coffee and quick flick through the Sunday mail for 20 minutes I moved on.

From Maleny down the range to Connondale I continued west with some amusement watching a Lotus Elise tackle some corners before showing him the MV's exhuast pipes and onto Kenilworth to refuel.

Kenilworth Hotel

Too early to eat still so I went to Mapelton via Obi Obi and up the excellent George Wyer Scenic Drive that climbs from the Valley floor to the top of the range in rather spectacular fashion - and fun thing is its one lane each way so you can pick and choose some great lines on the tight corners with no fear of oncoming vehicles.

Looking west to Obi Obi from George Wyer Scenic Drive

I rode straight on from Mapelton and down the range before turning right to Dulong at the lookout. Now how many nice flowing downhill rides do you know of? - not many eh - this is a superb ride that you really should try.

Near Dulong

At the bottom of the range (now on eastern side) you turn right and right again at both T junctions to go to Palmwoods. I did a lap there but nothing too my fancy so rode on to Mooloola valley on the excellent road via Eudlo.

Near Eudlo

At Mooloola valley I had lunch at the Graze Cafe. Tasty food in a generous serving, friendly service and good coffee made for a very enjoyable stopover. Next ride north get away from the crowds at Maleny or Montville and do the ride down via Dulong to here instead.

Graze cafe

After lunch I went back to Beerwah and rode down Old Gympie road a bit to try get some photos with the mountains in background and then back and over to Peachester. That road is so busy its near impossible to enjoy those few corners, then back d'Aguilar via Woodford to refuel and pitstop and then over Mt Mee and back home via Clear Mtn etc again.

Great day out, but the five different police revenue raising attempts I encountered on this trip is a bit over the top and again a reminder that the south is still the better choice for now.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Saturday ride

Why do bikers so often go for their ride on a Sunday. Is it just habit of do the chores and shopping Saturday then go for ride on Sunday.

I went for a ride on Saturday, not the first time and may not be the last. Less cars in the mountains day tripping, less people in cafes so no problem to get a good table, no crowd at the pub for lunch. Not always going to work as you can go grocery shopping on a Sunday but wont find a specialist store such as a bike shop open then.

Top of Trees road Tallebudgera - yep, worth a visit.

There were bush fires on Mt Tamborine and another started during the day near Tyalgum so alot of smoke about at times. I rode down over my recent find of Tullebudgera valley and over to Currumbin Valley then around to Tumbulgum and Terranora. Then back down to Murwillumbah pub for lunch, then to Uki via Chillingham and Tyalgum then south before mates bike sprung a fuel leak. Fortunately a car pulled up and was a Buell rider from Perth on holiday offered us a hand and helped re-seat a compression fitting from under tank in no time. I didn't even get his name but a big thank you, your gesture reassured my faith in mankind after a week of work ended with myself convinced a couple of my coworkers are less than human.

Returned to place that is a real find - the cafe at the new Tweed Valley Gallery. Great coffee and light food on the deck of this stylish building overlooking the entire valley - what a spot. Just take the road to Stokers Siding on the old highway heading south then the gallery is on your left 100 metres.

Road to Stokers siding, south from the gallery cafe, which has 270 degree outlook.

Chewed the fat a bit then did the long ride home. By this time it was already 4pm so was bit later than normal back to Brisbane and mental note to trim the distance a bit next time.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Good Motorcycle rides # 36

Tumbulgum (and Terranora)

I am breaking Tumbulgum out of the side roads listing to give it a post of its own as its too good to leave as simply a side road and if you add on Terranora then you have a fair distance of excellent riding to cover.

To do this ride you best approach from a position of having ridden down over Currumbin or Numinbah ranges or if returning from Murwillumbah or Tyalgum. What ever way you arrive there you need to take the Dulguigan road from Tomewin road north of Murwillumbah.

Now you will enjoy the twists and turns between the cane fields before joining the Tweed River into Tumbulgum, an excellent quick pace ride. Now to extend this further ride up the ridge to Terranora on the Terranora road. Superb views over the lakes to the ocean the Gold Coast and return with good views over the Tweed valley on the decent back down to either Tumbulgum or south to Murwillumbah or North back over the border.

I turned around at the old general store and cafe on the Terranora road as it presents a handy spot to rest and have a drink on the veranda but check back for a further update and more photos on this ride in next week or so.

More of these two places can be found in this post.

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Sunday, August 05, 2007

More great motorcycle roads

Today I explored the Tallebudgera valley a little more and discovered a couple more fun roads.

Tallebudgera Creek road is a dead end and I tend not to ride roads that don't connect to another very often. So I was hoping to find a side road to connect this and the other dead end (but fantastic) Currumbin rock pool road together.

Unfortunately the Mt Cougal road at the end of each is dirt and not very bike friendly looking. Further back is however a nice set of roads that connect but firstly in between I rode up Petsch Creek Road - just for a look and was pleasantly surprised to find it winds its way right up the side of the valley ridge to offer a superb vantage point to look down the valley.

Returning to the valley floor to Tallebudgera creek road, to connect to Currumbin creek take Syndicate Rd, then Ducats Rd to climb steeply to the top of the ridge between the two valleys, now you can turn left into Trees Rd for a roller coaster decent or right to climb to the top of the ridge where a few millionaire mansions are built and look out over the magnificent views. Map.

After the steep decent you need to veer right at the intersection to continue on the Trees Rd until you join the Tallebudgera connection Rd at the roundabout. Now right sees you heading along the Currumbin Creek Rd towards Murwillumbah.

Much steeper than these photos look in real life!
I continued that way and after the range veered over to Chillingham to then turned off to Tyalgum. I had a great lunch at the Flutterbies cafe. Excellent food, good coffee, friendly folk - highly recommended. I arrived at 12:00 a bit early as I noticed it really fills up so perhaps phone ahead if you want a sidewalk table 02 66793221 (or plenty of tables inside) Otherwise join the many bikes down at the pub - will try that in summer myself.

Above: Entering Chillingham. Below riding into Tyalgum.