Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Bylong Valley Way

This for me is one of the best rides in the country. It has amazing scenery including one of the best canyons in Australia. It is not closed in by trees like so many riding roads in Australia. Then it has a mixture of curves but mostly sweepers which again are a nice change from the usual tight technical roads. And also you can explore two wonderfully preserved 19th century towns with excellent food.
The route is from Lithgow to Denman NSW.
I don’t have many good photos, my Gopro SDcar filled up prior and I did not realise however this is from the official home page to give you an idea of how grand the views are.
And a few of my own photos.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Stoney Chute

Here is a top ride I have been enjoying for awhile that even a local didnt know about so I better make a mention of it.

Stoney Shute Road NSW

To or from Nimbin are a number of decent roads, the original road north to the Kyogle road has been under repair for so long that I don't bother with it - however once fixed it will be a good ride if you can strike it without much traffic. The road south has some nice curves also however these don't extend too far.

A road that is overlooked lies to the south just out of town and runs west to join with the Kyogle road. Stoney Chute road has a bit of everything, scenic rocky outcrops to view, a mix of curves and a small climb then changing to a almost new and perfect curvy road in the middle of nowhere before it joins the Kyogle road.

Take a look next time.

The Channon

The Channon and Dunoon to Nimbin

Part 4 of my series of reports on the roads that lie north of Lisnore

There is a fair bit of road works underway in the far northern NSW which is great news for riders as some roads with unsealed sections are about to or have already been sealed.

A route that should be finished by the time you read this is Dunoon to Nimbin via The Channon. I wrote about this just recently and do not yet have a good selection of photos however I will do an initial post on it now and add more later.

From Repentence creek road head south and you have two options to get to The Channon. The first road aptly named The Channon Road I was unable to find on the eastern side, the western side is freshly sealed and I shall update this route more very soon. The second route is further south via Keerrong - which Google Maps show as not connecting with anything on the eastern side. This road is all sealed and you will come to a Y junction where you need to stay right.

The Channon is a tiny rural community which has a pub that looks appealing for a lunch stop, after here there is a terrific back road that runs over to an area called Turntable Creek. There is a road on to the top of Mt Nardi which is nothing particularly special but offers something different to do if you have never been up there and a respite from the heat of the western side of the ranges where Nimbin lies.

An easy ride down the hills will deliver you to Nimbin which depending on your point of view is a place you either like or not, I am the later and ride straight on to the excellent Stoney Chute road which you will find in another post.

Goonengerry to Eltham

Goonengerry to Eltham

Part 3 in my series of road reports in the area north of Lismore

Near Federal is the district of Goonengerry and here starts Repentence creek road.

Minyon Falls might be worth a look after heavy rain but was just dry and dusty on this day

I have posted about this road in day rides a number of times - its a another fun back road in this area with great scenery and it has been all sealed for some time now. There are two choices to cut across from this road to Clunes first via Rosebank to Eureka or travel a little further south and travel via Corndale. Both roads are a bit tricky in a couple of sections so take care.


You could also ride on to Dunoon or ride to Clunes via Eureka - all good riding. 

Road to Eltham

If you end up at Clunes the ride on to Eltham pub for a good meal.

Eltham Pub lunch

There are more good road options on to Alstonville and Tintenbar but here is about as far South as I go comfortably in a day.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Roads Less Travelled

Despite the heat I had arranged to meet my friend and frequent ride partner today for a long overdue catch up and last ride before Christmas.

I spent a bit of time on Google maps last night to pick some roads less traveled in my favorite part of the world between Murwillumbah and Lismore then worked out a way to link them to end up at a pub for lunch and then plotted that into my GPS. I have thus far never really felt a need to have the GPS navigate for me and it just sits at home when I ride but today was via some roads that probably would not be sign posted which could get tricky.

Tweed river, Condong.

Starting with Currumbin Valley is hard to beat, the road is a top ride, scenic and delivers you over the border before you know it. Then instead of riding via Muwillumbah I veered sideways to visit Condong then before Murwillumbah turned into Reserve Creek Road which climbs up the ridge you can see to the east offering superb views and some excellent curves on what is surprisingly good road.

That unfortunately then ends and you have two choices - dirt or dirt. Now I hadn't noticed this on Google street view so with a 50/50 chance of which road would be the least amount of unsealed road I choose the wrong one. My route map (later in post) shows the way I should have gone (and had planned to) towards Round Mountain and Hastings Point however I went south on Cudgera Creek Road. So I cut out the coastal section then went on to Mooball. (fuel there but cafe still closed)

Riding south I planned to go via the old highway/Tweed Valley way as far as possible before joining the highway for last bit south however the GPS had different ideas and rerouted me onto the highway much too soon. I guess the nature of these devices is to try take you the best route rather than zig zag along the side of a highway so I should have put more waypoints in the route.

Leaving the highway via Kennedy drive ran into more dirt. The previous exit would work better so I have placed that into the route to show you the sealed way to go. Anyway soon back on tar at Possum Shoot road - readers may recall this road was a feature in a post a couple of years back. A steep winding climb brings you to a superb vantage point in the hills behind Byron Bay.

Back on familiar roads to Federal for a drink and rest break. Club Fed cafe has closed down it seems which is a real shame. After the break on to Eureka then over to Rosebank and south to Dunoon then got a bit lost trying to find the road to The Channon as by now the GPS had gone flat. Grr, so much for the claimed 4hrs battery life - serves me right for not bringing the power cable. Anyway hey technology abounds these days - so just look up Google maps on the iphone.

You could ride all day on near deserted country roads around here.

So after a detour via Keerrong which the Google maps say you can't actually do I got to The Channon. Nice looking pub there in the middle of nowhere, I saw a few people out the back of it eating so am going to pencil in a lunch there in the future. Leaving there the Turntable creek road over to Nimbin is a beauty! My mate tells me like many roads in that area it was gravel in part until recently so we just got lucky to time to visit after it has been all sealed.

Took a quick detour up Mt Nardi, it is quite high but heavily forested so the views are restricted.

Will revisit this area to capture it better in the future.

Numinbah Valley

Fueled up on the outskirts of Nimbin and then took the superb Stoney Shute road to join on to the Kyogle - Murwillumbah road and enjoyed a bit of fun with my mate for a brisk ride to Uki.
After a late lunch I again did the Numinbah Valley ride in reverse and again confirmed it rides much better in that direction for me. Despite it being a stinking hot day, turned out to be a very good ride.

Wonderful old time self serve fruit stalls that still exist. Seems another world just over the border.