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[May 18, 2016] Gold Coast -> NSW -> ACT -> VIC Ride (March 2016) (Qld)

Discussion in 'Roads, Touring, Journeys, and Travel' started by Valvoline, Mar 16, 2016.

  1. Hi 2 wheeled peeps! :D

    I'm going to be riding (moving) to Melbourne from the Gold Coast on the 19th March 2016.
    I'm posting the rough itinerary on here to see if anyone would like to come along for a part of the ride, or may have tips/recommendations for accommodation (or even be kind enough to host a fellow motorcyclist for a night)!
    Company always adds a spark to any adventure :)

    My 1st day has been locked in, but the rest will be flexible - depending on weather and how my turbo lawnmower can cope with hills & weight... lol

    Happy to change the itinerary to include some cool local places, lookouts etc to check out :)

    If anyone needs more info, just holler...

    DAY 1 - SATURDAY 19th MARCH 2016​

    Gold Coast (QLD)
    Murwillumbah (NSW)
    Grafton (F)
    Walcha (F)

    Total time - 7.5hrs on the bike
    Total day kms - 518kms
    Fuel stops - (F) Grafton, Walcha
    Accommodation - Aspley Arms Hotel
    Address: 33 N Derby St, Walcha NSW 2354
    Phone:(02) 6777 2502
    Single rooms $65

    DAY 2 - SUNDAY 20th MARCH 2016 ​
    Walcha (F)
    East Gresford
    Singleton (F)
    Putty (Rd)
    Kurrajong Hills
    Mt Victoria
    Hampton (F) OR Katoomba (??)
    Jenolan (Caves)

    Total time- 8.5hrs on the bike
    Total day kms - 585kms
    Fuel stops - (F) Singleton, Hampton
    Accommodation - Jenolan Caves Guesthouse (Backapacker accom)
    PH: (02)63593900, $65 night

    DAY 3 - MONDAY 21st MARCH​
    *This day will include a Jenola Cave tour from 9am-11am. Approx cost for caving $50.

    Jenolan (Caves)
    Oberon (F)
    cANBERRA - Stromlo (Paddys River Rd) (F)
    Canberra lookout - Mount Ainslie Drive
    Jindabyne (F)
    Thredbo (F)

    Total time- 5.5hrs on the bike
    Total day kms - 468kms
    Fuel stops - (F) Canberra, Jindabyne/Thredbo
    Accommodation - Thredbo YHA
    Address 2 Buckwong Place, Thredbo, 2625 NSW
    Phone (+612) 6457 6376
    $36 night, 4 shared bunks

    DAY 4 - TUESDAY 22nd MARCH​
    Thredbo (F)
    Tawonga (F)
    Lakes Entrance (F)

    Total time- 7.1hrs on the bike
    Total day kms - 430kms
    Fuel stops - (F) Tawonga, Thredbo, Lakes Entrance
    Accommodation - Riviera Backpackers Hostel, Phone:(03) 5155 2444
    Address: 669/671 Princes Hwy, Lakes Entrance VIC 3909
    $30 night, 4 shared bunks


    Lakes Entrance
    Tyers (F)
    Melbourne (F)

    Total time - 6hrs on the bike
    Total day kms - 357kms
    Fuel stops - (F) Tyers, Melbourne
  2. #2 Andrew West, Mar 16, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2016
    FYI day 2 is also the Black Dog ride destination at the Grey Gums café on the Putty Rd, so expect extra traffic of all sorts and will more than likely be heavily policed. In saying that looks like a great ride you have planned and wishing you a safe and enjoyable run (y)
  3. Do the Oxley on day 2 if you like riding awesome roads. Myself and a handful of netriders will be in the area so might see you around.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Not long before the big adventure starts.... Ride safe and post some pics if you can or at least take some to share when the trip is done and dusted. Hopefully some of the Netrider folk will join you for a leg or two.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  5. That's handy to note! I forgot about it :D Maybe I'll swing past and have a look. Cheers!!
  6. +1 for this. We'd love to see something of your journey ValvolineValvoline. I hope the trip is everything you want it to be and more of that!
  7. Just having a quick look at day 3 (I'm in Canberra) and I get 475km without adding in Paddys River Rd (doing the loop?) and Mt Ainslie. I expect that will take longer than 5.5 hours. If you aren't leaving until about midday, you will be arriving in Thredbo after dark. Watch for roos!
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. So far on the trip....
    • Bumped into a rider ol'mate in the middle of nowhere.
    • Discovered touring pants aren't the best for bush walking.
    • Walcha has one of the best home made pizza places (Cafe Amor) - definitely made with country love.
    • big grey kangaroos CAN jump over you.
    • putty road is quite the biker's road! (Did bump into the Black Dog Ride).
    • detours are always great to play havoc on your fuel & time calcs.
    • the blue mountains DO look blue X-P
    • Jenolan Caves ARE worth visiting at least once!!

    Wonder what else is gonna eventuate ! :D
    Over & out!!

    Attached Files:

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  9. I really like those photos, ValvolineValvoline! Jenolan Caves and surrounds are particularly beautiful aren't they. Good to know your first couple of days have started the trip on an excellent note.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Great pics ValvolineValvoline and you are making good progress with the trip and adventure. Put a few of your favourite pics up in -- "photo(s) from your ride" . go Forums then Photographers corner then Photos from your ride if your have a laptop with you. This is where we all post pics and so it will be seen and enjoyed by the whole Netrider clan.and you might eget more riders joining in the ride... ride safe.
    • Like Like x 1
  11. No laptop for me! So I'll post them once I can when I get to Melb :p cheers!
  12. Well it was inevitable.... When the only "waterproof" part of your waterproof gear is the packaging it came in!! X-/ Two days of drizzle was putting a fizzle in my mood... Resorted to plastic bags in my boots (hehe).
    Even with the shitty drizzly wet foggy and slippery weather has finally opened up and given me glorious dry (mostly) roads to wring my throttle! :D .
    And just in time... Mt Beaut-y! through Hotham into Omeo.

    Attached is the latest biker photo p0rn.... Pity landscapes don't attach well.

    Nothing nicer than enjoying the cool breeze in the arvo sun, next to a bubbling brook in an Omeo park. (Coincidentally - if anyone is camping, there's free camping at Omeo creek a street away behind the petrol station. Good services public toilets and also a natural "swimming pool" in the creek).
    image. image. image. image. image. image.
    Now to decide where to go tomorrow since I've changed my mind and gonna skip the south coast (Lakes entrance) a miss and enter Melb via the north....

    Peace out!

    Attached Files:

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  13. Great trip your having ValvolineValvoline, did some of those roads 6 weeks ago, awesome time, not a lot of options from Omeo, however if you were coming from Bright there's heaps of roads into Melbourne through the King Valley to Mansfield, Bonnie Doon and a choice of roads into Healesville. Happy travels and keep up the pics
    • Like Like x 1
  14. image.

    Day 1 - dept the Sunny GC towards Walcha. Full of pre-trip gitters & praying to the weather gods for a favorable time other than having to sacrifice an animal offering....

    Ride through Nimbin (yes, smelled the sweet pungent smell of freshly burnt canabis!) :rolleyes:
    Onto Lismore, Casino and through the straight & exciting road that is the Slumberzzzzland (Summerland Way) to Grafton for an obligatory fuel stop. :oldman:
    Not that the endless pine plantations aren't pretty to look at; it's just that for such a long piece of straight road, something more visually stimulating would be swell.... For a game I Resorted to counting red and blue cars... Desperate. I know.

    By Grafton was hanging out for the welcome Armidale Road twisters through the Nymbio-Binderay nat park & Nimboida forests ! :cool:

    Stopped through these for a photo op, & have a chat to a known rider :)

    Late-lunching was done at Ebor. Cute little cafe "Fusspots", where burgers are juicy and napkin worthy. It's worth the 1km side trip stopping by Ebor falls too.
    image. image. image.

    The road condition between Grafton & Armidale is ok to slightly good in parts. Potholes tend to be filled but can be bumpy in parts. Just gotta be good at picking your lines in corners. ;)

    From Armidale after fuel to Uralla and Walcha. This stretch of road although fairly boring, has some beautiful rolling hill vistas with quaint older style homesteads!

    • Walcha now has a 24hr pay yourself petrol station which is handy. :D
    • You can get an awesome home made pizza at Cafe Amor (gf too!).
    • Walcha is one of the best world's wool quality growing regions.
    • Walcha has a "boob" post... (What the!?) lol

    image. image.


    One successful first day!! :D
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  15. DAY 2 - Sunday
    Walcha to Jenolan Caves:

    Today was the biggest day on my schedule so early to rise.
    Woke up to a relatively nippy morning, with fog and that fine drizzle-mist that soaks through any gloves. Nothing a pair of kitchen rubber gloves can't fix ! ;)

    Glad I added every liner I had plus a light feather down jacket under all my gear. The transformation into a Michellin man has started and will progressively get rolly-pollier as I travel further south.

    By Gloucester (Bucketts Way) lived up to its name since it Buckett-ed down for about 50kms. Just stopped long enough to take a photo at a prominent lookout. image.

    Dungog to Singleton (Glendonbrook & Bingleburra Rds) was more fun than I'd like to admit with ridiculously tight & private corners. Unfortunately a little too wet and gravelly to go skitzo (ones 5km roadwork deviation too) but there's definitely no boys in blue on this stretch, which makes up for the road crappier parts. :rolleyes:

    I was Big Kev excited when I finally saw the sign for "putty road" for I've heard it's legendary status.... Didn't disappoint!! :D
    At the grey Gumtree cafe is where I met up with the lovely mob from Black Dog ride, before having to press on with the journey.

    I was on fumes of an oily rag by the time I coasted into the first petrol station of Kurrajong... Oh, what a lovely sight that was!! Didn't fancy having to push the motorbike for kms....

    Once I hit the Blue mountains it surprised me how good the road conditions were; albeit full of road works.... And average speed cameras... Which I think I learnt the hard way :oops: having WAY too much fun coming down the pass. Poo. Made up for it by using a swlfie stick for the first time to capture the mountain range...
    I can't believe how fast people go along this area though!!


    Leaving the biggest mountain range I've seen this far and going inland to see the worlds oldest cave system :) - Jenolan caves.

    Here I worked out that big greys CAN completely clear you on a bike... Brown pants moment. But once riding down into the valley and riding through the actual cave's arch & hearing the potential mighty deep lawnmower noise my bike could make was a highlight!

    Nice end to a 10hr riding day. =D

    image. image. image. image.
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  16. What an adventure you are on. I have never seen a 390 that loaded up before!!! Jealous, me? ...never ... keep the photos and write ups coming.....:)
  17. Caz, I'd never seen a poor 390 that loaded too! Lol it does struggle a bit up hills and passing but apart from that it's ... Ok.
    I'm sure other bigger ktms will be just fine! ;-)
  18. Day 3 Monday
    Jenolan Caves to Jindabyne.

    Due to not being able to sleep, too much fog, and the roads being still too wet, I made the best of it by getting up and taking myself through the self-guided cave walks. After dressing like the Michellin's man wife, with everything I owned, the walks were well worth it! The place was deserted from tourists and only the critters finding food dropped by tourists in the tracks the earlier day.
    This place is definitely something special & well worth a side tour.

    Leaving Jenolan with a obligatory fuel stop at Oberon, I had to layer some more due to clouds closing in and deciding to bucket down for half of Abecrombie Rd to Gouldburn.

    image. The road overall was in pretty good condition for a road so well used by logging trucks. The only real iffy part from pot holes and loose gravel was the Bald hill (gouldburn crossing).


    The giant turbines were a give away that I was getting close to Gouldburn, the skies gave way to blue (thankfully!!) and I was able to dry out a little in the sun, just like the magpies were doing!

    To make up time I decided to head down the highway (God forbid!) but I did get a nice surprise when I came across Lake George. I've never seen such a huge flat area framed by a wave-wall of hills with more wind turbines on top - no surprises to know I was being blown all over the road on this stretch!

    Canberra was my next stop... Pretty and orderly except for the sheer amount of roadworks on bypasses (can you tell the politicians live here? :p) which sent my gps and sense of direction out the back window... I gave up on finding stromlo but ended up seeing Mt Ainslie (Canberra lookout) & Parliament House. image.

    After fortifying myself for the next boring bit... Canberra to Cooma down the Monaro hwy (how Australian!) I set off to try not to fall asleep along this stretch by counting the number of Utes I saw. Thrilling stuff!

    By the time the stretch between Cooma into Jindabyne came along, I was downright bored and miffed because I saw a group of touring (much larger) bikes that were easily cruising through the wind and drizzle at about 1,30+ clicks ... Something I can only dream about on my overpowered lawnmower!! *sigh* * when I grow up I wanna be....*

    The arrival into Jindabyne was welcome and lifted my mood, since I managed to catch up to the bigger bikes once we hit the twisties around the lake :)
    And I arrived early enough to unload the beastie and take a side trip into Charlotte's pass and Perisher! :D yay.

    I played with glee, regardless of the drizzle because the weight of the luggage was dumped at the accommodation! apart from some hot-looking but bored firemen at Charlottes pass, waiting on stanby for an injured bush walker, the park was empty and I let it rip in stretches... Tee hee hee. I haven't smiled that big & wide for a while!! Best recommendation of road I've had!

    After a warm and hearty meal at the local pub, I crashed out.

    Just glad after every storm, there's a rainbow. Tomorrow will be interesting... image. image.

    Attached Files:

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  19. Day 4
    Jindabyne to Omeo

    Another day started drizzly, grey, & cold so I decided to push on towards Melb. Didn't bother stopping at Thredbo village for photos since it was too wet for pictures.
    Thankfully the rain gods smiled upon me later down the road, for a nice looksy of the national park and lookouts :)


    By the time I hit Corryong for fuel, the sun was quite brilliant and had dried most the gear. I was meant to take Murray River Road to see Lake Hume, but missed the turn and ended up taking the Murray River highway instead... Bugger. Interestingly though, this highway is quite scenic, and has more twisties than one would imagine. Which was a pleasant surprise!

    Instead of taking yet another highway to Mt Beauty, I took the tune off to Gundowring (Gundowring Road) - which there's nothing there as I found out (missed my rest stop), but was great because this area is copless :D The road is pretty straight, but most parts are wide and well marked following the dairy beef cattle valley, and next to pretty creeks. Here you can really open up the throttle without much stressing ;-)

    Mt Beauty was another fuel stop and a long rest with some good food from a local cafe. Longer break since I've heard the climb up to Hotham was a doozy.

    The climb started off well and got better as the height increased. The biggest transformation of the landscape came close to 1000m. From typical Australian woodland to almost bare moonscape with rock outcrops.
    The wind whips up and drops temperature as well as the crispness.
    The lack of vegetation gives way to the open vistas of crinkle cut mountain tops and winding roads cut into rock.

    image. image. image.

    It was only on the way down the mountain that I realised all the voices in my helmet fell silent just to absorb the amazing riding through unparalleled views!

    The rest of the day was just floating down into Omeo to the Hilltop hotel.

    Why is it about climbing mountains that capture people's imaginations? What ever it is... Riding is prob the best way to do it! :D

    Attached Files:

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