Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

My Evaluation Of The "top Rides" Nsw & Se Qld.

Discussion in 'Roads, Touring, Journeys, and Travel' started by dobbo, Nov 7, 2012.

  1. This is my own opinion of the "Top Rides" as listed in the Australia Motorcycle Atlas (Third Edition 2007) by Peter Thoeming.

    Plan: To ride from Wagga Wagga (NSW) to Toowoomba (QLD) return in 7 days, trying to take in as many of the "Top Rides" listed.

    Motorcycle: 2007 Yamaha XJR 1300

    Rider: 44 yr old male with 'Average' road riding skills.

    Accommodation: Swag & 1 night at a mate's place.

    Day 1: (682km)
    Wagga to Goulburn via Hume Hwy.
    Ride 28: Goulburn to Oberon
    Good ride, tar the whole way, narrows down around 'Abercrombie River'.

    Oberon - Lithgow

    Ride 16: 'Bells Line Rd' Lithgow - Richmond. (#82km)
    My opinion only.... boring!
    Speed restricted to the max, although nice scenery. I got stuck behind a truck for around 20km, so just a little frustrating. Would appeal to the 'Latte set'. Alright for a Sunday ride to take the missus out for a coffee somewhere. :sleep:

    Ride 31: Putty Rd. (#180km)
    Windsor - Broke.

    Started off slow, then nice road (After Colo Heights) with plenty of twisties. (Made my day better after riding 'Bells Line Rd').

    Had to pull up and spend the night beside the road (Trucks on the exhaust brakes around every 20 minutes all night long)


    Day 2: (640km)

    Finished off Putty Rd, then crossed to Broke for fuel, then down to Wollombi.
    this stretch is very narrow, watch for oncoming traffic!

    Ride : 39. Wollombi Rd
    Wollombi - Cessnock.
    Wollombi to Cessnock nice bit of road
    But from Cessnock - Kurri Kurri - Maitland (60 / 80 kph most the way through this area) was a drama for me, no GPS so trying to work out maps and a lack of street signage I wasted alot of time here.

    Ride:18 Bucketts Way.
    Pacific Hwy - Krambach
    Nice easy riding, I found it enjoyable.
    Had a feed at 'Roadies' @ Gloucester (recommended by another rider I'd met), Not bad with a bit of stuff to look at.

    Krambach -Taree - Wauchope (Not War-chop-ee, apparently ;))

    Ride: 30 (Oxley Hwy)
    Wauchope - Walcha
    Fantastic!! (y)
    Hugh mix of road, from twisties to nice flowing roads, and good tar.
    Made it to Walcha by around 5pm, and was told to check out the 'Apsley Falls' campground (NPWS) 19km East if Walcha back down the Oxley Hwy.
    @ $5 a night you get toilets, tables, BBQ's and fantastic walks and views.
    Here is some pics (smoke haze from bushfires burning to the north)



    More to follow :)
    • Like Like x 7
  2. Day 3 (464km)
    After a night of dreaming about the Oxley Hwy and how fantastic it was to ride :happy:
    I took a stroll around the rim of Apsley falls, to stretch the legs for another day in the saddle.

    After a chat and a cuppa with a holidaying couple from Kiama, I got off to a late start.

    From Apsley falls it was back to Walcha, then through to Uralla and Armidale for some breaky and fuel.

    Out along Waterfall way, is a nice ride with a few waterfalls to stop and look at if you need a break.
    I checked out Ebor falls.


    Then it was a right turn for
    Ride 36: Waterfall way (Dorrigo)
    This was another fantastic piece of tar, riding along the ridge line all the way into Dorrigo; where I had a pie (or 2) at Juan's Cafe (which boasts to being the 'smallest motorcycle museum in the world') which is very interesting. A couple of local's informed me that the 'roadworks to the east is heavily policed by Hwy Ptrl'. Then down to check out 'Dangar falls'

    Heading out of town towards Bellingen, I had a DR650 with knobbies fitted, sitting on my tail as we moved slowly through the road works (I am greatful that he/she was not a dick and pass me throwing rocks up (y))
    Once out of the road works, there are wonderful twisties coming down off the hill, suddenly the DR650 over took me and charged off, me on the XJR with double the cc's still couldn't keep up :eek:,
    but also owning a DR650 myself and knowing how well it handles the corners, I was impressed even more by this machine and the skills of that other rider.
    Once through Bellingen, I decided to take the Pacific Hwy through Coffs Harbour to Grafton.
    However; I didn't realise that there is a sh*tload of roadworks going on, and to top it off I was followed by a Hwy Ptrl car for around 20km of it, changing from 60 - 80kph.
    Then it was Summerland Way heading north towards Casino.
    But around 5:30pm I started spotting a few roos beside the road and decided to call it a day, pulling into a roadside stop, 25 km south of Grafton. Grey Nomads on scene is a good indication that there may be nothing further north.
    • Like Like x 1
  3. Day 4: (457km)

    Departed the rest area around 7:30 am, then to Casino for breakfast at Kibbles Bakery.
    Then off to Kyogle with the intention of riding the 'Lions road', I wanted to check with the Tourist Information Centre and find out if it was a dirt road. Instead I was told it was closed due to work being conducted on culverts through the area.
    So a quick rethink then I headed towards Murwillumbah. I found this road to have a few potholes, but generally pretty good.
    I decided to ride down to Nimbin for a look and took the first turn to Nimbin, this road was a little more than a tarred goat track, and narrow..... almost collected by a 4WD that needed the whole road way more that me.. :banghead:
    Into Nimbin, is an interesting place, with people sitting around trying to solve the problems of the world!

    Then out of there to Murwillumbah.
    Then Ride: 10 (Numinbah Valley Road)
    Sensational (y) this is one to remember!!

    Great twisty road with the border crossing right onto of the hills with fantastic views; So good that I even met the 'Ferrari Club' doing a tour also.


    The border crossing is right on a crest, and I'd imagine could have been used as a launch pad in the past. However, it has 'speed cameras' facing in both directions right at the border, with 80kph on the NSW side and 70kph on the QLD side.

    From here it was down to 'Natural Bridge' for a wander through the 'rain forest' to check out a sink hole / water fall.

    I then continued riding north, then turned off towards Canungra (aaah, memories of my old army days here :yuck:)
    Did a loop of Mount Tambourine (Ride: 8)
    This is an interesting ride with very steep sections and fantastic views, coming down the other side towards Canungra, I was meet by a lone traffic light to indicate a narrow one lane section of road.
    Further down, there are narrow sections of single lane with 'Give way signs' on the uphill side. WTF :banghead:
    Never seen this before, as usuallly the traffic heading down alway has the right of way.

    Into Canungra Hotel for a feed and a chat to the bar staff, who told me it was 35 degrees out side. After lunch I grabbed some fuel then heading to Beaudesert, before turning north on
    Mt Lindsay Hwy (Ride:9)
    Much of a none event here.
    Into Brisbane before heading to Toowoomba.
    As being a tight ar*e and not having an 'E-tag' I decided to skip the Logan Mwy (M2) and take Granards Road at Archerfield, to get to the Warrego Hwy.
    From here to Toowoomba, is pretty standard Hwy slabbing it, but it was stinking hot and a heap of smoke from the bushfires burning around Gatton.
    Arrived at my mate's place in Toowoomba. dirty & stinking after no shower the last 4 days, so a quick shower then a few cool refreshments to end a top day.
    • Like Like x 4
  4. welcome to my neck of the woods. If you get the chance you should check out the road between crows nest and Esk. Even if you don't get the chance to do the road, the ride to crows nest is worth it to see the valley of the diamonds. Your photos would suggest you might appreciate the views from the big look out there.

    Great write up, I'm planning to do waterfall way myself during the christmas holidays and you've given me a few ares to avoid and a few places i should check out.
  5. Thanks for the write-up Dobbo. I only just found my copy of the motorcycle atlas the other day and realised although I've already done many of the roads around Brisbane since moving here, there's still a lot in northern NSW I need to check out.

    Only made it as far as Grafton last weekend (though that was a 750km route through the mountains on a 250). So think I might have to plan on spending a couple of days to get to some of the roads (and sights) you described.
  6. Good write up Dobbo.
  7. Now the return trip ! Toowoomba to home. (3 Days to go)
    Day 5: (548km) Toowoomba to Bendemeer, via Texas.

    I had a late start to the day, departing at 11am (10am in the banana bender state ;)) after recovering from a self induced headache, thank the gods that the temps were down today.

    5 minutes after leaving my mate's place, I almost got cleaned up by a stupid b*#ch in a car coming out of a petrol station, she was totally oblivious to what had happened, and still is.

    I headed further west along the 'Gore Hwy' mixing with the road trains until I turned south at Milmerran.
    Then it was fantastic fast flowing section of unreal crests with superb tar and plenty of vision to the sides scanning for roos. I managed to push the extremities of the state speed limit :D and maintained that anti gravity feeling over each crest (like an MX track just for road bikes) . Did not see a single vehicle for the next 70km.

    I crossed the border at 'Texas', where there is nice camping spot down by the river, once again inhabited by the Grey Nomad army.


    Then down to Ashford, where I chatted to two blokes from Tweed on a V-strom (DL650) and a Tiger 800, who were out exploring all the back roads.
    I hit Inverell just in time for a festival with a pushbike race involved some how, but with a Hwy Ptrl bike prowling around I thought I'd move on. :sneaky:

    Then down to Uralla, where I had some dinner, an apparently there was some type of bike fest / poker run happening with around 400 Harley in the place, with Bikies, Bikers and wannabes (or as the young bird in the shop described some of them - ' Wild Hogs' :ROFLMAO:)

    Then it was down to Bendemeer for the night camping behind the showground near the river.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Day 6: Bendemeer to Sofala (640km)

    Bendemeer to Walcha was an easy 50km (Oxley Hwy) then time to Refuel, before heading down 'Thunderbolts way'.

    Ride 35: Thunderbolts way (I have to say this was the worst road I rode on for my whole trip, poor road surface)
    Walcha to Gloucester.

    Now it was quite chilly and with a light drizzle of rain, as I departed Walcha, with a mix of Harley riders travelling through on their way home from Uralla.
    The first 42.3km of road was sh*t-house, with even the potholes having potholes (now I generally ride off-road bikes, so this would have been fantastic on my DR650, but the XJR didn't like it :mad:)
    The local roads maintenance need to stop farking around and just repair this stretch. Thank god I wasn't on a Harley.

    The rest of the trip was okay, with a stop at Carson's lookout to have a break.


    On the way to Gloucester, my bike started to cough and splutter and ran like a pig, so I pulled into the servo at Gloucester, borrowed some hose and dumped the fuel from my tank, must of got a bad batch at Walcha :banghead: ; cause after I refilled it in Gloucester, it ran superbly for the rest of my trip.

    I then chased two bloke on a GSXR & a Triumph 955 down to Stroud then over to Dungog, before having an early lunch in the pub with them, one being local gave me directions to Denman.

    Refuelled at Denman, then time to hit the BYLONG VALLEY WAY.

    BYLONG VALLEY WAY (not listed in my motorcycle atlas, maybe a newer version has it ???)

    Maybe I should keep this to myself: but it was fantastic, maybe even the best road of my trip :D
    It is around 180km of Unreal riding with good tar, some tight twisties, long flowing roads and great scenery.


    I now know where all those old Hyundai Excels went to live out there days, they're everywhere :ROFLMAO:
    Just watch out for 4WD towing boats along this road.

    Into Rylstone / Kandos for fuel (Nice looking places, will be back here at a later date)
    Then onto Sofala, where I had a cool ale in the pub and then camped down near the river.
    (Will have to take my dirtbike here for a bit of exploring)


    • Like Like x 3
  9. Day 7: (Last day) Sofala to Wagga.

    Sofala to Bathurst is a nice run with good tar and hilltop riding.

    Did the lap of Mount Panaroma (Hardie Ferrodo, or what ever it's called nowadays :LOL:)

    With a 60kph speed limit, speed camera signs and cars coming the other direction, I could only dream what it would be like to unleash on this place.

    I then headed down toward Cowra, making a detour at Woodstock to go via Wyangla Dam.



    Then down through Frogmore, Boorowa (best coffee for the whole trip here at the bakery ), Harden, Cootamundra, Junee and finally home to Wagga.

    A total of 3886km covered over the last seven days. (y)

    Then it was a day at home doing a few jobs then onto the DR650 for 5 days out western NSW, but that's another story! (here is a pic)
    • Like Like x 2
  10. yeah mate, just have to keep the other half happy and build a few brownie points then I am off.
    Usually do the long distance dirt trips into the out back, so this was a first for me, and was great going alone at my own pace. I found my road riding technique improved greatly by the time I got home.
    Thanks for reading.

  11. Sweet write up. must be a curse on the fuel around the Walcha area. There have been a few diaries now where riders, myself included, have had issues with their bike after fueling up around walcha.

    Loved the Bylong valley write up. It's been in the last two editions of the bike atlas, but only as a small paragraph at the end. Great to see you've given it the write up it deserved.
  12. #13 Unconnected, Nov 18, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2012
    Nice ride mate, how good is that ride from Nimbin-Murwillumbah-Nerang. One of my favorites for sure, scenary is amazing.
    Love that natural bridge pic, i was so confused as to what the hell a Natural Bridge was, but both times i went past were late afternoon so i didnt have the time to stop. But thanks for clearing that one up for me.
  13. Great thread! Very interesting stuff! Mrs and I are interested in doing some of this, maybe next year.
  14. You're a star:rofl:

    You've obviously spent all the brownies.
    That's why you can't come this weekend.
  15. You shoulda hung around at that time if you didn't have to be elsewhere. At night is when the glow worms are visible.

    Minyon Falls is another great spot a bit further south. Only been there in a car and it has been years so I don't know how a bike would go. I think it would depend on which way you go to get there. There's a camp ground close called Rummery Park ( http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/nationalparks/parkCamping.aspx?id=N0699 ) and a Cafe close by ( http://thewrensrestminyonfalls.com.au/ ).
  16. thanks for all the replies.
    also found some great info regarding trips on a blog
    motorcycle paradise. this might also give some handy tip.
  17. Thanks for the write up mate - great read.