Thursday, 1 April 2004

Our favourite rides - some background

This page not finished - feel free to let us have your description of any of our favourite rides....

As always, click here to let us know that you are coming by email, or phone/SMS Stephe on 0412 301 616.

A Future Canberra Trip (to be led by Paul Jenzen): Just to fill you in, I went on an awesome 3 day trip to: Thredbo for some downhill MTB action, then the next day we rode the Jindabyne mountain bike area near the lake and then the following day rode some of the single tracks at Sparrow Hill in Canberra.

I’m keen to head back to Canberra for two days of riding – one at Sparrow Hill and the other at Majura Pines. Would head down on a Saturday morning and then back Sunday after lunch. Let me if the ‘shut up and ride’ crew are keen to do this?

Old Great North Road (South): Middling difficutly, with some technical bits, a good long ride (52kms) with time to stretch out the legs, but also have some fun punting around.

90% of this ride is pretty much similar to the basic Manly Dam ride or easier.

We start with a long fire trail up a hill, which turns out to be a lot better than it sounds - an excellent, slow and careful warm up.

Then it's into a good singles track - the Wisemans Ferry ridge line (or Old Great North Road proper) - with lots of up and down and the occasional rock - pretty much all but one or two sections entirely rideable - some bits (where we've done photos in the past) are a challenge, and we generally hang around and have a go at them, then walk up when we're done...).

Then it's out on a great singles track - which we call "Spiders" in honour of the first time we did it, when we had to stop every 100m to clear spider webs from the track) - which is all good (some slight bits like the uphill section of the Manly boardwalk, but without the boardwalk!). That track turns into a drop down to a creek - which is a very technical drop (short and sweet). Some of our folk walk sections of this (say ten minutes or so down), but it's also relatively safe to attack (not that anyone has yet cleared the entire section).

A long, relatively flat ride follows (say, 5 kms?) across some paddocks and along a road, back to the bottom of the Wisemans Ferry hill.

We then go up Shepherds Gully, which is a long (1km?) rocky hill - but a great and doable challenge (not too steep - generally, a clean line all the way through it).

We then arrive at Devines Hill (the top of the white sandy road from Wisemans Ferry).

Finally, we cruise back along the Old Great North Road singles track, and then roll down the long firetrail to home (at high speed, with stupid grins on our faces).

We loooooove it as a ride, but - while it's overall rating would be easy to slightly hard - there are a couple of sections that are at least as challenging as the manly dam boardwalk stuff (on the ridge line singles track (one or two), and then on 'spiders' singles track (one or two, plus the descent).

See here for a recent ride report (and the separate photos page has shots of all the major bits of track, particularly page 2):

and here for an annotated profile:

Six Foot Track, Blue Mountains: [Ed: we found this one pretty boring, to be honest - the beginning is great, but after that... The following description is from someone keener than us! Our ride link is here:]

A potentially epic journey from the Explorer's Tree at Katoomba, to Jenolan Caves and back. Return trip is of the order of 80kms, but - if the pace is insufficient to be back by dark - there is a turn around point at MiniMini Saddle.

If you're not driving, a train apparently leaves Central at 5.48am and gets to Blackheath at 8:05am. Drivers can either meet the train folk at Blackheath, or at 9am at Ford Reserve which is bottom of Megalong Rd near the Nellies Glen Road. It has a picnic area and toilets there (Lat/Long -33.7315,150.2350).

A high level GPS plot:, and some further information at (links to maps and profiles for the cool runnings marathon race along the six foot track). Another perspective:


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