Saturday, April 27, 2013

The Royal National Park and Seacliffe Bridge

Last Sunday I managed to get out and have a bit of fun on the bike and you couldn't have asked for a more perfect day. Saturday was bucketing down with rain, with showers predicted along the coast Sunday morning which didn't eventuate and it was a sunny warm 20°C day. First stop was into the city to take some photos for Gary France's blog challenge, then on down south to the Royal National Park which I haven't been to in a few years. Warning this post is pretty heavy on photos and videos.

I pulled over just before the Anzac bridge and put the Gopro on. Anzac bridge was named to honour the Anzac's(Australian and New Zealand army corps) and has a bronze statue of an Aussie soldier facing west and on the opposite side is a New Zealand soldier facing East.

Anzac Bridge and Aussie Digger

New Zealand Soldier
Here's a video of me riding from Anzac bridge through the city and across Sydney Harbour Bridge. If you've never been on the Harbour bridge then this may be of interest er..... or not. The harbour bridge starts at about 3:30.

Under the Bridge
I then turned off at Milsons Point and went down under the bridge and took in some of the sights. I think the picture below is my new favourite picture of my bike.

After this I decided I'd cross back over the bridge again and get some close up pics of my bike in front of the Opera House. I'd put the gopro in 5 sec photo mode for the short trip across the bridge. I finally go a chance to do some legal lane splitting in the city. At the moment our elected officials have allowed legal lane splitting in the north part of the city as a trial. On approaching the Opera house entrance a security guard popped out in front of me. The conversation with this nice kiwi went something like this.


Security Guard: Hey Bro where you going...hey you got one of those gopros, you filming?
ME: Yeah kinda, I'm taking photos.

Security Guard: Bro those things are cool.

ME: Mate I want to go over there and take some photos' of my bike in front of the Opera House

Security Guard: No Bro I can't let you in, you'll have to park over there and take them ay, Sorry Bro.

The location the nice kiwi guard had told me was shite, you couldn't take a photo from behind the guardhouse. So after a bit of thinking of what to do, I noticed there was a van parked on the footpath with lots of space around it and no one around. So I approached the security guard again and asked very nicely if I could push my bike in front of the van and take some pictures. He looked at it and said 'No problem bro'. So that's how I got my bike in there to take the photos.

Next stop on the way south was just near Sydney Airport. I turned off at Cooks River entrance near the Airport Radar tower. From here I watched the jets landing and taking off for the next 15 minutes.

Once getting down through the suburbs to Sutherland on the Princes Hwy I finally come to the turn off point for the Royal National park(Nasho to Sydney-siders). I noticed that there was a 50/50 mix of bikes going into the park as well as going past. Maybe they are going down to the waterfall turn off to get into the park. It makes sense as the top part near here is a bit on the rough side and a bit straight and boring to be honest. Its not until you get down to near the waterfall intersection that it get real twisty and fun.

Nasho Entrance

Warm up twisties
After a while you notice that the tree's start to change and get closer to the road. It looks a lot like a rain forest and the trees hang right across the road, blocking out most of the sun. The road looks very narrow and dark, hard to spot hazards especially with a dark visor. A bit dangerous in winter as the road doesn't get much sun and gets moss on it. The road was quite wet today as it was raining all Saturday and its still early when I came through.

I finally come out near Stanwell Tops to the lookout at Bald Hill. This is a place where bikers always meet. There are spectacular views all the way down the coast to Woolongong. This section of road through the national park and down to Woolongong is Sydney's version of the Great Ocean road on a much smaller and seemingly busier scale. Its also a place where you can hang/para glide from the cliff faces.

Seacliffe Bridge from Bald Hill Look out
It was pretty hard just to find a parking spot today. There were many bikes out today.

I think that AC/DC's biggest fan must have been out for a ride today. That paint job on this Spyder was just fantastic. So much attention to detail. I'd be scared to death of getting it stone chipped if I owned it.

I sat here in the sun warming myself just watching all the para gliders and bikes coming and going. It was just so relaxing I think I spent about an hour just watching.

It was now time for some lunch and I knew there were a few places south of the bridge to stop for lunch. One guy on a Blackbird I was talking to recommended the Scarborough Hotel. I thought that this sounded good, so thats where I headed for.

After riding over the bridge I stopped at the Scarborough Hotel for lunch. To say they were busy would be an understatement. The place was packed to the proverbial. I ordered a steak with chips and salad and it was a fantastic meal.

All in all a great day out for a ride. The royal national park is a bit like the Old Road in Sydney. Most likely a a good ride on a weekday but a cop magnet on weekends for bike riders.


  1. Hey, that might have been me taking off!
    Stanwell Tops was the spot that Laurance Hargreaves tested his model gliders back in the day. He didn't patent his ideas, but shared them. The Wright brothers, the French and Germans all benefited from his research. Such a pretty spot to do it too.

    1. Could have been you. Where you working and in Sydney last sunday at about 9:30am?

      The look out there is fantastic.

    2. Ah, maybe not me then.
      You forget how fast they are going. Sitting in the front, you are just driving them and everything seems to happen fairly slowly because it is all planned out, but it was probably doing 250-280km/h(156-175mph) there.
      Yeah, good photos too. Still looks nice and green down there.

  2. What an incredible day out! You made me feel exhusted just reading about it all ;-D

    Love the shots of bike near the bridge and that security guard looks like a pretty nice bloke, he musta been nice to let you put the bike there, I did think that it was on the pedestrian area when I first saw those shots.

    I didn't know about that look out and it looks spectacular .. the paragliding looks like too much fun!! I can see how you could spend a long time watching all the action going on up there.

    1. It was an incredible day out Brenda, it kinda just flew by and I didn't do a lot of riding, more sight seeing really.

  3. What a nice set of pictures. Love the one with the opera in the background. Nice catch! Glad the security guard played along.

    1. Yeah I thought the pictures came out really good, especially seeing as its just a point and shoot. I like the one under the bridge looking at the Opera House.

  4. Brilliant set of pics! That looks like a really good day out and isn't it so much nicer when the sun is shining.

    I've only ridden in Sydney once - lost in Friday peak period traffic with the temp around 36C - nightmare scenario, though we filtered all the time, not realising it wasn't legal.

  5. That is just the perfect day for a ride. Not too hot, not to chilly. Beautiful sunshine and blue sky.

    I can see why that one photo is your new favorite. Just perfect with the decorative railing and the opera house in the background. Good eye!