Sunday, February 2, 2014

Short ride in the Blue Mountains

I've ridden through the Blue Mountains many times usually going somewhere else but today I decided I'd go for a short ride around the Blue Mountains and have a look at several of the lookouts. It was going to be 33°C today so what better place to go to, its about 10°C cooler up in the mountains.

For the non Australian readers the Blue Mountains is a dissected Plateau carved out of sandstone bedrock. The mountains range are not very high as far as mountains are concerned and range up to around 1189m (3901 ft) and have precipices dropping away suddenly of up to 760m (2493 ft). Eucalyptus trees grow throughout the valleys of the ranges and the oil released by these into the atmosphere creates the blue haze which the mountains are named after.

I'd first turned off the Great Western Hwy at Wentworth Falls and checked out some of the lookouts along here. The views were sensational.
Entry at Wentworth Falls

View from Wentworth Falls Lookout

Bike only parking at the lookout, cars had to park hundreds of metres away

After Wentworth Falls lookout I headed back to the great western and on into Leura where I turned off and headed down around Cliff Drive which winds its way around the cliff faces until it comes out at Echo Point with the famous 3 sisters.





I had to park the bike and walk down to the viewing platform to take in the views of the three sisters. If your not in the know the 3 sisters are three rock formations that tower above the Jamison Valley. This is one of the most visited tourist attractions in the blue mountains and it was very busy today. I don't normally like touristy spots like this but I made an exception.
Echo Point

The 3 Sisters

I was standing next to a family and I recognised their kiwi accents and started chatting with them. They were from Wellington but had moved to Brisbane recently. Lovely people they were. The father said to me "Hey you been arrested yet" Looking at my jacket. I said "luckily we don't have those ridiculous laws here thankfully". His wife was wondering what her husband was getting at then she noticed my boots and jacket. Then she said" I hope they don't have any spy cameras here otherwise when we get back to Queensland we could be arrested for hanging with bikies". I had a big laugh when she said that.


Jamison Valley

Hydro Majestic
Continuing on from Katoomba I went past the old Hydro Majestic building at Medlow Bath. It's been shut for years and it is having reconstruction works done. The views out the back are amazing. I eventually turned off just before Blackheath and went and had a quick look at Evans lookout. Again amazing views of buffs and vistas.






It's smee





Then it was into Blackheath and I headed down to look at the lookout at Govetts Leap. I hadn't been here before and was greeted again with even more amazing views. There was a strong wind blowing here and the waterfall was actually blowing up into the air instead of going down. I spent about 20 minutes here just looking at the views before deciding it was time to head home. I decided to head off to Bell and cross to the Bells line for the trip home and do a few more twisties on the trip back. There wasn't much traffic and it was a quick trip home. As I dropped down out of the mountains the temperature began to rise and it was getting uncomfortable. Lucky it didn't take long and I was home in about 30min with about 220kms on the clock.

Govetts Leap

Waterfall at Govetts Leap

12 comments:

  1. looks like a great sunday ride up there great pics but thought it might have been a bit blacker after the fires there
    and yes it was a bit hot today for a ride
    glad i was working around the house [not]

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    1. It was a good short ride mate, with a little site seeing thrown in. I hadn't been to some of those places before. The fires were around between Mt Victoria and Bell and along the Bell's line which I took a couple of photos of on a previous post.

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  2. My, my, what a stunning scenery. You live in a beautiful area.

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    1. It sure is beautiful Sonja and its only about an hours ride to get there from my house.
      It's funny, I used to think that the Blue Mountains were boring as they are fairly flat. On our second trip to New Zealand whilst looking at the beautiful snow capped mountain ranges there it suddenly came to me that they may not be as majestic as the mountains in NZ, but they have a beauty all of there own which isn't found anywhere else. From that day on I had a new appreciation for the natural beauty of these mountains.

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  3. Such beautiful views. Those mountains are taller than what we cross to get to the coast. Our coast range tops out at under 1000ft when heading to Newport.

    I chuckle that you have a 3 sisters as we do too here in Oregon. Will have to take a picture for you.

    Silly question..... With the eucalyptus haze, could you smell eucalyptus in the air while riding? Inquiring minds want to know, lol.

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    1. Hi Brandy
      Please post up some pics of your 3 sisters as I'd be interested to see what they look like.
      You couldn't smell the eucalyptus in the air but you can see the effect it has with the blue haze.

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  4. Some pretty nice views over there. Cool!
    Echo Point looks like a lovely stop!

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  5. Hi Walter
    The views are pretty spectacular, you could look at them for hours. Echo point is one of the more touristy spots with easy access with a cafe/shop.

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  6. Hey Steve,

    Wow that's one nice little ride you took there! I love the Blue Mountains and visit at least once a year, never been on the bike tho cause the mountain roads scare me a bit.

    Is the Hydro ever going to open again, I went and high tea there once years ago and seriously I dont even remember the tea cause the view is just amazing from the windows!!

    Have you ever been on that little train thingy there, it goes straight down a cliff face and if you are brave enough to look while going down that offers some amazing views too.

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    1. Hi Brenda
      I believe the Hydro Majestic is supposed to reopen at some stage. I think I heard somewhere that it was undergoing a 20 mill make over. Looks like the tea and scones prices have just gone up.

      I haven't been on the train recently, but I think i remember going on it when I was a kid. Thats what I was doing on the weekend, scoping out places I could take the kids to. There's lots of good bush walking to be had up there just have to wait for the little on to get a little bigger first.

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  7. Steve, beautiful pictures. We had a great trip to the Blue Mountains in Feb 2010 and thoroughly enjoyed the riding -less so Katoomba as a place to stay.

    http://tarsnakes.com.au/2010/02/

    All the best for the NZ trip and look forward to the ride report.

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  8. Wow, I must visit there next tour.

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