First up was riding up through the Blue mountains via the bell's line of road. I've always liked the area around Bilpin where the tree's are evergreen, with apple orchards all along the road side. You can even come up here and pick your own apples. There are plenty of fruit shops along here too selling apples, apple pie and anything with apple in it.
|Bilpin Post office & store|
I took a small detour down one of the dirt tracks to a lookout for Mt Banks. I didn't go all the way down but I still had some spectacular views of the canyon walls with Mt Banks on the left of that.
|Victoria Pass Motogp track|
The monument below was put there in 1832 when this section of road was built. The stone bridge was built by convict labour to cross the last point between the 2 ridges as the only way down from the mountains on the western escarpment and it was completed in 1832. It's pretty much unchanged today. There's a lot of stone work in that bridge. I wish they would upgrade the bridge to 2 lanes each way like the rest of the road here.
I soon turned off the great western highway and headed out towards Jenolan Caves. And started the long climb back up the ranges for the sudden drop down into the gorge where the caves are. No pics of the caves today as I've taken pics of them before you can find them here.
|Plenty of wildlife to be on the lookout for|
I arrived in Oberon for a quick fuel stop. Every time we've stopped here for fuel its been 20-30c dearer than anywhere else. Today I found out the BP in town was 6.5c per litre cheaper than the shell so if your riding through try the BP(soon to be caltex) first.
Rather than ride out through the boring bit to black springs I'd back tracked out the Jenolan Caves road to shooters hill road which takes you down onto the abercrombie road and Taralga. I love this bit of road its very scenic and also high speed(but also very good at cruising speed). The road is basically here for the logging trucks and is very wide and very smooth much unlike other roads around here. There was a couple of kangaroo's that had been hit and were laying on the road just over a crest which became a bit tricky to negotiate at speed.
|I was like brap, brap, brap.....lean over, then brap, brap. brap|
As I was doing a solo run today there wasn't anyone to take photo's of standing next to their bikes so I had to get in some of the shots. Here's my first selfie.
I got into town just before 12pm right on time for lunch. I was pretty hungry by now. There was only 2 people in the pub today, still it was early. I hope they are doing lunch today as I didn't ring ahead and it is a small country town. As luck would have it they were doing lunches. I ordered a steak sandwich and an ice cold beer to wash it down with. I can recommend the steak sandwiches here. It was fantastic. About 20 minutes later the pub had a good crowd in.
It was 1pm and time to get going again, I took a quick detour out to the wind farm to have a look at it. These definitely were not here last time I came out here. I saw a notice on the wall of the pub which said something about 50 odd wind generators would be installed as part of the project.
Just one of the blades on these things is the size of a semi trailer that's how big these things are. They are huge.
It was starting to get hot standing out here in the blazing sun in full leathers so it was time to keep moving. I was basically retracing my steps back to Oberon for fuel then home.
On the way back I stopped along Shooters Hill road at a turn off on the road. I was wondering what was down the road, it looked inviting so it was time for another quick detour. It turns out this road was just as good as shooters hill road with big wide smooth tarmac with forested verges all the way along with the road being like a roller coaster ride. This is R1 territory.
|They should have locked me up, sorry your honor I couldn't help myself...did you see the roads on my blog. You would of too if you had an R1.|
|Please please tar the rest of this|
I'd made it into Oberon with the fuel light on for about the last 50kms. I filled up 16 litres for 238kms which is 6.72lt/100km. I normally get around 5.6lt/100km. These roads do make your bike thirsty.
By the time I left Oberon with a refilled camelback I went straight back down Duckmaloi rd and up Victoria pass and back along the bells line. It was hot, bloody hot. It was making me tired faster, so I slow it down to the limit across the bells line. I saw my first highway patrol and it was about 4pm. Not bad for today. It was 35°C when I got back into Richmond. I was knackered in the heat after a full days ride. The camelback was a life saver in the afternoon heat. You couldn't wipe the smile off my face for hours after. What a fantastic day and a great way to see in the new year.
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