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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by FLICKIT, Sep 24, 2012.
Looking forward to the rest
We headed off about 7:30am, the forecast was for isolated showers and possible thunderstorms and heavy rain late morning
We weren't keen on getting caught in storms so it was a fairly quick trip up to Fingal... There's a few waterfalls and other interesting things along this route, but they can be easily reach on day trips, so it was no drama skipping them... (Meetus Falls, Hardings Falls, Lost Falls, Longmarsh Dam)
Day 1 Route:
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Headed off in light rain, out through Brighton, Teatree, Campania, a pic just out of Campania:
Turned off the tar at around 30km on the route to make our way through Gravelly Ridge Conservation Area, then through Tunnack, Lemont, Stonehouse:
Then up to Tooms Lake and the start of the M-Road (McKays Rd) (125km on the route)
The M-Road is a gravel logging haul road that runs for about 100km up through the eastern forests, about 15km inland from the coast... A nice wide fast road
It wasn't long before it got foggy:
and foggier... to the point we could hardly see 20m ahead;
It cleared up once we got north of Old Coach Rd...
Just north of the Hardings Falls turn off there's a bridge out on the Swan River: (194km on the route)
We stopped here for a bit of a break and to take some pics:
The bridge was originally a bunch of big steel pipes covered in rock and gravel...
Amazing the power of water to be able to throw these pipes around, crush, and wrap them around trees!
An interesting rock:
The area where you ride across:
A 2 min video, me across the river first, then BIL:
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Day 1 to be continued... .. .
We continued heading north around the western side of Douglas-Apsley National Park, this areas been on fire for the last couple of months:
20sec video along here, BIL looking like a competent adventure rider:
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Heading down into Fingal... Damn stupid sheep! ... This lot ran for about a mile to the end of the road and out onto the hwy while we sat there watching and waiting for them to stop:
Then into Fingal for fuel, (235km on the route)... only to find the servo's closed on Sundays ...
Last year I put together a list of 24hour servos because the Dominator had a fairly poor range, from memory there was a 24hr unmanned place in Fingal, so we rode around for a while till we found it... Turns out you need a Caltas card, it doesn't accept credit cards:
This was a pain, I had planned to do a nice loop out through the Tower Hill, Evercreech, and Mt Nicholas forests out around Mathinna, but BILs bike only holds 15L, 300km is the safe max range... We had done about 230km since filling up, so the only option was to run 20km to St Marys and get fuel there, then double back and head up through Mt Nicholas...
20km later at St Marys we find there's no fuel there on a Sunday either .. Oh well, I wasn't keen on doing anymore tar miles to get fuel so I plotted a new route through the forests up over the Sisters, Upper Scamander, Skyline Rd, and down to St Helens, I was 100% sure we could get fuel there... It would be pushing Bil's fuel range, but I figured if he run out I could go get a can of fuel and return for him (I was going to carry a thin tube for a siphon so we could steal fuel from my bike if needed, but forgot to pack it)
Most the roads up through here are pretty good:
At about 287km on the route we turned off Eastern Creek Rd to take an alternate route up to the end of Skyline Rd, I've been up here a couple of times before but not via this route, it was something different... (I love new roads)
It started out as a nice dirt road through a pine forest:
But it had a couple of short steep rocky hills:
No real problem, but this was a lot rougher and steeper than BIL has experienced before, and probably beyond his capabilities:
I got to the top and started to park the bike, I didn't expect BIL to make it up, figured I'd have to go help.... But to my surprise he made it!
3 min video up to the southern end of Skyline Rd: (288-289km on the route)
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(This bit can be bypassed by following Eastern Creek Rd up to Skyline, where I turned off at 287km)
D-1 to be continued... .. .
We then cruised along Skyline Rd towards St Helens... There's usually amazing views up and down the coast from up here, but with the low cloud it was a bit crappy:
Made our way down to St Helens via Loila Tier Rd and Basin Creek Rd... Filled up with fuel, BIL's bike took 14.3L , so it was fairly close to running out, under a liter spare...
Made our way north out of St Helens then out along Argonaut Rd towards Pyengana, more nice roads:
The haul road continued on towards the Fingal forests and we turned off towards Pyengana, the road got narrower and the forests thicker:
Then it opened up into farm land:
Passed the "Pub in the Paddock"
and detoured out around St Columba Falls...
More bloody sheep!
Then down onto the Tasman Hwy for a nice twisty bit of tar:
To the final destination for the day:
The Welborough Hotel...
It cost $80 for a tiny twin room with 2 single beds and a bathroom down the hall, it was adequate...
We had a hamburger and chips for dinner, a decent sized meal, cost about $16 I think...
Day 1 ended up being 373km...
To be continued with Day-2... .. .
Dianas Basin in the back ground? if so there is good camp sites there
Thanks, I'll keep it in mind for later
Have you fulfilled your dream of owning a Tenere yet? ....
hmm i have owned a Tenere before......but as i am still paying for the WRr so thats a No :d
This RR is on hold for a bit, I've been busy trying to get some work knocked over so I can nick off for another trip before winter sets in...
Heading off today to explore NW-Tassie for a few days solo...
Here's a link to my Spot Tracker if anyone wants to follow along:
I love this thread - I keep coming back to it as I'm planning out my Tassie adventure (coming down in Jan next year)
Always keen to see more stuff from your travels
Sorry I never got around to continuing this, it went on hold while I did a 2000km NW Tassie trip, then I was too far behind and just didn't find time to catch up with it..
I'll make an effort to continue it soon LOTS to add (about 8000km worth) :huh
Also, RideWithGps did an update recently and it set all my tracks to "Private", so they cant be viewed, and the KML & GPX files cant be downloaded, I'll fix that in the near future...
I've been dodging you Aussie boy's threads to avoid the allure. Now I discover your thread and I'm off on another vicarious exploration. If I ever get over there I guess I'll just have to be buried there as there's so much to see. Problem is I'm only scratching the surface where I'm at. You hooked me right from the start as I bought a DR650 on impulse last year after a similar 25+ year hiatus. Now the urge to explore has me out on little ventures at every opportunity and by your tracks I can see there will be no end to it. Thanks for the great pics and reports.
Better get back to this, it's so annoying when people leave ride-reports 1/2 done
Day 2 (11 March 2013) Route: Welborough to Deloraine:
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Day 2 started with a short ride from the Welborough Hotel to Mt Paris Dam about 6km away...
Bugs sitting on the surface:
The spillway at the end of the wall:
Not hard to see the damage done to the hills around here by the old-day hydraulic mining operations:
From here we backtracked a bit and took Carnac Rd to get through to the Derby Jeep Track (I think that's what people call it also on maps as Cascade Dam Rd), I figured Carnac Rd was just another good gravel forestry road, but it turned a bit crappy, too crappy for BIL with his very limited riding experience:
I slowly went down each rough section and waited for BIL to catch up, it wasn't too long before... Oops:
Bil was fine, being his fist drop he was a little shaken, but sorta glad to learn IT happens, and it's no big deal... I jumped on his bike and took it down that little rough bit then handed it back to him... I had only ridden his bike for a few k's on sealed roads (test ride when we purchased it), it wasn't till this little bit of rough road I realized how ridiculously soft the front end is, so soft it was a bit scary!, something that will have to be fixed VERY soon...
7 min vid crawling down here: (pretty boring, not worth watching unless you're REALLY bored)
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Not much further along we came to a decent "Adventure-grade" riverbed crossing (about 9km into todays route)
There was a bit of a steepish slope down to the river:
Considered turning back, but BIL would have struggled to get back up the track we'd just come down, and it was further than I wanted to walk to shuffle both bikes back up, so we decided I'd take both bikes across and hope the track doesn't get any worse further along:
3 min GoPro vid:
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40sec vid, 3rd person view XTR:
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(the poor sump guard)
40 sec vid, XTZ:
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(the old video camera wasn't too happy with the damp air down there, it seemed to fog up inside the lens)
I enjoyed the challenge, it was no drama what so ever, but it was on the extreme side of my experience level, if I had been alone I'm not sure if I would have done it
The track improved past here and we made our way to the Derby Jeep track: Boring 2min Vid:
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The Derby Jeep Track runs up to Cascade dam, 12km to 16km on the route, I visited here on the Dominator in early 2012, I was surprised to see the water level so low this time:
9min vid along the Derby Jeep Track:
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(fun track, BIL is behind me at the start and in front at the end because the vid was edited down, BIL lost his sunnies and I had to head back and find them, they had fallen out of is pocket while we were taking photos out on the dry dam bed)
Cascade Dam was built after a flood caused the Briseis Dam to burst:
http://www.utas.edu.au/library/companion_to_tasmanian_history/B/Briseis Dam Disaster.htm
The Briseis Dam Disaster resulted from the bursting of a dam constructed on the Cascade River above Derby to supply water for hydraulic tin mining operations. Following unprecedented rainfall of 450mm (18") during the previous two days, on 4 April 1929 a deluge of 125mm (5") fell in one and a half hours on the catchment area above the Briseis Dam.
The resultant flood broke the dam, and a huge wall of water surged down the river valley towards the town, engulfing several houses and other buildings and pouring into the workings of the Briseis Mine. Fourteen lives were lost, including one family of five who were sitting down to a meal when their home was carried away. Senior Constable William Taylor was awarded the Royal Humane Society Medal and the King George Medal for bravery in saving eight stranded miners.
After the 1929 Briseis Dam Disaster, the Cascade River Dam was rebuilt as Cascade Dam, in 1936. The Dam, when full, covers an area of around 49 hectares.
Up at the northern end there's a nice old cable walkway across to the dam wall:
But the fun police have been active and fenced it off:
To Be Continued... .. .
From here we continued on towards Derby to get some fuel... Up till now, on the good tracks and roads I had been zipping ahead and waiting for BIL to catch up every now and then, or when I got to a rougher bit or intersection... This had worked fine, it gave BIL a chance to go at his own pace, find his feet, without sucking my dust or having the urge to try and keep up with me...
Between Cascade Dam and Derby the track has a few rough parts, a few rain trenches running down the middle, a couple of rocky bits, nothing too bad, I was stopping to wait for Bil every minute or 2, all was good... Then I stopped to wait for him and he didn't appear, I waited maybe 2 mins then headed back:
Oh no, found BIL sitting on the ground next to his bike with his boot off
Parked my bike, checked his bike for damage (as you do), then checked him and got the story... Seemed the front had washed out in a rain trench and he went down... The bike had landed on his right leg and left him pinned on the ground... After great effort he managed to get his leg out and pick the bike up... It sounds like it was all a bit of a panic because the fuel cap doesn't seal and fuel was dribbling out, he was expecting to go up in flames
Inspected his leg, it was starting to swell, so I grabbed a bandage and wrapped it up pretty tight, there didn't seem to be any bone damage, just soft tissue damage/bruising... (I keep a wide and narrow bandage in the top of my topcase for things like this, or snake bites (all Tassie snakes are venomous)
The bike copped a couple of battle scars
3 cheers for the crash bars that were put on 2 days earlier:
The offending trench.. seems he came down the hill, as the front hit the trench the wheel folded under due to the crazy soft suspension:
(BTW, decent high motorbike boots were on order for him but they hadn't arrived in time, so he was wearing ankle high lace up work type boots, not ideal, as he discovered)
BIL was in high spirits and good to carry on, I think the adrenalin was still flowing... Playing it safe, from here on I tried to keep him in my mirror and not let him out of my sight... Headed down to Derby but the fuel place was closed, so headed to Branxholm where we stopped, got fuel, and started making plans for the rest of the day...
I had mapped/planned a route through roads I hadn't been on before between here and Ben Lomond, but after the bad condition of Carnac Rd and the drop, I decided I better stick to known good roads to give BIL a chance to recover... There had been enough "learning experiences" for today
Headed down Ringarooma Rd and Mathina Plains Rd (39km to 67km on the route), and turned into Cokers Rd, I hadn't been through here before but the maps showed it as a good gravel road, turned out to be an enjoyable ride through nice forests:
We continued on to Upper Esk Rd, then Memory Rd, Gunns Rd through to Roses Tier (95km on route), This was a fun route, lots of dense forests and the road wound up and down some nice hills.... headed down Roses Tier Rd/Upper Esk Rd to Ben Lomond, the only real ski field/resort mountain in Tasmania... After seeing the photos of my trip up here last year BIL was keen to ride the zig-zag road known as "Jacobs Ladder" that leads to the summit:
Jacobs Ladder from the bottom:
From the top:
A skink, they're everywhere in Tassie: Probably a Mountain Skink: http://www.parks.tas.gov.au/?base=5335
You can read about Tassies wildlife herehandy site if you want to identify something you've seen)
3 min video heading down Jacobs ladder:
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(check out the champion on the sports bike 1/2 way down "appropriately dressed in sneakers, shorts, and a t-shirt) :huh
BIL battling on:
It was getting a bit late in the day so we started hightailing it to Deloraine where we were booked to stay for the night, we stayed at the:
Mountain View Country Inn: www.mountainviewcountryinn.com.au
Nice sized clean room, $105 for a queen+single room, we ate in their onsite restaurant, a bit pricey for food and drinks, but after a long day that was no issue, the food and JD cans went down VERY well
BIL's leg didn't look too bad, the bandage seemed to keep the swelling down:
I'll try to do day-3 in the next couple of days
Fascinating sights, impressive views. Thanks for your efforts on the report, I'm enjoying it very much. Jacob's Ladder looks familiar only different - we've similar pitches in southern Utah and a no longer ride-able track named Jacob's Ladder on the slope of Lone Peak, looking down on the Salt Lake valley.
Thanks for your comments, it's good to get a bit of feedback ... I should admit, 1/2 the reason for writing this is for selfish reasons, it forces me to go through all the photos and videos, and think back through the trips which helps cements the memories into my mind... + I find re-reading my threads later is motivational, helps keep the enthusiasm going...
There's certainly a lifetimes worth of stuff to see in Australia, it's endless... I'm fairly lucky living in Tassie, there's so much great ADV riding compressed onto a small island, the more I look for places to ride the more I find, every ride is different, and ever ride I learn new skills and better ways to do things...
I was dead keen to get over to the mainland and do a lap of the big island but I'm starting to think the longer I spend exploring my backyard and gaining experience here, the more I'll be able to appreciate the rest of Australia... (rather than spending 1/2 the trip learning the ins and outs of ride/touring/exploring)...
Looking over your ride reports it looks like you have no shortage of excellent riding in your area I'd love to ride that sort of mountainous country!
gotta put that place on my must-see list
Far out - you are probably one of the most well travelled FF in Tassie. I'll need to get your list of "what not to miss in Tasmania" sometime. Expect a PM when I'm planning everything out
Photo's do it no justice
doing my best to colour in as much of the map as I can, still no shortage of stuff to do/see
I'll attempt to continue this RR with all my rides so it shouldn't be to hard to pick the places you want to see... I might do up a Google Earth pack eventually also, with all my tracks and place-marks to show the good spots, that'll make it easy for people to pick a route... just need to find the time
Day 3 (12 March 2013) Route: Deloraine to Waratah
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Day 3 we continued west, we headed out through the Gog Range forests, nice gravel forestry roads, some nice scenery an views, but I didn't take any photos.. From there we headed to Mole Creek for a fuel top-up (50km on the route)...
The general plan was to poke around some of the Hydro dams in this area, you can read about them here: http://www.hydro.com.au/energy/our-power-stations/mersey-forth/old
First one we went to was Parangana Dam (77km):
Then onto Lake Rowallan, they seemed to be repairing/improving the spillway:
Quite nice white gravel roads down here:
We went as far as we could down the eastern side of Lake Rowallan, the road was a bit potholed, but it was a pleasant ride, quite a few little bridges and creeks along here:
The lake level was fairly low, probably drained down while they're working on the wall:
This road was a dead end so we returned back up to near Parangana for a break125km)
Then we headed up over Borradaile Plains, there had been fires up here recently and the track had been chewed up by bulldozers in places126-138km)
The track got a bit crappy in places, but not too bad, it was a little hard for BIL with the crazy soft suspension though:
10 min vid, a rough cut of going over here:
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It wasn't till we got through here I realized there was a good gravel road that loops around the bad section oh well, it was fun for me, not sure about BIL
Then we headed down across Emu Plains to the sealed road, lots of good views around here but I didn't take many pics:
Then onto Lemonthyme Power station below Lake Cethana,(152km), we were going to head south from here for a poke around the forests but a fire started down there the day before, so fire fighters and forestry workers were blocking the road preparing to head down there to sort the fire out:
To Be Continued... .. .
This is where the day got exciting .. I had read about the old Lorinna Rd in the news years ago, it's a narrow little old road cut into the side of the steep hills and winds it's way around the side of Lake Cethana, the town of Lorinna about 1/2 way along doesn't have power (I believe), and was only accessible by the narrow dangerous roads to the north and south, the Gov barricaded the road to the north because they felt it was unsafe and it started a bit of a war with the locals, they tore the gates down and dragged the rock and log barricades out of the way, it got to the stage the Gov threatened to use an excavator to destroy the bridges to stop people using the road to the north.. The locals wanted the road left open as a northern fire escape, and because it was a fair detour to head to the south to get out of town... I think the Gov ended up building a new road into the town and then gated the northern road, then all the trouble died down:
(EDIT: looks like they may not have built a new road)
Some news articles about it:
Anyway, in between times I've see it mentioned that the Northern road could still be accessed, so that was the main mission for the day, I wanted to knock it off my bucket list... From Lemonthyme power station we headed north along River Rd to Lorinna, a nice narrow windy road with cliffs on the right and BIG drop-off on the left along a lot of it:
7min rough edit from along here:
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Not far north of Lorinna we came to a gate, there was plenty of room to get around it (can be seen in the above vid), from here the track got interesting, LOTS of BIG fallen trees to duck under, and drop-offs on the left that would kill you if you left the road .. all was good till we came to a bit of a landslide:
As ominous as it looked from first glance, it seemed more than do-able, so off I went:
2.5 min video, XTR first, then XTZ
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20 sec vid 3rd person view of the mighty Tenere:
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5 min edit of parts from the Landslide to the gate at the northern end of the road:
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An amazing road to ride, I highly recommend it, but use you're own judgment, things are likely to change along there anytime
From here we headed around to the Cethana Dam, (190km on the route), I went part way down the boat ramp to turn around, and lost the front end in some deep loose gravel dumped the bike on it's side, no damage done and I stayed on my feet, camera battery went flat less than a minute earlier so I didn't get it on cam
Down here there was a large barge in the water, lots of gas bottles on it and such, at the time I assumed they must be doing some underwater work on the dam wall or something similar:
After doing some research it seems it's a diver training barge, they send guys down to a depth of 100m here :eek1 The barge has a diving-bell, moon-pool and a decompression chamber, pretty snazzy gear for little Tassie
"With a depth range from 30m to 100m, nearby Lake Cethana provides ideal conditions for the deep diving elements of our commercial diver training. Students on our ADAS Part 3 (Air diver to 50m) will carry out dives from 30m to 50m, and students on our ADAS Part 4 (Closed Bell) diver training will carry out 100m bell bounces."
Then we headed up to the lookout above the dam: (196km)
You can see the northern end of the Lorinna Rd going along the side of the hill:
The road goes across there somewhere also, but I cant spot it
It was getting late in the day so we stuck to the sealed roads and zipped west to Waratah for the night:
We stayed at the old Bischoff Hotel: http://www.bischoffhotel.com.au/ ... it was only $70 for a small twin room with 2 single beds, as with all little pubs the food was good but a little pricey, I must be getting old (complaining about food prices)
Day 4 to come soon :)