Adventure Cycling Association Forum

Regional Discussion Area => International => Topic started by: gj_coop on August 18, 2010, 10:14:50 pm

Title: cycle trails Australia, 16 epic bike tours in Australia
Post by: gj_coop on August 18, 2010, 10:14:50 pm
I  spent 15 months getting to know Central Australia on a transcontinental off-main-roads ride. Since I took a break from the ride I've been plugging away on a website with ride info for some long distance bike trails. There's 16 up there so far, ie Tanami Track, Gibb River Road, Finke, Mereenie Loop, Karijini National Park, Gregory National Park, Oodnadatta Track, Mawson Trail, Munda Biddi Trail, etc.

I'm hoping to expand these over the next year: Great Central Road, Cape York etc.

The site is (

Happy reading and I hope it inspires you to get off those highways and have a little adventure.
Title: Re: cycle trails Australia, 12 epic bike tours in Australia
Post by: tonythomson on August 19, 2010, 04:28:09 pm
Hey great pics will look more carefully at the full site later - planning to do the Hwy 1 (sorry I'm 63 is that OK?) next year so looks as if it might be helpful.
Title: Re: cycle trails Australia, 12 epic bike tours in Australia
Post by: gj_coop on August 23, 2010, 07:14:15 am
Oh, so I didn't manage to convince you. Yet.

Yes, 63 is much too young.

For the most part the ol' Highway 1 has too much traffic for me, not so much fun with the cars and trucks whizzing by at 110km/hour at your shoulder.  OK, so some parts are great, just avoid the Sydney/Brisbane section and some odd little bursts like Port Augusta to Adelaide.

Hey, even I went round the Great Ocean Road.

If you need any info on road touring the blog at ( is useful.

Have a great trip Tony. :)
Title: Re: cycle trails Australia, 12 epic bike tours in Australia
Post by: tonythomson on August 27, 2010, 12:46:20 pm
thanks for that - just about to set off on LEJOG Lands End to John O'Groats to try out new bike before Oz next year.
Title: Re: cycle trails Australia, 12 epic bike tours in Australia
Post by: Macbeth on August 28, 2010, 09:04:46 am

 Thanks SO much for posting this.......

 I have been doing a lot of short trips (3-4 days) off road in NSW, and just got back from a 14 day Cairns-Cooktown loop that took in the Bloomfield Track. Been thinking a lot more about long off-tarmac trips and this is massively inspiring.....

 Would love to get in touch with you regarding a Sydney-Cairns-Darwin trip I have planned for next winter.....

Title: Re: cycle trails Australia, 12 epic bike tours in Australia
Post by: gj_coop on August 30, 2010, 06:12:40 am

Glad you find it helpful, well, there is a bit of info aboard.

I started off doing 5 day rides, then the odd 2 week tour.  Nothing prepares you for the great joy in doing a long distant stint.  Somehow with the huge distances in Australia you need the time to learn to appreciate what you are travelling through.

I kept a, hopefully, humorous blog about my 15 month travels across Australia at Crazyguy. ( The entries get a bit more vivid once I get to Esperance and worked out a proper system for writing them up.

I'm hopefully heading back east via the usual devious route in March, Great Central Road, Plenty Highway, Cape York ... Just a small issue with financing.

I'm happy to answer any questions but bear in mind I'm only a "daytripper" on this site.


Title: Re: cycle trails Australia, 12 + 1 epic bike tours in Australia
Post by: gj_coop on October 03, 2010, 04:18:31 am
I've added another trail to the mix on the site: the south coast of Western Australia, from Dunsborough to Esperance. I rate this as one of the most interesting/diverse routes to ride in Oz.

Now all I need to do is add the slide shows for each trail, maybe 20 images for each. (Select, resize, crop. This might take a while, so don't hold your breath.)

summary – south coast, WA

This is the great secret in long distance riding across Australia, kind of like Victoria’s Great Ocean Road on steroids. Zip around the coast, plenty to see, not much in the way of traffic. What’s not to like?

Well, there is a bit, the first three that come immediately to mind: hills, wind and inclement weather. There’s lashings of all three. It’s a roller coaster, true, but you get to whizz down the hills and it’s mostly less than 20 minutes of up before the down. There’s a fair chance of wind behind you as you head east, that’s a plus, unless, of course, you are riding into it. The weather, basically there can be just far too much of it.

But despite these factors the countryside you traverse more than adequately makes up for it: surf beaches, (Yallingup), wineries, (Margaret River), Cape Leeuwin lighthouse, rail trails, (Cowaramup, and Denmark/Nornalup), big tree forest, (Pemberton to Walpole), beaches, (numerous but Greens Pool, Two Peoples Bay, Point Ann etc are a start), national parks, (Leeuwin Naturaliste, D’Entrecasteaux, Walpole-Nornalup, Stirling Ranges, Porongurup, Fitzgerald River.)
Title: Re: cycle trails Australia, 12 epic bike tours in Australia
Post by: gj_coop on December 13, 2011, 07:36:44 am
I've been busy adding a few more routes to this website , now numbering 16, starting to get somewhat remote in Outback Australia.

The Great Central Road
A handy shortcut from Western Australia to the Northern Territory, missing out on the Nullabor and South Australia, but only for the intrepid, ie, it’s a long ride unsupported, out among the sand dunes and camels, the road is often smashed up by the roadtrains and 4WDs, and some of the gaps between permanent water points are 3 days riding.

While the road is generally well maintained it can be soft, or with chunky gravel, for long stretches. Fat tyres, ie, 2”+, are plenty useful and you may spend considerable time whirring away in the granny cog.

Mt Augustus

Some excellent dirt road riding through the heart of the Gascoyne area with the major highlight Mt Augustus National Park, ie, the permanent waterhole at Cattle Pool and a climb of the world’s biggest monolith, whatever that means, Mt Augustus.

Once you leave the company of the roadtrains and caravans on the highway you have all that austere scenery to yourself and the road surface is generally magnifique. What more could you wish for on a long distance bike ride?

South Gascoyne

An attractive alternative for those wishing to avoid the “boring” and busy, ie, caravan and roadtrain laden, North West Coastal Highway from Geraldton to Carnarvon and treadle down a better than average, often sublime, Outback unsealed road on your lonesome.

A few highlights along the way, mainly to do with water, Ballinyoo Bridge, built 1932 when they had grand ideas for this region, at the Murchison River, Bilung Pool, and Rocky Pool, with the opportunity to venture off for a couple of days detour to the dry gorges of the Kennedy Range National Park.

In April, once the Wet Season has finished up, I will be continuing my voyage north to Cape York.


Title: Re: cycle trails Australia, 16 epic bike tours in Australia
Post by: gj_coop on June 15, 2012, 08:56:38 pm
Wow, there's another trail been added, The Plenty | Donohue Highways that link Alice Springs with Central Queensland.

Just on my way up Cape York gathering info for another one.