Day 1 - Around Bellagio - strava link
Day 2 - Pilgrimage to Ghisallo cycling museum and Madonna del Ghisallo - strava link
Day 3 - Loop around Lake Como strava link
Day 4 - Rome - strava link
Day 5 - Around Rome - strava link
Day 1 - Bern to Interlaken (Lakeside camping) - strava link
Day 2 - Interlake to Giswil (Lakeside camping) - strava link
Day 3 - Giswil to Wolfenschiessen (Valley of cable cars)- strava link
Day 4 - Wolfenschiessen to Altdorf (Mountain hut)- strava link
Day 5 - Altdorf to Ertsfeld (train to Saint Moritz) - strava link
Day 6 - Airolo to Biasca (Hangry) - strava link
Day 7 - Lugano - strava link
One of my favourite places in New South Wales is the Southern Highlands, a short train trip from Sydney. The best part is you can take your bike, perfect for a long weekend cycle tour camping trip.
Start: Central Train Station @ 7:24am
End: Bowral Train Station @ 10:00am
Day 1 - Bowral - Fitzroy Falls - Bundanoon
Distance: 59 Kms
Pit Stop 1 - Bowral - Gumnut Patisserie
At Bowral we rolled into the Gumnut patisserie for a pre ride coffee and a multi award winning pastry.
Pit Stop 2 - Someone's farm
Goggle maps took us through someone's private property but it was a short 100 m sneaky pass. We figured we weren't going to be long. So shhhh.
Pit Stop 3 - Fitzroy Falls & Lunch
Mini hike around the top of the falls and a perfect spot for lunch.
Pit Stop 4 - Exeter train station
A quick snack break sitting at the Exeter train station only needed to move once for the freight train.
Pit Stop 5 - Camping - Bundanoon - Gambells rest site
Bookings essential details here.
Limited number of sites available here.
Cost: From $25 a night
Facilities: Hot (gas) showers, flushing toilets, gas stoves, taps
Dinner - Eggplant & tofu stirfry
Ingredients: 1 massive eggplant, packet of firm tofu, 4 packets of 2 minute noodles, cabbage, onion, soy sauce, ginger, cooking oil spray. Marinate the tofu. Fry up the onion and eggplant on the stove. Cook the noodles. Cook the tofu. Once the noodles are cooked, mix everything on the stove top.
Bundanoon Night Ride to the Glow worm cave
In the dark surrounded one of the crew recited a beautiful Arabic poem by Ibn Arabi,
I follow the religion of Love
whatever way Love's camels take
that is my religion and my faith
ابن عربي - أدين بدين الحب
Day 2 - Hiking around Bundanoon
Lazy morning, slow to start. Pancakes on the stove top lathered in blue berry jam.
There are plenty a hiking trails in the Morton National Park. We
Day 3 - Easter Sunday - Bundanoon - Berrima - Bowral
Distance: 40 kms
Kicked Easter Sunday watching sunrise over Morton National park, followed by another epic feast of pancakes.
Pit Stop 1 - Bundanoon Markets
Packing down and heading into Bundanoon to sip coffee at the cafe and check out the local markets. Picking up a few goodies at the local op shop and sampling some delish vegetarian Indian goods.
Pit Stop 2 - Berkelouw Book Barn
Lazing about reading in the sun lying on the beautiful grounds of Berkelouw Book Barn.
Perfect ending to a beautiful Easter break.
My anxiety of not having planned a holiday over the xmas break resulted in this last minute cycle tour to the wilderness (better known as Bungonia National Park). Famous for its gorge, pretty popular canyoning spot as we later found out when we bumped into another Sydney Night Rider that night at the camp site.
Lesson # 1. Invite people who are spontaneous
For some reason I couldn't do this last trip on my own. I hadn't been on a long ride in a while and I wasn't feeling the most confident, even though I'd been to this place before. So I invited people who I thought would enjoy a mini tour. 2 people caught the bait.
So on Friday the 30th December 2016, after some false starts with bike malfunctions and missing trains. Daniel, Jeremy and I set off into the wilderness from Moss Vale at 13:30 and managed to get to camp before sunset.
Lesson # 2. Chat to people. They always have great advice. Like hidden swimming holes
At the campsite one of the boys was tipped off about a swimming hole, so with the tents half set up we ditched everything and ran for the bush to find this hole, for a twillight swim. Swimming at twillight in a gorge surrounded by a forest is just magical. Even more so when there's thunder and rain.
We were still swimming when the rains hit.
Lesson # 3. Always close your bags. Always cover the tent. You never know when the rains will hit. Especially when you're twillight swimming at the bottom of a gorge.
We were 40 mins away from the tents when the rain hit. Should have closed the tents but it probably wouldn't have made a huge difference as there was a stream of water running through the ground sheets anyway. Lucky the camp site has a shed and hot water. We slept in there that night.
Lesson # 4. Sleeping mats are soft and comfy
Sleeping mats make hard floors comfy to sleep on.
Lesson # 4. Butt Cream
After the whole trip (160 kms, return) my butt was pretty chaffed. Not sure if it was because I was wearing underwear the first day or because I wasn't wearing underwear the second day. My crack was a raw and riding back home wasn't fun.
Elevation Gain (click link for Strava details): Day 1 - 582 m , Day 2 - 668 m
Lesson #5. Check the Burger joint you plan to have your victory post-tour dinner at is open.
Total Distance: 622 kms
Total Elevation gain: 7,760 m
Highest Peak:1,500 metres above sea level at Selwyn Snowfields
Coldest point: Selwyn Snowfields, 6 degrees, felt like 1 (evidence in the ice that formed in our drink bottles)
Fastest speed: 59 kms/h
Fires we made or leeched off others: 6
Successful dampers made by the fire: 0
Muesli bars consumed: 14
Favourite moment: Riding with a brumby
Least favourite: All the gravel
View the posts for the whole journey: link
Last day, home stretch to Albury. We saw on the radar the night before that the rains were coming through. We're prepared with all the wet gear ready to go.
Distance: 117.3 kms
Elevation: 941 m
Roads: Mostly on road (minimal traffic), bike paths 7 kms
Distance: 57.3 kms
Elevation: 522 m
Road: On Road, then gravel with corrugations from Tooma (nasty) for 35 kms
Difficulty: Medium - Hard
Waking up to a frozen drink bottle isn't so bad when you're camping lake side and it's all misty when you wake up to the sun rising. Our neighbours are super helpful again showing us their topographical map with contours of the mountain ranges and then donating 4 litres of water. Much appreciated as we had our massive climb on a hot day.
Distance: 63 km
Elevation: 1,207 m
Warning: no water stops along the way.
Wake up after a freezing cold night. Luckily we have enought fuel for a fire to warm some water to make porridge. However the gravel road out of Canberra along Bobeyan road is soul crushing. Our patience is thinning. We're not talking to each other and ready to burst.
We make it out by 12pm and roll into Adaminaby for lunch. We sit eating in the fallen Autumn leaves planning the next section. We thought we'd be able to make it to O'Hare's rest area, but as the sun went down and still had 30 kms to go we realised there'd be no chance. Plan b get to a warmer flat ground, outta sight camp-able spot before we freeze. Hangry and cold we pass a sign for Selwayn Snowfields and come across a sign with the tent symbol, Three Mile Dam camp grounds. SCORE! We roll in and see several campervans with fires going and we're more at ease. The night gets better as we get invited to share the fire of our neighbouring campers who also have keen cycling children and are keen adventurers. Another close call.
Distance: 74.5 kms
Elevation: 1,478 m
Road: Gravel 43 kms, on road, beautiful decent into Kiandra goldfields
Start: Mt Clear
End: Three Mile Dam Campground near Selwyn Snowfields
Food: Lunch @ Adaminaby, cafes, bakery, pub, bowling club, general store with camping gear
After a night in the comfort of a bed at a friend's place, pub dinner and a hot shower we're on the road with a smaller entourage. We ride out to Thawra for brunch on ANZAC day and get some hot pides and turkish bread for the road.
We're supposed to cover 120 kms but only managed half that after encountering some nasty gravel uphill roads which were a lot tougher than we'd hoped. By sunset we were looking to make camp on the side of the road anywhere it was flat
End: Somewhere on Mount Clear near Shannons flat
Elevation: 1,694 m
Road quality: On bike paths until Thawra when it turned onto country roads. Then into gravel going into the state forest. Gravel with uphills.
Temperature: 10 degrees C at night
Notes: No water from Thawra on. Must carry all water for 100 kms until Brayshaw's homestead.
Some photos courtesy of @Elbosout