Bike touring in the Land of Oz
Cos I live here...
Most of the tours I've done here in Oz are pretty small scale - does 50 kms really count as a tour ? - but there are a couple of longer ones also
Oz tours are of two 'flavours', big and little, or, if you prefer, long and short
Amongst the little rides are:
Cycle Sydney Fantastic fun ride from North Sydney over the Sydney Harbour Bridge to Olympic Park
What can you say? It's an event ride that aims to attract 10,000 riders of all ages and persuasions - the recumbenters, the mountain bikers, kids on bright pink training wheeled jobs, the day-to-day workhorse bikers and the lycra clad riders on their bright shiny new road bikes - that's available in multiple flavours, from 5 km and to 50 km (tho only the 50 km route goes over the bridge)
Sydney to the 'Gong Australia's most scenic one day bike ride
This ride is almost an institution, it's been going now for more than 25 years and attracts thousands every year, many returning year after year. An event ride available in long (90 km) and short (60 km) versions the 'Gong ride is probably a little more serious than the Cycle Sydney ride - some of the inclines and a couple of the downhills are very serious indeed!
Like the little rides, the longer tours below are also mostly organised events - it's great having someone else looking after all the little things and touring without lugging panniers and/or camping gear is nice!
Amongst the bigger rides are:
Big Rides Ride thru small 'one pub' towns, see the 'real' Australia
There used to be Big Rides in almost every state in Oz, but no more, dunno why that's so tho. The New South Wales Big Ride was a cycling/camping adventure that attracted a couple of thousand riders from all walks of life for a five or six hundred kilometre tour of a different part of the state each year
Outback Odyssey Into the fringes of the Australian outback together with 'roos and wallabies
Another organised cycling/camping adventure. This ride has been going for a few years now, I rode the inuagral Odyssey in 2002 which sort of followed the route of the off-road Mawson trail but my route was on-road
Nullarbor 1200 Into the depths of the Australian outback
Another organised cycling/camping adventure that never actually happened. This ride was meant to run in 2006 but was rescheduled to 2008 and then 'til some time in the future. Tho it's now dropped off the edge of the world,the website no longer exists...
Adelaide Thru the Hay Plains, probably Australia's least scenic place to ride
A solo unsupported 1400 kilometre ride from Sydney, New South Wales to Adelaide, South Australia in March 2006. This was sort of consolation prize, I had hoped to ride the Nullarbor. Anyway, riding down to Adelaide was the best of times and the worst of times as they say
What did I find?
This is gunna sound awful, but Oz isn't a great place to ride!
Too many bloody-minded motorists for a start, then there's the third-world standard roads... but don't let that stop you, cos in Oz you can ride for hours without seeing a car and if you can ride cobblestones then you can ride Oz roads too
And if you decide to give Oz a go, check out the Warmshowers page