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Great North Road "updated" Saturday 21st April

leximack's picture

By leximack - Posted on 25 March 2007

Saturday, 21 April, 2007 - 08:30
5 hours
Come Rain or Shine: 
I'll be there, no matter what the weather.
Ride Database Entry: 
Great Northern Road
Meeting Point: 

Wisemans Ferry. Meet on this side of the ferry, ie don't cross over the ferry, park near little shop close to the ferry crossing.

-33.38142,150.989066 (Park by the Ferry)

As discussed here:

Meet at 8.30am for 9am departure. Please confirm your attendance. We'll take the ferry over with bikes so when it's there and we all are will be off.

Who's in?
No confirmations as yet.
What Happened?

Were you there and have a story to tell?

Ride Gallery
Little-Ditty's picture

I think I will give this one a go. Have always heard good things said about this ride, but never been there myself yet. So I will defer to the guys that have been there before about what tracks to do. Should be an awesome ride.

Just throwing the idea out there, but is anyone interested in sharing a ride out there? Anyone interested in lunch afterwards?

leximack's picture

Dirtworks site has updated info on the course.
I am thinking we should do approx 50-60km as a bit of a warmup/preview to the dirtworks ride.
I think anymore would be difficult with a group of people that needs to stay together with the potential breakdowns, flats etc. The course description mentions clares bridge, ten mile hollow etc, this is accessible at all times of the yr so may a loop to clares bridge (or beyond) a little to make a 50-60km loop, anyone know the distnace to clares bridge from wisemans and back, i know there is 2 ways to get in there, so maybe in one way and out the other to change things a bit, am open to suggestions as i have never been there before.
Will try and find some more details and distances this week

Caro's picture

Sounds great, have never been in that area and would love to check it out! The longer the ride the better I guess (considering future events Smiling. Lunch after would make it another perfect day.
At the moment I am 90% in, have to work sth out but am pretty sure it will be fine!

Liam, would be happy to share a ride, maybe we can work something out with Speedy Rob
again Smiling? (What do you think Rob??)


Rob's picture

... yes, will be operating. Same deal as before for Liam and Caro if you want it. Liam - your place is pretty much in a direct line for me, although means we'll have to weave up and down Galston Gorge. Wheeeeeeeeee! Eye-wink

It's a top idea to meet this side and take the ferry over. Shop and facilities both sides. Let's hope for a sunny day to warm us as we wait both out and back.

Little-Ditty's picture

Outstanding work, sounds good! Smiling

Yes there is plenty of places to eat in Wiseman's Ferry (Western side), so we could hook up something there. We love easy!

By the end of this ride, I will be needing all the food and drink I can handle. Smiling

leximack's picture

ok, been reading up a bit on a possible loop, has anyone who is coming along done the loop from wisemans, left to the track start, up the hill, to ten mile hollow and clares bridge and then kept going to the wrights creek turn off, then left at the end onto St albans road, back to wisemans, description is here
Doesnt give exact km length but from what i can make out is a good 60km loop. Would not want to do this unless all comers were willing and atleast one person has done it before and is confident of the right way to go. The maps i have benn able to find a fairly dodgy to put it mildly. The other option is to go to clare bridge and beyond a little and turn around and come back maybe via the western commision track, this loop would be approx 40km or a bit more depending on how much further on from clares bridge we went. Check out this dodgy map
What do you guys think? i am guessing, never been there before

leximack's picture

also lunch (probably late lunch) will be good, i remember there being a nice pub in wisemans that make a nice steak sandwhich

Caro's picture

Great Rob!

Will keep my eyes open for "give way" signs this time Smiling.

Also am happy to drive us back if you want to have some nice cold beer at the pub after! Oh sorry.. I forgot, you did swear abstinence on that dark, gloomy night in Lithgow, or maybe not?? Laughing out loud

Bruce's picture

Just confirming i will be there for this one.

Sorry Don, havent done the lower section from wisemans up to clares bridge, however i have recently riden the whole GNR north of the ten mile. It is a really nice track.

leximack's picture

Hi bruce,

i think a few people have done the ride to ten mile hollow so not too concerned about this part. From ten mile hollow would you know the turn off to "wrights creek" i think it is called, this is the way i would really like to go, would make a good loop i think

Otherwise i think we will ride to ten mile hollow and beyond and either turn bakc when we feel the need or do the wrights creek loop if it is easily noticeable


Bruce's picture


Looking at your proposed route it looks like we would be doing the reverse of the 06 DW loop, or part of. I have a topo map(although not a very good one), together with the CBD directions & anyone that may have done DW last year, I think we should find our way without any problem.

If any one has the Kulnura topo map, it would be helpful for this ride.


leximack's picture

i noticed from the DW 07 description that we will be going the opposite way, the reason for this is that it will be easier from our start point. Shouldnt matter though, as long as we do "some" of the dw100 07 course in either direction i will be happy. If we do decide to turn around after clares bridge rather than do the wrights creek loop then we will end up going the right way, either way it should be a good day.

leximack's picture

remember that this will be a long ride, approx 4-6 hrs or more so make sure you bring lots of water, ie full 3litre camelbak plus water bottle, and also food to eat, muesli bars, gu, lollies, bananas or whatever you like to eat. Unfortunately the GNR is not known for its cafe's and milk bars. There will be frequent stops i would say and will be a steady but not overly fast pace so hopefully water consumption wont be a problem. Also dont forget to bring a few extra tubes incase of flats.

Gilbo's picture

this looks great, looking forward to a sneak peak at the dirtworks terrain. see you guys on Saturday morning.

leximack's picture

OK from what i can make out we have
me, Liam, Caro, Rob, Bruce and Gilbo coming along.
If anyone else is coming please post so we dont leave you behind at the Ferry or call me on the morning on 0402810773

Steve 01's picture

I'll be definitly there with my shiny new frame .Cannondales have top warranty no questions asked.
Looking forward to a good training ride .Bring it on !!

leximack's picture

cool steve, see you there.
new list me, Liam, Caro, Rob, Bruce, gilbo and steve

Rob's picture

I believe Matt P will also be a starter for this. Matt?

Matt's picture

Subject to a bit of late night maintenance to be performed tomorrow night on a popped out fork wiper seal, wish me luck! Didn't notice it until tonight! Luckily the lubrication oil in my upside down jobbies missed the brake pads altogether and they're a doddle to service. Just got to figure out why the thing came out in the first place...

I'll text you (Rob) to let you know if all fails and I'm not coming.


leximack's picture

cool, hope you can make it Matt
new list me, Liam, Caro, Rob, Bruce, gilbo, steve and Matt

Gilbo's picture

If anyone on the list is coming from inner west direction and wants to carpool, let me know. i can fit another bike on the rack.

Rob's picture

Thoughts on the route...

I don't really want to go to Wrights Creek as it would involve far too much road work, and is probably quiet dull. Plus, to get to the North end of that turning is a long, long way.

How about this:

From the start, right along Wisemans Ferry Road, heading to the bottom of Western Commission Track. Have thought long and hard about a route around here and sadly the churn up the Western Commission is the best option if you want to come down Shepherds Gully or Spiders. I don't think Spiders is an option here as from there on the road back to the start is a long way (again, too much road). We can discuss on the day, make a decision at that junction I guess.

Anyhow, there's a trail around Mill Creek Camping Area marked as 11Km circuit which is actually 15.5Km when you add in the road from Western Commission junction. I'd like to add that in here.

From there, up Western Commission, loop around Ten Mile Hollow then hit the best part of the ride at the end which is from Ten Mile to and down Shepherds Gully.

From there, sadly it's 9Km back on the road to the start, but this makes it 62Km all up by my reckoning, probably a little more.

Have drawn a map here (hope this link works!):

Sound good?

Rob's picture

Spoke to Justin about this and he said Mill Creek is a good walk, but very rocky and reckons we'd be hiking a bit. Hmmm, doesn't sound ideal - interesting, but perhaps not ideal for a ride like this. Check the picture here:

Hmmm... so if we miss that out there's 15Km left to find. How about go out the other way, up Shepherds Gully, down Spiders, back round and up the gully again then do the rest in reverse from there?

Although you are not meant to ride down Devines Hill or Finch Line he also said that there's nothing wrong with riding up these, so one could go up Finches Line, down Spiders, round and up Shepherds then rest in reverse.

Doh - and it was all so clear before! Eye-wink

Oh, should have pointed out these maps, which show what I'm talking about, esp. the second:

Detail near Wisemans Ferry:

Bruce's picture

you guys that have more knowledge of the area. No matter which way we go it should be an awesome day!

Matt's picture

So happy to see Spiders in there. Other than that I am in your capable hands... did somebody mention sandy firetrail ;-O

leximack's picture

like your proposed map, had something similar in mind but didnt know about "spiders" so i think we can go with that idea.

Rob's picture

OK, I've added the following sections (to the Google Maps link above) and reckon this could be real nice:

Cross Ferry and up Finchs Line: 8.94km
Down Spiders: 6.09km
Spiders to Shepherds (on the road): 4.32km
Up Shepherd's Gully (this is actually a really nice climb): 4.38km
Fun Stuff: 6.96Km
Round 10 mile hollow and down Western Commission: 26.1Km

That's 56.79Km. But... if we get to the bottom of Western Commission track and still have a lot of energy we can go take a look at that 15Km Mill Creek loop, and even if we get there and it's crap we've had a good ride and should be up over 60Km by then.

Deal? Phew Eye-wink

leximack's picture

sounds excellent Rob, couple of hills, couple of down hills, some techy stuff, some fire trails, sounds like a good day out
seeyou all there tomorrow

Matt's picture

Now just remember to bring your map, GPS and relevant co-ordinates... (he shouts from the back seat while doing diddly squat ;-}). I'm sure I'll get a chance to make up for my laziness by fixing somebody's bike tomorrow, have tools will travel.

Suspension service was a success, if a bit of a scramble to get the right fork oil after work. if anybody needs some 5wt fork oil I've a big bottle full!

Cheers, see you tomorrow,

Rob's picture

Great Day!

I'm stuffed though - didn't eat anywhere near enough on the ride, despite the fact was stuffing bananas and muesli bars down for 3 hours prior (since getting up). Didn't help that I was treating the technical sections like we were an a sprint lap of the dam either Eye-wink

Profile is here:

Which shows 50.32Km, 3005m vertical! Now, really, that has to be wrong on the vertical climbing. I had the GPS in my backpack on this ride when normally it's on the bike. I can't see how this could make that much difference but probably has something to do with it. In case you don't see how - the barometer is accurate enough to spot the movement between being crouched over the bars and sitting tall, must have made that move a few times!

Would be interested to see stats from the other two Edge's though.

Will post some pics later (tomorrow). Sadly seems my rear hub is cactus, damn, knew something was holding me back Eye-wink


leximack's picture

thanks for the great day guys and girls. Had a really good day, few spills and thrills but all managed to get home safely.
Feeling ok apart from a sore right knee and left ankle after a few stacks. but should be ok for the dirtworks.
see my motionbased profile here
i have it as 2000m vertical climbing. Which is pretty good as i think the dirtworks has a total of 2000m of climbing over the 100km and we done it in 50km, so happy with that.
again thanks for a good day

Caro's picture

Hi guys,

thanks for the great day everybody!
I would love to write "it was easy and good fun" but to be honest it was bloody hard work but still good fun anyway Smiling!
No matter which number is right, I know we did A LOT of climbing but the nice fast downhill fire trail at the end made it all worth it Smiling. I had no idea that breaks can smell so badly, pewh!
Thanks Don and Liam for keeping me company at the back for some time!

Feel a bit like I've been tortured today so I think a couple of laps around the Dam in the arvo would be good to turn the legs over. Will post a ride in a bit if anybody is interested or send me a txt.


Bruce's picture

everyone for a great day, really looking forward to dirt works now!

Rob's picture

Yeah - my Unit itself said the vertical was 2000m, MotionBased has gone a bit wonkey here!

Thinking about this, I had 3h44m of movement, Don has 3h37m - we hung around a long time. That, and the massive climbing means this:

Instead of all that hanging around, could you have riden 50Km more on flat-ish fire trail, with the climb from 10 Mile Hollow tossed in? Although I cramped a little, by the time we were on the road was feeling good. I think the answer is, 'Yes', so long as I eat and drink more.

OK, Dirtworks, bring it on Smiling

Rob's picture

Pics from the day:

Enjoy Smiling

Little-Ditty's picture

Thanks to all for the ride at Wisemans Ferry. Not having been there before myself (it's only taken 2 years riding to finally get organised and get up there!), the explore was well worth the wait. I can recommend these trails to any intermediate or experienced rider that has never been before. There are just so many cool things we saw and did in the day to list. Thanks Don for hosting the day!

I want to thank Rob for some slick camerawork over the course of the day. There are both some well captured action shots, and some lighter moments. You done did good. It doesn't look like anyone was spared the harsh lens of reality! Sticking out tongue I bet you are a bit chuffed with those, is this a second career blossoming?

The only advantage for Mr Cameraman is that you have avoided getting snapped in some of those funnier moments yourself! And I can recall a few obvious examples to choose from. Lucky bugger.

Happy trails!

Bruce's picture

nice photos again Rob, thanks

Gilbo's picture

great ride on Saturday.. well done to Rob for capturing all the action.

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