Australia, Port Macquarie to Taree

I’m sitting by a rather nice swimming pool, drinking a cup of black coffee and thinking about my day. It started off as an unremarkable day, we woke to blue skies, which to be honest after last nights storms was a blessed relief. We did all the normal stuff, pack up, breakfast etc. we rode down a very up interesting road called ” ocean drive “, and just because they call it that, don’t assume you can actually see the ocean. We did see it a couple of times however, but on the first occasion we had to ride up a dirt track to see it. The second occasion was when we stopped for coffee at a very nice rest stop. Picnic benches and coin operated BBQ’s everywhere, the sea a distant turquoise rolling into the inlet. The only thing to spoil this beautiful setting was the disgusting mess that some unknown bunch of morons had left for someone else to clear up. Despite there being ample bins provided they’d left numerous coke cans and a bag of rubbish on the table and grass. The table had a mess of sticky stuff and the BBQ had been used but not cleaned. It’s incredible to me that someone would leave such a mess anywhere let alone in such a beautiful place. How ignorant and inconsiderate, don’t they realise how lucky they are to have such fantastic services provided and such a wonderful place to enjoy them….muppets !!
Naomi and I picked up the rubbish and coke cans, we just couldn’t walk away and leave it like that. From there into Laurieton was no more that 20km and when we arrived it was still early. We though about going on to Kew so I got out the iPad and was sitting on the floor looking for a campsite when another cyclist stopped. Now this is where our day became remarkable, the cyclist, Brian, was a local and stopped to see if we were ok. We explained that we were going to camp at Kew but he said there was nothing there. We then decided to stop at the camp that was right behind us, Brian then started to tell us about a view point. He said it was a 5km climb to the top but the views were worth the effort. Anyway to cut a long story short, he came back in the car about an hour later and drove us up, the view truly is a stunner, you can see for miles, literally !! After that he took us back to his house for coffee, we’d offered to take him to a cafe to repay his kindness but he’d have none of it. Not just coffee, homemade cookies, brownies and a Tory of his wonderful home and toys, motor bike, bicycles and racing kayaks. Great guy, good coffee, amazing how your day starts unremarkable and turns out to be fantastic !!
We cooked at camp, saved a few pennies but couldn’t resist going out for a beer later at the local serviceman’s club, always the cheapest place to buy food and beer and the money goes to a great cause !!
And so to bed, tomorrow will be another day and who knows what will happen, all I know is that I’ll be ready 😉
And so to the photos…

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Did you see the photo of the mess those muppets left, disgraceful !!
60km today, that’s all, nice cool start but it warmed up quickly as we headed out of camp towards Kew. A fairly narrow road with not much shoulder, flat but reasonably scenic. It didn’t last though as yet again we’re on the Pacific Coast Highway for a good stretch, about 30km in total. There is one good thing about the highway, the hills are designed for trucks to keep up a good speed so very easy on a bike. Bugger all to see though but at least it was fairly quiet, we had it all to ourselves at one point !
Finally we got to Moorland and took the Forest Road through the Coopernook Forest, made a nice change to be cycling in the trees. The dappled sunlight pouring through the canopy and lighting our way through this huge forest. The road started as paved but soon became a rough compressed grit and occasionally rough packed dirt with loose rocks. A few short sharp hills added interest as did lots of twists and turns. Surprising how busy the road was, lots of gravel trucks so I assume a quarry somewhere, we had to stop and get off the road for them on several occasions as the road is very narrow. Lucky for us most of the drivers were considerate and slowed to minimise the amount of dust they created. The forest road ends with a long downhill, lots of loose stones so quite tricky, then arrives at a t junction. We turned right for Lansdowne and pretty much followed the railway all the way to Taree. Better scenery now, more fields, cattle and agriculture, also a much quieter road. We stopped at a hotel / tavern for food but alas they don’t do food during the day. One of the locals, Rob McKay got talking about our bikes and we said we’d be up later for a beer. We’d made good time and arrived at the campsite early, there’s a cafe next door so we had lunch before signing in and putting up tents. Nothing to do here, a very small, quiet little place on a river, so we just lazed about until it was time for dinner. After dinner we did as promised and walked up to the local hotel / tavern, Rob was still there and we had a good chat, finally said goodnight as he’s a carer for his mum and he had to take her home. We gave him our details, blogs, email etc, he’s one of the few people I know who doesn’t have a mobile or computer, said he’d get his daughter to look us up !! Later another couple of regulars, Sean and Beau, asked us to join them, Beau bought drinks and it turned out that Sean has done a lot of travelling, Europe, Africa and Canada, Beau on the other hand has travelled and lived in lots of different parts of Australia. A great night out and we were finally allowed to buy a round ! A big thanks also to Ian the Barman for staying open longer than he should and for making sure we got home safe, top man !!
So another extraordinary day, you just never know what’s coming for you, best be ready though !!
You want to see some photos….thought so 😉

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Bit short on photos, scenic but not stunning and how many photos of trees do you really need !!
Oh well, another blog done and dusted, hope your still enjoying them, we’re certainly enjoying travelling and taking the photos 😉
Take care
JC

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About John Chevis

I'm a forty something single guy who spent far to long depressed, but luckily for me I found an answer in the form of exercise !! I started running and cycling on a regular basis and now two and a half years later I'm cycling the world !!
This entry was posted in Australia, Cycling and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Australia, Port Macquarie to Taree

  1. Graham Lovell says:

    Nice one John, looks amazing stuff as always. Yes I am loving your blogs and photos. take care Graham

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