Christmas is here and a few days off. The regular posts and ride reviews from Dualsport Australia have been a casualty of opening a Fruit Stall called Tomartys on Sawtell Road. The stall has been a raging success at the expense of time to go riding making posts difficult.
Talking about tomatoes and bananas hasn’t quite got the same ring to it as a multi-day ride. The website will stay as a platform to sell my discs but the posts will be few and far between until the stall becomes well established enough allowing for some time off.
With limited supply at Christmas following a huge week resulted in a few days off.
With Bushfires raging all across the state and lots of National Parks still closed there is limited bush open in our area.
Backroads and forests are still available so after a few days of rain, the sky returned to a sparkling blue instead of a Smokey hue. I headed for Bellingen, topped up the fuel and followed the Dualsport Australia route to Bellbrook through the devastation of leafless burnt and charred trees.
Bellbrook had a fire right into town burning a few houses to the ground and making a mockery of the no-smoking sign on the fuel bowsers. A quick top-up and a snack and I headed west following the mighty Macleay River which was at a historic low at the moment.
Rock and roll
The rocky cliffs along the river banks had been burnt to a crisp, heaps of rocks cascaded down onto the road making for an additional obstacle.
A convoy of camper vans heading for gorges junction provided plenty of dust and with limited passing areas, it took a few kilometers to squeeze past into the fresh air.
The hills looked different with burnt trees, showing how many rocks are usually hidden by dense foliage.
It seemed like a good idea.
Gorges junction showed the river looking noticeably low proving too much too resist. At first, I wondered what all the fuss was about, the gravel wasn’t slippery, halfway across the water became notably deeper, the rocker bigger and rounder covered in slippery moss. As the bike struggled to maintain forward momentum, the water over my knees, as my boots filled with water the bike’s path was all over the place like a drunken sailor.
We eventually clawed our way out only to turn around and cross back over. At least my feet were cool.
The rim of fire
As I climbed the mountain the air became refreshingly cool, Forest way turnoff was burnt both sides showing just how close the escarpment is to the road. The bush was starting to regenerate with green grass shooting and the trees trowing new growth.
Point lookout was closed so it was a blast back on 60km of twisty tar with mobile chicanes down Dorrigo Mountain for the blast back home on the dirt.
An eye-opening 360km loop showing the power of mother nature with fire and water.