Kingsclif - Toukley - Kingscliff - 5 days and 1800 kms

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Kingsclif - Toukley - Kingscliff - 5 days and 1800 kms

Post  Sandman on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 9:19 am

This is a ride I posted on the OZSTOC members site (Honda ST). My ST is being mothballed and I'm heading to the dark side and buying a Bandit.
The ride applies equally to any road rider so i hope the information is useful.
This was my first long ride over multiple days for many years and since I bought the ST 1100 nearly 4 years ago so I've put a bit of detail in. I hope it helps if you're planning to ride on some of the roads I went on.
Kingscliff, Murwillumbah, Casino, Glen Innes, Dorrigo, Newcastle via Scotts Head, Toukley, MacMasters Beach, Singleton, Muswelbrook, Armidale, Grafton via Ebor and Blaxlands Creek, Kingscliff.
My plan was to visit my Brother and Sister around the Gosford area and I had a window between the 30th of December and the 3rd of January. I needed to be back in the Tweed by the 3rd so I had 5 days to do the round trip.
So I headed off around lunch on the 30th from Kingscliff to Murwillumbah, then to Uki and on to Kyogle. This is a really easy and nice road with plenty of twists but I’m biased as it’s my home turf. The speed limits are mainly 100 km and 80 km with a few 60 and 50 that need to be kept to as the Blueys some time hide at the end of the straights waiting for the unsuspecting driver or rider.
The Summerland Highway from Kyogle to Casino is not bad but it’s pretty flat and not very interesting. But it’s a dream compared to the Casino Tenterfield, Bruxner Highway. It’s a good road but flat and mainly straight. The only interesting bit is around Tabulam and Drake, it goes up and down a bit with a few twists. I didn’t stop in Tenterfield so I have no comment. I could have gone to Grafton and then to Armidale but I was coming home that way so I wanted to go a different way, and I’d not been on that road on the bike. Not sure I would do it that was again.
The New England Highway to Glen Innes is good enough to go to sleep. Flat and straight. Unfortunately there are not too many options to get the Glen Innes coming from North. I stayed the night at the Poplar Camp and Caravan site. It was cheapish ($76 for the night for an air-conditioned room) but the owner is a bit officious so if you are staying in Glen Innes maybe choose somewhere else. I didn’t want to carry camping gear so a tent site was never going to be an option.
Up early and headed off to Guyra on the New England and left towards Ebor. The road is pretty good with some open straights that you can open up if you have the mind. I saw a dead Kangaroo on the side of the road so maybe if you’re coming through at Sunrise or Sunset take it easy. I stopped at Ebor Falls. Take the left to the waterfall lookout. The Lower Falls lookout has a great view of the falls and only 50 metres from the parking bay. Nice break.
It took Chris’ (ST2UP) advice and went past the Dorrigo turnoff (about 15 km) and it goes through some country roads which are nice and tight and lots of fun. Take it easy through these roads as they are tight and although there weren’t too many cars on the road it could be a disaster if you cut a corner tight at speed. Came into North Dorrigo and this is when the fun really started. The Waterfall Way from Dorrigo to Bellingen and then from Bellingen to the Pacific Highway is probably the best tight and twisties that I have been on. I have led a sheltered life and only ridden around the Northern NSW area so I’m sure some of you will have better roads, but for me I just loved it. The drivers were also really understanding and moving over to let me pass.
There’s no other option from Bellingen as the Bellingen Road to Bowraville has a landslip that you can’t get around (the Information guy told me that). If I had time I would have taken the Raleigh, Urunga as it is the old road. I saw it from the highway and it looked mainly 80km with double lines so not sure.
The Highway down to Macksville. It was 80 all the way with road works and nearly drove me crazy. I’m not a fan of the Highway but again it was my only option.
I took the Scenic Road (14 I think) to Scotts Head. It’s a right turn that doubles back under the Highway and then winds its way on reasonable road. It’s a bit rough in places but nothing too bad. Don’t go into Scotts Head as it’s a dead end, not unless you want to go for a swim. It’s a great beach and there’s some cheapish accommodation in the off seasons and a great Hamburger. Take the Grassy Head turn off. It sneaks up on you so just keep an eye on it. This road winds its way to the Highway past Stuarts Point.
I needed to get to Newcastle before nightfall so the Highway was my best option to Taree. Again not many options if you want to stay on the coast. Crescent Heads is an option but the road from Crescent to Port Macquarie is unsealed, so I would struggle keeping the ST upright on that road.
I pulled in towards Taree to do some running repairs and pulled into Auto Barn. They convinced me that the road from Taree to Glouster was really bad. One was a Trucky so I trusted him. I chose Forster Tuncurry Scenic Road (6) that heads to Bulladelah. It’s an 80 kms trip with lots of 60’s and 80’s so if you’re pressed for time it’s not that great. It is however very picturesque along the Lakes Way looking over the Myal Lakes. Back on the Highway to Newcastle. Again not too many options.
Long day but lots of fun. I’ll dream for a long time about that Dorrigo to Bellingen road for a long time 
The trip from Newcastle to Toukley is only just over an hour along the Highway. There are a few Scenic options but I needed to get in under cover as it looked like rain.
Stayed with my Brother at Toukely and visited my Sister at Macmaster. Left around 11am on the 2nd to Armidale. I should have taken the Kurri Kurri road through Cessnock to Singleton as the Highway was again boring. Next time. The road to Muswelbrook from Singleton was ok nothing special.
I eventually got to Armidale on the New England and when I got there they told me the road to Gloucester and the Walcha had been upgraded and in pretty good condition. Oh well, next time.
From Armidale travelled on Waterfall Way B78 which took me back to Ebor. Needed to be careful along this road as it was in the morning and there are Roo signs everywhere. I didn’t see any dead Roos on the road but I was on the alert ! Went passed the Dorrigo turn off and headed towards Grafton.
This road takes you through Tyringham, Clouds Creek and Blaxlands Creek. Make sure you have a full tank as there is no fuel between Ebor and Blaxlands Creek. The road is definitely bumpy in parts but not the worst I have been on. Really tight and twisty for a lot of the way. If you want a leisurely ride, this is not the one. I knew I had been on the bike at the end of it and it was fun in parts. Just needed to be careful because of the road quality and tight turns. Not many cars on the road but they were there. I got to Grafton at around 10 after leaving Armidale at 7.30 with one fuel stop at Ebor, so it’s a decent time in the saddle.
Again I needed to be back in Kingscliff by lunch so the rest of the trip was on the highway. You can go via Kyogle back through Murwillumbah if you have the mind.
I worked out I was about 25 hours in the saddle doing roughly 1800 kms. The blue beauty   :bl11 didn’t miss a beat and the seat I got from John Moorehouse treated my toosh very nicely.
I hope some of the information is useful to some of you.

Sandman

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