These rides serve no practical purpose other than to enjoy relatively quiet, beautiful countryside a short distance from suburbia. I used them to practice for my first Sydney to Gong ride. They can be travelled to extend the ride round the lake or for a short Sunday morning exercise. They can be mixed and matched as desired.
Ride West Dapto
Travel north from Dapto along the Princes Highway to Kembla Grange, opposite the entrance to the Racetrack turn left into West Dapto Road (3.5 km)and follow this road across the railway line, past the entrance to the Crematorium, the road to Whytes Gully rubbish dump and past Tubemaker's Factory (who said I dont take you on the most scenic routes?).
Inspite of these apparent environmental hazards the ride is very pleasant as the road passes through rolling country side with the escarpment always dominating the landscape, parrots and birds of all descriptions abound, it is hard to believe that just a few minutes away is the fast growing suburb of West Dapto.
Follow West Dapto Road until nearly at the village of Wongawilli then turn left into Shone Av (8.8 km) - you cant miss it - for about a kilometre you are cycling along side the mine railway just turn left at the first road you come to.
After just over 1 km turn left again into Bong Bong Road (10 km) and soon you are in the urban sprawl that is the concreting of West Dapto (Oh well, thats progress?).
Keep going past Reed Park, across the railway line until you reach Dapto Leagues Club (you are now a few metres from the Highway and the centre of Dapto), turn right opposite the club into Marshall St (12.5 km) and keep going until the stop sign at Cleveland Road .
Now a choice, is it to be the undulations and wrist numbing vibrations of Cleveland Road? Or the gentler terrain of Avondale Road?
Cleveland Road has a sound surface but it seems to have been made of large pieces of blue metal stuck together with tar, unless you have fat touring tyres or front suspension riding out this route can be a dubious pleasure. I do it occasionally on my road bike but only for the mushrooms <g>.
If you do chose this route just follow the road past Dapto High School, past many paddocks, up and down a few short hills until you emerge onto Avondale Road and turn left. Keep going until the junction with Huntley Road where you bear right. Jump to On to Yallah
Back to Marshall St - cross Cleveland Road at the stop sign and cycle to the next junction and turn right down Avondale Road (14.1 km). Just after the houses peter out you come to the Y junction with Huntley Rd (15.7 km). Here you bear round to the left
Follow Huntley Road back briefly to the edge of suburbia, just before the railbridge turn right into Marshal Mount Road (16.8 km) and coast downhill to Yallah Agricultural TAFE and the now defunct Logbridge Farm.
NB. The Marshal Mount Road turn off is just a few metres from the Princes Highway and Mount Brown (see Round the Lake)
After couple of kilometres turn left into Yallah Rd (19.3 km) and head back toward the Princes Highway past the abattoir and the electricity substation (I told you I would take you to all the best places) until you reach Yallah itself (21.2 km).
Now you can turn left back to Dapto (26.5 km) or turn right and continue on round the lake.
Instead of turning left into Yallah Rd you could carrying on down Marshall Mount Rd to Marshall Mount itself and on to Albion Park but again that is another story...
Copyright © Bruce Lloyd 2005