Galston Gorge - Berowra Waters - Bobbin Head

Group:
B1
Distance:
82km
Climbs
Route Description:
On leaving Renegade, turn left onto Burns Bay road, follow the road and turn left onto Longueville Rd. Turn right onto Epping Road at the lights, and take the exit ramp to the Pacific Highway and turn left.

Follow the Pacific Highway through Chatswood, Lindfield, Killara, Gordon, Pymble, Turrarmurra and Wahroonga. At Pearce's Corner (cnr Pennent Hills Rd) turn right and continue along the Pacific Highway. At the intersection of College Crescent, again turn right to continue along the Pacific Highway. In Hornsby, follow the road to the left to cross over the railway bridge, and then follow the road to the right.

At Galston Rd, turn left and follow this down to the bottom of Galston Gorge. Once at the bottom of the hill, regroup briefly before climbing up the opposite side. Continue straight across the new roundabout and continue left on Galston Rd until the roundaboutat Arcadia Road. Turn right and follow the twists and turns of Arcadia Rd as it passes through Arcadia. Arcadia Rd becomes Bay Rd and then passes through Berilee, descend down the hill into Berowra Waters. Cross on the Ferry.

Ascend the eastern side of Berowra Waters to Berowra Heights. At the top of the climb, turn right at the roundabout and continue along Berowra Waters Rd, at the second roundabout, turn left, then turn right at the lights onto the Pacific Highway.

Follow the Pacific Highway through Mount Kuring-Gai and into Mount Colah. At the intersection with Belmont Parade, turn left to head towards Bobbin Head. Cross the bridge, and then turn right. Then take the first left onto Ku Ring Gai Chase Rd. Follow this road through Bobbin Head, and out the south side, where it becomes Bobbin Head Rd.

Follow Bobbin Head Rd until the intersection with Bannockburn Rd, this is the second left after the traffic lights at Burns Rd. Take the first right to continue along Bannockburn Rd.

Follow Bannockburn Rd back to the Pacific Highway, there is a right then left along here just after the intersection with Pentecost Ave.

Turn left onto the Pacific Hwy, and follow it back through Pymble, Gordon, Killara, Lindfield and Chatswood. At Epping Rd, turn right, and then left into Longueville Rd. Take the first right into Birdwood Ave and follow this back to Renegade and the Cafe.
Ride Description:
This is a good fun ride that contains two major climbs, it is longer than the average distance for the C Group but there are no real surprises. The first climb is an in and out, so it is possible to wait at the top if you are unsure about your ability to tackle it.

The first climb (Galston Gorge) is the harder of the two climbs, so if you beat that one, the second (Bobbin Head) is easier.

Apart from the sometimes disgraceful quality of the Pacific Highway, there is nothing of much note until reaching Pymble, where you will have to contend with the infamous Pymble Hill, after muscling your way up this, expect a fairly sedate ride to Galston Rd.

Along Galston Rd, you will see that you are starting to leave the city behind due to the increasing amount of vegetation and open land, soon it will really hit home as you descend into Galston Gorge and Berowra Waters Regional Park.

This is a fun descent, the road isn't in the best condition, but there isn't much that the alert cyclists needs to fear. The best feature of this descent are the 6 hairpins. So pretend that you are descending an Alp in the Tour de France and have fun, just take care if it is wet or foggy.

The first hairpin can catch you unawares, as it is about 20m past a 90 degree right hand corner. When you see the sign for Berowra Waters Regional Park, the first hairpin is just around the corner.

The group will usually stop briefly at the bottom of the climb to regroup before ascending the other side to Galston. There is a classic timber planked bridge, it is a bit rough on a road bike, but as it was recently refurbished it is in good condition. It is only a single lane, and while you have right of way, there may be some impatient motorists coming the other way.

Once out of Galston Gorge, the ride takes in the urban rural fringe areas of Dural, Arcadia and Berilee. There are no traffic lights out here, and only light traffic. The road is a bit rough in a few places and there is the odd rolling hill, but for Sydney this is pretty much cycling nirvana. The road is narrow so be courteous to the odd vehicle that catches up to the bunch and ride single file to let them pass.

The descent to Berowra Waters is can be good fun. The road surface is quite poor on the top section but has been resurfaced part way down. There aren't any big surprises on this descent, just descend at a pace that is comfortable to you. There is a Ferry crossing at the bottom and the group won't board until all riders have reached the bottom.

On reaching the bottom, make sure that your bike is in pretty much it's lowest gear as the climb on the other side starts straight away. After the climb out of Berowra Waters, the group will often stop just after the roundabout at the top before heading back towards the Pacific Hwy on Berowra Waters Rd.

Once the group has turned off onto Ku Ring Gai Chasi Rd, the pace will often lift as this is a fast section. Some of the faster riders may attempt to break away, they will wait on the other side of Bobbin Head so it isn't critical to chase them down. The descent into Bobbin Head is pretty straight forward, there are two tighter corners to be aware of, one just past the Kalkari Discovery Centre, and the other right at the bottom of the descent.

On the South side of the bridge, just before the ascent, there is a toilet block. This can be a good opportunity to lose some ballast before the ascent.

Once over the top, the route follows Bobbin Head Road, but will take the back way of Bannockburn Rd back to the Highway, if you are unsure of the exact route listen out for the calls.

Turn left onto the Pacific Hwy, and follow it back through Pymble, Gordon, Killara, Lindfield and Chatswood. At Epping Rd, turn right, and then left into Longueville Rd. Take the first right into Birdwood Ave and follow this back to Renegade and the Cafe.