Central West Cycling Trail Review
John McBride, a Bicycle NSW Member, shared his recent experience which we wanted to share with you.
We completed the Central West Cycling Trail starting our journey on Monday 31 August in Mudgee and finishing back in Mudgee on 8 September.
The trail is a 400 km journey through small, characterful NSW central west towns: Gulgong, Dunedoo, Mendooran, Ballimore, Dubbo, and Wellington.
We took a day off in Dubbo to enjoy cycling around the town's excellent cycling trails, including the Zoo and the beautiful Japanese garden at the Dubbo Botanical Gardens.
The CWC Trail is well laid out.
We simply downloaded the trail data to our cycle computers. The trail is only a few months old but we ran into 3 groups who had heard about the trail and were already out enjoying. The distances between towns were no more than 60 km each day, although the Wellington to Gulgong stretch is 75 km of which about half is dirt road.
The vast majority of the trail is on back roads with little or no traffic, and very well chosen. On day 2 out of Gulgong there is a suggestion for a "challenging" route which we definitely suggest you take.
There are a few creek crossings but it is more enjoyable than the main road. Much of the trail is under idyllic canopies of Eucalypt. Or through picturesque rural, rolling hill scenery. The weather was amazing and the Spring flowerings were spectacular.
The breaking of the drought and the recovery of the landscape and resulting elation of the locals was a pleasure to be part of.
Each night was spent in a welcoming rural town.
All of the pubs we stayed at were helpful with safe bicycle storage overnight. Gulgong is proud of its well preserved main street and the fact that it featured on our first ten dollar bill.
Mendooran has an impressive art deco streetscape. Ballimore is a one pub town which backs on to the Goonoo Protected Forest. And Wellington has the historic Lord of Wellington pub.
One suggestion we have is to check the NSW Parks website just to make sure the trails through the Goonoo Protected Forest area are open. When we passed through the trails were closed to vehicles because of heavy rain but open to cycles.
We had no trouble getting through the Goonoo creek crossings and the soft trails were no problem on mountain bike 2.35 inch tyres. A quick phone call to the Parks office in Dubbo for a chat will allay in concerns before you head out. Highly recommended!