Brisbane Ranges?

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Marx
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Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Marx » Sun 21 Aug 2016, 12:02 pm

So Brisbane Ranges?
What are the gravel roads there like?
Not much on Strava heatmaps, looks like roadies sticking to mostly bitumen.
Google street view, the gravel roads look interesting in places.

Wondering if anyone else has been there & how they found the ride?

I've recently traded to a 'gravel grinder' drop 'bar roadie & looking to explore "roads less traveled", like it says on it's product spiel. 700x28 semi slick tyres & 48/34 11/32.
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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Snuffy » Mon 22 Aug 2016, 7:27 am

Hiked and camped there a few years ago.

Lots of the trails there would be very rideable although not terribly exciting. Admittedly, you'd cover a lot more ground on the bike, so you could probably find more interesting stuff than we could on foot.

I remember two things....
- It was oppressively hot and water was not easily obtained.
- There was a long stretch where the trail followed a fenceline and the smell of manure was overpowering. It might have been the heat or the wind direction, but... *gags*
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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Marx » Mon 22 Aug 2016, 11:04 am

Thanks Snuffy.

I've penciled in a cautionary route I'll do in the next few weeks from what I could gauge from Google street view:

https://www.google.com.au/maps/dir/Bris ... !3e1?hl=en

The bike I've got is mostly a roadie (Specialized Diverge) with pretty slick tyres (Roubaxi Pro) so I'll firstly stick to the smoother gravel road there, before I come back to tackle tracks like Brisbane Track, Switch Rd or Aeroplane Rd.
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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Snuffy » Mon 22 Aug 2016, 12:51 pm

Hmmm... the area you're looking at is the bit I didn't quite get to.

We were doing a north to south, point to point, multi day walk when one of our party rolled her ankle. I ended up running back to get a car for an evac. The southern part of the park definitely looks more interesting based on the park notes.
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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby UJ1 » Mon 22 Aug 2016, 1:22 pm

Wondering if anyone else has been there & how they found the ride?


I took my son out that way to do the Midlands tour some years back when was it raced on road before they moved it to a closed circuit. It was always known as a "hardman's" course with unrelenting short, steep climbs so only the toughest won often in atrocious conditions. The race route was a bit to the south and only formed part of your plotted course so can't speak for the gravel roads but if they have little traffic and you take your time then what's not to enjoy? Take some pics and report back. ;)

BTW if you have the clearance I've been very pleased with the performance of Contis 700 x 35 Speed CX folding tyre for touring on gravel and road. I've found the extra width helps with stability in the gravel more than 28s and the side knobs offer better cornering grip. The dimpled main part gives lower rolling resistance on the seal.

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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Marx » Mon 22 Aug 2016, 1:41 pm

Yep, I would be looking for some different tyres when the stock ones on my Diverge wear.
Although I was interested in the Schwable S One in a 700x30 as I still ride a lot of sealed surfaces and occasionally [just quietly] Beach Rd.
I'm a bit cautious with tyre width though, as I had an opportunity to put on some 700x35 (Panaracer Pasela) early on after orginally getting my new bike with quite tight results.
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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Claude Cat » Thu 25 Aug 2016, 11:49 am

I've had good results with Panaracer Gravel Kings (from 23 to 32mm).
I usually run the 28s on my Domane for extended gravel rides. http://www.panaracer.com/gravelking
And there's the Gravel King SK in 32, 35 & 40mm if you really want to go wide. http://www.panaracer.com/gravelkingsk/

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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Marx » Thu 25 Aug 2016, 7:13 pm

Claude Cat wrote:I've had good results with Panaracer Gravel Kings (from 23 to 32mm).
I usually run the 28s on my Domane for extended gravel rides. http://www.panaracer.com/gravelking
And there's the Gravel King SK in 32, 35 & 40mm if you really want to go wide. http://www.panaracer.com/gravelkingsk/


Come new treads time I'll keep them in mind. Although availability usually means I opt for plan B tyres.
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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Marx » Thu 25 Aug 2016, 8:17 pm

Ride report.


I did the ride route today that I posted earlier.
Day was cold (never got above 10degrees) and had passing showers with bouts of sunshine.



Headed south down Staughton Vale Rd, sealed & quiet, then left onto Mount Rd which was gravel up a climb behind Mt Anarkie, it was a punchy climb & I reverted to first gear (34~32) for the last 100mts to its top which will be a pattern for the rest of the climbs on this route for the day.

Photo - Mount Rd looking north, more plain dirt than a gravel rd, recently graded but muddy after a recent shower.

Photo - Top of climb on Mount Rd, if you look closely you can see I'm in first gear, but don't worry as just after this stone barn it's downhill for the next 4 kms.

Seems that most of the climbs for the day will be like this, short sharp punchy, with me reaching for first gear to clear the last 100metres or so of each climb.

This first section of Staughton Vale Rd, Mount Rd & De Motts Rd is open (exposed) farmland with a hint of cow manure on the breeze. Great vistas out to Geelong & surrounds from here.
Through Anakie which has what looks like a general store off down Ballan Rd from De Motts Rd but I didn't venture there. De Motts Rd rises sharply & then undulates quite a bit, I pretty much shuffled from top gear to first & back to top a few times before getting to Steiglitz Rd.

Steiglitz township, I turned off into 'town' on a gravel road. There's only a few closed heritage buildings, and a pit-toliet. Mining tailings mounds are dotted here & there, then down to a old wooden bridge over a creek which then takes you up into Brisbane Ranges park. This becomes typical forestry gravel roads with chunky shale rocks in it, but this first bit: Steiglitz/Durdidawarrah rd & Beremebroke Rd is pretty smooth.

Photo - This is Steiglitz the town, pretty much all of it (except maybe the brick courthouse to the left aways).

Photo - timber bridge that takes you up into Brisbane Ranges park from Steiglitz.

Photo - Brisbane Ranges park, most of the gravel roads are exactly like this one.. except for....

Photo: ....McLeans Hwy, as it goes in & then out of the Little River gully.

Marshalls Lane to McLeans hwy took you past hobby farm back blocks,I copped a shower here & the dirt rd got instantly muddy, which complicated the little climb into the Bris Ranges Park again as I couldn't get out of the saddle without he rear breaking loose.
McLeans Hwy, this gravel forestry rd was the roughest of the day, especially as it takes you down into the Little River picnic ground with a rough descent & I punchy climb out. It's doable but this direction - going north - goes from what feels like the park's lowest elevation, the Little River creek, to it's highest elevation - the corner of McLeans hwy & Thompsons Rd. I bailed & walked the last 40mts.

Thompsons Rd takes you back out of the park and into the farmland alongside Staughton Vale Rd. As I rounded the corner into Thompson Rd for the descent it rain & poured down pretty heavily causing river-lets across the gravel road. It's a long decedent as well sitting on the brakes all the way down in cold rain & spraying gravelly mud into my face wasn't fun. Fingers, toes numb with cold.

Finally onto the gravel of Murphy's Rd which was all downhill to Staughton Vale Rd back to the car.

Strava from ride.

Oh yeah, I've got to mention I drove there past You Yangs around the back to Anakie taking in Granite Rd. I gotta say that Granite rd looks like a nice ride, sure it's open and exposed but grand vistas all around in every direction.
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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby UJ1 » Thu 25 Aug 2016, 10:30 pm

Nice pics and countryside Marx. The hardpacked gravel even after some rain you experienced is better ime than the hot dusty roads of summer.

Re Granite Rd to the You Yangs yes it is open but the roads out there when the wind is up can be treacherous. I've been blown clear off the road in strong wind so pick a calmish day.

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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Marx » Fri 26 Aug 2016, 7:33 am

Yep Granite Rd vistas would be ruined by a slight breeze in the wrong direction.
I was originally thinking about a ride out to Brisbane Ranges from You Yangs (where the MTBers park off Sandy creek Rd) which is why I drove out that way to suss those roads.
Then there's trucks from the quarries out the back of the Youies during the week that would put a dampener on that back route by bike.

Brisbane Ranges bushland gave me the impression that it would be pretty harsh in the warmer months, with hardly any trees above 4 metres for shade on the roads and no real water points that I could see.

Interesting where I parked the car at the bottom end of Gorge Rd (to Anakie gorge) there was a Parks Vic signage saying 'no bicycles'. What's that about?
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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby UJ1 » Fri 26 Aug 2016, 8:08 am

Just found this on the relevant Park notes (my bold) ....

The presence of Phytophthora cinnamomi in the park
is a serious problem. This organism invades the fine
roots of many native plant species causing roots to rot.
In many places in the ranges, you will notice patches
of dead or dying plants such as grass trees, bush peas
and banksias. This is a sign that Phytophthora may be
present.
There is no known practical cure for the disease, but
its spread can be limited by preventing the movement
of infected soil. All management tracks have been
closed to vehicle, bicycle and horse access to reduce
the spread of this serious threat.
Due to the known
threat, several tracks have been quarantined to
restrict all access.

Link: http://parkweb.vic.gov.au/__data/assets ... l-Park.pdf

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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby HughieP » Fri 26 Aug 2016, 8:59 am

Looking really good Marx.

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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Claude Cat » Fri 26 Aug 2016, 9:56 am

Nice ride!

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Re: Brisbane Ranges?

Postby Snuffy » Fri 26 Aug 2016, 10:04 am

Nice ride report :)

That bridge looks fun for doing a Parawolf-esque superman
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