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Hill end to Bathurst via Bridle track

datafunk's picture

By datafunk - Posted on 11 June 2014

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

Hi there

I'm thinking to ride Hill end to Bathurst via Bridle track with a mate later this winter and curious if anyone has done it lately.
Any catches / advice etc?
Also, if you know any write offs on this ride, please post URL.


Ian_A's picture

Post the ride up as a meeting before you go. I wouldn't mind tagging along if I'm free.

The Brown Hornet's picture

A mate and I have ridden out there. It'll be farkin freezing this time of year. I'll try to find my notes and post up.

datafunk's picture

It's somewhat a family gig so won't promise this time, sorry, but chat to my bro and if he doesn't mind I'll post back.

datafunk's picture

Thanks mate - that'd be great. I know it'll be rather cool. We've just spent the weekend out there and despite the mild weather the mornings are just above zero usually. We'll prepare for subzero for later in the winter I reckon.

The Brown Hornet's picture

Check out Adam Macbeth's blog 'A Therapy for Pain'. I think he has a pretty detailed write up on there, plus other cool rides in that neck of the woods. And lots of pics.

kitttheknightrider's picture

as at easter this year the Bridal Track was still closed because of a land slip. There is a section of track, from what I have been told, about 1km long that is impassable. I haven't seen it personally so it may actually be possible to hike a bike over that section but I have been told the side of the hill has slipped, taking the trail with it, so we aren't talking a few meters here.

There is another trail that parallels some of this trail, on the other side of the river called Root Hog Fire Trail. I have been told you'll need to turn onto this a couple of km north of the land slip site, at the river crossing, and then use this to get back into Bathurst. It shows up on Google Earth if you zoom in on Hill End and follow the Bridal Track south. Zoom in far enough and the names of the fie trails will appear.

I guess you could ride to the land slip site and if you can't get through just double back to the start of Root Hog FT.

Good luck. Maybe see if you could speak to Hill End, Sofala or even Bathurt RFS to check for any updates but from what I understand there is no plan to clear the slippage at all.

philipm's picture

I have done this ride a few times great views along the turon and Macquarie rivers the road over the bluff is down to single track so any support vehicle will have to go through Turondale its between 60 and 70 ks 4.5 to 5 hours cruisy ride plenty of hills though you may get wet feet at the turon river crossing take a wind jacket it gets cold on the run into Bathurst after the climb to the top Duramana one of my favourite rides

datafunk's picture

Thanks mate Smiling
This (even in our short H/E > Bathurst version) is shaping up to be an epic ride Smiling))))


datafunk's picture

Wow - thanks Philip! That's a nice concise summary. We do plan to do one day with a H/E drop off and a ride back to Bathurst. Starting earlish, which should give us 8 hours and a cruisie ride then, plenty of time to marvel the wonders of the area.

kitttheknightrider's picture

well that certainly doesn't look like a 1km long section gone.

Sounds like a great weekend, have fun.

datafunk's picture

Thanks kittheknightrider!
Sounds like we'll have to double check that slippage with RFS, though your second comment confused me somewhat. What is that based on? The URL I posted based on suggestions? Bc that's 2012 (

Can you clarify what you meant?

thx heaps!

datafunk's picture

do you have recent info on the landslide by chance?

datafunk's picture

Could you clarify the situ RE that landslide if you have more info pls?

pharmaboy's picture

I just had a search, there is a bridle track Facebook page.

There is a comment there from April that says it's fine by them that the public thinks it's closed, and there is also more recent photos, so sure looks open to me to bikes and hikers anyway - physically open, not officially open...... Eye-wink

kitttheknightrider's picture

sorry datafunk, missed a few of your posts.

The info I had was from a 4wd enthusiast that I go up there with. He had been to the road closure from both sides but not actually seen the extent of the slippage himself. He had been told it was quite a substantial section of the side of the hill that had slipped out, possibly up to a km based on his gps coordinates of where he could get to from both sides.

The link you posted, and had been previously posted shows photos of them riding past the slippage and whilst it clearly prevents a car getting through it looks like it is meters wide not hundreds of meters.

This pic

It does sound like an epic ride through what is beautiful country. Enjoy.

datafunk's picture

No probs & thanks for coming back to me.
That sounds better. If it's a short section of hike-a-bike, I am still cool with that Smiling

datafunk's picture

- good find!

datafunk's picture

Hi Ian,

on this note though - I see you're local, wondering if you know any social rides around during week evenings?

Ian_A's picture

G'day datafunk,
I'm in Winmalee. There isn't a regular social ride around here during the week but occasionally there is one down at Glenbrook. I often head out on weekday afternoons but it just depends on what time I get off work. I sometimes tend to ride on the road too.
I assume you've ridden all the local loops? I can give you some tips if you're new to the area.

datafunk's picture

I prefer bush rides, it chills me out. The ones I ride around here are Winmalee (Shaw's and SW ridge with the grotto or bees nest and faulco. I rode down in sun valley but not all the tracks yet. If you know more (hyper)local rides, please do share as I like to do door to door rides.

grantd's picture

I've done Orange -> RootHog -> HillEnd -> LongPoint->Orange a few times. We usually take 2 days and stay in Hill End for a night. This is a nice ride that I'd recommend.

Root hog trail is good fun down to the river. If you had to climb back out that way though you'd probably have to walk some of it (ie. you'd be climbing this on your trip from Hillend to Bathurst).

I haven't actually seen the landslide so don't know for sure about that but I reckon you could get by ok based on nothing whatsoever.

The descent from hill End to the Turon River would be fast and fun but don't forget about cars.... or cliffs Eye-wink

The winter has been quite mild out here, I'm not sure that will keep up though.

datafunk's picture

This is great info. I had a wholehearted laugh on :" reckon you could get by ok based on nothing whatsoever", but with everyone's contributions, this is shaping up for us to be just right and an epic ride.
We're plannig to start at H/E - which is teh monster hill you're referring to? E.g on this: ?

grantd's picture

Yeah, Hill End is at the top of the hill at the end of that strava thingo. The descent from there to the Turon is pretty smooth and constant gradient and is reasonably steep (especially noticeable when climbing the other way with bob trailer carrying my camping gear and wife's panniers). It would be a fast descent.

The Root Hog fire trail, as mentioned, is on the other side of the Macquarie and is rougher and has steeper sections (which is more fun going down). You'd only have to go on this if you want to extend your trip or you can't get past the landslide on the bridle track. Here's a google maps link to root hog fire trail (,149.3697328,14z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x6b0e249d39d7e54d:0xa8501345d536d14b).

datafunk's picture

What's that like? Do you know what's the highest water level still passable by two cyclists unassisted (i.e. no 4WDs).
If the pics I saw here and there are of the Turon, then it's a pretty wide watercourse and looks like big 4WDs can submerge to near window level.

datafunk's picture

Looks like this is the best / clearest pic of teh landslide / boulder on the road, however I suspect it's years old:

Big Dog's picture

Don't worry about the landslide / boulder on Monaghans Bluff, you can sneak past between the rock face and the boulder now - at least you could two weeks ago when I rode it. The crossing of the Turon River is a concrete causeway, after a little rain it was about 3 inches deep, unless it pisses down it should be fine. Really cool ride, I did it on my CX bike without any trouble as it is mainly dirt road or smooth fire trail, but don't let that put you off.

grantd's picture

Yeah Turon crossing is not wide and is not usually very deep. I've always just ridden across.

Once when crossing the Macquarie in flood (at root hog and long point) I had to use two air beds to float bikes/gear across but that was a big rain event. You won't have to cross the Macquarie by the sound of the previous post.

fh6162's picture

Mate, the landslip only prevents cars from passing, its bugger all, you just hop off your bike and rock scramble the short distance over then carry on ya merry way ..its a top ride, good Pub to stay in too, the last 6-8 k's is all uphill not too bad but a bit of a slog, you'll love it if you have good weather....good luck

datafunk's picture

...Macquarie that I've seen the pics of.

Thanks Grant et al for the awesome info. I am getting really excited about this ride - the first full day ride since I got back in the saddle a year or so ago.

datafunk's picture

It was an awesome ride and indeed, you can practically ride beside the landslide on a pushie. That is if you feel comfortable. It's about a meter wide to pass, but indeed, about 300m drop on your side. Amazing views though.

We rode it from HE, so the big slog was a nice DH for a starter. Had some nice, but comfortably rideable hills to climb on the other end too .

philipm's picture

we rode to hill end Saturday morning 16 aug passed 2 riders coming the other way it may have been you its a ride that never fails to impress me even the climb at the end has stunning views

datafunk's picture

that must've been us - you guys were a larger group of 5-8 riders, right?
I know, the upper part along the river is breathtaking, but the whole trip is stunning. I loved every second of it.

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