Saturday, May 14, 2016
POPRAN NATIONAL PARK MTB - 14 MAY 2016
I drove out to Popran National Park for a bike ride.
I parked near a wire fence along Ironbark Road where the road became too rough for the van to travel.
I peddled a couple of kilometres along the rough dirt road until I reached Popran National Park picnic area. There is a toilet and gate at this point.
I rode down the steep service road which was littered with loose stones and some deep sand obstacles.
I took the turnoff leading to the 248 trail and Donovan's Forest. The fire road was steep downhill. At Donovan's, the vegetation became more serene with softer plants and taller dispersed trees.
I reached the start of the narrow 248 trail. This was a fun, slowly ascending ride winding through thick mazelike vegetation until it reached an area of tessellated sandstone. I took a break here and watched the bird life.
The return down this trail was excellent - more speed with plants whipping at both sides. I copped a more sturdier branch to the face at one point splitting my lip but it was only minor.
Back on the main circuit trail, it soon turned narrow with fun descents, winding tracks, steps and more erosion type obstacles. At the steepest part leading before Hominy Creek, the track was heavily eroded and I had to porter the bike down.
Once I met up with Hominy Creek, I took the right track to Emerald Pool.
Emerald Pool was fed by Hominy Creek. The water was an emerald colour and the pool and area around it was very pretty. I took a rest and wandered around the pool and along Hominy Creek. I had to do it so I stripped off and tried to go for a swim in the pool. I got part of the way but it was icy cold.
I backtracked a short distant along the creek then crossed the creek and walked and rode the bike up the track to the turn off to Mount Olive.
I took the right turn and rode down and walked up two long very steep loose stone sections ending in a small area of rough tessellated sandstone at some lookout point. I rested here and watched a few butterflies at play.
I backtracked along the trail and continued on back to the picnic area and onwards to the van. This section was the hardest being very steep, loose stones and pockets of deep sand plus I was getting tired. Along the way, I diverted for a short distance towards Mount Olive but being tired I decided to do this challenge another day.
A long and challenging 13.75 km ride along some steep tracks and trails with plenty of obstacles and three pretty rest areas.
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