Posts Tagged ‘Lithgow’


‘It’s a walking path, but, yeah, you should be able to make it down!’
My plan of returning back down the dead-end road back to Lithgow was transformed into a beautiful loop through pristine Blue Mountains landscape.

Wolgan Valley

Wolgan Valley

The return was also on a dead-end road, through the Wolgan Valley. Dead-end roads are the best. There are hardly any cars. People are too busy going from A to B to worry with dead-end roads. Cycling on them is like being on a different planet.

Wolgan Valley

Wolgan Valley

Wolgan Valley

Wolgan Valley

And the kind of people driving on the road are cool. Some cycling fans recognised my bike – a Koga with Rohloff hub. They were so excited they stopped for a photo opportunity, and then offered me food and water. It was like being on the world bike trip all over again!

Friendly people

Friendly people

At the end of the dead-end road is an old pub that now runs as a kiosk on weekends. Entering there makes you feel time has stood still.

Newnes pub

Newnes pub

Going backwards in time through the day, to get to the Wolgan Valley, I had to descend from the Newnes plateau, where I passed through the Glowworm tunnel (I’ll come to that). The plateau comes abruptly to a halt at some vertical rock walls. There is a little walking path that makes its way down, but, it involved a little bit of carrying the bike.. 🙂

Down to the Wolgan Valley

Down to the Wolgan Valley

Approaching the Glowworm tunnel

Approaching the Glowworm tunnel

The actual trip was inspired by a turn-off I passed last week to the ‘Glow worm tunnel’. That sounded too good to miss. The glow worm tunnel is at the end of a 35km dirt road from Lithgow that passes over the Newnes plateau. In the middle of the tunnel, total darkness reigns. After a few minutes, when the eyes adjust, little green points of light appear. Everywhere. Like millions of stars in the night sky, the glow worms dot the blackness with life.

The Glowworm tunnel

The Glowworm tunnel

Entrance to another tunnel

Entrance to another tunnel

A palm paradise

A palm paradise

Approaching the Glowworm tunnel

Approaching the Glowworm tunnel

Approaching the Glowworm tunnel

Approaching the Glowworm tunnel

Approaching the Glowworm tunnel

Approaching the Glowworm tunnel


‘Yep. You should be alright,’ they said, eyeing off my touring bike. ‘You could get past on that.’ Well, the road was closed, and had been for years, judging by the state of it. A quiet descent into the lonely valley in the Blue Mountains. Not a soul was there, and I was happy.

Bowens Creek Road

Bowens Creek Road

The main roads in the Blue Mountains are not that great – cars scooting along around sharp corners and not much room for cyclists. My plan was to leave the busy Bells Line Of Road asap, and I headed off to the road to Mt Wilson, past the ‘Cathedral of Ferns’ and a few lovely lookouts.

Cathedral of Ferns

Cathedral of Ferns

Wynnes Lookout

Wynnes Lookout

The closed road connects Mt Irvine to Bilpin. It is closed due to a crumbly bridge at the bottom of a long descent, and due to numerous places where the road has caved away and slipped down the steep valley slope. There were lots of big rocks and bumps, and it wasn’t much wider than a walking trail. And there were numerous trees that had fallen across the road. It was a lot of fun!

Bridge Bowens Creek

Bridge Bowens Creek

Bowens Creek Road

Bowens Creek Road

Bowens Creek Road

Bowens Creek Road

Bowens Creek Road

Bowens Creek Road

Returning to the main road, I had to leave as quickly as possible. It was the end of the Australia Day long weekend, and the mad drivers were building. So, I did my little detour through Mountain Lagoon, and remained in peace until just before Richmond. A lovely way to spend a Sunday in the Blue Mountains.