Western Pub Crawl

Cowra - Young - Temora - Grenfell - Cowra via Gooloogong

May 7-10, 1999


This trip started life as a repeat of last Easter's trip but after much deliberation, which continued until the morning we left Young, it was decided to go to Temora rather than Grenfell on day 2

We carried much more on this trip than on previoius similar trips - we each had a pair of panniers to accomodate our warm clothing, both for on and off the trikes. In fact we carried too much, but I suppose it did our muslces good on the uphills :)

Day 1

Cowra to Young

As we've done this before, and reported it in a previous ride there is not much to add about the travel conditions etc. Keith got a flat tyre at Koorawatha, but blamed this on the M2 in Sydney. We did find the hills at the Young end smaller than we remembered them to be, and perhaps most importantly we found Young to be a really nice place, which was not at all our previous experience. This of course is because last time we were in Young (by bike) it was Good Friday and nothing was happening, no food, no pubs etc, but this time it was fine.

We booked into a large motel run by the Services Club. This was a 4 star room, at reasonable tariff, in a quiet location and where the trikes were easily locked up in the motel garage overnight!

Dinner was at an excellent restaurant ("Jonathon's") which served a variety of dishes including swordfish, nasi goreng, etc - not the type of meal one expects in country NSW!

Day 2

Young to Temora

It was not until breakfast time that we finally decided to take the road to Temora. The contingency plan was to go to Grenfell (a much shorter trip) and then Forbes the next day so that this trip would then be the same as last year's. It had rained overnight, and this morning was cool and cloudy, but with not too much threat of more rain.

We set off a little before 9:00. The first 10km or so our of town was fairly hilly - but of course this meant we had some wonderful downhill runs! In accordance with O'Toole's Law (which states that Murphy was an optimist) one of my panniers decided to part company from the rack at the bottom of a steep descent. I was of course travelling quite fast at the time and naturally the pannier which misbehaved was the one containing the camera and lenses! The rear cap on one the lenses broke, but luckily no other damage was evident (wait 'til we see the photos I suppose!)

Milvale is a town, no an intersection, no actually a silo and closed shop which is for sale. Here we stopped for our halfway break. After a good snack we set off again for the 40Kms to temora, the last 10 km of which was uphill, more and more steeply until a long grade to the outside of the town, followed by a great descent into the town - we always enjoy the fast bits :)

We arrived in Temora at about 13:30 and found a motel - "all booked out mate and so are all the others" - this was not what we wanted to hear. U-turn. Let's try the Pub there. "$35 for the room, you can put the trikes out the back". The room was small but was on the upper level and we had a huge verandah on which to sit and read or just watch the goings-on in the main drag.

Temora seemed to be a town with no restaurants at all, not even a coffee shop that we could find. We found a hasty-tasty and had lunch. A rest time alloed us to restore some energy, and then we went downstairs for a few beers, after which we had dinner in the dining room of the pub. The dinner was actually not too bad for a pub - some understanding of bleu was displayed in the cooking of my excellent steak! A reasonalbe bottle of red (we gained the impression that red wine was very rarely sold in this pub) helped boost our condfidence for the next day.

Day 3

Temora to Grenfell

Having examined the maps we knew this was to be a long day. Fran's father had advised us that the roads should all be sealed on our chosen route (the topographic maps we use are great except they are often more than 20yrs old!). The shopkeeper in the 'Deli' where we had breakfast however said that there was a stretch of gravel road from Morangael (variously spelt "Morangorell", "Morangorel" etc on both maps and road signs) to Bribaree, a distance of about 16Kms. If the gravel were too bone shaking we could turn off to Quandialla on the sealed road, but it would make the trip longer.

Now we knew it could be an even longer day, but at least it was pretty much all flat...well apart from 20Kms of undulations when we left Temora. This was very scenic and we enjoyed the views and the thousands of birds who decided to sing to us, but we were aware that this potentially 100km+ day had begun with hill climbs and that perhaps we would need a good meal en route - we carried plenty of dried apricots, biscuits and almonds but these may not be enough for lunch.

We arrived at Morangael. There was nothing there of course apart from a dirt road - well actually large stone road with dirt filling the gaps. This was absolutley hopeless on the trikes! Not only were we afraid that the trikes would be shaken to bits, but we had doubts about our own structural integrity. We could also only manage 14 k/hr whereas we had been doing 21-24 k/hr on the tar.

We took the Quandialla turn.

At a few minutes before midday we zoomed into Quandialla and immediately found a shop and the pub. Well, actually there is not much more than this in town anyway. The shop was not open - of course, it was Sunday, something we had forgotten. Oh well, break out the dried apric...no wait the pub is opening!

After a light beer and a meat pie each we were back on the road feeling rejuvenated and ready for another 50 kms.

The going was easy enough, especially now that we realised it was more efficient for us to ride in single file than across the road. OK- you knew this, but we're slow learners. Fran was able to travel at between 18 and 21 whereas I could do from 21 to 28 so we decided that I would ride in front. This lifted Fran's speed without making her work any harder, so for the most part we travelled along at about 25.

We were getting tired and decided to take a break at 15 kms from Grenfell. As I was munching some dried apricots I noticed a large animal in the distant paddock. It was an emu which eventually came close enough for Fran to get a good look and take some photos (which unfortunately haven't made it to this page)

We could almost feel the hot showers and managed to pedal into Grenfell still travelling at good speed. Having stayed in the Motel last year we decided to try one of the Pubs - the first one we saw was advertising B & B - unfortunately they had a broken stairwell and couldn't accomodate us. On to the Motel. Here the owner locked our trikes in the garage and made us most welcome. A short sleep followed our stroll around town to find some food.

Now we needed to find dinner and went back to the pub we first ecountered for a drink. They didn't do meals so we took the publican's advice and went to the next pub up the street - well the lady said she always did do a meal on Sunday night, but because it was Mother's day she was taking the night off, and just serving at the bar. The options had dwindeld to one - the local Chinese restaurant. The meal was edible and the service good especially considering the crowds who had found their options also limited.

Day 4

Grenfell to Cowra via Gooloogong

As many country towns in this region are built in a hole it is wise to make sure you take the correct road out of town, ir order to avoid a needless climb. No more need be said here apart from the fact that we did an extra 5 km very early in the day...

Luckily we began with a great brekfast from the motel, and once we were on the correct road, found it to be very scenic, if a little hilly at first. The country changed after 35Km or so - not a good place to ride in summer as this stretch of road has no cover at all - very open unlike most of the rest of this adventure where trees lined the roads. As we neared Gooloogong the trees returned, as did the slight hilliness. Gooloogong has a good pub and a shop at which we bought some sandwiches and drinks. The park opposite boasts a large parking bay, toilets, BBQs and an unuseable tennis court.

We had 50Km still to Cowra, taking the turn to the little town of Billimari where Fran's aunt has just bought a small property. After a tour of her new house and the paddocks we headed into Cowra, riding in single file and at good speed.


Dist Time Avs Max Alt

Cowra - Young


Young - Temora


Temora - Grenfell


Grenfell - Cowra

366 km - 91.5 av per day!