Day 53: Jun. 10 – Manly Beach to Terrigal
Daily Distance = 59.53km, Trip Total = 1,365.54km, Today’s Climb = 539m
I was on the road at 8am this morning and made a pretty determined ride (aka no pictures) for the first 30km to catch a 10:30am ferry in Palm Beach. Today’s ride was actually hillier than I expected it to be. No long climbs, but constantly making steep climbs up and down. And on the downhills I took the cautious approach of riding the brakes because of changing traffic lights, roundabouts and dodging debris on the bike lane. From Manly Beach to Palm Beach you pass through one town after another. The towns are so developed and blend together I actually couldn’t really tell when I was leaving one and entering another. Traffic was also busy, but the road had a good shoulder and there were lots of other cyclists out on their road bikes (it’s a long weekend in New South Wales Australia!).
I made it to the ferry shortly after 10am, where a gentleman looked at me in shock and stated ‘I saw you AGES ago’. Apparently he’d passed me closer to Manly Beach and didn’t expect to see me again! lol!
Palm Beach Wharf
My bike on the wharf, waiting or the ferry
Looking out from Palm Beach
I had a chat with one of the employees on the ferry who also does some tour cycling. I asked him about one of the off road trail options that I have coming up ahead of me, which my online research indicates can be ‘prone to flooding after heavy rain’. There has been A LOT of rain lately. But he assures me the trail will be passable. He also mentioned that two tour cyclists were on the ferry a couple days ago, it is their first tour and they were heading to Brisbane. I always like to hear about other tourers, especially if they’re going the same general route and time as me.
I got off the ferry at a town called Ettalong where I knew I would have to cross a bridge on Maitland Bay Dr. Google maps was directing me West for a bit, then North for a bit, then East onto Maitland Bay Dr. I thought I would out-smart google maps and just head straight North to Maitland Bay Dr. And when I got there, here’s what I found:
That road above me is Maitland Bay Dr…..should’ve followed google maps….
So I stood on the side of the road for a bit while I looked at how I needed to re-route. Just as I thought I had it figured out and I was setting out again a vehicle pulled up to me. The driver is a cyclist and he gave me directions on how I could get on the bridge without backtracking. A couple quick right hand turns later and following a path beside a ‘blue-ish’ house (per the directions provided), I was successfully on the bridge! Yay!
The rest of the ride to Terrigal continued with the constant hills, but the towns were a bit further apart with some greenery between them.
Between Ettalong and Terrigal
In Terrigal there are multiple paths for cyclists!
I got to my Airbnb accommodations and had a quick chat with my hosts, who were super friendly and fellow adventurers. They have two young kids, but pre-kids they actually lived and toured around on a boat for a while! It sounds like they are planning their next adventure, it just takes a bit more time and effort with kids (I can imagine!).
After I got cleaned up I headed across the street and walked the short distance along the coast to the downtown area (the ocean is quite literally at my doorstep tonight). I picked up some quick groceries for tomorrow’s ride and then spent an hour or so before sunset reading at the beach. Weather wise, it’s now comfortable for cycling (mid to high teens), but not quite warm enough to entice me into the water yet. Regardless, sitting by the ocean and reading while listening to the sound of the waves at the end of a day? Not a bad life…..
View across the street from the Airbnb
Town of Terrigal
Reading by the beach :)