24/07/2017 Coffs Harbour to Armidale

We had to have breakfast at the resort in Coff’s Harbour as we were quite a way from anywhere else.  The room rate at this place was pretty low for the nice room we had, but our burger and chip dinner last night and our breakfast this morning is where these resorts make their money-or take our’s as the case may be.  Still we knew this would happen before we stayed there.  Still we enjoyed listening to the pounding surf all night-it’s the closest we have stayed to the ocean and the view was great too.

We woke to a beautiful blue sky again and no cold wind blowing.  We set out on a ride called the waterfall way.  Soon we were climbing up high on winding roads, back up onto the Tablelands.  Once we got to the top of the winding road, the wind began to blow and it was pretty cold again.  Most of the time it was a cross wind that could really blow the bike off track, but that’s a time I’m grateful for the 500+kg of weight.

The scenery is very like riding through the Waikato.  We stopped at a place called Dorrigo.  A character filled little town with some nice falls-looks very like Te Aroha.  This is in the Dorrigo National Park which is known for it’s bush walks and waterfalls.  Looks very like NZ with Ponga ferns.

 

We rode on and stopped for lunch at Ebor falls on the Guy Fawkes river.  We were able to stand on a viewing platform 115 meters above the falls, which were very nice to see.  These falls attract about 80 000 visitors a year.

We rode on through the cold wind and into Armidale.  This is a very nice town of about 30 000 people.  It’s the highest city in Australia at about 1000 meters above sea level.  The wind was really blowing when we got here.  We had a quick ride around the town to orientate ourselves and then checked into the motel.  I was so cold I had a hot shower.  We ride in cold weather in NZ, but we are prepared for it and wear lots of woolen layers, but today I had only shorts on under my leathers and my little legs got very cold.

The motelier told us he had lots of ice on his car this morning and we should take care on the roads tomorrow as it is to drop to -3deg over night.  He’s a nice guy that enjoyed having a look over the bikes.  He used to ride and asked husband how did he find a woman that can ride!  He asked me if I have a sister with poor eye sight!

Anyway, we soon headed out to explore the town.  They have 4 seasons in Armidale and we are clearly here in mid winter.  All the deciduous trees have lost their leaves, and lots of trees have buds ready for the spring.  I’m sure its’ very pretty here in all seasons.

The British colonized this area in the 1830’s which was quite early on.  John Oxley was an early explorer and named Armidale after Armadale on the Isle of Skye in Scotland.  There are lots of roads, rivers and area’s around here called Oxley.  This area was good for grazing and brought lots of settlers in, and then gold was discovered nearby which had the town and area grow very quickly.  There’s lots of really nice historic buildings here and a lovely cathedral.  It’s nice to see some lovely British architecture.

We enjoyed exploring and then had a beer.  Super.

Tomorrow we are off to Port Macquarie for two nights.