Wednesday 23 March 2016

Cycling the BVRT from Moore to Yarraman Return

I was at a loose end last weekend and was a bit too sick to join my paddling mates on a downwind kayak from Mooloolaba to Noosa so decided it was about time I ticked the top end of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail off my TODO list - not to mention hijacking my own paddling blog for a cycling diversion!

This section of the rail trail starts at Moore and heads up the range to Blackbutt via Linville which is around 30 kms.  You can add another 20 kms onto the trip by heading up the rail trail to Nukku and then onto Yarraman.  I turned this into a 100 km day out by riding both ways, but if you were looking to do a car shuffle for a shorter ride, then I would be heading up to either Blackbutt or Yarraman and riding down the range to Linville or Moore.

I wasn't looking to push the envelope on the ride so was just in spin mode, stopping regularly for gates and photo opps. Overall, it took me 3.5 hours from Moore to Yarraman (2 hours from from Moore to Blackbutt), and on the way back it took 3 hours.  The main time difference was on the Blackbutt to Linville section as this includes a steady 20 km climb on the way up the range which turns into a 20 km downhill for the way back.

I was surprised by the amount of wild life I came across on the ride.  The day started with some wild deer on the Moore to Linville section, along with Kangaroos, lots of lizards and other unidentified scaly creatures that were out enjoying the heat on the trail over the day.  The forrested sections were amazing with the sounds of bell birds echoing around the valleys as well as numerous different types of parrots and finches flitting in and out of the trees.

Moore to Linville - 7kms

I parked in the middle of Moore at the park near the main road which includes a toilet block.  There are some signs that will lead you out of town to the BVRT which starts off to the left of the main road to Linville.  This section includes a couple of steeper gully's which are a bit more of a challenge than the normal trail which is rated easy.  If I was doing this trip again, I would probably drop my tyre pressure a little as there were some sandy sections and some loose gravel on some of the gully's - but I have a lot more experience on a road bike than I do mountain biking so don't take this as the voice of experience!

This section of the trail is undulating so only short downhill and uphill sections.  There are lots of gates which I find a little frustrating, but chillin' in the country with no traffic is a good thing.

Linville to Blackbutt - 23 kms

The trail turned more rocky from this point on as I started to climb the range.  The old station still survives at Linville and there is some old rolling stock on a short section of track.

As you started to climb the range, the vegetation changed and groves of (big) grass trees started to appear.

This is a great section of the track as the gates aren't so close together and at the top of the range you start riding through some forested sections with lots of bird life as well as some great views on the way.

There is a toilet along this section of the track, along with a small tank under a covered area.

Blackbutt to Yarraman - 18 kms

There is a great bakery in Blackbutt so well worth the deviation into the main street for something to eat and drink.  Don't forget to refill your water bottles in this section as there isn't much infrastructure on the rail trail to Yarraman.

This section of the trail is a little less used so there is more grass over the track in spots and in other areas it gets sandy and there are a number of washouts.  This section is undulating, but still interesting with a gully or two to provide some challenges.  The more difficult gully's generally will have a black (expert) MTB hill legend sign which is a good hint about what is in front of you.

The main street of Yarraman is a kilometer or so up the road which has a foodstore, pub and a bakery if you aren't there on a Sunday!

The Wrap Up

Definitely worth doing this trail.  There was an intermediate trail off the right hand side of the track on the way up the range from Linville to Blackbutt (before Benarkin from memory).  It could be worth another visit just to explore this trail and the forestry around Blackbutt.

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