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Author Topic: The Old Convict Road.  (Read 1358 times)

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Offline Jaqhama

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The Old Convict Road.
« on: May 28, 2007, 03:01:28 pm »
Shalako-Lin was keen to get out and about on her new Sherpa.
She has never been along the Old Convict Road that was the original main inland route between Sydney and the Hunter Valley.
So Saturday off we went...

This the view of the Hawksbury River, overlooking Wisemans Ferry.



And here's Mr Wiseman himself, came out from Ye Olde Dart (the UK) as a convict 200 years ago, built the first ferry in this region and also built the first pub, which made him very popular with the locals. So much so that they named the township after him
Lin reckons he must have been a real hardman to prosper in the harsh conditions of penal Australia, a man of iron.


I think all the fame and fortune made him a little big-headed.


The ferry still runs today (actually there are 3 ferries in this district, most people only know about 2 of them.) They all work 24/7 year round, with a seperate day each month when one or another is closed for maintaince.



We stopped at St. Albans in the middle of the countryside, only a pub here, nothing else. Been in business since 1836...they got their liquor licence in 1991.
There was a local horse show on, people came from horse farms from miles around. Lin making friends with one of the ponies.


Then it was off along a 35 km road that runs alongside the St. Albans Common. This road part of the original Old Convicts Road.


This lake if full for the first time in years, some years ago I rode a trail bike along the dried out riverbed, nice to see there has been some rain in this area of late.
Even cormorants have taken to catching fish and frogs here.




Now there was this field full of horses.


And I just couldn't help myself. You can just see me in the background.



Because it looked just like the fields that Steve McQueen rode across in the classic motorcycle scene in the Great Escape movie!


I could almost hear the movie theme music.


Of course I'd used Lin's new bike to do my Steve McQueen impression...and halfway across the field had encountered a bog...the pristine Sherpa was now all muddy...Lin was horrified.


While I was innocently explaining that mud and trail bikes go together two other riders came past to prove my point.


We continued on towards the end of the Old Convict Road.


"What's this big rock doing here then?" queries Lin.
The arrow pointing upwards is not directional, it's the logo that was sewn on the old convict uniforms and used to denote convict or prison property.


"Oh look, it's got writing on it!"


These stones were placed here back in the 1800's.
There is a sign warning of huge fines and imprisonment for damaging or removing them.
Jaq wondered idly if there was a surveilience camera hidden somewhere, I mean who'd know if you took one or damaged one, the road is deserted.


It was getting into late afternoon by now so we saddled up and headed back to a main tar road for our return journey back down to Sydney.
Lin was very happy, she'd seen another place that she had never been to before, all thanks to the joys of a motorcycle.

It's not just a mode of transport, it's a fking adventure!
 

shark_za

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2007, 03:19:18 pm »


Convict road in Australia...
Take your pick !
 

Offline Jaqhama

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2007, 03:34:09 pm »
It's a sad fact that on the mainland there are few of the old roads left.
Quite a lot of convict built remains on the isle of Tasmania though.
It's not just a mode of transport, it's a fking adventure!
 

Offline Clockwork Orange

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2007, 03:38:56 pm »
Very interesting . Thanks Jaq
When in doubt...grab throttle!!!
 

Offline Jaqhama

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #4 on: May 28, 2007, 03:43:37 pm »
I just realised that the last sentence on the stone plaque reads " Get a map and explore!"

What a great logo!
It's not just a mode of transport, it's a fking adventure!
 

Red

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2007, 04:04:19 pm »
You are going to make us do something irresponsible like coming for a two month visit to Australia if you continue like this.   :D  :D   Keep it coming, though.  Thanks.
 

Offline Jaqhama

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2007, 04:49:02 pm »
Quote from: "Red"
You are going to make us do something irresponsible like coming for a two month visit to Australia if you continue like this.   :D  :D   Keep it coming, though.  Thanks.


Let us know the dates in advance and we'll tidy up the camping equipment room (errr I mean the spare bedroom) and sort you a bike or two.
It's not just a mode of transport, it's a fking adventure!
 

shark_za

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2007, 05:02:07 pm »
All roads in Oz are convict roads. Its a penal colony.
 

Offline Clockwork Orange

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2007, 05:05:10 pm »
Shark is that the sound of Live Aids "We are the world" playing in the background :D  :D  :D
When in doubt...grab throttle!!!
 

Offline Jaqhama

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2007, 05:07:28 pm »
Quote from: "shark_za"
All roads in Oz are convict roads. Its a penal colony.


In actual fact there were thousand more settlers than convicts in early Oz.
Most roads were built using convict labour, some of the most innovative bridge structures were designed and built by convicts.
Many of the convicts were given pardons for work performed and went on to become prosperus business men, as did Mr Wiseman.
It's not just a mode of transport, it's a fking adventure!
 

Offline Clockwork Orange

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #10 on: May 28, 2007, 05:11:29 pm »
Quote from: "Jaqhama"
Quote from: "Red"
You are going to make us do something irresponsible like coming for a two month visit to Australia if you continue like this.   :D  :D   Keep it coming, though.  Thanks.


Let us know the dates in advance and we'll tidy up the camping equipment room (errr I mean the spare bedroom) and sort you a bike or two.


A couple of years ago I was in Sydney for 2 weeks. If only the forum was in existence then I would have jumped at the chance to scoot around on a bike instead of the trains
When in doubt...grab throttle!!!
 

Offline wino

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2007, 06:17:13 pm »
great stuff! how's lin handling the kawa?
 

Offline Jaqhama

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The Old Convict Road.
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2007, 07:22:42 pm »
Quote from: "wino"
great stuff! how's lin handling the kawa?


She's loving it.
It's just the right size and weight for her.
It's well fast enough for road riding and is quite capable off-road.
We have got quite a few adventure trips planned in the near future.
We just have to sort a rack out for the Sherpa.
It's not just a mode of transport, it's a fking adventure!