Cycle Sydney, Mountain Bike Ride, Bennetts Ridge Trail
This bike ride packs a lot of variety into its 23km length. There is a creek crossing, fantastic views over the Nepean River and western Sydney from Portal Lookout, the grassy wide open spaces and friendly resident kangaroos of Euroka clearing, lovely Bennetts Ridge fire trail and the return leg via the fabulous fast and flowing Oakes single track, which is arguably Sydney’s most popular bit of single track. What more can you ask for?
One of the best things about this bike ride is its versatility, it makes an excellent midweek training bike ride or a great social cruise for those looking to take in some lower Blue Mountains sights. Technically this bike ride is a loop and it can be done in either direction, however it is strongly recommend riding to the top of the Oakes via Bennetts Ridge and descending on the Oakes for a number of reasons. Firstly it makes for a more enjoyable bike ride and secondly the Oakes single track is very popular especially on weekends. Going with the flow on the Oakes single track lessens the chance of an unplanned meeting with a fellow MTB rider boring down the trail in the opposite direction.
The Portal Lookout section of this ride is an out and back and so can be done as a side trip. The climb to the top is rather steep, and all but the fittest cyclists will probably end up pushing their shiny steed to the top. Once at the top however the stunning views more than make up for the steep climb. From the lookout great views of the Nepean River can be had, and on a clear day the entire Sydney Metro area is visible. Euroka clearing is a volcanic neck and is one of the most popular areas in the Blue Mountains. Its lovely grassy areas also sport a healthy population of giant blue and red gums.
Euroka is a public camp ground and has amenities including BBQs and pit toilets. It is also popular with the native residents and most days usually supports a healthy population of kangaroos. Bennetts Ridge is a little known fire trail which connects Euroka clearing to the end of the Oakes fire trail. This section of the ride provides enjoyable cycling and although a fire trail it has developed a definite line which has an almost single track feel to it in sections. Whilst this ride is only 23km in length it packs in a fair amount of climbing with almost the entire first half of the ride being uphill.
There are a few steep climbs especially the climb up to Portal Lookout and the climb out of Glenbrook Creek. What goes up must come down and the best way to come down is on the fabulous Oakes single track which makes all that climbing worth while. Due to the amount of climbing involved this ride is only recommended for riders with good fitness and above. Technically this ride is quite straight forward and only contains a few technical challenges towards the end of the Oakes single track.
Fire trail, double track, and single track. Expect to climb!
Most of this ride is open to vehicular traffic except for the Oakes single track so take care. Walkers also frequent the area. It can be popular on weekends.
Car: From Sydney, take the M4 and turn left at the first set of lights at Glenbrook. Continue on to the visitor’s centre at the Blue Mountains National Park and park here.
Train: Alight at Glenbrook, turn right out of the station and follow all the way to the visitor’s centre.
Food and Drink
Water is available at the Blue Mountains visitor centre. Plenty of cafes, bakeries and takeaways are available at Glenbrook. An outdoor store is also located at Glenbrook.
Portal Lookout, and short walk down to the Nepean River.
23.307 km / 14.482 mi
634 m / 2,079 ft
555 m / 1,822 ft
284 m / 933 ft