If you are looking for something more substantial during your stay at Walcha, this 3 to 5 day bike tour (depending on your speed) is a safe choice.
If you feel the need to buy the detail of this route but would like to support nonetheless you can make a donation here -
The Walcha Grand South Tour is a gentle tour that gives rewards of beautiful scenery often reserved for the hike-a-bike demonic routes. It is a 100% rideable, 75% gravel country cruise. Giving you the opportunity to have long days racking up many kilometers - if that is what you want.
If you like your biking to be a little more technical this route does have a mean sister - I like to call it….The Walcha Grand South Tour’s Mean Sister - slightly shorter, and more abrasive. You can find this route here. The differences are the choice between visiting Dick’s hunt or leaving it for next time.
Despite the Mummel Gulf National Park having a long history of logging on the plateau and upper slopes, most of the vegetation is still in good condition. Only the more accessible areas of open forest show signs of disturbance and there are extensive areas of old growth forest
The planning area is primarily in the traditional land of the Biripai people but borders the country of several other Aboriginal peoples including that of the Anaiwan to the west, the Nganyaywana people of the southern New England Tablelands and the Dunghutti of the hinterland valleys.
At the highest elevation point and from the logging roads of Riamukka State Forest you will have a view to the south. On a clear day, it might be possible to see right off the Northern Tablelands plateau.
The next township you visit on this route is the geologically isolated Niangala. With a population of 30ish. It is remnant of the Australian gold rush, leaving an old cemetery, a derelict gold crusher and a number of old buildings from when the township boasted more than 300 folks panning for gold in 1893.
You enter Niangala from the north, having passed through Billey Creek TSR which, depending on the time of year you are riding, may have been a slow bounce around fallen trees and deep crevices.
Weabonga, the next small township on the route, is a fun place. Nestled in the crease of rolling hills. If you reach Weabonga in the evening you will see the hills alight with the last sun.
The 30km climb back up past Limbre and towards Woolbrook is a long one...but gentle.The Main North Line train line wobbles through the terrain and guides you straight to Woolbrook. Another small town, less geologically challenged. It has a heritage listed rail bridge over the MacDonald River and platypus sightings from the road bridge.
If you wanted to cut the tour short, you could opt to return to Walcha via the Scrubby Gully Road. If you continue the route you will be rewarded with a stop at The Walcha Road Hotel, built in 1870 and sits next to the heritage listed Walcha Road Station - which 100 years ago was alive with trade and industry. The station, still in service, now sits quietly peeking over at you enjoying a cold one at the same pub that served the men and women that sent 7500 bales of wool each year from its platform 100 years ago.
Hopefully by this stage you have had your fill of gravel, and you can enjoy the faster roll back into Walcha. The town is waiting for your arrival with plenty of ways to replenish your energy and leave you wanting to return to ride the Great North Tour.
A reminder that you can buy the details of this route here - https://jambijambi.com/collections/walcha-tourism-collection/products/walcha-grand-south-tour-387km-4-5-days