Review: GABCY South East – Wayne and Matt

In December 2022 Wayne and Matt rode a 190km, 2-day / overnight loop starting and finishing at Heathcote. Their loop used sections from several South East GABCY routes – Reap the Red Ridge, Camel Cornella, Kirwans Rushy Whroote, Nagambie Meander and Ghostown Gambol. This is their report (words – Wayne, images -Wayne & Matt).

Day 1: Heathcote to Whroo via Toolleen/Colbinabbin/Rushworth

We zigzagged our way out of Heathcote on a perfect summer’s day.  Warm but not hot, and barely a breeze.  We made good time on the firm, gravel roads to Toolleen, with the occasional section of fast bitumen having us arrive at the Toolleen pub early, well before opening time.

Toolleen Hotel – too early for beer o’clock

My disappointment in missing on an early beer turned out to be a blessing in disguise.  Instead we crossed the Mt Camel range with a short, relatively easy climb to detour to the Shiraz Republic Winery/Brewery in Cornella.  40km done. We were rewarded with spectacular views, admiring the wedge-tailed eagle hovering above us as we paused at the top for some photos and a drink.

Chinamans Bend lookout, en route to Shiraz Republic

Can’t say enough about Shiraz Republic.  We shared a superb beer and pizza lunch in idyllic surrounds.  Heaps of shade, music, and even sunscreen!  Need to come back on a day ride and stay longer. Some pics below.

Penance for lunch was dished out with a nasty (longer, steeper) climb over a more northerly part of the range, full bellies groaning in protest, though the red dirt roads were again spectacular.  They’d be incredible when the canola is in bloom, though I’m told these red clay roads can be unrideable when wet.

Hamblin Road, Mt Camel Range – climb and descent

With the climbing behind us, we tracked northwards through open farmlands, helped along by a gentle tailwind, for some silo art gazing at Colbinabbin.

Colbinabbin – Hotel and silo art


To continue reading this report and access Strava links for each of the days click on this link – Review: GABCY South East – Wayne and Matt.