This is a lovely ride that is notable for mirror-smooth lakes, large gum trees, magnificent sand dunes and the absence of traffic until just south of Forster. It could be done in one day, but we enjoyed a peaceful night of camping near Bombah Ferry.
Day 1 – Nelson Bay to Bombah Ferry (61 km) Take the ferry from Nelson Bay to Tea Gardens/Hawks Nest. This ferry ride is a great deal because they guarantee dolphin sightings 95% of the time – no need for an extra dolphin excursion.
After the approximately 1 hour ferry ride, follow the NSW Coastal track across the bridge to Hawks Bay and then follow the signs to Mungo Beach. The narrow road is paved, but quite bumpy.
These sand dunes were the site of aboriginal festivals.
We only saw a handful of cars the entire ride to Bombah Ferry.
Although there are plenty of campgrounds on the east side of the ferry, we rode the ferry across and opted for Myall Lakes Resort with hot showers and potable water on the west side. Aside from the mosquitoes and the birds, we were the only tent campers there so it felt a little eerie.
Day 2 – Bombah Ferry to Forster – (49 km) We owe a huge “thank you” to the Bombah ferry operator. He pointed us back across the ferry to some hiking tracks/fire roads through Myall Natioanl Park that he assured us are suitable for bicycles. We’d been told differently at 2 tourist information centers.
Based upon his first-hand advice, we took the turnoff to Old Gibbers Road which turns into Mining Road Trail. The 20 km of dirt road took us though magnificent brush and huge sand dunes and gave us a chance to chat while riding which we seldom do.
We had to lift our bikes over the gate to exit the dirt roads where we intersected and turned west onto Seal Rocks road.
The remainder of the day was spent on The Lakes Way, a “tourist drive” that meandered around Myall Lake, Smiths Lake, Wallis Lake and Booti Booti National Park (got a big kick out of the name) All three lakes had glass-like water that was just begging for a ski boat and water-skier to take advantage of the “glass.”
This section of the Australian Coast makes for a lovely bike ride.