Two previous postings cover riding the Great Dividing Trail’s Leanganook Track. One from Castlemaine to Bendigo and the other in the reverse direction.
The Castlemaine to Bendigo route described a route to bypass the very tough climb (or drop) up the southern face of Lenaganook (Mt Alexander). Only very fit and very expert riders can ride it and even they have to portage over many fallen trees. Once was interesting but enough for me.
The Map & Route files
Download Leanganook W bypass web web view PDF 221kb
Download Leanganook W bypass print quality PDF 3.7mb
Download Leanganook W bypass GPX file for loading into GPS
Download Leanganook W bypass MM Memory Map file
Instructions to go with the Map
Sometime after the Garfield water wheel you will ascend then descend snaking single track, turning R onto Welsh St 4WD track. L @ T onto Endall, ignore GDT R towards Golden Point Rd instead continuing onto Llewellyn Rd. Start climbing then veer 1L. Through fence line into clearing and if a hot day take in the heady aromas of the pine forest.
Now listen up! This is tricky so refer to the map as well. You should be in a clearing. You are to continue NW on dirt roads, not N along the fence line unless you like more hills. At 300m veer 1R and soon youLeanganook Specimen Gully w will be back at the fence line. Continue N, keep SA where track veers off to L, veer L on dirt road down a steepish gully, SA at next junction still down gully, then saunter along the valley floor, SA at triangle junction.
L@T onto Specimen Gully Rd and from here until Leanganook foothill it is sweetly undulating farming, lifestyle and orchard country. R into Reillys Rd, R@T onto Peelers Rd, R@X onto tarmac Blackjack Rd, take care SA across Calder Highway, 1L into Danns Rd for a few kms more of apple orchards (if using Memory Map, the gap in Danns Rd does not exist).
After it becomes Reservoir Rd, on your R eventually is Henry of Harcourt’s cidery, usually open. A bit further on veer R onto the dirt Quarry Rd for a shady interlude if sunny. Then SA onto tarmac Harcourt – Sutton Grange Rd, up a steepish climb past the Joseph Young Drive (Mt Alexander tourist rd) then from the ridge swoop down the esses to the water race and rejoin the GDT on your L.