2008 trip day 5 – A great Big Loop

I started on a great loop around the rim. My intention was to get to and stay the night in Byron Bay, because I still have never stayed there the night. However, it turned out to be much further than I though and I did not have the stamina at the end of the day and bailed at the first place I could find.

2008-10-30 track

But back at the start, I headed north from Casino. My first major stop, and this took hours, was the Border Ranges National Park. Here the Prius struggled a bit, though for an unexpected reason. Some of the roads were very steep and gravel with stones. As the prius has a very low ground clearance, I had to take it slowly. But at low speed, the electric motor is at its most powerful. As I was going uphill most of the weight of the car was on the back wheels. The Prius is a front wheel drive and so I was having great difficulty stopping wheel slip. The problem with that was, the traction control kills the power when the wheels slip, I’d loose momentum and then when the power came back, I had slowed a lot and the wheels would slip more. With care I never once stalled the car, but I came close.

Border Ranges National Park

Border Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National ParkBorder Ranges National Park

I then headed up the road that followed the main interstate railway line between Sydney and Brisbane. I followed this as I wanted to see if I could get photos of one of the two railway spirals in NSW. I had travelled through this spiral when I once caught the Brisbane Limited.

the lions road

North Coast railwaythe lions roadWilson AveWilson AveWilson AveNorth Coast railway

I then came to what must be one of the most fortified border crossings in Australia. Only the Western Australians take their border crossings more seriously.

the lions road
the lions road

After some of the steepest roads I have encountered, but luckily only quite low hills, I found myself unexpectedly heading for Beaudesert. I was even now starting to feel tired. So I backtracked towards the coast. On the way I made a detour to Reilleys at Lamington National Park.

Lamington National Park

Lamington National ParkLamington National ParkLamington National ParkLamington National ParkLamington National ParkLamington National Park

I then made a dash for Byron Bay, but I was very tired. So I ended up staying the night at a place called Pottsville. Most of the residents were small business workers. It turned out to be a good night singing and playing the blues (some of the others were guitar players) on the balcony of the motel.

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