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GOLD METAL WINNER | In this issue

Just a few hours from Sydney and steeped in gold rush history, Hill End offers an amazing adventure ride back in time

The trip from Sydney to the historic gold rush town of Hill End is a popular adventure bike haul these days, but many who travel to the area often tear through on the phenomenal roads and tracks unaware of the history that brought towns like Hill End into existence.

With some annual leave up my sleeve and an urge to get out and explore after restrictions lifted, I loaded my kit on Yamaha’s WR250 R Rally and headed for Hill End and some of its gold rush era neighbours, with the goal of keeping as much dirt under my tyres as possible. The plan; head west from Sydney via Bells Line of Road, Blackfellows Hand Trail, bitumen for a bit before hitting the dirt again for the trip to Hill End via Sofala. All, hopefully before sunset and without freezing to death.

The ride from Sydney to Hill End and back offers some of the best adventure riding you can get and all just a stone’s throw from Sydney’s CDB. You can stick to the dirt for a good portion of the way, which means that you can do the trip on a smaller-capacity bike like the WR250R; you don’t need a mega-sized adventure bike. It’s close enough to rattle it off in a weekend but if you’ve got even a passing interest in the gold rush, then it’s worth slowing it down and spending a few days immersing yourself in the history.

Words Pete Vorst

Photography Angela Williams & The State Library of New South Wales