I was feeling a bit sheepish about my brand new Garene off-road riding boots as they were … new. That is, they didn’t look dirty, beaten up and used like my DR650 – plus as I was doing an off road riding course next weekend they weren’t going to do his cred any good. So I decided to ride 150km west of Sydney and ride some trails just to get my boots dirty. Why not?

So off I set on a not so lovely Saturday into the Blue Mountains. In no time I regretted not bringing 1. rain gear and 2. a warm jacket as the mountains lived up to their reputation for changing weather and he was wet and freezing. Doh.

A couple of hours of riding in the rain found me thawing out in a cafe and contemplating a somewhat inglorious retreat home. But the prospect of rocking up to the course with virgin boots was a worse alternative so into the rain and mud I went.


Actually it wasn’t too muddy as the sandstone rock of the mountains weathers into nice sand but still it was great to get off road.

There are some nice dirt roads around Blackheath and I headed to a lovely campground at Perry’s Lookdown. We had done a bushwalk through the Grose Valley near there so it’s a perfect base to explore the valley.

From Perry’s trails head off into the bush in all directions. Many are blocked by the Parks Service but you can follow power line service roads and get some great riding in.

The rain finally passed long enough to take in the view and it was classic Blue Mountains.


I had a look down the road we walked out of the Grose Valley and found the old cemetery in Mt Victoria. A beautiful quiet place tucked in the bush. The graves dating from the 1880s remind one of the history of the mountains and the people that settled there.

From there it was a long wet road home. Not a bad ride but still a 400km round trip.

A long way to get your boots dirty but still worth it!