29 June 2022 / Words by Mike Lawless. Photos by Mike Lawless, Peter Wilson, Rod Nicholas
On Thursday morning 11 eager souls gathered at the Woodworks Cafe Gallery in Bungendore to prepare for our trip up to Bowral. The cafe always provides a nice place to meet, and it did so on this occasion - the apricots scones in particular were a big hit.
The outskirts of Bungendore presented the first of a few ‘challenges’ for our trip; some minor roadworks, and a dirty great truck that took up a position at the rear of our convoy. It was clear the truck, likely heading to Tarago to deposit waste, was keen to travel at a pace in excess of the speed limit and it edged ever closer to the rear bumper of our car. Our job was clear; stay in front of the truck and stay within the speed limit. This we successfully achieved, notwithstanding that the road surface was unpleasantly damaged in parts (not that it seemed to worry the truck) and there was quite a lot of clearing on the side of the road. ‘Clearing’ is a polite way of saying ‘untidy mess’; tractors have just pushed over the trees and there were upended and broken stumps everywhere. Hopefully they’re going to improve the road so in the future it will be a much better MX-5 road.
Unfortunately the road after Tarago to Bungonia still had large segments where the speed limit was reduced and the road surface was damaged. However, the country side could be admired as we putt putted along and we could see Lake Bathurst with plenty of water. A rarity.
The road from Bungonia to Marulan was by and large in good condition. But the sides of the roads had subsided, thanks to the heavy trucks that use the road, and there were a few potholes. We joined the Hume, stopped briefly for a comfort break and a tour of Marulan (two and a half minutes) and took off up the highway and onto the Illawarra Highway to Sutton Forest Inn for lunch.
Sutton Forest Inn - a great old pub, and the locals are friendly!
We had an enjoyable lunch and met MX-5 owners, Peter and Lesley, who were in the southern highlands and spent lunchtime with us.
After lunch we motored on to the Bowral Boutique Motel where the group split up - some to shopping and others in search of one of the local breweries for a beer tasting.
Beer tasting at Eden Brewery - sure beats shopping
After drinks, generously facilitated by the motel manager in the reception of the motel, we enjoyed a pleasant and noisy dinner at a local Italian restaurant.
Friday morning saw us drive from Bowral to Kangaloon, though Robertson and on to Burrawang General Store for a nutritious breakfast.
The Burrawang General Store - a great place to break your fast
Fast broken, we motored on to Fitzroy Falls and along the Tourist Road, ending up at the Bundanoon Hotel for lunch. This driving took us on some pretty, but narrow, back lanes where we could take in some great views. New roads for many of the group made up for the occasionally poor road surface.
Somewhere along the Tourist Road - a lovely drive
After lunch in the Bundanoon Hotel, we said our farewells and left for home.
Mike and Jo