I have been intending for a while to discover how to navigate the Harbour Bridge on a bike, and decided today would be the day. It is not quite clear on a map, which way to go, and doing the research online, only served to reinforce that you had to know your way - and it's not that straight forward.
I made my way into the city, and was overtaken by 2 cyclists who seemed to be on a mission and decided to follow them. They turned into Clarence Street (one sooner than I have been planning to take), and followed it all the way to the on-ramp onto the bridge, before taking a turn onto the footpath, across a ramp, down a side street, and another ramp onto the bridge. Bikes are allowed only on one side of the bridge, and again I would have guessed incorrectly: bikes go on the inland side, and pedestrians on the ocean side. I had been warned of the lack of a ramp on the other side, where cyclists have to dismount and carry their bikes down fifty odd steps. So that was my first Harbour Bridge crossing on the bike - not that bad, when one knows how, but I still think on a weekday, the traffic will add further complications.
|View of the "north shore" from our side of the Harbour today|
Having started out a bit late, I decided to forego a 100km ride all the way to Palm Beach, but headed off to Manly, which involves crossing yet another bridge, called "The Spit". (I will have to do a bit of research how that bridge got it's name - had a few mental images going thru my brain, while on the bike!) The beach at Manly was packed, with quite a few surfers and some swimmers in the water. I cycled up as far as I could up to the North Head (entrance to Sydney Harbour), and then decided to retrace my route back. I stopped by Bondi Beach, before getting back home - having therefore visited two of Sydney's landmark beaches in about an hour time frame - I'm not sure that is possible by car with Sydney's traffic conditions. My route is available here: http://bit.ly/mit2ds .
It was a great day for discovering, and now I'll be able to make further discoveries on the other side of the Harbour more confidently.