I had never ridden LCD before but thought it would be a good trail for my partner who has just recently got into the sport to try plus it is a beautiful part of Sydney too.
IMO, it is a perfect trail for newbies and riders with young kids to ride. You can ride the whole 20k (10k out and back) or just stop off at many picnic areas to take a break and turn around.
We witnessed heaps of birdlife including three lyrebird sightings at very close quarters. Spectacular! History states that this was once used as a road back in the late 1800's and early 1900's and evidence of this can be seen along the trail with the natural spring-fed stone carved horse water troughs at Jersey Springs (see trail photos) and further along on your left-hand side going from north to south, another water trough also spring-fed with steps down. There is also evidence of various stone kerbing and culvert capping along the way.
The Hacking river rolls along beside the trail for most of the trail. It is vary shaded which makes it ideal for riding on hot summer days providing adequate protection from the sun. For newbies, it is a good workout with a few challenges such as various surface changes, gradient climbs and downhill sections. Very easy stuff but challenging for unfit newbies and young ones.
I enjoyed the ride for the sheer peacefulness and serenity (ah... feel the serenity!). It must be one of the most stunningly beautiful trails to ride around Sydney.
I also went back and did a hard and fast ride a couple of weeks later and did this within an hour.
Parking is good with BBQ facilities and toilets. Loftus Oval is just up the road for those who want to tack-on a more challenging single track/technical ride as well.
Did this today, including another big section. It was fun. As others have said, not very technical and would be perfect to take your non mountain biking Partner.
At the t-intersection at the weir, turn right onto Lady Wakehurst Drive. Park about 100 metres down here on the right. On the bike and start a big climb up Sir Bertrum Stevens Drive, the climb goes forever, go past the turnoff to Garie Beach and for another couple of kms. There is a fire trail that pops up on the right during a fairly long straight. Take this fire trail down the hill. It is fun and fast and there are lots of mounds to jump. At the bottom of this you are at Eagle Lookout i think its called. A great view. There is a little stream that runs into a waterfall into the ocean. Water is about waist deep in the stream, so go for a swim to cool off. Then back up where you've just come from up the fire trail... your legs will hurt by the time you get up the top. Hang a left onto the road again and a couple of kms down there is another fire trail, this time on the left (cant remember what its called). Its easy to miss as the entry is pretty grown over with trees. This fire trail is good fun, fairly technical for a fire trail, lots of rocks to deal with, a couple of steep sections, and a bit of a killer climb about 3/4 of the way along. At the end of this you'll end up back on Sir Bertram Stevens drive, just further North. Left back onto the road, and cruise along for another few kms, including some small climbs... then the fun part, a downhill in which we clocked 72kms. As you hit the bottom of this you need to take a sharp left and this is where Lady Carrington Drive starts (there is a building there of some sort). Lady Carrington drive is probably the easiest of the lot, but was a bit muddy when we went through. Beautiful scenery through there too. At the end of Lady Carrington Drive another climb and by now you'll really feel it. Come out at a carpark, go right and about 500 metres back down the hill you'll be at your car. 38km round trip.
Here are some thoughts to help with the submissions...
From Nerf Herder
A quick email highlighting that as a rider you are interested in legitimate and sustainable trails, where you can volunteer to provide free maintenance so that you can have a sense of ownership of the tracks that you love to ride ... should do well to support the local riders and get some sniggle
they are asking for people to nominate as representatives of the various stakeholder groups. This is something that you local guys will really need to get together and sort out. Make sure the local NPWS know who you are. It is all fine for all of us to register our interest, but you need to get into the pockets of the NPWS now.
This is what we have used the Glenrock Trail Alliance for, as the peak representative body with the NPWS.
I've ridden this trail a few times and I love it. If you want to introduce women to mountain biking then this is good trail to try. You can access the trail by getting of at Loftus Train Station and riding into the park. But the ride out on the road is a bit steep. It's better if you can drive the car and park at Audley where the trail begins and drive out. There is nothing technical on the trail, but like all fire trails there are uphill sections, but they are very manageable. The return trip is around 20ks so you need a pretty good average level of fitness to complete the ride without feeling too exhausted.