Forrest to Apollo Bay - Sunnyside Down
This is one of my favourite ways to get to Apollo Bay.... if you haven't ridden Sunnyside Rd, you need to pop it on the list. The section leaving the Forrest-Apollo Bay Rd is just stunning forest with tall slender gums and ferns everywhere. Once Sunnyside intersects with Mt Benwerrin Sabine Rd, then you start a rolling descent that takes you through plantation and bush and then it opens up to rolling hills and oceans views. Sunnyside Rd intersects with the Great Ocean Road where you find yourself back on bitumen with cars for fairly flat roll into town. Being a point to point ride, this does require a partner or friend to pick you up at the bottom, but why not make a date out of it and find somewhere nice to eat before you drive back up the hill to Forrest. Of course, super keen beans can of course ride all the way back, but that makes for an epic day!
The route is 50km long and has 880 vert metres. My time of just under 3 hours was ridden at an average speed of 17.5kmph.
This is all gravel with the exception of the last section of Sunnyside and the Great Ocean Road. Generally these roads are well maintained, decent gravel for the most part.
Starting in the main street of Forrest at the Brewery:
- Head down Blundy Street to the end, turn right onto Station Street.
- Take the next left onto Hennigan Crescent, before you follow it to the left to head onto Kaanglang Rd.
- Follow Kaanglang for 12km.
- At the intersection with Benwerrin-Mt Sabine Rd, take a right.
- Ride 10km along Benwerrin-Mt Sabine Rd.
- Turn left onto Sunnyside Rd. Follow this all the way to the coast, approximately 14km.
- Turn right onto the Great Ocean Road - take care! This road can be busy.
- Ride the Great Ocean Road into Apollo Bay, about another 11km. Find somewhere for a bite to drink and drink!
Phone reception can be patchy up in the hills. Telstra is your best bet out here.