I did a bike ‘n’ hike recently – you know, where you bike part of the way and then hike part of the way. This was a bike ‘n’ hike to The Spout, a geyser of sorts in the rock along our coast. You see, there is this hole in the rock that goes all the way down to the ocean. And down this hole flows a stream. So, with a bellows-effect the ocean blows the fresh water of the stream up into the air like a geyser. Like a whale spout. The Spout.
One way of getting to The Spout entails using Shoal Bay Road, which is about 7 km long and pretty boring to hike. I like to ride Shoal Bay Road as far as Queens River Bridge and then hike the East Coast Trail the rest of the way. It is a funner (is that a word?) way to travel Shoal Bay Road.
Shoal Bay Road is used by a lot of different people; hikers, bikers, hunters, loggers and lots of fellers just out on their ATV’s for a run. The traditional use of this road certainly belongs to the loggers and the hunters as is evidenced by this:
The first real view of the ocean comes around the 3 km mark. Did I mention that this can be a very wet ride?
Yep. That’s the trail. Here’s another look at the trail another kilometer or so further down:
Once you get to the coast it is spectacular.
I hiked along the coast for about a half hour or so until I got to Long Point, where you can get your first look at The Spout. It is that plume of water in the center of the next two pictures.
From here it was another 45 minutes to The Spout and I was feeling a bit lazy so I turned around. Heading north you get views like this:
I got back to my bike and had a little boil-up of hot chocolate with some crackers and cheese before riding up Shoal Bay Road again on my way home.