September 25, 2005 GMT
Blencoe Falls

Being on call for jury service over three weeks has limited my riding somewhat. On Thursday 22 September 2005 at 3:30pm Patrick Peck (of Patrick & Belinda Peck fame) and I left Cairns and headed south along the highway to Kennedy. I was riding my Suzuki DL650 and Patrick was on his Yamaha Super Tenere. Kennedy is about 180km south of Cairns.

Arriving at Kennedy at about 5:30pm, I was able to check to determine if I was required for jury service in Cairns the next day. I wasn’t, so I was free to ride. Patrick stocked up on his food supply at the Kennedy store ( I had come properly prepared) before we started our westward jurney inland to the foot of the Great Dividing Range.

About 3km west of Kennedy, we took the turnoff to Blencoe Falls. The road to Blencoe Falls is 67km of rough dirt road climbing from the coastal plain to about 850m above. This road was built by the Australian army during WWII and is now only seldom used. The first 40km take you through dense rainforest (Wet Tropics National Park) as you climb the mountain range before the country opens up into cattle country.

By 7:00pm the light was fading and we came to a small clearing by the side of the track next to a stream. It was here that we made camp for the night. Dinner was cooked over an open campfire. Patrick brought out his Kennedy store tin of beef stew only to find that he had no can opener or anything to heat it up in. Luckily I was better prepared so Patrick was able to have his hot stew for dinner.

Camp Site

Waking at 6:00am on Friday morning, we had cups of tea and coffee for breakfast before breaking camp and heading on our way.

The track up the mountain range was not too bad and the weather had been kind to us. The track was dry all the way. After about 2 hours of riding, we reached Blencoe falls. Even in the dry season, these falls are quite spectacular. Near the falls there is a campsite with basic facilities. We finished a cold breakfast at the top of Blencoe Falls.

Herbert River Gorge

Blencoe Falls

Blencoe Falls plunge 90m to a pool below before cascading 230m to the start of the Herbert River gorge. These falls are one of the most stunning waterfalls in Australia. The falls are on part of the traditional land of the Warungnu Aboriginal people.

As you take the short 200m stroll to the lookout and listen carefully, a distant dull rumble becomes a roar as you get closer to the falls. At the lookout, you soak up the sights and sounds of Blencoe Falls as the water races towards the Herbert River. Here, relic hoop pines shrouded in mist create as eerie feeling.

From Blencoe Falls we rode the 100km of dirt road to Mt. Garnet. Without stopping at Mt. Garnet, we travelled the 15km of sealed road east to Innot Hot Springs. It was here that we had lunch and spent an hour or so relaxing in the hot spring thermal pools.

After lunch and a relaxing soak, we rode 5km out of Innot Hot Springs turning left onto the Silver Valley Road. This dirt road takes you the 45km to near Herberton. As we approached Herberton, we came to another dirt road that lead towards historic Irvinbank, an old tin mining town now almost deserted. Not having visited Irvinbank for some 20 years, we decided to head that way and from Irvinbank to Petford.

It was getting later in the day. Patrick and I wanted to get back to Cairns before dark. At about 10km from Irvinbank we came across another dirt track that bypassed Irvinbank and made straight for Petford. With time against us, we decided to give Irvinbank a miss this trip and head straight for Petford.

River Crossing

We arrived at Petford at about 4:00pm. Back on the sealed road again we took 2 hours to travel the final 140km to Cairns through Mareeba. We arrived home at about 6:00pm, tired but exhilarated.

In a little over one day, we covered 750km including about 400km of dirt.

Posted by rbscairns at September 25, 2005 07:36 AM GMT

NEW! HU 2015 Motorcycle Adventure Travel Calendar is now available! Get your copy now for some terrific travel inspiration!

HUGE, 11.5 x 16.5 inches, beautifully printed in Germany on top quality stock! Photos are the winning images from over 600 entries in the 9th Annual HU Photo Contest!

Horizons Unlimited 2015 Motorcycle Adventure Travel Calendar.

"The calendar is magnificent!"

"I just wanted to say how much I'm loving the new, larger calendar!"

We share the profit with the winning photographers. YOU could be in the HU Calendar too - enter here!

HU DVD Autumn Special!

Take 40% off Road Heroes Part 1 until October 31 only!

Road Heroes features tales of adventure, joy and sheer terror by veteran travellers Peter and Kay Forwood (193 countries two-up on a Harley); Dr. Greg Frazier (5 times RTW); Tiffany Coates (RTW solo female); and Rene Cormier (University of Gravel Roads).

The first in an exciting new series, Road Heroes features tales of adventure, joy and sheer terror by veteran travellers."Inspiring and hilarious!"

"I loved watching this DVD!"

"Lots of amazing stories and even more amazing photographs, it's great fun and very inspirational."

"Wonderful entertainment!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'HEROES' on your order when you checkout.

Renedian Adventures

Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!

What turns you on to motorcycle travel?

Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!

New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.

Books & DVDs


All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.

Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!

Story and photos copyright ©

Sorry, you need a Javascript enabled browser to get the email address and dates. You can contact Horizons Unlimited at the link below. Please be sure to tell us WHICH blog writer you wish to contact.

All Rights Reserved.

Contact the author:

Editors note: We accept no responsibility for any of the above information in any way whatsoever. You are reminded to do your own research. Any commentary is strictly a personal opinion of the person supplying the information and is not to be construed as an endorsement of any kind.

Hosted by: Horizons Unlimited, the motorcycle travellers' website!
You can have your story here too - click for details!