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Tasmania welcomes and warns riders

Almost every road in Tasmania is a motorcycle rider’s paradise with more corners than you can count. But there are also many dangers for riders.

In spring and summer the state experiences a wave of visiting riders. So the Tasmanian Road Safety Advisory Council (RSAC) has completed a short five-minute motorcycle video (V-log) to educate interstate motorcyclists about the joys and dangers of Tassie roads.

The RSAC says that from 2010 to 2014, there were 1249 serious casualty crashes, with 131 of these involving tourists.

Cradle Mt tassie tasmania

“Interstate motorcycle riders made up nearly half (46%) of these crashes and of these 86% involved a single motorcycle,” the video says at the start. They are sobering statistics!

The V-log aims to reduce interstate motorcycle rider crashes in Tasmania, striking a balance between safety nanny and tourist guide, showcasing some of the most beautiful parts of Tasmania.

It features multi-Australian Superbike Champion Malcolm Campbell and interstate motorcycle club member Lester Knowles. They ride parts of Tasmania seeing breathtaking scenery while discussing what to look out for to make the ride as safe and enjoyable as possible. 

Mt Wellington in Winter - beware of ice Bookings for the annual Black Dog Ride that this year heads to Tassie instead of the Red Centre have been extended.
Mt Wellington in Winter – beware of ice

Shorter distances

One of the interesting points is that they recommend no more than 300km in a day. That’s nothing for most mainland riders. However, the constant twisting roads, slippery surfaces, quickly changing weather conditions, stray wildlife and occasional logging trucks make 300km in Tasmania quite exhausting.

Besides, you’ll want to stop a lot to check out the scenery along the spectacular coast, through the dramatic mountains and in the quaint towns.

”Tasmania is a rider’s dream with plenty of tight bends, sweeping corners, long straights, little traffic and great scenery which makes it fantastic for touring – but there are plenty to challenge even the best riders,” the RSAC release says.

Great to know that at least one state welcomes motorcyclists and wants our return patronage!

Mt Wellington tassie tasmania
Stop to soak in the views

Black Dog Ride to Tasmania

In 2017, the Black Dog Ride will visit the state for the first time. Founder Steve Andrews recommends riders check out the video before they attend.

Steve says they have organised discounts with the Spirit of Tasmania ferry. They have organised to get all riders across within 24 hours.

Black Dog Riders in every state and territory will leave in late October 2017 to ride throughout regional Australia.

Along the way, they will raise awareness of depression and suicide prevention, culminating in a national meet-up in Hobart on November 5-6.

Steve says there is already a lot of interest in the ride, but numbers will be capped. Registrations open in mid-November and we will alert readers.

  1. Tassie is an awesome place to ride. The scenery is amazing, the traffic is minimal, and the cops seem to have some natural common sense. If only us visitors could recognise that the challenging roads are narrow, super-twisty, and not always signposted at the difficult parts. Then we’d stop trowelling ourselves into the scenery, and the cops won’t lose their sensible approach.
    Hopefully this WON’T be a story of a few idiots ruining it for the rest of us.

    1. Good sensible advice especially re the moss on roads. The Hellyer Gorge from Wynyard to Waratah is out at the moment after flood damage, grey nomads take the scenic routes too so they can hold you up….and beware log trucks anywhere statewide. They’re logging like there’s no tomorrow (so if you want to see the Tasmanian Wilderness, you’ll have to be quick) and the increase in traffic on roads around logging coupes means some of the roads are pretty rough too. BUT, pack an extra polar fleece and keep the wet weathers handy , be sure to stop fellow bikers(especially locals) for insider tips and secret roads that we don’t like too many people knowing about and most of all , give yourself time. As the video suggests, Tassies not big, but it’s twisty (Awesome) and average speeds are down. Enjoy Tassie and keep an eye out for the furry locals. Cheers guys.

      1. Hi Proey,

        How bad are things at the Hellyer Gorge bloke?
        I’ve been busting my balls to get back there. This trip with trailer in tow, was planning to spend a day or two there to dip the line.

        Cheers in advance for any further advice.
        Grumpy Old Bastard.
        Ride free and safe

  2. It’s on my places to ride list. I’ve driven around it a few times now with the wife and kids. But next time it’s just going to be me and my bike.

  3. Hey Mark, good article. Don’t suppose you will be doing an article any time soon on some good ways to get to the motogp in the next couple of weeks. I will be riding from QLD to get down there and don’t want to miss any “must do” roads along the way. I know some decent roads to Sydney (Putty Road etc), but not too sure about Sydney to the Island. Of course I could google this but interested to know if you anything was going up soon about this as your info rarely leads me astray.

    1. Hi Marc (Marqeuz? Really?)
      I hadn’t planned to do an article like that but might consider it.
      I think the Putty Rd is overrated, over-policed and brings you in too close to Sydney.
      Here are my suggestions: Bylong Valley Way; Illford Sofala Rd; Bathurst to Oberon on the O’Connell Rd; Taralga Rd to Goulburn; Braidwood Rd to Braidwood; Kings Highway to Bateman’s Bay then follow the coast road.
      Coming back, you have to go through the Alps. There are so many choices there!
      Do you have a road bike or adventure bike? If you have the latter, I would suggest you don’t miss the Barry Way.
      Have fun!

  4. Good stuff, Mark.

    And a great video from the Tassie RSAC. If only other states would follow suit.
    Her in doors and I, are so looking forward to being there in January for a 3 week lap.

    Your suggestion, about the Bylong Way, what a glorious section of road, every time we head to FNQ for our winter holiday we make a point of hitting it. But I have heard recently, she’s a bit cut up and rough in places. Understandable with the weather of late. But still would be worth the effort.

    And Kandos is alway a treat. Bikes and Buds, great coffee, and grub, and Ken and Vicki both treasures.

    Grumpy Old Bastard
    Ride free and safe.

  5. “The RSAC says that from 2010 to 2014, there were 1249 serious casualty crashes, with 131 of these involving tourists.”

    “Interstate motorcycle riders made up nearly half (46%) of these crashes and of these 86% involved a single motorcycle,” elieves

    This is why nobody believes rubbish statistics from safety “experts”.

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