August, 2020

23AugAll Day31CancelledThe Original Smiddy Challenge: Townsville to BrisbaneAn epic 9 day ride through outback QueenslandCOVID-19TownsvilleState:QLDDiscipline:RoadTerrain:Flat,Mixed,UndulatingDistance:121-160 km,160+ kmType Ride:Charity,Multi-day,Recreational,Ultra

Ride Details

The original Smiddy Challenge is an epic ride from Townsville to Brisbane, through outback Queensland! 

The original Smiddy Challenge is an epic ride along deserted outback highways, warm country towns and stunning ranges and farmland.  Starting in Townville and finishing in Brisbane, this ride covers approximately 1600 km over 9 days.

Townsville is about 1300km north of Brisbane, this would be about a 15 hour drive or a 2 hour flight. As part of your registration, all of your accommodation and meal requirements are catered for as well as experienced front and rear support vehicles and mechanical support.

This ride will require you to be fit as there are some long days in the saddle, so there is a dedicated training program that has been developed by the organisers, Smiling for Smiddy.

You’ll be raising money for Mater Research, funding research projects that will make a difference to the lives of those suffering from melanoma, prostate, ovarian and breast cancer. Support will be given to help you to meet your fundraising requirement. 

This is the first Smiddy Challenge, with a second now happening in Adelaide – the Adelaide Smiddy Challenge.

Travelling through the back of Queensland by bike is one of the things that not many people will ever have the chance to do. So this is a great opportunity to jump on board and join the smiling for smiddy ride from Townsville to Brisbane the original classic.

After making your way to Townsville there is a mandatory pre-ride briefing and dinner, the night before.  Then it is ‘all go’ from the first day as you head out west to Charters Towers, and then south to head through the many small outback towns before arriving in Brisbane.

Day 1. (141km) Townsville to Charters Towers. The first day starts off from Townsville with the grind of the slow climb for 80+km and eventually climbing the Mingela Range and crossing the Burdekin River on your way into Charters Towers.

Day 2. (198km) Charters Towers to Belyando Crossing. The days’ high point is over within the first 25km near the Trafalgar Rd turnoff, where you reach the highest point of the day’s ride. Then it’s almost a 100 km “descent” before crossing the Cape River and the undulations through to the oasis of the Belyando roadhouse. PS. anyone for tennis?

Day 3. (176km) Belyando Crossing to Clermont. This is the second day of ‘mind over matter’. The outback highways continue to test the spirit as the undulations continue as you continue south. Expect a warm reception in Clermont with the hospitality of a community dinner.

Day 4. (203km) Clermont to Blackwater. Another solid day to keep you honest, mainly undulations with a couple of good descents after Tieri and into the back of Blackwater. You will notice all the mines that dot the countryside from Tieri through to Blackwater.

Day 5. (179km) Blackwater to Baralba. From Blackwater heading to the east along the Capricorn highway, and turning off just before Duaringa. Heading back south, turning off near the aboriginal community of Woorabinda to the east. The reward is staying at the Myella Farm Stay which is the treat for the night.

Day 6. (115km) Baralaba to Biloela. This is the shortest and flattest day of the ride,  and it may even be considered a rest day with a bit of a spin to turn the legs over. Making your way to the south-east of the back roads to avoid three highways. Staying in the Biloela, the day’s highlight will be stopping in to the local schools at Goovigen and Biloela.

Day 7. Biloela to Mundubbera. This is the start of some real good honest hard work. Heading out to the south-east and up on to the ranges and the climbs near Mootford. Enjoy the descent into Monto and a break for morning tea and school visit. Then it is undulations through to Eidsvold and the final push through to Mundubbera.

Day 8. Mundubbera to Yarraman. The penultimate day which is the longest and the most challenging. One to remember and some would even call it character building! Heading east for 50km before turning south and heading towards Kingaroy were all good best peanuts come from. Then continuing through the rolling undulations through to Yarraman.

Day 9. Yarraman to Brisbane. The final day is here but this is still no walk in the park! Another solid day with some work to do. Heading east towards the coast and off the Blackbutt Ranges, then into the undulations around the sides of the Glasshouse mountains to Caboolture. From here you turn south for home, or in this case the Mater Private Hospital, on the south side of the Brisbane River, around the corner from “The Gabba”.

All in all, this looks like a challenging but fantastic long ride!

You’ll find other cycling events, like the original Smiddy Challenge: Townsville to Brisbane, in our online Cycling Event Calendar.



The original Smiddy Challenge is an epic ride from Townsville to Brisbane, through outback Queensland!


23 August - 31 August


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