Orphan School Creek
34.0 km (4 hrs )
The Upper Nepean scheme is a series of weirs (later dams) which for the first time in Australia collected water far away from a city, transported it by canals and pipelines, and stored the water in a major dam. The scheme which was completed in the 1880s would also require no energy - water would simply flow by gravity (about 0.1% grade). This feat of engineering is still in use today. The great thing is that a bicycle path has been created that runs parallel to much of the scheme, allowing you to see first hand the Lower Prospect Canal, Prospect Reservoir and the Upper Canal.
The Upper Canal passes through what is now the Western Sydney Parklands, an extensive area of open space and bushland on the western fringe of suburbia. The parklands feature more than 60 km of tracks and trails, numerous picnic areas and a chance to get out and breath some fresh air! The extensive cycle network of Fairfield City is also very nice, particularly the path that follows Orphan School Creek to Canley Vale. This off-road track is nice and level, a welcome relief after a long ride!
I very much enjoyed this longer day out. For a shorter ride, take a look at the Prospect Creek variation.