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Stage 303 – Monjingup to Speddingup East Nature Reserve

If ever a stage was a slog without being massively taxing, this is a definite candidate. After a lumpy four mile stretch from the rollout, which passes by North Bungaree and Canowindra, the left/right combination of bends just before the Shark Lake Nature Reserve at seven miles sets the tone for the remainder of the stage.

Once the route passes by the Nature Reserve on its northern side, it (the road not the nature reserve) swings ninety degrees left to head north west and directly inland. This is effectively the beginning of the inland leg of the long southerly route up to Norseman where the (shorter) northerly route from Perth meets this much longer southerly excursion.

From the left turn, the South Coast Highway passes by the Helms Arboretum on its eastern side, going through Tatiara and Homeacres as it does so. After Homeacres, the road kicks sharply uphill, passing by Greenacres, Elanora and Gibson in quick succession. At Gibson the railway line runs very close to the road on its right hand side but the line deviates north shortly after as the road hangs a left to head out past the Esperance Down Research Centre at eighteen miles.

By now the gradient is starting to flatten out, albeit that the road’s still rising: indeed by the end of the stage, the road has gained three hundred feet since turning left at the Nature Reserve. After the Research Centre, there are further communities at Koppio Downs at twenty one miles, Em-A-Lee Downs at twenty two miles and Brenco at twenty three miles ahead of the finish, which incidentally is at the highest elevation on the stage at just over four hundred and fifty feet above sea level.

Distance: 24 miles / 38 kilometres

Ascent: 709 feet / 216 metres

RGT Magic Road: PBCIFv6HWSLp

Total distance: 23.46 mi
Max elevation: 462 ft
Min elevation: 143 ft
Total climbing: 707 ft
Total descent: -390 ft

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