Social Road Rides

 
Click on the following link to take you to stories and pictures from some of the road bike rides enjoyed last couple of years.

Road Bike Ride Archive - 2008

Road Bike Ride Archive - 2009

October Long Weekend Ride - 2012

Plans had been made for our annual weekend away but, as the weather prediction was for atrocious weather (think footy grand final), final preparations were put on hold. Until 11.20 Saturday morning when Phil and Bill convinced Barb to go. “We can always turn back”, said Bill.  Frantic packing ensued for departure within the hour (and a bit).
Fuelled up Phil, Bill & Barb departed Holbrook in cool but dry weather for our first stop at the Myrtleford Bakery for lunch. On our way through Albury we observed a motor vehicle accident take place on the freeway just north of Borella Road. Luckily they were in the north bound lane – car in left lane, distracted, climbed the steel wire fence then crossed back over the two lanes and was t-boned by 4WD in the right hand lane (just as we were riding by). No report in Monday’s Border Mail so guessing no serious injuries. Took a ‘little while’ for my heartbeat to return to normal.
The usual pastries were consumed at Myrtleford, the temperature had risen a little, and we headed off for the mountains. Snow traffic coming down and not much going up. Nearing the top we encountered suspicious precipitation, rain, sleet or snow??  … hmmmmm.  We could see bad weather approaching from the southwest, but did not realise at this stage what it contained.  At Hotham the precipitation was raindrop shaped, but fluffy, not hard like hail ….. More hmmmmm. We received ‘funny looks’ from the locals and the local cop as we rode through town and as we waited for Phil to arrive. Finally Phil caught up and we headed for Dinner Plain where Bill asked if I wanted to stop for a cuppa. I declined, as I thought we would really feel the cold when we had to continue riding. Oh how lucky were we!!  Dropping down out of the snow line the temperature rose from the zero degree experienced at Hotham and we continued on to Omeo, our stop for the night. Unpacked, checked in, I showered, the boys settled the bikes in for the night (about 6 other dirt bikes there) and the bad weather caught up.  After a warm cuppa and the end of the AFL Grand Final Bill and Barb headed outside for a walk up the street. Freezing, 3.6 degrees, and needless to say the walk was cut short. Returning to the Golden Age we looked up to the hills we had ridden through and there was ‘white stuff’ all over them……… OMG !!  I hate to think what would have happened if we had stopped at Dinner Plain for that cuppa.
Dinner was ordered, a table next to the heater occupied, and a debate ensued whether or not ‘it was Grant Denyer’, in bike gear, also in the hotel. As we didn’t want to ‘intrude’ upon him we decided to find out at breakfast the next morning. Alas this did not go to plan as Grant and his mates were set to leave town at 6.30 in the morning, for Corryong and eventually Canberra (he was due back on Sunrise Monday morning). Oh well, our loss. Funny how things work out though. After showering and dressing we wandered outside to find one of Grant’s mates had discovered a puncture, as they were about to embark. As repairs were undertaken, Bill struck up a conversation with them and I got the photographic proof, that yes indeed it was Grant. (Phil had also spoken to him the night before, upstairs). It was after 8am before they finally rode out of Omeo, their planned ride for the day shortened somewhat. After a hearty breakfast and refuelling we headed out around 8.30 in cool though clear conditions. As usual the ride down to Bruthen was thoroughly enjoyable and drama free. Bruthen saw the wet pants donned before continuing onto Buchan. Light showers were encountered along the way. Scrumptious scones, jam and real cream were heartily consumed at Buchan. Phil topped up with fuel then off to McKillop’s Bridge we ventured. The scenery is spectacular, the Snowy River was running a little higher and traffic was scarce. Evidence showed where the Snowy and Deddick Rivers had risen in recent times with lots of debris piled up in many, many places along the riverbed. Wombat, roos and wallabies, feral cats (even a miniature black panther) and dozens of dog carcasses (hanging on the fence line) were observed. Delegate was next stop for lunch, then on to Merimbula, via Pambula, our stay for the night. We stayed in the same motel as a couple of years ago and again wandered up to the Club for dinner, which was to die for – roast lamb and veges, followed by pavlova and soft serve ice cream. Phil stayed on for ‘drinks’ while Bill and Barb wandered back to the motel, only to encounter a police car flying past, lights and sirens in full mode. Good thing all feet were still on the footpath.
Next morning brought clear blue skies and after breakfast and packing up we headed off to find fuel. At the servo I heard a loud noise, this turned out to be a plane on landing approach (I had my back to it) and I was kicking myself for not having the camera at the ready. Could ‘almost’ reach up and touch it.
Bega, Brown Mountain and Nimmitabel followed (where the usual gorging of bakery goods was enjoyed). Several ‘L Platers’ were out and about (and up Brown Mountain) and one driver, at the opposite end of the spectrum, in quite a hurry. Dalgety, (beautiful views of the Snowy Mountains were enjoyed along this route) Jindabyne (fuel), Thredbo (a handful of skiers on the slopes), Geehi and Khancoban for lunch. We then took the long way home through Corryong, Granya Gap and the Wymah Ferry.  

Informative information

•    1170 klms
•    Sunny and warm, snowing and freezing, cloudy and wet
•    1 accident observed
•    1 celebrity observed
•    1 miniature black panther observed
•    1 really scrumptious dinner
•    2 bakeries
•    Beautiful scenery
•    Hardly any other bikes out and about

Father's Day Ride - 2012

Holbrook, Tumut, Kiandra, Cabramurra, Khancoban, Corryong, Granya Gap

Bill & Barb left Holbrook, and the town garage sale, around 9am for a loop ride to the snow. We had done part of this ride a couple of weeks earlier with Phil Cox in tow. After an earlier frost we departed under blue skies and quite cool conditions.
We rode out to Rosewood, through the Green Hills Forest and on to Tumut for our first break at the Tumut Bakery. Along the way several mobs of large kangaroos were seen warming up on the hillsides as well as wallabies sitting in the shadows under the tree line through the pine plantations. Bill had seen some emus, but I missed them.
With bellies filled, and rising temperatures, we departed Tumut and enjoyed a very nice ride out to Talbingo. Dozens of kangaroos spotted on the hillsides, near the dam, enjoying the warmth and noted several of their lost family members littering the roadsides. I have previously written to National Parks about removing the carcasses and their reply is that it is to make motorists aware there are kangaroos around and to drive accordingly. I also wrote to the Environmental Roadside Committee and it became a debate of who is responsible for the removal. National Parks claim it is the responsibility of the RTA. National Parks also claim injuries could be incurred in trying to remove carcasses from the roadside, but on the other hand if you the motorist happen to hit one then it is your responsibility to remove it from the road. Tough luck if you hurt yourself in doing so!
We had an unimpeded ride up the hill out of Talbingo, unlike previous couple of rides, and came across the first signs of snow (ice) in the gutter near the new lookout. Between the Lobb’s Hole turnoff and Yarrangobilly village there is a 6klm section where the bitumen has deteriorated and road works are in progress. As usual we struck the wind near the Long Plain Rd turnoff and quite a bit more snow on the ground. Not much traffic on the highway and we saw two mobs of brumbies. Kiandra was picturesque with plentiful snow on the ground. We ventured into Mt Selwyn for a photo opportunity. More snow but less people than our previous visit. 3 Mile Dam was also picturesque and would love to have gotten better photo’s but was not willing to traipse through the snow for the pleasure. After a careful ride through damp sections of road we stopped at Cabramurra for lunch. The shop has new managers and we now enjoy our meals in the canteen nearby. Egg and bacon rolls are highly recommended.
From Cabramurra we gingerly rode down the hill, until we cleared the snow line, and then rode in our usual manner - especially up the hill out of Sioux City (no traffic). At the end of the Elliot Way we turned left for Tooma and Khancoban and eventually all the way out to Scammell’s Ridge Lookout for a close up of the snow on the Kosciuszko Range. Photo’s taken we headed back to Khancoban for fuel and a cuppa.
We headed for home through Corryong and the Granya Gap, catching the ferry back across the dam and arrived home at 5.30pm. 570 Klm’s all up.


Queen's Birthday Mystery Ride - 2012

Bill & Barb, Phil and Mick dressed in their warmest gear to embark, at 9am, on a mystery ride. Too icy to attempt a ride in the mountains we headed west for Howlong only to be horribly disappointed to find the bakery shut. The café a few doors down was a sad substitute but not much we could do about it.
After warm food and drinks, waffling and being introduced to Phil’s new iPhone 4 female companion we rode down to Chiltern (boys in blue doing roadside checks), Beechworth (crowded as usual), Stanley (some pretty Autumn leaves hanging on) and then down through road works (by now newly sealed) to Mudgegonga. We encountered a chill in the air at the bottom of the hill on this road that was due to the frost still lying on the roadsides at 11.53am. If you are going to ride this road please be aware of the frost and ice at lunchtime. We have ridden this ‘part dirt’ road on the Beemer several times but it will make a change to ride on completed bitumen.
From Mudgegonga we crossed over to Rosewhite Road and onto Bright for lunch at the bakery.
Tawonga Gap beckoned and once again did not disappoint, until we came up behind slower traffic. From Tawonga we headed north and criss-crossed the hills eventually arriving at Tallangatta, where Mick had a pit stop. Balaclavas were donned before we climbed the Granya Gap, another nice ride at any time and caught the Wymah Ferry back across the dam. Quite chilly crossing the dam and the wood fire at home was much appreciated upon arrival at 5pm.

We would like to thank the Queen for allowing us to have this time ‘off work’ and share her special day – which really isn’t on her birthday at all, but we are not fussy

Mt. Buffalo. April 2012

WYMAH FERRY – MT BUFFALO

 

In very cold conditions Bill & Barb and Mick ventured south on the freeway. We turned off at Bowna to take the Wymah Ferry (very foggy) across to the Victorian side of the dam, up Granya Gap and to Tallangatta for morning tea.

 

Mt Buffalo was scaled in bright sunshine and lunch was welcomed at the Bright Bakery.

 

Don’t remember the route we took home, it could have been one of several, but the brain cells are not functioning to a high capacity as I write this. Enjoy the photos anyway.

Post Easter Weekend - 2012

After Easter 12th – 14th April 2012

HOLBROOK – WYANGALA DAM – BATHURST – GULGONG – WELLINGTON – BLAYNEY – REIDS FLAT – COOTAMUNDRA - HOLBROOK

Bill & Barb (and Beemer) embarked on a return trip to Bathurst to continue some of the roads we rode just after Xmas. Our first stop was the Junee Bakery where you will find the tastiest lamingtons with cream in all of Australia (in my opinion). They are moist, dense and soft (not dry and fluffy) and are not particularly pretty to look at.
From Junee we continued up through Cootamundra and on to Murrumburrah where we enjoyed lunch. Next came Boorowa and a detour to Wyangala Dam before an overnight stay at Bathurst. A huge dinner serving saw us stagger back to our rooms.

A bright sunny morning greeted us and after breakfast and repacking the gear we set off for Sofala and Ilford followed by morning tea at Mudgee Bakery. Ulan and Turill were next prior to turning west on the Golden Highway and looping back around to Gulgong. Actually this was a very ordinary ride and not one I would recommend unless you were ‘passing through’. A somewhat quirky main shopping ‘precinct’ with very narrow streets greeted us in Gulgong. Lunch was eaten here followed by a look through the best museum we have ever seen. Please visit if you get the chance, you won’t be disappointed. We then headed west to Wellington and down the Mitchell Highway to Molong (afternoon tea), Orange and an overnight stay at Blayney. A walk down the street to the local Chinese restaurant for dinner more than satisfied the bellies.

The morning brought cool conditions and after packing up we headed down the street to the Blayney Bakery for breakfast (got to love raisin toast and tea). Trunkey Creek, Tuena, Bigga and Reids Flat followed. Very scenic and included a ‘muddy water crossing’ for good measure. An early lunch was taken at Boorowa before returning home the along the same route.

  • Wyangala Dam
    Wyangala Dam
  • Wyangala Dam
    Wyangala Dam
  • Gulgong Museum
    Gulgong Museum
  • Gulgong Museum
    Gulgong Museum
  • Gulgong Museum
    Gulgong Museum
  • Gulgong Museum
    Gulgong Museum
  • Gulgong Museum
    Gulgong Museum

Adelong Falls Gold Mill Ruins

March 04th and 25th  2012

ADELONG GOLD MILL RUINS

Bill & Barb rode to Adelong to again have a look at the old ruins. We have been here a couple times by two wheels and four. We never knew this place existed up until the end of last year. If you want a short leisurely ride before/after lunch then we highly recommend the Ruins as a place to visit

Geehi Dam Ride - Feb 2012

Geehi Dam

Bill & Barb decided to take a ride on the Kawasaki to Geehi Dam after information was noted that the gate across the road would be opened to the public again after heavy rains had caused major damage along the road.

The scenery as usual in the Australian bush is beautiful, and if for some reason you don’t agree then please feel free to pack your bags and depart our land that is girt by sea. Several kilometres along we came across a very large tree lying across the road that fortunately was high enough to ride under. I will admit my heart was pounding when riding underneath but we realised after that the tree had slid down the hill and across the road with the top part of the trunk resting on thin air and the rest of the trunk well down the slope on the other side. Probably quite stable though I was not going to investigate that theory.

We finally reached the dam itself and found it to be a very peaceful place. The spillway is unlike any other we have seen before. After a wander around and the obligatory chucking of stones we then rode around the area to see what else was around. Curiosity satisfied we then retraced our steps back to Olsen’s Lookout for a glorious view of the western side of the main range and then journeyed down to Geehi where we encountered a snake slithering across the track. We had unknowingly ridden past it, and were returning back to the main road when we stopped to make some adjustments when it crossed in front of us.

Refreshments were welcomed at Khancoban on our return trip home.  

Bluff Falls Ride - Jan 2012

Bluff Falls – Burrowa Pine Mountain National Park

Bill & Barb have ‘acquired’ a new addition to the family – a Kawasaki KLR 650.  
This bike will enable us to ride (two up) the roads unsuitable for the Beemer. With the 650 in the rear of the Ute together with our other new addition (caravan) we look forward to travelling more remote dusty/rocky/muddy roads.
A major problem encountered with the KLR is sore bum syndrome, particularly noticeable after having enjoyed the comforts of the Beemer seats. No doubt the Air hawk will rectify this problem. One of our first rides, via Walwa, was to Bluff Falls near Cudgewa North.

Post Xmas ride - 2011

Holbrook – Yass – Abercrombie Caves – Bathurst – Lithgow – Capertee – Sandy Hollow – Hill End – Stanley Tops – Berry – Holbrook

Boxing Day morning Bill & Barb departed for Lithgow (for 4 nights) to catch up with our son and his girlfriend who had just returned from 3 months backpacking in South America and also to spend a few days riding with Al & Hel from Traralgon (also staying at Lithgow for 2 weeks).

A few showers were endured along the way to Yass where, along with a million other people with the same idea, morning tea beckoned. Gunning, Crookwell and Abercrombie Caves followed. After a tour around the caves we stopped at Trunkey Creek pub for a late lunch. Bathurst was our fuel stop and with clouds gathering, again, we hurried onto Lithgow. Not long after unpacking and settling into our motel room the heavens opened with a huge thunderstorm. Pizza was ordered in.

Dec 27th The morning saw the sun trying to come out. We had arranged to meet Adam and Bec at Katoomba for lunch so we had the rest of the morning to ‘fill in’ with a ride. We rode out to Bell and then crossed over to Mount Victoria. Disappointed with speed restrictions and the amount of traffic on these roads. From Blackheath we dropped down into the Megalong Valley, very beautiful. We had thought about having lunch at the 3 Sisters Lookout but it was over-run with tourists so an executive decision was made to meet Adam & Bec at Leura for lunch instead. Leura was busy but not nearly as bad as Katoomba. After tears (from me) and hugs all round, we exchanged gifts (Xmas and overseas) and filled our bellies. There was much to catch up on. We spent the rest of the afternoon being chauffeured around the region by Bec (and Adam) after leaving our bike in the Woolworth’s car park for a few hours. After another hopeful visit to the 3 sisters lookout parking was still a problem so we meandered along the edge to another, less crowded lookout.  Returning to our bike we donned warm gear said goodbyes and returned to our motel at Lithgow. Al & Hel were still on their way so pizza was again ‘ordered in’.  

Dec 28th This morning we wandered across the road to the caravan park to meet up with Al & Hel and discuss our route for the day. We geared up and headed out to Capertee and Glen Davis. Between these two places we came across road works – where the whole road was dug up. Endeavouring to go ‘around’ we had an ‘incident’ where the front wheel slipped which resulted in the Beemer having a ‘gentle lie down’. Awkward. The audience included all the road workers, sundry neighbours and a tanker driver waiting at the other end of the road works.  Bike checked wife checked - assurances were made all round that there was no damage sustained at all. Phew! Drama over, we had a pit stop at Glen Davis before riding on to Rylstone for lunch at the bakery. Hill End, via Hargraves, was our next destination. Hill End is a town of historical significance and well worth a visit. We spent quite a while walking around the streets, as well as enjoying afternoon tea in the garden with passing ducks for company. Clouds were beginning to build in the west as we rode out of town to Sofala, then down to Bathurst and back to Lithgow. Dinner was enjoyed in the caravan park with Al & Hel and plans were made for the following day.

Dec 29th We headed back out to Rylstone, then up to Bylong and across to Sandy Hollow for lunch. Very scenic and lots of photos were taken along with lots of waffling via Sena headsets. Along the way, at a pit stop in a small village, we came across a very friendly kitten that literally walked under your feet. Extreme care was needed not to stand on it (though I don’t think Al would have a problem with that) and as we left it shot out and ran across the road almost under the front wheel of the Beemer. That would have been the ultimate blunder as Bill and I are both cat lovers. From Sandy Hollow we rode to Merriwa and crossed down through the Goulburn River National Park to Wollar and Mudgee. Upon our return to Lithgow we cleaned up and enjoyed dinner at Lithgow Workies.

Dec 30th After saying our goodbyes we headed for suburbia and Stanwell Park to check out the Sea Cliff Bridge.  Morning tea soon followed while a shower of rain passed overhead. As we travelled down the coast the holidaymakers heading for the sea and sun soon absorbed us. At Berry, with temperatures rising and stop start traffic, we decided enough was enough and we headed for home. Lunch was welcomed at Kangaroo Valley. A break was taken at Gundagai and then followed the short leg to home.

Informative information

•    Klm’s – unknown
•    Weather – hot/warm/cold/wet/dry
•    Bakery food is usually good wherever you go
•    Holiday season = too many tourists and not enough parking spaces
•    Wear sunscreen
•    No smoke alarms activated at breakfast time
•    Write up the story ASAP

Tumut Ponds ride - Dec 2011

Khancoban – Tumut Pond Dam – Tumut

Bill & Barb, Phil and Ray enjoyed a beautiful day riding up to Tumut Pond Dam, Kiandra and back down to Tumut for a late lunch at the bakery.

October Long Weekend Ride - 2011

Holbrook – Tawonga Gap – Harrietville – Mt Hotham – Swifts Creek – Swan Reach – Lakes Entrance

Bill & Barb decided to take a long weekend and head for the coast (the long way round). Coincidently several other Holbrook riders were heading for Philip Island, also the long way round, so Bill & Barb along with Peter, David, Tim and Stuart departed Holbrook for Wodonga where we met up with Andrew and his partner. Our first rest stop was the lookout at the top of Tawonga Gap. Lunch followed, outdoors in the sunshine, at Harrietville. The usual very pleasant ride up Mt Hotham was enjoyed where we crossed paths with a large group of riders from Melbourne up the top. This group were also headed for the coast. Onto Omeo, Swifts Creek (threatening shower) and Swan Reach where Bill & Barb parted company and headed onto Lakes Entrance for the night. Food in the belly and a stroll across the footbridge preceded an early night.

Lakes Entrance – Orbost – Delegate – Eden – Wyndham – Bega – Tathra – Bermagui

Breakfast consumed, we packed up, did the obligatory photos and headed up to Orbost – passing the aftermath of a bushfire along the Princes Highway. From Orbost we headed up to Delegate – a fantastic stretch of road, especially as there is little traffic. Bellies were ‘re-supplied’ at Delegate and we again hit the road towards Bombala, turning right to cross over to Eden via the Mt Imlay Road. More food, more photos, fuel and a glimpse of the riders we saw at Mt Hotham as we headed off for Wyndham, Candelo and then back across to the coast to Tathra. A lone seal entertained us, frolicking in the sea, in front of the Tathra Wharf. Yummy cake and a cuppa were consumed (well we do feel obligated to try out the local fare) before heading onto Bermagui for the night.

Bermagui – Brogo – Bemboka – Nimmitabel – Dalgety – Jindabyne – Thredbo – Holbrook

Cloudy conditions greeted the morning and after a cuppa and packing up we left Bermagui and the coast to head inland again. Breakfast was welcomed at Nimmitabel, as was the warmth inside the bakery. Our next destination was Dalgety (sunshine) where we saw the Snowy River carrying the extra release of water from Lake Jindabyne. Jindabyne was our lunch stop, fuel purchased and a look-see at the water being released from the lake into the Snowy River. We headed for home via Thredbo, Geehi, and Khancoban (where we again glimpsed the riders from Melbourne).

The ride was drama free and almost argument free. Don’t remember how many klm’s we did as once again it is a long time between ride and write.

Fall's Creek Ride - Oct 2011

Falls Creek Ride

 

Two days after the last snowfall for the season Bill & Barb and Phil set off for Falls Creek. Once again we had beautiful clear blue skies.

We ventured to Mt Beauty via Sullivan’s Lookout on the Tawonga Gap Road. Not sure how we arrived there (once again it has been ‘a few months’ between riding and writing) but the photos say we did this route. Will make a stab in the dark and say that we had morning tea at Myrtleford Bakery or Bright Bakery.

Bill & Barb arrived at Falls Creek ahead of Phil and enjoyed observing the scenery while awaiting his arrival. We could see signage ahead stating the road was closed, and barriers were in place, but traffic was bypassing said sign and it was decided that we should push on and check out the Rocky Valley Reservoir. Boy am I glad we did ….. It was beautiful.

The road was still gated on the dam wall, preventing traffic from accessing the Bogong High Plains Road, even though a lot of ‘seasonal roads’ re-open after the October long weekend. I hope you enjoy the photos.

  • Mt Beauty from Sullivan's Lookout
    Mt Beauty from Sullivan's Lookout
  • Bill & Barb, intrepid explorers
    Bill & Barb, intrepid explorers
Mt Beauty from Sullivan's Lookout
Mt Beauty from Sullivan's Lookout

Cabramurra Ride - Aug 2011

Holbrook – Tumbarumba – Cabramurra – Kiandra – Tumut – Holbrook

 

Under a beautiful, clear blue sky Bill & Barb, Bryan and Phil headed off on a ride to Cabramurra. Balaclava, over pants, winter jackets ……  and heated seats, heated gloves and heated handgrips for the fortunate ones were the order of the day.

 

Colder conditions were experienced in the deep shadows along the road and particularly chilly alongside the Tumut River where ice can be deadly between Sioux City and Cabramurra. Old snow was encountered along the roadside at Cabramurra, very icy to the touch but beautiful to look at nonetheless. After filling of the bellies and the usual waffling we rode up to the lookout above town for a look see.

 

Next stop was the Mt Selwyn car park where lots of activity was observed on the slopes. I might add that none of us left the comfort of our bikes or ventured onto the white stuff and after a very short stop we continued on to Kiandra.

 

Between Cabramurra and Kiandra Barb observed plenty of beautiful photo opportunities, especially at Three Mile Dam, but alas did not have the camera handy.

From Kiandra we headed off to Tumut for lunch and then home through Rosewood.

  • Bryan, Phil & Bill
    Bryan, Phil & Bill
  • Cabramurra from the lookout
    Cabramurra from the lookout
  • Selwyn carpark
    Selwyn carpark
  • Approaching Kiandra
    Approaching Kiandra
Bryan, Phil & Bill
Bryan, Phil & Bill

9th & 10th April, Victorian ride

HOLBROOK - HARRIETVILLE - DARGO - STRATFORD - HEYFIELD - LICOLA - JAMIESON - MANSFIELD -
BENALLA - HOLBROOK


Bill & Barb and Phil departed Saturday lunchtime, in balmy sunshine, for an overnight stay at Dargo. The usual route was taken through Wodonga, Yackandandah, Rosewhite and Bright (where fuel was taken on board by Phil) and on to Harrietville for a cuppa. Several other riders were out and about, which was good to see, either going up or down the mountain. Filling of the bellies completed we donned the gear and climbed the mountain along with a moderate amount of traffic. At the Dargo turn off Bill & Barb waited for Phil to arrive (caught behind traffic) and observed the darkening of clouds and the wind picking up.

Phil arrived and was sent off ahead as Bill packed up the video camera. (We never saw Phil again until he had stopped near the Talbotville turnoff). The Dargo road has a short section of bitumen and then many kilometres of gravel (easy riding with road bike) and then returns to bitumen again several kilometres out of Dargo. Very scenic but also noted very little wild life along this road (maybe they were seeking out protection for the change in weather that was on its way). Dargo was a hub of activity especially around the fuel pump and the pub. We continued on for about 800 metres and arrived at the Dargo Bed and Breakfast, formerly the Dargo Winery, which was our stay for the night. We enjoyed the company of Pam and Herman, our hosts, and a lovely home cooked meal (the local red is really nice) was followed by much laughter around the pool table. The carousing at the Inn across the paddock, which in turn was interrupted by the falling rain, made
getting to sleep difficult.
Thank goodness for earplugs.

The morning started early thanks to the resident rooster and the stirring of the natives next door. Phil consumed a 'full breakfast' while Bill & Barb enjoyed tea and toast.  The overnight rain had eased although roads were left wet and potentially very slippery. Full wet gear was donned, we farewelled our hosts and took to the road for Heyfield at 8am. A wallaby crossed the road in front of us not far out of Dargo, but other than that we saw very little wildlife. We travelled via Fernbank, Stratford (fuel), Maffra and eventually Heyfield to be greeted by old friends that were going to ride to Jamieson with us. Between Maffra and Heyfield Bill & Barb had an 'oh shit' moment when a farmer that we were in the process of overtaking decided to turn (right) into a driveway (with very, very little warning) which resulted in us taking evasive action (luckily the driveway entrance had ample room for maneuvering). We were able to cross back to our correct side of the road before oncoming traffic collected us as well - don't know what they thought was going on! Many profanities were spoken inside my helmet!!

At Heyfield our party of 3 swelled to a party of 10, and 2 bikes became 6 bikes. After consumption of warm liquids and yummy food we set off for Licola. The sun was making its best effort to stay out but at times we got wet. Those that didn?t already have it on donned full wet gear at Licola, and a pit stop taken by others (first come first served as far as toilet paper was concerned) then we headed up the hill. Temperature and weather deteriorated the further we climbed, bitumen became gravel, brilliant scenery observed but alas no photo?s as it was too wet and too cold to be pulling gloves off and then trying to get them back on again. A short break was taken on the downward slope before arriving in Jamieson for a late lunch. Leaving around 3.30pm our friends headed off via Eildon and Healesville for home in the Latrobe Valley (arriving around 9pm) and we set off for home via Mansfield, Benalla and the Hume Highway (arriving home around 6.30pm).


Statistical Information

 

·       Approximately 900 klm?s

·       4 degrees - 23 degrees

·       1 x really hairy moment

·       1 x arthritic knee that does not like the cold

·       Pack all your cold weather gear (yes Phil, liners will be taken next time)

·       Pack a roll of loo paper

Dec. 2010, Gippsland ride.

Thanks to Barb Sullivan for a great ride report.

There's an album of matching photos in the

Photo Gallery


27th - 30th December 2010

Holbrook-Jindabyne-Gelantipy-McKillop's Bridge-

Delegate-Bombala-Pambula-Eden-Cann River-

Sale-Port Albert-Traralgon-Moe-Warragul-

Warburton-Marysville-Taggerty-Eildon-Jamieson-

Mansfield-Whitfield-Myrtleford-Albury-Holbrook.

 

Monday morning Bill and Barb departed Holbrook around 8.30 for

a mystery tour. We toured in beautiful conditions for our first

break at Khancoban. The road leading out of Khancoban had

slight damage, due to rockslides, and we encountered a

moderate amount of approaching traffic. A short delay, due to

road slippage, and low cloud just below Thredbo were also

encountered. A small number of bikes were out and about and

traffic thickened between Thredbo and Jindabyne. Arriving at

Jindabyne, under cloud cover, the normally picturesque lake was

a murky grey colour. Lunch and fuel were purchased before

heading out along the Barry Way.



We overtook several 4WD vehicles on the bitumen (before the

dirt started) and needless to say said vehicles caught us up on

the gravel. Most of the traffic was heading in the same direction,

for which we were grateful. The Barry Way and the Snowy River

are very scenic, though the road was a little dusty. Cloud cover

was increasing at Suggan Buggan and by the time we had reached

the McKillop's Bridge turnoff rain was imminent. The last 12 klm's

into Gelantipy were some of the 'longest' we have ridden as the rain

was getting heavier and the temperature was plummeting, by the

time we arrived it was 5 degrees. We were joined at Gelantipy by

an American couple that were riding bicycles (from Warrnambool to

Brisbane and their blog can be found here -

http://ridewithus.newfrontiers.org/). They were so cold that they

had stopped for a cuppa, to warm up, and then decided to stay the

night (instead of sleeping out). A lovely warm fire, home cooked

dinner, great conversation and warm beds were thoroughly enjoyed.

 

Tuesday morning brought blue sky and sunshine, the Americans set

off for Suggan Buggan and we set off for McKillop's Bridge. A small

amount of traffic on the road down (luckily none on the narrow

section) and after a quick stop at the bridge we travelled to Bonang,

and then enjoyed a great ride to the border on bitumen. The NSW

section of road is pretty ordinary but eventually becomes bitumen

near Delegate. Bombala was our lunch stop; several other riders had

the same idea. Bombala Bakery is highly recommended. We then

headed off to Pambula and down the coast to Eden, travelled along

Mt Imlay Road and then down to Cann River for the night. Bill met a

German couple here that were riding a BMW with sidecar (on the right

hand side) from Perth to Brisbane. The Budget motel near the bakery

is highly recommended, large rooms and fairly quiet. During the night

we heard a couple of cars literally 'zip' through town, scary thought if

one was to hit wildlife.



Wednesday morning brought blue skies and warmer temperatures

and breakfast at the servo. A temperature of 18 degrees made for

comfortable touring as we headed to Bairnsdale (cuppa), Stratford (fuel),

Sale, Yarram and Port Albert (lunch). Very windy on the run down to

Yarram, and it was extremely windy at Port Albert. Lunch was purchased

from the hotel (take away) overlooking the water and NOT from the cafe

next door (way too expensive). We rode through the Tarra Bulga National

Park, narrow winding bitumen road, and onto Traralgon to visit with family.

Our stop for the night was Moe, where we enjoyed the company of old

friends.

 

Thursday morning was overcast and cool and jumpers were required

to keep warm. We travelled through Warragul, Powelltown, Warburton

and Marysville where we enjoyed a cuppa at the bakery. Several other

riders were also stopped here. Jumpers were discarded before leaving

and our next stop was Taggerty, again to visit old friends. Leaving around

noon the temperature was climbing considerably. Eildon was our next

fuel stop before travelling along the newly sealed road to Jamieson and

Mansfield for lunch, again at the bakery. Discussions were held with a

fellow rider from Queanbeyan who was also doing a mystery tour. A quick

looksee at some shops was followed by the enjoyable ride down to Whitfield.

We then took the dirt road to Myrtleford (cooler than riding out on the flats)

where a cold drink and rest was undertaken. Yackandandah and Albury

(dinner, rest and cool down) before hitting the freeway for home arriving

after 8pm.

 

INFORMATIVE INFORMATION

 

  • Approximately 1500 klm's
  • We crossed the Vic/NSW border 6 times
  • Temperature varied between 5 and 35 degrees
  • Next time make sure to pack WINTER gloves, even if it is the middle of Summer
  • Drama free

N.E. Vic., November 6th & 7th, 2010

Holbrook - Beechworth - Whitfield - Mansfield -
Jamieson - Eildon - Yea - Mansfield -

Whitfield - Beechworth


Bill & Barb, Phil, Peter, Dave and Tim were scheduled to depart Holbrook

at 1pm on Saturday. Unfortunately as Phil was disembarking to check his

tyres for air pressure, his pant leg got caught up on the foot peg.

Luckily Phil was able to release his clothing from the peg (that prevented

serious damage to him) but the bike sustained a dislocation of one

blinker, re-shaping of one lever and a small scratch to the chrome work.

Repairs were undertaken and we headed off to Whitfield via Beechworth.


A cuppa was enjoyed at Whitfield while we rested and waited for the

Whitfield to Mansfield road to re open after the Targa Rally had

finished racing along it. We later came across one Targa car nose

first into an embankment and another Targa car burnt to a crispy shell.

A couple of checkpoints were still in place along with numerous officials,

and plenty of rubber left on the bitumen. Fuel was taken on board at

Mansfield and we then continued onto Jamieson.  On arrival at Jamieson

we checked with the local constabulary regarding the road closure in the

morning of the Jamieson to Eildon road as the Targa Rally were holding

2 stages along this section. Road was closing around 8.30 so plans were

made to leave before 8 in the morning. We checked into the Jamieson

Hotel for the night, very busy, great food and as usual great company.

Jamieson is very picturesque and would recommend staying the night

to anyone.



Waking up around 6 the next morning, thanks Phil and Tim, a shower,
cuppa and a walk around town to check out the
Jamieson and Goulburn
Rivers preceded leaving pretty much on time. A couple of kilometres
along the Eildon road we
came across the start point for one of the
sections for the Targa Rally, in full set up, and were waved through.
All tracks
leading onto this road were closed off, so if you were out trail
riding and needed fuel (and didn’t know the Targa Rally was
on) then
you were probably going to be in strife.
We passed the chequered flag
for the first section then rode along a
short gravel section and were
then stopped at the start of the
second stage. We assured the
‘management’ we were
travelling right through to Eildon and continued
on. Along this second stage
section Bill & Barb were thoroughly enjoying
themselves when they had a very close encounter with a wallaby. Bill
reckons he could
count the hairs on its back! Barb reckons they were
very lucky not to have been responsible for holding up the Targa Rally.
We passed
the second chequered flag and considered ourselves to have
done the ‘warm up lap’ for the rally.


Breakfast followed, eventually, and we then had a look see at the

Eildon Dam. Peter had the unfortunate experience of also having his

bike ‘have a lie down’ at the dam wall. Damage was non-too serious so

was able to proceed as normal. Upon leaving Eildon some of the

rally cars were already coming through, so there had not been a lot of

spare time up our sleeve coming up from Jamieson.



From Eildon we headed to Yea to view the Cheviot Railway Tunnel

which is well worth a visit. Somewhere around this time Bill & Barb picked

up a sliver of metal in the rear tyre which resulted in repairs being carried

out at Yarck. Puncture Repair 101 was noted by all just in case, somewhere

in the future, history would be repeated. This is the fourth, on road, repair

Bill has undertaken and we are pleased to announce was 100 % successful. 

Mansfield was our lunch stop and also a chance to catch up with an old

Holbrook friend who has moved to the area. Fuel was again purchased

prior to leaving for the very enjoyable Whitfield road.  A short rest at

Whitfield was followed by a longer break at Beechworth where ice

creams were consumed and we watched the local ‘unmarked car’

embarrass 2 drivers. The rest of the trip home was uneventful and

enjoyed in late afternoon sunshine.


 

Statistics

Just over 1100 klms, in beautiful weather

5 x bikes

2 x gentle bike lie-downs, with assorted damage

1 x puncture

1 x mobile phone dropped on a rock, still works but no visible screen

1 x flat I-pod (no music on Sunday)

1 x boot protector, missing

1 x ‘kiss my butt’ wallaby

100’s of other bikes out enjoying the weather (okay not 100’s – but there were lots)

Sensational Stoner wins 2010 Moto GP

Raelene and I awoke early Saturday morning, dressed in our layers to avoid the cold and suited up in wet riding gear for departure at 7.30am. It was pretty cold, I guess about 4 degrees. We took the Hume Highway south from Holbrook and pulled into the meeting point at Barnawartha. Ten minutes late for the 8.00 am official start to the ride. Waiting in anticipation was our good friend and ride organiser Steve (FJR 1300). Also at the meeting point was Hulm (BMW 1150), another Greg (BMW 1100), Des (BMW1100) and Tim (BMW 1200). After all the drama Friday's flooding and road closures it was a relief to be there looking forward to a good weekend. We set off for the Moto GP, taking the Hume Highway south to Benalla and then onto the Midland Highway and Marondah Highway for our first stop at Bonnie Doon. The last stretch into Bonnie Doon felt very cold with intermittent showers. Raelene and I were looking for a break. A quick refuel, drink, a snack and a toilet break really refreshed us and we were ready for the next leg. Tim and Des started talking to a local lady at the servo, she said there was snow on the hilltops near Alexandra, it was cool (Tim's BMW said 3 degrees) but we pushed on.


We arrived at Marysville about 11am and soon learned of the groups liking for bakery foods. No worries, I don't mind bakery food myself. The Marysville Bakery has a fine selection, pies pastries, salad rolls, coffee all very nice. After lunch we took the Black spur down to Healesville, (slowly it was a bit wet and slippery), then via Lilydale, Ringwood, Dandenong to Carrum downs. Steve had booked some nice cabins and they very reasonably priced.



Sunday morning we woke early and kitted up for departure, 7am we were on the road to the Island. Breakfast at San Remo at 8am and then onto Phillip Island to the GP track by 9.30 am. The weather was cool and windy, but looked promising. We set up at turn one and you can see a fair bit of the track from there. Main straight turns 1,2,3,4 and 5. We watched the warm up sessions and then toured the trade display area. I nearly lost Raelene at the trade display. She made her way to the grid girls and kindly posed for some photos with her new friends.


125cc race- Top racing here, the lap times were surprising 1.36sec on a 125cc. they sound great and look fast.

Moto 2 race- Wow what an exciting class, heaps of bikes and action.

Moto GP race- Casey Stoner just put his head down and rode away from the others, Lorenzo 2nd, Rossi and Hayden had a great battle with Rossi taking 3rd and Hayden 4th.


After the racing we headed back to Carrum Downs to the cabin Park. Sunday morning we headed off at 7.30am, breakfast at Yarra Glen. Then we headed for home via Yea, Bonnie Doon, Benalla and Albury/ Wodonga. What a weekend, thanks Steve for organising the ride, thanks Hulm, Greg, Des, Tim for your company.

Moto GP gets a big thumbs up from me and we will be back.

Oh and Casey Stoner you little legend. Thanks for making it four in a row. Awesome riding, you showed 'em what a gutsy little Aussie you are.

Proud of you mate. Greg


**Thanks for the Report, Greg. An album of accompanying photos are in the gallery**

October Long Weekend 2010

Holbrook - Whitfield - Jamieson (almost) - Eildon - Healesville - Powelltown - Noojee - Morwell - Swifts Creek - Mt Hotham - Myrtleford - Holbrook

Departing 8 am Sunday, in coolish conditions,  (Phil had to play golf on Saturday) Bill and Barb, and Phil left for an overnight ride to Morwell (catch up with old friends) via the 'back end' of Lake Eildon and returning home over Mt Hotham.

 

Our first stop was Whitfield for a welcoming cuppa and cake, followed by the great climb up the hill (not much traffic) and onto Mansfield where fuel was purchased. We then headed off towards Jamieson (very scenic) before taking the turn-off to Eildon (a couple of klms from Jamieson). This road (to Eildon) is currently undergoing sealing and is due for completion at the end of November. Even in its current state it is still a very good road to ride. We stopped at the Eildon dam wall, for a look-see, (dam has a significant amount of water in it) before heading into town for a (late) lunch at the Billabong Cafe.


Eildon dam wall


Leaving Eildon we travelled through Taggerty, Healesville (very busy, and had car pull across in front of us in main street), Yarra Junction, Powelltown, Noojee (great road riding), Hill End, Moe (fuel) and Morwell. We checked into the Morwell Hotel/Motel, showered etc and then enjoyed great food and great company for the rest of the evening.

Monday morning saw us depart just after 7.30 heading for Stratford, via Traralgon, Heyfield and Maffra, for breakfast. After a very satisfying (read big) breakfast was enjoyed, we found that the temperature had risen significantly and less gear was required to continue our journey. We took the scenic route to Bairnsdale (Perry Bridge and Bengworden) then onto Bruthen and Swifts Creek, where cold drinks, ice cream and fuel were purchased. We then travelled through Cassilis and up the hill to Dinner Plain. Quite a bit cooler up the top and beer, hot drinks and garlic bread were consumed. Not hungry enough for lunch, but in need of something warm to ingest.

9 degrees was the temperature at Mt Hotham and plenty of snow still lay scattered on the mountain tops. Photos taken, we then descended the mountain travelling through Bright and onto Myrtleford for another cuppa. We had some concerns over possible storms, but luckily they didn't eventuate, and we arrived home safe and sound having ridden approximately 1100 klms. Both days consisted of 10 hours from getting on the bike in the morning to parking the bike in the evening, inclusive of all breaks.

 

Thanks Barb. An album of Barb's photos can be found on the Photo Gallery page.

Fathers Day 05.09.2010

HOLBROOK - MYRTLEFORD - MT BEAUTY - TALLANGATTA – JINGELLIC


** Barb has sent some great pictures of the floods, have a look for the album of photos in the Gallery**

 

Bill and Barb left around 9am in cloudy but dry conditions endeavoring to get a looksee at the waterfalls on Mt Buffalo. At the time, approximately 180mm of rain had fallen so one would expect the waterfalls to be spectacular.

 

After riding through some brief showers/drizzle sunshine greeted us as we arrived at the Myrtleford Bakery for a cuppa. The bakery was quiet but the food, as usual, was scrumptious. What we didn’t realise was that a lot of people were down at the river watching it rise. Several businesses had wet feet and roads were closed to the south.

 

After donning the many layers of gear we headed out of Myrtleford towards Bright. Water filled the paddocks to the right where Happy Valley Creek crossed under the Great Alpine Highway to join the Ovens River, already in full flood.


 

The road to Bright was closed, apparently 1m of water across road at Eurobin, so we detoured along the Rosewhite Road. Traveling through the ‘twisty section’ we encountered debris along the road, a few small trees/branches already removed, along with more traffic than usual due to road closure to Bright. Approaching the intersection of the Kiewa Valley Highway we could see large areas of paddocks under water from the Kiewa River. We turned right and headed towards Mt Beauty only to be stopped by water across the road not far from the Redbank Road turn off. Police were on duty and one lane of traffic was allowed through at a time. On the north lane ‘high side’ of the road the water was only a couple of inches deep, but much deeper on the south lane ‘low side’. We travelled through Mt Beauty hoping to get to Bogong Village and check out the dam but found the road also closed just outside Mt Beauty town limits. Turning around we headed back the way we came along the Kiewa Valley Highway before coming across a detour to cross over Keegans Bridge to Redbank Road. A section of the highway had collapsed at Kergunyah.


 

At the intersection with the Murray Valley Highway we turned right and headed for Tallangatta for lunch at the bakery (where else). We have ridden along here each fortnight for the past 6 weeks, and are amazed at the changing water level in the Hume Dam. The ‘tide’ is not that far from Old Tallangatta.

 

We crossed over Granya Gap and spied a waterfall in the hills to the west of Granya. We followed the Murray River back to Jingellic and noticed more waterfalls in the surrounding hills. The Murray River at Jingellic was almost 4m deep.

 


We encountered our heaviest shower of rain near Wantagong and arrived home around 3.30pm.

 

Tassie trip - March 2010

After you've read the trip report, please take the time to go and have a look at the album full of fantastic photos that go with the story on the 'Photo Gallery' page.



TASSIE TRIP    19/03/2010 – 28/03/2010

 

Friday

 

Bill and Barb, Bryan and Phil departed Holbrook at 2.30am to catch the Spirit of Tasmania that was due to leave Melbourne at 9am. After breakfasting at Euroa we continued on and arrived in plenty of time as the ship was late getting in and therefore late leaving at around 9.45am.

The journey through the bay was pleasant but within minutes of entering open water Barb was not a happy camper and found a recliner to lie down on for the rest of the crossing. The men were much more tolerant of the conditions.

Upon arrival at Devonport we eagerly descended the decks to retrieve our bikes and travel to Ulverstone for the first night.


 


Saturday

 

The morning bought ‘iffy’ weather conditions but we crossed our fingers and headed off towards Stanley. Our first destination was Penguin, where the obligatory photos were taken, followed by Wynyard where we stopped for a cuppa. A short ride to Table Cape Lighthouse was next on the agenda. Here we met some other riders who had made the ‘night crossing’. The men on bikes, and their female companions in a 4WD. The weather held as we continued on to Stanley and took the chairlift up to the top of the Nut. Showers were closing in so we descended and headed to the café for lunch, during which a heavy shower passed by. Nearby dining companions devoured a crayfish and wine to the value of  $200 while we devoured the best ever flake, chips and salad. Leaving Stanley we backtracked before heading south, just before Wynyard, to Yolla and traveled down the Murchison Highway through Hellyer Gorge and returned back to Ulverstone via Hampshire, South Riana, Gunns Plains and North Motton.

 

Sunday

 

We awoke to damp conditions, and rode to Sheffield (for breakfast) via Spreyton and Nook. The weather deteriorated at Sheffield, which set the pattern for the rest of the day. We headed south, through Paradise, to Mole Creek Road before heading west and Cradle Mountain. Lunch and fuel were purchased, the mountain could not be seen, 7 degrees, windy, showery. Met other riders from Griffith. We continued west to rejoin Murchison Highway, then across to Zeehan and south to Strahan. After a cuppa and purchasing of goodies we then headed to Queenstown for the next 2 nights. A pub dinner, failed Keno tickets and an early night followed.

 

Monday

 

The morning began around 5am, as the many workers headed off to work (don’t advise anyone staying the night here) and daylight showed how miserable the day was going to be. Breakfast, laundry done, walk up the street (between showers), lunch and then a fantastic trip on the Wilderness Railway down to Strahan. Highly recommended. We left Queenstown at 3pm and arrived in Strahan at 6.15pm where a mini bus took the four of us around to the main shopping area for dinner. After dinner a coach picked the four of us up, we were the only passengers, to return to Queenstown. We did not ride at all this day.


 

Tuesday

 

In dismal weather we headed out along the Lyell Highway for our first break at the visitor centre at Lake St Clair. Around this time the weather cleared and we continued on to Lake Pedder and the Gordon Dam. Spectacular scenery all around and great roads to ride. Our stop for the night was New Norfolk where we dined at the Bush Inn – the oldest continually licensed hotel in Australia.

 

Wednesday

 

After breakfast at the bakery we headed for Hobart where Phil was hoping to change his rear tyre, sooner rather than later. This could be achieved after lunch so, in the meantime, we headed off to the Tahune Forest Airwalk. Phil did a short tour before heading back to Hobart, whilst the 3 B’s did a more intensive tour, which included 2 swing bridges and an hour plus walk. Lunch was very welcome at the completion. Have never seen such big trees – they are huge! Returning to Hobart the 3 B’s scaled Mt Wellington before joining Phil at Sorell for a cuppa. Eaglehawk Neck was our overnight stop in beautiful surroundings. Bryan and Phil had a water view; Bill and Barb scored a view of the carpark! Bryan and Phil had sunrise through their window – Bill and Barb had Sunrise on the TV.

 

Thursday

 

An early start had been planned but didn’t really eventuate. A short stop at the Blowhole, Arch and Devils Kitchen was followed by breakfast at Port Arthur. After touring the site we traveled through Nubeena and Koonya before returning to Sorell for lunch. Taking the Tasman Highway we traveled through Orford and had a short break at Mayfield Bay where we had a look see at the Three Arch Bridge built around 1845. Next stop was the Bark Mill Museum at Swansea. Bill had hoped to take a detour along Lake Leake Rd to Campbell Town and return along the Esk Highway to Bicheno, our stopover for the night, but time was against us. Very beautiful scenery observed along the coast and a delicious evening meal was consumed at Pasini’s. The night was quite blustery and noisy.


 

Friday

 

Breakfast was enjoyed in the garden surrounds even though clouds were starting to darken. We continued along the coast to Chain of Lagoons and then detoured across to St Marys and a stop at the bakery. The road from St Marys to the coast was signposted at 80klm, in places, where in fact you were lucky to be able to do 60klm – don’t know what they were thinking. Continuing along the Tasman Highway we stopped at Derby, historical town and tin mining area, for lunch. After a ‘bush ride’ to see the Derby Tunnel we traveled to Launceston, booked accommodation, and then visited Cataract Gorge. We then rode to the power station carpark, further up the Gorge, where Bill and Bryan did a tour around of the remains of the power station.  Phil and Barb couldn’t be stuffed! Chinese was ‘ordered in’ for dinner. By this stage bums were really beginning to ‘feel it’.

 

Saturday

 

Following breakfast we headed out to the Hollybank Forest Reserve to fly among the tree tops, but unfortunately this was not to be. We then decided to meander back to Devonport through Lilydale, Pipers Brook, Pipers River, George Town (cuppa), Beaconsfield (toured the mine/lunch), Beauty Point, West Frankford, and Moriarty. We checked out the mouth of the Mersey, watched a cargo ship leave, and prayed (at least Barb did) that conditions would be better for us as it was very windy and lots of whitecaps could be observed. Another cuppa, more souvenirs and then the short ride to the carpark to await boarding. Behind us in the line were riders from Gundagai (go figure) and we had been told that around 37 bikes, all up, were making the return journey to Melbourne. We boarded, Barb consumed Kwells, our bikes were sandwiched between 2 rows of truck trailers, and luckily we had a smooth ride back entering the bay around 3am.

 

Sunday

 

The Spirit docked at 5.45am and we disembarked just after 6am. Our first stop was Warburton for a cuppa and a check of the 50-line lotto ticket that we had purchased. Could not believe that we had not won anything at all! We continued our ride to the intersection of the Marysville/Woods Point Road, where we stopped for a few minutes – not knowing that at approximately the same time, just a few kilometres up the road, a car had slammed into a tree. We arrived at the scene and Phil (retired ambo) assisted the driver (broken leg) while the rest of us took up traffic control. Ambulance etc arrived and driver was airlifted out by helicopter.

Lunch was consumed at Alexandra, we then passed through Mansfield, Whitfield, and fuel/refreshments were purchased at Wangaratta. The short trip back to home was uneventful although we dodged some heavy showers. We traveled around 3,000 klms on the bikes.

 

Things we learnt

 

Having a GPS is both help and a hindrance.

 

Take Kwells

 

Take thinner clothes because they dry quicker in the drier

 

Have companions who can tell really good jokes – haven’t laughed so much

 

Extra batteries and SD cards for all the photos that you want to take

 

Remember important dates – I forgive you (the earrings are really nice)

 

Tasmania - March 2010

NEW YEARS RIDE 2010

Saturday 2nd January 2010


A small group of riders were out and about for their first ride of 2010

Paul Emerson (Milburn) and James Plunkett (Slash) set off at 9.30am. The skies were a little threatening and they decided to head north on the Hume Highway. Taking the Tumut exit they travelled through Batlow, Tumut and Talbingo on their way to Cooma for lunch and refuel.

Greg Webb and pillion Raelene hit the road at 12.30pm. They planned to meet Milburn and Slash at 3.30pm in Bungendore on the way to Batemans Bay where we planned to stay overnight. Greg and Raelene took the Hume Highway north from Holbrook all the way to the centre of the universe (The Yass service centre). A quick glance at the line up at the bowsers (about 10 cars each row) we decided to head into Yass for fuel.

A small servo in Yass no line up, we refuelled and were on the road in no time.

Greg and Raelene then headed for the coast. We took the Barton Highway to Murrumbateman, turned left taking the shortcut back roads to Bungendore.

3.29pm Greg and Raelene passed the 50km/h signs into Bungendore, a quick lap of town looking for a coffee shop, we found the Bungendore Bakery, last cappuccino for the day said the owner.

Milburn and Slash had travelled north from Cooma, got a little mixed up in Queanbeyan and then found Bungendore.

Milburn and Slash rode into Bungendore at 3.39pm, a quick lap of town and they found Greg and Raelene. I love it when a plan comes together.

4pm Greg, Raelene, Milburn and Slash all headed east through Braidwood down the Clyde mountain and into Batemans Bay at 5.30pm. Greg and Raelene had travelled 400km in 5 Hours.

It was nice to ride behind the big singles with their Exhaust Popping on a trailing throttle, brought back memories of my DR650.

Milburn and Slash had a cosy cabin at a caravan park, and Greg and Raelene a comfy motel room complete with a spa and ocean views.

We all met for pre dinner drinks and dinner at the Batemans Bay Soldiers Club, the bistro here is excellent.




 

Sunday 3rd January 2010


Next morning we met at 8.30am for breakfast on the Esplanade. We watched as rowboat crews and kayaks set off on an open water ocean race. Good luck.

We set off at 9.30am with a plan to meet up with Bill and Barb, at Cabramurra for lunch. This proved to be a little ambitious, but we pressed on.

We travelled south from Batemans Bay, through Moruya, Narooma and refuel at Cobargo. We continued south almost to Bega before turning west and up the Brown Mountain to Nimmitabel and Cooma.

Lunch at Cooma, we took the Snowy mountains Highway west through Adaminaby and Kiandra, we made it to Cabramurra a little late at 2.30pm.

Bill and Barb where waiting patiently, along with Bryan and Mick.

Greg and Raelene, Milburn and Slash (adventure tourers) and Bill and Barb, Bryan and Mick (super tourers) set off for Tumbarumba and then on to Holbrook.

5.30pm Greg and Raelene made it home 950km in a weekend, we decided that we should do this more often.

Thanks to our travelling companions for your great company, see you on the road in 2010.

Greg and Raelene Webb





Omeo ride - Dec. 2009

Holbrook - Mt. Beauty - Falls Creek - Omeo - Mt Hotham - Bright - Holbrook

Barb & Bill together with Brian left Holbrook for an overnight stay at Omeo (and a catch up with old friends) via the newly sealed Bogong High Plains road. B & B riding a BMW R1200RT and Brian riding his newly purchased Honda ST1300. Leaving around 1.30pm we headed via Kiewa Valley Highway and Redbank Road for Mt Beauty where we filled the bellies with a cuppa and cream filled delicacies.  From Mt Beauty we scaled the hill to Falls Creek, a great ride any time, and continued along the Bogong High Plains road. Very picturesque, perfect weather and little traffic. Bill was not too keen on the High Plains road due to loose gravel in places. Brian did not seem to mind at all. At the intersection with the Omeo Highway we turned left to visit the cemetary at Glen Willis, just a short distance past the end of the bitumen. After a quick look see and much waving of the hands (bloody flies) we headed back towards Omeo.

Several other riders out and about in this area, and who could blame them. We rode past the Blue Duck Inn, enjoyed the sweeping bends in the road and arrived at Omeo before 6pm. We checked into the Hilltop Hotel and waited for our friends to arrive.

Alan and Helen were riding a BMW R1200GS with a group of other GS riders that had travelled the previous day from Warragul, up to Jindabyne for the night, and then down to Omeo via Kiandra, Khancoban and Tom Groggin. This group drifted into Omeo about half an hour after us. Tired and dirty, but happy. After a late dinner B & B and Alan & Helen wandered down the street in search of a cup of coffee and finished up at the Golden Age, where several of the GS group were staying. Here Bill caught up with a ‘friend of a friend’ and reminisced about enduro riding 30 years ago. Trudging back up the hill we then retired for the night.

Next morning saw us up bright and early, although we had to wait till 8am for breakfast to be served. After much laughter and hot food we packed up and headed down the hill to fuel up for the ride home. Many bikes in the street, many road bikes arriving from Mt Hotham direction and many dirt bikes arriving from the opposite direction. Servo was really busy. Word went around that an unmarked police car was in the vicinity so all eyes were peeled. After saying our goodbyes (GS bikes heading down to Dargo) we headed out the road to Swifts Creek and looped around through Cassilis (very nice ride) and back onto the Great Alpine Road heading for Dinner Plain and a cuppa. Nothing open at Dinner Plain (except real estate office) so we continued to Mt Hotham. Hundreds of pushbike riders had overtaken Mt Hotham (big road ride) so we fought our way through and attempted to descend the mountain.

In the midst of this struggle with bike riders and accompanying vehicles we rode over ‘something’. Didn’t see it but sure felt it and sure enough a short distance later we had to pull over with a puncture to the rear tyre. Finding a safe place was not easy and we ended up parking on the inside corner, on the wrong side of the road, next to the armco railing. Good thing we hadn’t mouthed off out loud at the pushbike riders because they passed by us while repairs were being undertaken. Thankyou to the fellow motorcycle riders who offered us assistance. Repairs completed we were on our way again, only to be held up with lots of traffic and even had a pushbike rider overtake us on the way down. I’m sorry if this offends but I have to say it - “d***h**d”.

Harrietville was crawling with pushbike riders and their entourage so we continued onto Bright for a very nice lunch. During lunch we noticed some riders come through that had also been at Omeo the night before. We believe they did the opposite loop to us. Prior to leaving Bright we checked the tyre at the servo and continued on our way. We headed towards Myrtleford before detouring across to Rosewhite and again dropping down on to Redbank Road. Approaching the end of this road the tyre deflated again and another attempt at ‘plugging’ was undertaken. Repairs completed we headed off with Barb now a pillion behind Brian giving the damaged tyre some ‘relief’. At Wodonga more plugs were purchased, repairs made again, and we set off for home. The tyre finally had enough by the time we crested the new hill at Bowna, so Barb jumped back on the Honda for the quick trip home to return with the car. Barb then stayed with the bike on the side of the freeway while Bill returned to Holbrook to replace the tyre. Meantime Barb had a visit from the local constabulary to see if things were ok, he was assured everything was under control and a half-hour later Bill returned with rear wheel. We eventually arrived home around 6.40pm and had travelled around 630 klms. Seemed like we had been gone for a week and not just over 24 hours! 

Things we learnt: 

  1. If you think the tyre might need replacing before you leave – Do it, especially if you are riding ‘two up’. Although the puncture was in the tread and may not have made any difference if it was a new tyre fitted.
  2. Photo’s turn out pretty good while hanging off the back of the bike.
  3. There is a reason why pushbike riders get such a bad name on the road.
Thanks Barb for another terrific read - Heaps of Barb's photo's are now in an album on the Photo Gallery page

October Long Weekend, 2009

HOLBROOK – MT HOTHAM – OMEO – CANN RIVER – BOMBALA – MERIMBULA – BEGA – NIMMITABEL – DALGETY – JINDABYNE – THREDBO – KHANCOBAN – HOLBROOK


  Bill & Barb and Phil left Holbrook around 12.30 on Saturday, in drizzle, bound for the coast via Mt Hotham. The drizzle accompanied us as far as Yackandandah where it dried up and we continued under cloud to Harrietville for a cuppa and scones.

We then tackled the climb up the mountain, on wet road, rising up into the cloud cover. Mt Hotham was heavily blanketed in cloud, temp was around 2 degrees and snow lay thickly on the roadsides. Phil found his glasses fogging up which was not the best thing to have happen. We only stopped momentarily before continuing on to Dinner Plain, where scattered snow lay on the ground, and then came out of the snow and cloud altogether before we had reached the airport. We rode in part sun part cloud cover to Omeo where upon arrival were greeted by two fellow riders from Wagga, and a shower or rain as we unpacked. We stayed at the Golden Age Motel in excellent accommodation and enjoyed a filling dinner with much laughter, and a cooked breakfast supplied in the morning.

Sunday morning we departed Omeo for Bruthen and then on to Cann River for a break at the bakery (where else). Mother Nature was at her best and provided us with beautiful sunshine to enjoy our meal outside.

After filling of the bellies and filling of the bikes we ventured up the Princes Highway to Narrabarba and rode the Mt Imlay Road back across to Rockton on the Monaro Highway (page 26 Hema Motorcycle Atlas).  Phil tried to get a photo of a lyrebird, but said bird was not obliging.  We then went on to Bombala for more refreshments.

From Bombala we headed for the coast, another great road for bikes, and into Merimbula where we stayed the night. After unpacking we headed to the Sapphire Club to watch the NRL final on the big screen for the first half and then watched the second half while having dinner in the dining area. A scrumptious meal was thoroughly enjoyed, along with the final score in the rugby (sorry Phil). A short walk back to the motel and Superbike action was observed (for those that could stay awake).

Monday morning bought cloud and eventually drizzle and the weather forecast for Thredbo was 3 degrees and snow - hmmmm! We checked out Short Point Beach before re-fuelling (saw the first police car all weekend) and headed off for Bega. We then headed for Brown Mountain (page 17 Hema) and Fred Piper Lookout. Unfortunately low cloud obscured what could have been a wonderful view and the rain that began, as we were gearing up again, made glove fitting a challenge! We continued on to Nimmitabel bakery for warming cuppas and fresh baked food. This bakery has excellent produce, to the extent that Bill found it necessary to have two apple/cream turnovers. (The handle of the fork was handy for re positioning the glove finger liners – must remember to find old knitting needle to carry with us for ‘next time’).

From Nimmitabel we took the shortcut to Jindabyne going through Dalgety. In ‘nice’ weather this would be a great ride but unfortunately we encountered a wet road and when we arrived at the ‘non bitumen section’ we found a wet, slippery, sandy road. Slow and steady was the only way – fishtailing not uncommon – for approximately 10klm’s. We were ‘tricked’ by a short section of bitumen about two-thirds along the way only to find a short section of sand at the end of the road! Well done to Bill & Phil = Bill ‘two-up’ and Phil a ‘virgin’ in those conditions. A big sigh of relief was emitted by all!  We arrived at Jindabyne in sunshine and continued on to Thredbo where dark clouds were threatening. Showers greeted us and after a quick photo opportunity we headed down the mountain to Geehi for a bum rest. More rain was moving through as we arrived at Khancoban, where we stopped at the café up the hill, and enjoyed hot drinks and hot food as a thunderstorm passed by.

From Khancoban to Holbrook we rode in welcome sunshine and arrived home around 6pm having completed 1180 klm’s.

Things we learnt:

1. Have a go!

2. Carry Something to re-position your glove finger-liner.

3. Dress for the conditions and you will be 'just fine'

4. If you see something interesting - take a photo.


Winton 31st May 2009

31.05.09  Holbrook - Winton -Myrtleford - Holbrook

Bill & Barb, Peter and David departed around 8am in rather cool conditions (aka 4 degrees) for Winton via Howlong and Wangaratta. We were to meet up with Phil at Howlong, and sure enough there was Phil waiting for us in the bakery having 'breakfast'. We joined him for a cuppa before heading off through Rutherglen and then on to Wang and down the freeway to Winton.

We arrived at a very busy Winton racetrack - many already there and seated, and many more arriving. After paying our $30 we parked the bikes, removed the many layers and merged with the crowd. After wandering past the car display we ventured into the very, very vintage motorcycle display area. Comfort for the rider and pillion did not seem to be a priority in the old days - or are we just too soft?


Leaving the bike display we wandered down through the pits ($4 entry fee) where all manner of action was taking place and could be observed by all, and where you had to be on your toes or risk getting run over/or sworn at under muttered breath.

Leaving the pits, lunch was purchased and we sat down to observe some great racing. The sun was quite warm so we proceeded to go and sit in the shade at the 'first corner' which was a great spot. Brilliant motorcycle racing was followed by a parade of the many vintage cars in all their glory.

At 2pm B & B and Phil donned the layers of clothing again (Peter and David stayed on longer) and headed off originally for Beechworth but had a change of plans enroute and ended up at one the bakeries at Myrtleford for afternoon tea.

Leaving Myrtleford we headed south before heading across to Rosewhite and the Kiewa Valley Highway. Even though the bushfires crossed through this area it is still very beautiful and if you get the chance to ride through here you will not be disappointed. As the cloud cover had moved in and time was against us we returned home via Wodonga and the Hume Highway just as it was getting dark (aka after 5pm).



**Words and pictures by Barb Sullivan. More pictures in the Photo Gallery.**

Austin 7 Club Historic Winton

The ever popular Austin 7 Club Historic Winton returns on the last weekend of May (30th / 31st).
This unique event at which both Historic Cars and Historic Motorcycles participate on the same programme.

This is one of the longest running annual Historic events in Australia.

Gates Open 7.00am

For more information visit www.historicwinton.org

McKillop’s Bridge 18.04 -19.04.2009

HOLBROOK – BRIGHT – OMEO – BUCHAN – BRIDGE – ORBOST

CANN RIVER – NIMMITABEL – COOMA – KHANCOBAN – HOLBROOK

 

In cool conditions (8 degrees) Bill & Barb, Phil, Mick, Dave and Peter left Holbrook at 7am for a trip to McKillop’s Bridge (again).

We travelled through Yackandandah at 8am, detoured around Myrtleford and arrived at Bright around 9am for re-fuelling. It was so nice to see Mother Nature returning the landscape back to green after the horrific fires. At Harrietville there were many Triumph bikes/riders getting ready to leave (believed to have attended a RATS gathering). Prior to Mt Hotham we were overtaken by a Triumph Cruiser (2 up). We had a 5-minute break at Hotham (13 degrees) before continuing on to Omeo for a cuppa.  Leaving Omeo we noticed the Cruiser had also stopped for a break and sure enough we were overtaken again before we reached Swifts Creek. It was noticed by some of us that his ‘overtaking’ of a vehicle was in the ‘not to be desired’ category and if I had been pillion passenger he would have received a smack around the helmet for it. (Probably with a piece of 2 x 4). I can only hope his passenger arrived home in one piece.

We continued down to Bruthen and then on to Buchan where we stopped for lunch and more fuel.



At around 1.45 pm we headed off to see the bridge, arriving 3.20pm, after passing approx 6 bikes coming out and luckily no vehicles on the narrow section. One other rider, mystery man in photo, on an Aprilia arrived with us and another single rider on a Honda arrived just prior to us leaving the bridge. Both these riders had come down the Barry Way and were returning home – one to Canberra and the other to Cooma. Pity they hadn’t ridden together as they were only 5 minutes apart leaving the bridge.






We returned back up to the Barry Way (all bikes having handled the road with out incurring any problems) and then on to Buchan. From here we took the ‘back' way to Orbost, dodging a horse and grazing cattle, enjoying the corners but not the smoke from a ‘burn-off’ and arrived at Orbost just after dark. (Phil’s next job is to adjust his headlights so they shine in the vicinity of the road).

We stayed at the Orbost Club Hotel and enjoyed a very filling dinner along with the usual full-of-it waffling. Rain fell through the night and daylight bought drizzle and wet roads.


We fuelled up at Orbost before leaving, at a moderate speed, for Cann River and breakfast. Well what can I say about breakfast – Phil, I don’t know where you put it all.


From Cann River we rode through low cloud/drizzle all the way to Nimmitabel where we stopped for a warming cuppa. Several other riders were out and about in the not so pleasant weather as well. We continued on to Cooma for more fuel, where wet gloves were changed for dry ones and soggy boots just stayed soggy. Just before Berridale we finally struck dry road surface and could finally do what we do best. At Thredbo a decision was made to continue on down to Khancoban for sustenance and fuel for those that needed it. As usual this is a very nice section of road to ride and traffic was light, which is a bonus. By the time we reached the Murray 1 Power Station viewing area it was time to strip of some of the gear while waiting for the Mick and Phil to catch up.


Arriving at Khancoban Mick fuelled up and headed for home – no doubt with very uncomfortable wet feet, while the rest of us had another cuppa and some warm food. Already seated at the servo were 3 lads who were heading back to Sydney that night on their bikes. Leaving after 3pm and traveling back through Batlow I hate to think what time they would be getting home. After the filling of the bellies was completed we headed for home – Peter and Dave taking off, leaving Phil, Bill and Barb to bring up the rear - we arrived back at Holbrook at 5.23pm. We had covered around 1200 klms, a little stiff and sore but happy to achieve it.


NOTE:  Things we learnt –

Have your headlight adjusted correctly – just in case.

Have spare gloves (or genuine waterproof ones).

Have spare footwear (or genuine waterproof ones) or plastic bags if all else fails. &

Have a sleeping mask to cut out unwanted light while trying to sleep.


**Thanks as always to Barb Sullivan for her words and pictures.

 

Tantangara Reservoir 05.04.2009

HOLBROOK – TUMUT – TANTANGARA DAM – ADAMINABY – JINDABYNE – KHANCOBAN


In fresh, slightly cloudy, morning air Bill and Barb departed at 8am for Tumut via Rosewood/Green Hills. The logging road has re-opened through here after road works. At 10am after enjoying a cuppa at McCafe (Heritage Café was closed) we proceeded up the Snowy Mountains Highway, passing the scenic Blowering Reservoir and many kangaroos grazing on the hillside. Continuing on we climbed the hill where the temperature has a habit of dropping somewhat, and luckily, there was very little wind.


We reached Kiandra, where the wind was picking up, the temperature was around 12 degrees and mostly sunny. We scanned the roadside information boards before continuing on to the turnoff for Tantangara Reservoir. To reach the Reservoir we travelled along a gravel road for 18 klms. We could comfortably sit on 60 kph for most of this road. Hard to imagine that the water flowing out the bottom of the dam is the mighty Murrumbidgee River. Returning to the main road an executive decision was made to turn left and continue on to Adaminaby.



 

At Adaminaby we had lunch, along with a couple of other riders, in the café (the bakery was shut).

Leaving around 1.30pm we headed off towards Cooma, bypassing Berridale shortcut, before turning right to head back towards Jindabyne. Here we refuelled. From Jindabyne we encountered traffic – mountain bikers from Thredbo and ‘The Man From Snowy River Bush Festival people’ from Corryong. We also ‘met’ two kangaroos right at Tom Groggin corner. Luckily we were traveling slowly and the roos moved off into the bush. Between Geehi and Khancoban we noticed many diesel spills on certain corners – sure enough someone forgot to put their fuel cap back on after filling up at Khancoban. The fuel cap is sitting on diesel pump at servo.

 

We enjoyed a warming cuppa at Khancoban before setting off around 4.30pm for the last leg home.

Before reaching the main Corryong turn-off we had a ‘moment’ where an oncoming 4WD decided to turn right just up the road from us and at the last minute changed his mind and ended up half in our lane and half in his. We braked, we were not sure what he was going to do, but managed to safely get by (muttering under our breaths). At the main Corryong intersection we got caught up in heavy traffic but managed to overtake and continue on.


Before reaching Walwa we viewed the aftermath of rain run-off from last weeks storms. In a couple of places the water had crossed the road. Arriving at Jingellic we came up behind a 4WD, and a cattle truck that was spewing ‘pee soup’ continuously from the trailer. The 4WD overtook the truck but we kept a respectable distance (although received several spots on visors etc). Luckily at the Jingellic Rd turnoff the truck continued on towards Tumbarumba.

 

We arrived home just before 6pm and (darkness) having travelled 654 klms tired but happy.

***More of Barb's photos on the Photo Gallery.



Corryong 8.03.2009

Holbrook – Walwa – Corryong –   1. Cabramurra – Tumbarumba   or  2. Granya Gap – Jingellic

 

Once again a beautiful morning beckoned (the only good thing about the drought) and 7 bikes and 11 riders / passengers set off for morning tea at Corryong.


Phil took his Royal Enfield for a run (average speed 90 kph) and this enabled some of us to smell the roses along the way instead of whizzing by in a blur. At the outskirts of Walwa, a ‘big grey’ was standing in the shade on the edge of the road having breakfast. He stayed where he was while most of us rode past, but when Phil arrived the noise was too much and he moved off. At Walwa we had a ‘rest’ and some had the obligatory light up while waiting for Phil to arrive. Phil arrived, disembarked, removed his helmet and it was then suggested he go on ahead of us and we would catch up – so Phil put his helmet back on, got on his bike and rode off.


 

Arriving at Corryong (Phil got there 5 mins before the rest of us) we enjoyed the usual cuppa and conversation at the bakery (very busy). From Corryong Bill&Barb and Phil detoured to Cabramurra while the rest rode to Granya Gap, back along River Road and had lunch at Jingellic.

 

Phil refuelled at Corryong before heading off at 11.15am over the hill and up to Cabramurra with Bill & Barb. As usual this was a beautiful ride, not much traffic, and Bill & Barb stopped at Tumut Pond Reservoir to wait for Phil. The water level is way down in the reservoir. Several bikes crossed the pond wall while we were there. After 15 – 20 mins we rode up the hill from the wall and were entertained by ‘Swifts’ flying along with us.

 

Cabramurra was fairly quiet and about 18 degrees – so not too cold. We enjoyed lunch of hamburgers and egg/bacon rolls and purchased some warm clothing for the coming months. A fellow ‘ambo’ from Hay recognised Phil and they had a quick chat. Phil’s Royal Enfield also drew some attention from fellow diners.

 

After a tour around Cabramurra we headed down to Tumbarumba. On the way we were overtaken by a lone rider, who had crossed the dam wall going in the opposite direction (when we were there) who fair scared the daylights out of me (although we were only doing about 90 kph) when he seemingly ‘flew’ past us on his return trip. Phil had been watching from behind and said our bike veered to the left when we were overtaken (probably me jumping out of my skin). At Tumbarumba we enjoyed a cuppa in the café surrounded by bears. From Tumba we headed out past Mannus and returned back home along Jingellic Road where we rode past a rather big snake sunning itself on the road.

 

We arrived home around 5pm and had covered 350 klms.


*** More pictures of this ride in the photo gallery. Thanks Barb!***

Falls Creek Ride, 22 Feb 2009

Holbrook - Yackandandah - Myrtleford - Bright - Falls Creek - Mt Beauty - Walwa - Holbrook

An absolutely beautiful morning for a ride, temperature wise, Bill & Barb and Peter headed off at 8.30 for Falls Creek.
First stop was Wodonga for Peter to fuel up and then onto Yackandandah and down to Myrtleford for a cuppa. Between Yack and Myrtleford we rode through the devastation left behind from the bushfire. This was gut wrenching to say the least. Amazing to see how some properties remained standing while others were totally destroyed. It is impossible to imagine what it was like for the residents to endure this fire.
 
Arriving at Myrtleford we enjoyed a cuppa and watched the many other riders out and about. From Myrtleford we headed to Bright, then over the Gap Rd down to Mt. Beauty and proceeded up the hill to Falls Creek. On the way up we passed a couple of blokes dressed in leathers - but no motorcycle in sight only a car. It was surmised (after we came back down) that they were in fact riding "luge" down the road. May be wrong in that but if they were, then would hate to meet a 4WD on a corner. Falls Creek as usual was very pleasant - fresh and cool air, and lots of construction going on. Will be great when the road sealing is finished and we can do a 'loop' to Omeo and come back via Mt Hotham.

 
Leaving Falls Creek we arrived back at Mt Beauty for lunch. Very, very quiet at the cafe - but service and food, as usal, very good. Fuelling up we then headed back along Redbank Rd and again passed through some burnt farm land (smoke still rising out of hills). We passed by Tallangatta and on to Shelley where we checked out the old railway station (Peter hadn't seen) and then down the bitumen/dirt road to Walwa. The temperature reached 33 degrees on the low country, but riding near Shelley it was a very pleasant 28 degrees. Definitely feel the difference in the air temp. From Walwa we headed home along Jingellic Road arriving back at Holbrook around 5pm. We had covered 500 klms.

*** Thanks again Barb. More pics of this ride in the photo gallery***

Jenolan Caves ride, 24 -26 January 2009

Seeing there weren't enough takers for the McKillop's Bridge ride, Bill & Barb couldn't see a long weekend wasted, and took off to Jenolan Caves for the weekend. Here's Barb's report. Also head over to the photo gallery for some excellent pictures of the weekend.

Holbrook - Gunning - Wombeyan Caves - Jenolan Caves - Oberon - Kanangra Wall - Bathurst - Cowra - Wagga

Around 8am on Saturday Jan 24th Bill & Barb and Phil, left Holbrook for the Jenolan Caves. The weather was quite mild and sunny, although the wind increased markedly as the day progressed. We headed up the highway for our first break at Yass McCafe, which was packed. After filling our bellies we proceeded to Gunning where we turned off the highway and onto Crookwell where we refuelled. It was very windy along this stretch of road. From Crookwell we rode along bitumen/mainly gravel to Taralga, and then detoured to the Wombeyan Caves just out of Taralga. This also was mainly gravel. When we reached the cave area at the bottom of the hill, Phil found his rear tyre going flat. After our own flat tyre a couple of weeks ago we were now better prepared with small compressor, better plug and glue too. After repairing the tyre we ate lunch before wandering around to have a look see.



The plug seemed to have worked so we left the caves area at 2.45pm and headed back up the hill where we came across a lady who had rolled her car. Phil, being an ambo, gave her a check over, the police etc were called and we waited with her until the services arrived. Her partner had arrived before we got there. She was going to his farm down the road and had moved over for another vehicle when she lost control hit the brakes and rolled. At least one broken rib but was to go to hospital for x-rays. 75 mins later and we were on our way again. Joining up on the main road again we headed for Oberon, a very nice ride, and had cooling drinks before the short trip (where car in front had an almost close encounter with kangaroo) to Jenolan Caves. Upon arrival we found the place was buzzing. 2 large groups had booked in for the night - one was a birthday group and the other was HOG riders from Sydney (about 30 bikes). After a mediocre meal we had a wander around just as dark was setting in. Our rooms were very nice, although basic and expensive. Breakfast was $15 continental or $21 cooked and was enjoyed in the large dining room.


 
After we checked out, we hiked up the hill to Carlotta Arch and then down through the Devils Coach House, we were buggered already - zillions of steps - and then had a cooling drink before embarking on the Imperial Diamond Tour (1.2 klms, 418 steps and 1.5 hours long). Worth every cent! The water in the river at the bottom of the cave looks to be only a couple of feet deep max but is in fact 9 - 12 feet deep. After the tour, which finished at noon, we had lunch while waiting for the road north to re-open. It is closed from 11.45am to 1.15pm to allow buses to come down - although one bus came in before the allotted time and one came in while we were heading out.
 
Leaving the caves we headed up to Hampton then turned left at the Great Western Highway for Donnybrook where we refuelled. From here we left the highway and travelled past Lake Lyall, Tarana and back to Oberon where we stayed the night. Bill wanted to check out the Kanangra Wall but as it was on a gravel road Phil didn't want to push his luck with his tyre so he stayed at Oberon while we went to the Wall. Very beautiful scenery, more walking, and lots of dust. Also encountered a wallaby just out of car park area and a kangaroo while travelling back to Oberon on main road. 
 
Monday morning was foggy and cooler (lovely) but fog had lifted 5 mins out the road towards Bathurst. Again encountered kangaroo on side of road and was a bit 'hairy' when he turned and started jumping along the side of the road in the same direction as us. We arrived in Bathurst and headed out to Mt Panorama for look see and a ride around the track. We did one circuit - took photos as we were riding along. The next lap we followed and filmed Phil in movie mode, and the final lap we did in reverse alo filming Phil. We then checked out the museum there.


 
About 11.30 we again hit McCafe, where Phil had breakfast and we had a cuppa. Leaving Bathurst we travelled to Cowra - getting hotter - and stopped for drinks and bum rest. Then on to Young - bloody hot - more drinks and ice cream, through Cootamundra and Junee and eventually Wagga - really, really hot. More drinks and rest. 37 degrees on bike thermometer. Finally arrived home around 5.30pm. Over 1200 klms


Bill and Barb's Excellent Adventures.

Seeing there wasn't enough starters to get the McKillop's Bridge ride away this Australia Day weekend, Barb has sent in a couple of reports and some pictures to show you  what you've missed out on. Then maybe we can organise a ride down that way later in the season (when the weather is cooler and a bit more stable perhaps!)




27.12.08 – 30.12.08

 

Holbrook, Frankston, Traralgon South, Aberfeldy, Licola, Buchan, Gelantipy, McKillops Bridge, Jindabyne, Holbrook


Leaving home at 7.30am we headed to Howlong (skirting some storms), onto Wangaratta and then Whitfield where we donned the wet gear. Riding up the mountain we passed 2 police motorcyclists (not together) in slight drizzle and onto Mansfield where we refuelled and had a cuppa. Mansfield was packed with 4WD’s.

 

Leaving Mansfield the sun was shining and the traffic was increasing. We stopped at Lilydale for lunch and then headed down the new freeway to Frankston. We enjoyed a cuppa and conversation with family and then headed off to Korumburra, Trafalgar (tea) and eventually Traralgon South to stay with Alan and Helen.

 

The next morning we rode to Aberfeldy with Alan to have a look see. A very enjoyable ride although we had to dodge other riders and the odd 4WD that did not want to move over, and a police car too. Had a cuppa at Erica and after lunch we visited friends at Morwell and then returned to Traralgon South for a bbq that evening with old friends. Good food, good memories and old photo’s to ooh and aah over.

 

Monday morning was overcast and threatening rain but we headed off to Licola with Alan and picked up Ray at Toongabbie. This became a beautiful ride in sunshine. Glenmaggie Weir is full and must be one of the only ones in Victoria that is. After visiting Licola we headed to Heyfield, where after a cuppa Alan and Ray headed home and we headed up the highway to Buchan (lunch) and eventually Gelantipy (where we stayed). After checking in at our accommodation we headed off to see McKillop’s Bridge. Quite spectacular. Roughly an hour to get down to the bridge from the main road: but most definitely worth it. Not a lot of traffic at that time of day, which was good as the road can be quite narrow in places with a steep drop off. We checked out the gorge and waterfall on the way back up. Arriving back at our accommodation a roast meal was awaiting for us. All meals are shared with guests and owners at one long table, which makes for interesting conversation. The owner knows people at Korumburra that Bill also knows.




 


Tuesday morning was wet and blustery early on, but when we left at 9am the sun was shining again. We headed up the Barry Way to get a quick photo of Seldom Seen. Continuing up the road (which is quite narrow in places) we passed through some beautiful scenery, eventually coming down alongside the Snowy River near the Vic/NSW border.



We stopped at Jindabyne for lunch, crowded, and met a couple that had ridden down from Emerald in Qld. We refuelled and headed onto Thredbo. Extremely windy and threatening rain along with the temperature beginning to plummet. Riding through Thredbo itself it started to drizzle (low cloud) and we were soon engulfed in fog and temperatures that got below 7 degrees. We came out of the fog at the snow line but could see bad weather ahead of us. Around this time we came up behind a 4WD towing a caravan (road not suitable for caravans – der) and eventually overtook them. The drizzle got heavier but we did not stop to put wet gear pants on because we did not want to get caught behind the caravan again. We arrived at Khancoban for a warming cuppa and donned the wet pants before leaving as heavier rain was coming. We skirted some of the rain but eventually came out the other side into the sunshine again near Walwa.


We arrived home safe and sound and started washing our clothes as we had planned to head back out again on Thursday to continue the road past McKillop’s Bridge.



01.01.09 – 02.01.09

 

Holbrook, Mitta, Benamra, McKillop’s Bridge, Bonang, Orbost, Cann River, Nimmitabel, Cooma, Cabramurra, Rosewood


Again leaving at 7.30am we headed for Albury (refueled), Tangambalanga, Mitta and then along the dirt/bitumen road to Anglers Rest, and then detoured to Benambra for lunch. From here we headed directly across to Wulgulmerang on the Barry Way along a dirt road, which was not too bad, although very dusty. We left the Barry Way at 2pm and crossed the Bridge at 2.45pm (didn’t seem to take as long this time) and continued along the dirt road alongside the Deddick River. Very beautiful scenery through here and apparently lots of wild dogs as 9 were hanging on a fence near the end of this road. We came out at Bonang about an hour later looking for a rest and a nice cuppa. Unfortunately the only store at Bonang was shut and it was 90 klm’s to Orbost. We had no choice but to continue on. Really good road for bikes but because we needed a rest and cuppa we didn’t enjoy it as much as some other bikers did. We arrived at Orbost late in the afternoon and had to stay at the pub, as the 2 motels were full. We enjoyed a lovely Chinese/aust meal and the rain fell while we were eating.





 

As the pub didn’t serve breakfast, and we were woken at 5.30 by a street sweeper, we left around 7am for Cann River and breakfast. It was quite cool so when we left Cann River we donned the balaclavas and by the time we had climbed to the top of the plateau we stopped to put on the wet pants, neck warmer and thermal gloves to stay warm. It was windy as anything too. We pulled in to Nimmitabel for a warming cuppa, before heading to Cooma and Adaminaby. Traffic was starting to thicken up along the Snowy Mountains Highway. We turned off at Kiandra to Mt Selwyn and came down the dirt road into Cabramurra. Here we again met the people from Emerald and had a very enjoyable lunch with them. From Cabramurra we travelled down the Elliott Way to Tumbarumba. I had almost fallen asleep on the back of the bike (closed my eyes at least twice) before reaching Tumbarumba so had a pit stop to waken up a bit. We then stopped at Karen and Mick’s at Rosewood before continuing on home only to be detoured less than 1klm from the town boundary as a truck carrying paper had caught fire on the highway. We finally arrived home around 5pm tired and cured of any further thoughts of bike rides for the next week at least. We covered just under 3,000 klms in a week.

 

- Barb Sullivan

**thanks to Barb for both words and pictures**

Tumut ride 18 January 2009

Holbrook – Tumut - Holbrook

 

 

Greg, Paul, Brett & Lou and Bill & Barb met at 8am at Mobil for a morning ride to Tumut and back before it got too hot. Phil Cox was also at Mobil and after talking to Bill & Barb was no doubt wishing he could come too – hopefully he has been talked into coming next week for the 3 day ride to McKillops Bridge.

 






Leaving Holbrook just after 8am we headed out the Jingellic Road in fresh morning air and beautiful sunshine. We then journeyed to Tumbarumba, where Paul refueled, and then onto Batlow and eventually Tumut. Hardly any other bikes out and about, just a couple of rabbits and echidna, and lots of apples etc on the trees.

 

Eventually finding parking spaces for the bikes in Tumut we enjoyed a cuppa at the Heritage Café. Conversation centered on the Dakar Rally and the Long Way Down that are currently showing on TV, but also side tracked to Brett &Lou and the ‘teabag incident’.

 

Leaving Tumut we travelled back to Batlow along the Old Tumbarumba Rd. At Batlow, Paul and Brett & Lou refueled. From Batlow we travelled to Rosewood and detoured out to Glenroy before joining the main road again at Mannus.

 

We returned home along Jingellic Road, Bret & Lou turned off at Annandale Rd, and arrived back in Holbrook around 1pm having covered over 330 kms. The temperature in the hills was very pleasant, but significantly warmer on the flats.




McKillop's Bridge Road Ride Details.

Looking for something fun to do on the Australia Day long weekend? Bill and Barb's Excellent Adventures have confirmed details for the McKillops Bridge ride:

"Leave Saturday morning, go to Gelantipy via Omeo and Buchan, overnight at Gelantipy. Sunday do 4WD tour,most of day, then go down to Orbost or Cann River for the night. Monday head home via Cann Valley Hwy to Bombala and Cooma then home.

Road Rides, 2009

Who's up for a challenge in 2009? Bill & Barb (now known as Bill & Barb's Excellent Adventures) are looking for expressions of interest in the following ride:

"Two day ride in the new year to McKillops Bridge and Little River Gorge more info here http://www.parkweb.vic.gov.au/1park_display.cfm?park=186   Will ride up on the Saturday via Omeo stop at Buchan or Gelantipy overnight which is 50 km up the Buchan Jindabyne rd. Check out the bridge on the way home on Sunday.

 

http://www.egd.com.au/outandabout/parksandreserves/nationalparks/maps/Snowy%20River%20National%20Park%20Map/snowy_river_national_park.htm


There is about 130 km of sand road on this ride, about 50km down to the bridge and back up to the main rd and 80km on the Jindabyne rd back to NSW. I have ridden some this rd and it was quite good at the time.

 

If you where not keen on the extra sand rd you could go back via Omeo or via Bombala and Cooma, less sand but longer.

 

Bridge is around 280 mts long.

 

Any starters?"

 

Bill has also found an alternative for those of us that are unable to tackle that much dirt / sand on our roadbikes:

 

"Another option you can add for the  McKillop's Bridge trip is to go the bridge by 4wd from the place we can stay at Gelantipy see here  http://www.karoondapark.com/sre/index.html  this may turn it into a 3 day trip. Karoonda Park is the place we would stay."

As usual, contact Bill via Holbrook Mowers and Chainsaws for more information.