Well it’s not a mid-week ride, and it is the first Tuesday ride. In fact, I found it quite confusing as I kept thinking it was Sunday! (Just me was it?)
While some people had overnight rain, and there were patches of fog around, the morning was dry and clear around Officer.
A dozen riders gathered at the outbound Servo in Officer (on the M1, and not in the town) and after we enjoyed a hot drink to counter the very cold morning, leader Ed Sleightholm gathered the team for the briefing. TEC was Ian Snadden on his easy-to recognise Red Suzuki Outfit, with twin head lights.
The usual corner marking and buddy system was the go.
Ed’s map showed a simple plan: we follow the orange road to Yarragon, and morning tea. We follow the dark blue road then the light blue road to lunch and fuel at Trafalgar. It is then just a matter of the pink road back to Officer. Simple!
We set off at 9.10am and took an amazing route of good quality back-roads, straights, curves, and hills with great views, (0.5 second peeps only). So many wonderful views and so little time to safely appreciate them while riding.
I think Reg saw a fox, and I was amazed to see a lyrebird sprinting along in the grass beside me for a few seconds. (I won) Many cows were seen and smelt, and the roads were mainly dry and in very good condition. While still cold, the sun was appearing regularly.
The ride included Bayles, Athlone, Poowong, Teetoola road, Timms road, Warragul/Druin road, and eventually into the car park behind the Bakery.
Over morning tea just about everything except Barnaby was discussed: We do have our standards.
From Yarragon we followed Ed through Thorpdale, Childers, Narracan, Coalville, and Hermes Oak. We almost completed a large anti clockwise loop, winding back to Trafalgar for lunch.
This section included more hills and more spectacular views than the first section. Ed knows how to lead up to a climax! The roads varied a lot and even included a handful of corners with loose gravel to increase the heart-rate. As we rode further east we saw sheep as well as cattle and again we were treated to new smells. I believe a Forensic Poolologist can identify cattle herds entirely from their smell.
Everyone survived and loved this section, and it finished when we stopped at a tall timber lookout which gave a great view of the area to our North, particularly the town of Trafalgar. See photo.
By this time we had plenty of sun and the whole area was looking great with lots of green paddocks and trees in all directions. No drought evident here. After a ten minute break, a further five minutes ride had us in Trafalgar for lunch, in the service road Bakery.
Again, many weighty matters of global concern were discussed in a friendly atmosphere as we enjoyed food, drink, and a chance to warm up and relax. What a nice bunch we really are.
After lunch we only had to take the pink road to home.
We started by visiting the servo for some of us to top up fuel, then headed north across the highway, for another off-highway excursion ending with us taking the Princes Highway back to Officer.
Ed pulled us up a few Kms short of Officer to say farewells then we made our own way home.
Ed’s estimate was right: I made it exactly 270km, and a total for me of 330km for the trip from home and back. A lot more for some!
The ride, the weather, and the company would be hard to better.
No incidents, no breakdowns, no rain, no wind.
Thanks Ed and Ian for running it, and thanks to all for being there.
|Ed Sleightholm||Triumph Street Twin 2018|
|Bill Washington||BMW K75S 1986|
|Reg Hammond||Honda Integra 2005|
|John Best||Suzuki Bandit 2008|
|Ian Snadden (TEC)||Suzuki outfit 1980|
|Graham Boulter||BMW R1200GS 2010|
|Brian Boulton||Kawasaki ZRX1200 2002|
|Paul Clayton||Honda VFR 800 2014|
|Colin Sullivan||BMW R1200R 2009|
|Richard Fanning||BMW R100RS 1992|
|Norm Wills||Moto Guzzi 1981|
|Paul Woods||Suzuki V Strom 2011|
|Greg Costello||Yamaha TX 750 1973|