The previous few days had been very midwinter in character, with hail, rain and gales on Sunday, so when I peered out the window this Tuesday morning I was pleased to see mostly dryness. So it was on with the layers of kit, push the BM out on to the street and try not to wake up the neighbours. Riding north along the Greensborough bypass I noticed a two kilometre queue of traffic heading south and aiming to join the eastern end of the Western Ring Road. It must be a difficult facing that every morning.
There were six of us at the start at Diamond Creek Road, Greensborough, for this Northern Region ride, and Reg Hammond walked in for a brief chat – he is nursing a sore shoulder at present otherwise he would have been riding with us. We were soon following Keith under a gradually lightening sky through Hurstbridge, Panton Hill and Kangaroo Ground. The roads were damp and a little greasy in places so we rode cautiously down the hill to Yarra Glen for our morning break at the Yarra Flats Cafe where Ian soon joined us. We sat outside around one table and the pies were acclaimed as being very good, and I can say the same for the Sour Cherry Danish. Conversation was mainly about large capacity Japanese bikes of the 80s and 90s and the unnerving handling characteristics some examples had.
From Yarra Glen we rode towards Yea and enjoyed the Murrundindi loop. In this area the creeks appeared to be full and flowing and the surrounding hillsides and paddocks a healthy green. There were occasional light showers but generally the weather was holding good for us. Lunch was at one of Yea’s bakeries. Conversation ranged over genealogy and goldmining history. We had also noticed that some cafes and bakeries now charge an extra 30c if you say you want sauce with your pie/pasty.
After lunch we rode south via Strath Creek and Broadford, some separating to take their own routes home while I followed Wally, Keith and Michael back to Wally’s place for a welcome cuppa and chat before riding home myself.
Thanks to Keith and Wally for this their first ride as Northern ride coordinators. The riding and the company were most enjoyable.
Keith McCracken, Honda 2002 (Lead rider)
Wally Walsh, Triumph 1997 (TEC)
Richard Haughton, Kawasaki W800 2012
Michael Thompson, Triumph 2013
Damien Lewer, Suzuki 1100 1981
John Best, BMW R80 1986
Ian Snadden, BMW R1100GS 1995.