Originally this ride was planned as a visit to an old friend near Ballarat, however, we postponed that when one of the ‘Proctastinators’ couldn’t make it. The weather has been unusually warm for Autumn (ie. that’s March Downunder), but unfortunately a cool change with some rain was forecast for around lunch time on Saturday. We decided to head inland for the best chance of avoiding rain, however, the price paid for that route was hardly any twisty roads.
Our route for the day
Marty & I rode from Geelong to Colac and met Steve at his place. The three of us then headed inland towards Ballarat. The first section was an unremarkable, featureless ride (ie. boring!) with quite a lot of side-on wind buffeting.
We skirted around Ballarat and stopped at the tiny township of Smythesdale for lunch.
Lunch stop at Smythesdale. Marty with his ZX9R
A woman and her daughter pulled up in their car, had a good look at Steve’s Norton and then approached Steve as we walked back to the bikes. She proceeded to relate a sad story of how her husband had been restoring a Commando, but literally dropped dead unexpectedly as he was working on it. What can one say when confronted out of the blue with such a thing?
From Smythesdale we traveled via Snake Valley to the lovely little town of Beaufort. I took some shots of Steve’s bike in front of the picturesque old fire station, we fueled up and then pretty much headed off. We really should have spent a little more time there as it’s a pretty little town.
Steve in front of the fire station.
From here we debated whether to head for Avoca and make a long day of it, but eventually decided to head back towards Colac via Skipton and Cressy. The Commando used a bit more fuel than planned in the strong winds, which led to Steve running out of gas about 3kms from his home. A problem we easily resolved via a pillion ride home for Steve on the back of the ZX14.
Marty & I back at Steve’s.
I will have had my ZX14 for a year on 2nd April and I’ve managed to do a bit over 10,000 kms in that time – which is about average for me in a year – as well as doing 3,500kms on a rental bike in New Zealand. So a total of around 13,600kms of trouble free riding pleasure for the last 12 months. I feel well pleased with that.