Morning run along the Great Ocean Road

The incredible run of hot Autumn weather has continued this week with temps around 32-35C and overnight lows around 20C all last week and will continue into next week. Today’s forecast was for 36C (around 97F) and humid. I had some new Michelin Pilot Road 2’s fitted yesterday and I was keen to take the ZX14 for a run to scrub them in. Why fit PR2’s when the PR3’s are better all round? Because I already had them, having purchased two sets of PR2’s from the USA last year when our currency was 10% higher than the US$.

I decided to get up early and do a quick run along the GOR to Lorne and back before it got too hot. Early starts are a bit tricky this time of year as the sunrise is around 6.45am and it’s risky to head off too early as there are quite a few spots where there are kangaroos between home and the start of the GOR at Angelsea. I had the bike fueled up and tyre pressures checked last night so I was away at 7.30am with enough light not to worry about the risk of roadside ‘roos.  I had such a good run along the first part of the GOR and it was only around 8.30 am as I rolled into Lorne that I decided to keep going along the GOR to Apollo Bay. I hardly took any pics as I was enjoying riding the twisties on new tyres so much. I only had to overtake a couple of car along the entire run towards Apollo Bay and really got into the groove of riding the hairpins. The only issue was occasional bunches of MAMILS (middle aged men in lycra) heading towards me whose presence led to cars traveling towards me occupying my isde of the road to get past the MAMILS. I think that bunches of bicycles on that stretch of the GOR is downright insane given the speed differential between bicycles and cars AND that the arrogant buggers insist on occupying the whole lane and will not yield at all. (Rant over!).

Here’s the route map

A quick stop in Lorne in the morning light.

Surfers at Lorne

I didn’t quite go to Apollo Bay and turned off at Skene’s Creek and climbed inland through the Otway Ranges. After a milkshake stop at the Forrest brewery I was on my way as the temp was really climbing. I arrived home mid morning having done 220 kms with 2/3rds of it being on the most twisting roads we have in this part of the state. It was already 30C (86F) and climbing at 11.00am. I had a fabulous morning run, all the more enjoyable for being on new rubber (and dodging the heat). The ZX14 felt substantially better than it did last weekend on old tyres on some of the same roads. FWIW, the old PR2’s did just about 9,000kms and probably had another 1,000 in them at a pinch, but I was happy to swap them over now and enjoy my riding more.