More Otways goodness

The middle of a public holiday long weekend is not always a great time to ride motorcycles, right? Well it can be OK if you are thoughtful about the route. Rather than the frustration of following the herd of tourists & day trippers traveling along the Great Ocean Road from Melbourne, we headed inland to the get to the Otways, then intercepted the GOR at Lavers Hill and then rode the rain forest section to Apollo Bay, against the flow of tourist traffic heading for the 12 Apostles. From Apollo Bay we tracked inland to Forrest, then took the back roads back to Geelong. It was perfect weather, with blue sky and not a puff of wind. The temps ranged around the 24C mark for most of the trip, but got up around 32C for the last 50kms.

Helmet hair, but hey, it’s from a new helmet!

Mrs T’s brand, spankin’ new Shoei TZX in anthracite color

Mrs T enjoying the day out

We made salad rolls for our lunch, thus avoiding the hassle (and expense) of buying food and enabling a lunch stop in a beautiful, deserted Otway’s picnic area.

I was surprised how neglected this spot was, and what used to be a well defined walking track was now all but overgrown.

I don’t have any pics other than this spot as we were enjoying the riding too much to stop! All up, the ride was around 300 kms.

 

 

 

 

 

Procrastinators’ New Year ride 2014

The 2014 New Year’s Day AGM of the West Coast Procrastinators was thwarted by an unfavorable weather forecast, which actually eventuated in a day of wind and rain of ‘biblical proportions’ as Marty described it. In a rare display of decisiveness, the ride, lunch & AGM were re-scheduled to 2nd January, 2014. Mind you, I packed my wet weather gear as I wasn’t 100% convinced that it would remain dry for the whole ride.

Marty and I met on the outskirts of Geelong then headed via the Cape Otway Road to Steve’s property just outside Colac.

When we arrived at Steve’s the team were found to be in good form, with Andy deriding the exhausts on my ZX14 before I even had a chance to get my helmet off. It seems that size does matter in this case! There were two very different generations of motorcycles present – the old 1970’s Brit bikes and the latest from Japan.

Two ZX14R’s and a Commando

Steve’s Norton Commando

Marty’s ZX14R

After some more good natured banter and New Year handshakes we headed off for a tour of the salt lakes near Warrion, then on to our destination at the Timboon rail shed distillery for lunch. Fortunately we had booked a table as the joint was packed and even getting a parking spot was problematic.

Tarsnakes’ ZX14R

The ambiance of the restaurant was only sullied by the presence of a former politician who had been at the heart of the “Children Overboard” affair (suggested by some as one of Australia’s great political lies) and who had condoned unprecedented strikebreaking measures during the Waterfront dispute. (Imagine security guards in balaclavas with German shepherd dogs used for the first, and only, time in Australia’s history).

Anyway, after a tasty lunch and an uneventful and mercifully brief AGM, we hit the road and headed for the 12 Apostles via the Great Ocean Road and then tracked inland to Beech Forest for a pit stop and photos.

Three of four at Beech Forest

And with no procrastination at all, rode Turton’s Track to Forrest. Turton’s was in excellent condition with none of the usual slippery wet bark covering the asphalt.

Here’s a file shot of Turton’s Track

Our last stop for the ride was the Forrest Brewery. Time for a drink, swatting the abundant flies, a bit of a debrief, some more New Year handshakes and we were on our way again – Marty and I back to Geelong and Steve and Andy back to Colac.

 

A really enjoyable day of riding and banter with mates – a great way to start the new year. All up, I’d done 390 very enjoyable kms for the ride – and it didn’t rain once!

Spyders everywhere

Mrs T and I took a short run from Geelong down to the West Barwon dam at Forrest to clock up just a few more kilometers so that the new ZX14 will be ready for its first 1,000km service next week. As we started our picnic lunch a large group of Spyders rolled in. Apparently they were part of an event called Spyder Royale, with owners from many Australian states present. You can double click on any image in the slideshow below to see the high res pics.

It was a lovely sunny Spring day to be out riding, although there were some very strong wind gusts at times.

Mrs T shot a little footage of me with the point & shoot camera – it’s a bit mediocre I’m afraid!