You look tired …

…. is what Maria from the Gellibrand store said to me at my first stop today. She was right ….. I just wasn’t really sharp enough today for a long ride. So I re-routed, took 100 kms off the intended journey distance, took my time, and dropped in to see Steve (think black Commando) for a couple of hours. All of which led to an enjoyable day out!

A couple of shots from Beech Forest in the Otway ranges (Vic).

So just 240 kms all up, but that’s all that was within my capability today.

Inland run to Ararat

Awoke to a magnificent Spring day, just right for riding. All the pics below feature lots of blue sky. This was long overdue after a very wet week, Melbourne having had some fierce storms on Thursday..

Our route

larger version HERE

Lunch stop. I should have photographed our visors. The air was thick with insects, so much so that a stop was needed each hour just to clean our visors enough to be able to see.Snake Valley 1914-1918 war memorial. Every other small town memorial I’ve seen has a statue of a soldier – this one is different.

Nice old place opposite the memorial.

Wind farm turbines between Beaufort and Ararat

Marty waiting patiently while I took some shots

Challicum HillsI think I’ve mentioned before that I love riding this motorcycle!

It was uncharacteristic for us to head inland on a day like this, but I’m glad that we did. I wore my textile gear just to see how breathable it was on a warm day as I plan to take textile rather than leather gear to NZ in February. The initial impression was that it breathes OK, I certainly didn’t feel like I was in a plastic bag as I’ve done in the past with non Gor-Tex lined stuff.

The whole trip was 417 kms. A great day out.

 

Spring in the Otways – lots of bugs & bad asphalt

After a week of miserable weather we finally got a sensational Spring day – around 30C (86F) and blue skies. We took our typical Otways run and it was a treat to be riding in such warm conditions.

Larger route map HERE

The riding was so good that I hardly took any pics. The countryside is just lush, green and alive with bugs and birds. It’s actually hard to imagine that prior to last year we had a decade of drought. However, I really have to comment on the appalling state of the many of the roads and more particularly the road repairs – unbelievably amateurish looking patches with fine screenings about the edges! This is a major tourist route to the 12 Apostles and the Otways National Park in southern Australia and the road conditions are an embarrassment.

I took just two pics today. One was of the ZX14 before I left to meet up with Marty (look at those roses).

The other was of a great looking Harley at the gas station in Apollo Bay, ridden by a nice young woman from Echuca (Vic) on her first run on the Great Ocean Road. She said her buddy also had a white HD as well.

Ride safe ladies and enjoy your weekend.

We stopped for a break at the microbrewery at Forrest and bumped into an old work colleague whom we hadn’t seen for many years, which just added to a grand day’s riding. Yes Di, we did see you sampling those beers!

Unexpected afternoon ride

I looked at the overcast sky all morning procrastinating whether or not to fire up the bike and go for a ride. Lunch time came and went and the weather seemed to pick up a little. It’s daylight saving time now so I thought it wouldn’t matter if I left late, so by around 2.00pm I bit the bullet and headed off for a short run to Deans Marsh. I decided to head up through the bush to Lorne, but only traveled a couple of k’s when the heavens opened up. I wasn’t in the mood for getting wet so turned around and headed west to Otway Estate winery & brewery.

I believe that Oktoberfest is held in September in Munich because the weather’s better. They’re sticklers for (German) tradition in the Aussie bush though!

There was nothing much happening here and it looked remarkably sunny to the south so I decided to head on towards Beech Forest. I pulled in and took a couple of shots of the ZX14 at the tourist info place.

This is was timber country from the late 1800’s until quite recently.

This old photo caught my eye – why was she riding a bullock I wonder?

I headed down Turton’s Track to link up with the Apollo Bay road and then headed through the bush to Forrest, then back home to Geelong via the back roads. All up it was a great ride of around 250 kms, all the better for being so unexpected today. The afternoon in the bush really lit the fuse on my hay fever though, I’m off for some antihistamines right now – oh, and it’s raining outside!