Autumn in the Otways

Last week we planned to ride the Otways on Easter Sunday with our partners aboard, however, the weather was cold and windy. The newspapers all reported that Easter had marked the last of the good weather, even though it’s early autumn (fall). Well the weather forecasters got it all wrong yet again and we’ve just had a sensational weekend with blue skies and the temps in the mid to high 20 Celsius range.

We met Marty & Pauline on the outskirts of Geelong and headed towards Colac via Dean’s Marsh. It was a glorious, one T-shirt under the leathers, kind of morning. Our first stop was at Maria & Paul’s store in Gellibrand. It’s our usual first coffee stop. It was great to be greeted via the the kitchen window as we pulled up with “Hello Tarsnakes – I’ve been looking at your blog lately” from Maria.

On the counter were ‘Choo Choo Bars’ which excited the girls enormously – not having seen them since their childhood days!

I’ve been meaning to take a shot of their fabulous antique cash register for some time. Isn’t it a ripper?

It was a bit early for lunch, so we headed on just a little further to Lavers Hill. The road twists its way uphill through the bush and it is a great strip of scenic and fun road to ride. Both Marty and I are fortunate in that we both have excellent passengers who enjoyed the run up through the winding road as much as we did.

Lunch stop at Lavers Hill. The colors of the vine covering the outdoor deck are lovely. Pauline took a few shots and then the waitress offered to take a pic of all of us (though it’s not so good due to shooting into the sun).

From Lavers Hill we rode the Great Ocean Road to Apollo Bay in perfect conditions.

Blue sky as far as the eye can see.

 

Other than fuel, we didn’t stop in Apollo Bay. We were in for a shock, I’m not sure if you can read that gas price – but it is just on $1.88 per LITRE for premium!!

We had a great run up through the hills to Forrest, where we stopped at the Brewery for a break and a chat before the final  run back to Geelong. All up we did 312 Kms through some great countryside in excellent – and unexpected – sunshine.

Great company, great roads and great weather – a motorcyclist can’t ask for any more than that!

 

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

It has been a brilliant weekend of Spring sunshine, so Marty and I took a quick sprint though the Otway Ranges on our typical day trip route.

Here’s a few pics taken at a roadside stop near Laver’s Hill.

Jules with the Kawasaki ZX14

Marty conjuring spells for sticky tires

Marty with his Kawasaki ZX9R

All up 317 kms of riding pleasure, including the inland section of the Great Ocean Road. The ZX14 is now due for its 2nd service (6K kms service), which I will be getting done this week. So far I cannot fault this motorcycle, it is everything that I hoped it would be & suits my purposes very well.