Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Wheelie Wednesday

Yep its that time, wheelie wednesday. Pic taken at Sydney Motosport Park (SMSP) on the weekend. I went out and did a little shooting on the Queens Birthday because.......thats what she'd do.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Mudgee Muster

The Friday pre ride weather reports were in, the weekend was going to be warm and sunny which is just perfect for late Autumn. That was gladly welcomed as the last Mudgee muster it was below 10°C in the mountains and was bitterly cold. Our meeting point was at Richmond for the Sydney crew, but later we would be meeting the Nowra crew out at Oberon.

Heading up the Bells line early around 9:00am there was an unexpected amount of traffic and the rozzers were out handing out performance awards this early in the morning but temps were up around 16-17°C just perfect really.

First pee break around Bell in the Blue mountains and a quick photo op before we crossed over to Mt Victoria and down the pass and onto the Jenolan caves road.

We then turned onto Duckmaloi road towards Oberon and it was a nice smooth run through the hills, where we stopped for a mid morning snack at the wild bean cafe. A toasted ham/cheese/tomato sammich washed down with a nice warm coffee hit the spot.

It was in Oberon we also picked up Dave's crew from Nowra and Geoff and Scotty who had driven up.

Why was Geoff driving you may ask. Well he is is still recovering from his off road bike crash back on new years eve and still cant been his leg to get back on his bike. Yes it was a pretty nasty one. At our fuel stop in Bathurst Geoff tried out Bruce's Triumph.

It took a bit of effort getting on and off but you couldn't wipe the smile off his face being on a bike again. Maybe you'll have to sell the MT to me and you can get yourself a Harley mate.

It was decided here to do a lap of Mt Panorama. Why not we only have about a 2.5 hr ride to our destination. We stopped at the top to take in the views.

One lap of the mount was enough before heading out the Turondale road to Hillend. This is a great little ride as it is not very highly trafficked, its a bit narrow and its hilly and twisty. The ride into hillend is also a great bike road and following Craig on his Vstrom into the blinding sun he was setting a cracking pace.

The hillend pub had a fair few people for a Saturday afternoon and we had one quick beer whilst chatting out the front. The tree lined entry into tower was aglow with autumn colours. 

Hillend was a historic gold mining town back in the late 1800's and had a population then of over 8000 with 28 pubs but since then its become a bit of a ghost town with a current population of 80 with one pub.

From here we followed the Hillend Road all the way to Mudgee. This is another good fun motorcycle road, again similar to the turondale road being narrow and winding. After about an hour we arrived at our accommodation for the night, the Oriental Hotel. We had booked out all the rooms upstairs and the house next door. At diner our table was reserved and it looks like they heard a famous motorcycle racer was in town. The food here was great and the accommodation was good and reasonably priced at $50 per head.

We finished up just before midnight but some of the other boys decided to go out for a few more. We were waken at 2.40am by 2 of the boys returning trying to get in when they were staying in the pub. Slomax was not impressed. They will have sore heads when they wake up.

Sunday morning greeted us with rain. WTF, the forecast was for clear weather and so I didn't pack any wet weather gear. Bruce asked how long I'd been riding. 25 years and I haven't learnt a thing haha. But it was light rain and it didn't last long as a cold front had come through.

We made our way down to the Mudgee Brewery for breakfast. Poached eggs on toast with bacon hit the spot nicely whilst we waited for the rain to move on. Topped off by a wake the hell up coffee.

When we finished and came out there was a shroud of mist streaming from my ventura bag as the sun heated it.

The 2 drunken louts from last night failed to appear for breakfast and we ended up leaving them as they were making their way back to Newcastle as the rest had to get to Sydney/Nowra and would run out of daylight waiting around.

So we headed off towards Rylestone on wet roads but thankfully there was no more rain today. By the time we got onto the Bylong Valley way the rain had all dried up making for a more enjoyable ride.
We stopped in Bylong for Stu and Graham to catch up. There were quite a few bikes out today. Some of the surface along the Bylong road was in very poor shape, but there were also some new sections that were pretty good.

Our next stop was in Denman for fuel before we stopped in at Broke for a spot of lunch. It was here we parted ways with Dougie & Craig heading down to Wollombi whilst the rest of us made our way via the Putty Road. Stu said that we should take it easy on the Putty today. Here's how it went.

We stopped at the Grey Gums Cafe but only so that we can all regroup and make sure everyone made it through the 10 mile twisties ok before we continued on. It was a good day on the putty today, nice and warm and no rozzers.

As I sit here and type this on Monday morning(the man flu caught up with me) the cold front that has swept through eastern NSW over night has brought snow to the Blue Mountains, Bathurst and Oberon with temperatures into the negatives with wind chill. Looks like we lucked out with the weather to our good fortune as none of us would have been prepared for negative temps. Another great weekend ride away, thanks Stu for organizing everything. 

Cheers Lads 
Looking forward to the next one

Monday, April 1, 2019

SMSP Gallery 30-3-2019

A new bit of kit turned up this week for my camera so I headed out to SMSP so I could try it out. Here is a gallery of images that I took on saturday afternoon. More on the new kit later.

Monday, March 25, 2019

Riding the QLD Hinterland Part 4

Today was our last day of riding as I had to fly home today. But that didn't mean the fun was over far from it. We packed our gear ready to go then headed out for breakfast then fueled up before leaving town. The route plan was a fairly short one today, but involved a lot of twisties on the way back to Flyboys place.

First up was the ride out of Kyogle up to Uki on the Kyogle Rd - Uki Rd. The road just out of town rises up and over 2 mountain passes and is an awesome ride. Some bits can be a bit rough but it was a lot of fun.

Kyogle Road
We stopped at a look out over the valley below, the mountain that was out in front of us was covered in cloud. The road here had recently had new chip seal put down and still had a bit of gravel on it, just enough to give you that uneasy feeling all though there wasn't any slips or slides.

The ride into Uki was quite enjoyable, lots of hills, rain forest, and the Tweed rivers flows along next to the road all the while the road sweeps along through valleys and over hills. The only downer was that the council was out doing maintenance on the road in a few spots leaving gravel on a few corners.

 Turning left before Murwillumbah we headed down the the Tyalgum road another nice flowing road through beautiful green countryside.

The road took us up the Numinbah Valley with a steep ascent we went up the range to the NSW-QLD border crossing where stopped for some pictures.

There were 4 bikes parked in the lookout bay so we pulled in. We spoke to one of the guys that were out on a day loop ride from Tweed heads. We took a few obligatory photos before getting moving again.

Flyboy then lead us down towards the Hinze dam before turning off and up and over Pine Creek road to meet up with the Springbrook Rd. Turning down the Springbrook road the surface here was hot mixed race track smooth surface. It was a little damp due to passing showers but it was a fun bit of road. Near the bottom we turned around and came back up the pass and up and over to the Hinze dam and back up the road to Advancetown.

Ahead we turned up the Beechmont road stopping at the beginning of the road and looking back over the Gold Coast. It must have only been 3-4 km in a straight line, you could see all the high rise buildings in the distance. It was a weird feeling standing in the bush with no one around but being able to see one of Australia's big cities in the distance.

The next 4-5 kms along here reminded me of the Oxley highway, it was a good bit of road 35-45 km corners but it was over too soon(5k ish) and it then came out into a dense group of houses along the roadside.

Soon we came along to a cafe which overlooked a paragliders take off point, which went out over this huge valley. You could see all the way down to Mt Warning in NSW. A beautiful spot to stop. There we a few bikes stopped here. I bet this is a popular spot during the weekend.

We ordered a iced coffee and shared a bowl of wedges here whilst we watched the paragliders flying over the valley and bikes passing by. We spoke a couple of local bike riders. One had an immaculate 2010 R1 in the matt black and Gold. 

We continued around through beechmont and towards Canungra where the military base is. We stopped in along the road next to an entry point to the training area. With the bikes off we could here explosions in the forest behind us. They were blowing something up today.

We turned up the Tambourine Mountain Road and went up through some of the Gold Coast Hinterlands most popular tourist spots. We weren't interested in stopping to look at any of this and only stopped one more time at one of the look outs to the west. After this went back down the mountain to Tambourine and back up into Brisbane.

So after 4 days of blood, sweat and beers we managed to rack up 1635 kms over some of southern Queensland's best and twistiest bike roads. No bikes were harmed during the making of this blog post and no licenses were tarnished, but we sure did manage to have a great time.

What are my thoughts on the roads up this way? Well.......To be brutally honest I didn't rate the roads as being some of the best I've ever ridden. I don't mean this to sound negative because we had a ball. Sure there were little pockets of brilliance here and there but as a whole the roads just don't compare to the likes of the roads in the NSW Snowy mountains or Victorian High country, I guess I've been spoiled by the likes of the Omeo Hwy, Jamieson Rd, Bonang and Snowy Mountains Hwy.

There's no doubt that the scenery here is quite spectacular including the whole Scenic Rim area which I quite enjoyed. The twisty bits are never long enough with only a few km's of bends before it turns back into sweeping corners and the road surfaces on a lot of these roads leaves much to be desired. Your never far from civilization which means there are always cars blocking your flow along the road and messing up your rhythm. Again some pockets of good hot mixed sections but in between it was a mix of the good, the bad and the downright ugly and some are too narrow to be of any real fun (Tooloom rd). The best thing about these roads is there are not many straight sections and relative short distances to the next road, unlike NSW which can have big distances to the next bike road. Would I come back and ride them, sure why not but not anytime soon there are much better roads to be ridden.

Special thanks to my older Bro for letting trusting me with his R1 for 4 days of riding through unknown roads. It's been a long time since we had ridden together and it was a great time for memories of past rides. It was a blast bro and maybe we can do it down in the Vic high country one day. Thank you very much for making this happen.