Sunday, March 15, 2020

New Growth

As you would have seen from my previous posts on the bushfire crisis we finally had some unprecedented rainfalls one weekend in March that practically put out most of these fires with around 400mm falling over that weekend which had extinguished 7 of the largest fires. Four months on from the start of the bushfires that ravished our country I decided I'd head on out for a ride and see how the regrowth was going.

It also gave me a good excuse to give the old R1 a damn good thrashing. I retraced my route from the previous trip and headed up the Putty Road on friday morning as I had an RDO. I decided I'd stop at the cafe for lunch then head back down and go across the Bell's line of road.

On the ride up I noticed the throttle was hesitant at 2-3k rpm, not as bad after changing the fuel filter but must be some junk in the carbies. Hopefully a clean and balance will sort that out. I'll take it to the dealer as you need specialised tools for this. First stop was at Colo heights to grab a couple of comparison pics.

It's amazing how much the tree's have started to regrow already. All along the side of the road there are signs of regrowth with thousands of little fern growing everywhere. Looking at the tree's they looked a little comical, it looked like they were growing fur.

Next stop along the way was the Mellong Valley. This was particularly harshly hit by the fires and again such amazing life growing again. It was Fun riding along, I'd been thinking how badly out of practise I was and how ride unfit I was. For the first time ever I had the thought that riding motorcycles is a dangerous thing to do. WTF. I wasn't even doing anything dangerous or speediung, yes hard to believe but true. Man I need to get out more.

I rode to the other end of the straight you see above and took some shots back the other way. Why? only for comparison purposes with the photos I took last time back in mid December. The differences are remarkable.

Whilst standing on the roadside taking pics I looked down and saw a car battery discarded. It was melted in the fire. I don't think it's going to regrow however.

I was starting to get hungry now it was after 12pm so I put the camera away and made my way to the Grey Gums International Cafe for some lunch. Lunch more resembled breakfast with a bacon and egg roll and cappuccino to wash it down with. Sitting here in the middle of nowhere it was pure serenity, such a perfect day, weather was fantastic, road was good. What else is there?

It was nearly 1pm by the time I thought I needed to make a move if I was to ride across the Bells Line of Road and photograph that as well. There were no more stops until I got out past Mt Tomah and near Mt Bell.

The regrowth in the Blue Mountains is happening but not as quickly as on the Putty Road. That's probably because there was a couple of weeks between the fire sweeping through this area.

By the time I'd pulled up here to take these photos my butt was getting sore. Yep lack of ride fitness. It's not just the 15 R1, this bike is hurting me now as well. Seems like age is creeping up on me. Time to start looking at a more comfortable bike I think. The 5 year plan is near its end as I've said earlier in the blog.

The photo below shows the amazing contrasting landscape. Beautiful green countryside on top with fire ravished landscape below.

From here I rode out past Mt Banks and the canyons of the Blue Mountains. They are far away from the road but the 70-200mm has just enough reach to get some nice shots. Some areas are affected by the fire where other areas are not.

The ride back into Sydney along the Great Western Highway was pretty uneventful. Getting down onto the M4 and into peak hour traffic was a bit of a chore there was a 5 car pile up that slowed my travel and I was getting tired by the time I got home. Some good photos and good to see mother nature taking care of itself, as it usually does. Another good day out but some thoughts to ponder on here.