Monday, October 26, 2020

Another Mudgee Muster

This ride was 3 weeks ago now and was the precursor ride to our upcoming Snowy Mountains ride in a few weeks time. What's been the hold up? Well I can't really say I've been busy doing anything much, But I watched an episode of Cobra Kai on Netflix one night and got instantly hooked and had to watch the whole two seasons instead of writing up this blog post.

All the regular crew had been lined up for this ride with a couple of new faces being thrown in at the last minute. I picked up Stu at his house on the way to the meet point at McGraths Hill maccas. Stu stopped for fuel on the way and asked if I was fueling up. Nope I got fuel I said. Most of the guys were waiting for us at maccas so I ordered a coffee for Stu and myself whilst we caught up with everyone.

Heading out of Sydney via Freemans reach we turned onto the Bells Line of Road. Just as we passed the petrol station I looked down at my trip meter. It said 210kms. That's odd, did I forget to reset it last time I got fuel? When did I get fuel last? I distinctly remember getting fuel on a sunday last week or was that the week before. Ah shit, I'd better pull over and take a look before we get into the middle of nowhere, then I'll be really stuffed. Looking in the tank I couldn't see anything. Haha I am that idiot who turns up for a ride with no fuel. Don't be like Steve. I think this might be the early onset of Alzheimer's disease. Whipping a u-turn into the petrol station I fueled up in record time, didn't even take my helmet off and was back under way in about 2 minutes. Ah well I'll catch up. Yeah I'm not going to hear the end of this for a while....I can hear Geoff laughing at me now.

Five minutes later about 4 bikes were pulled over, Geoff needed to water the bush scrub, what already? Hahaha 1 All. A quick stop in Bell to catch up and off we headed across the Darling Cause Way to Oberon. A pesky little magpie dive bombed Craig pecking his helmet as we took off then started eyeing me off until I waved my arm at it.

Stopping in Oberon for morning tea at the bakery and we were also waiting to pick up Dave who was coming up from Goulburn, he was only a few minutes behind. Good timing. 

Heading out of Oberon Doug took a left and I went straight, thinking he's going the wrong way, but when everyone else followed I thought I'd better get myself following too as I don't know where they are actually going. Doug took us some back ways where he proceeded to take a a wrong turn or two and we ended up on the dirt. He stopped and I had a look on the map. Its about 12km or so of dirt to Rockley or go a hell of a long way back. So off we went on the dirt, however a few turned around chickens. Geoffs new Africa twin was nicely suited for this road and he tore off into the distance.

We arrived in Bathurst and promptly topped up the tanks again and set of for Sofala. It was fantastic weather for riding today 22°C and blue skies. Perfect. I was following behind a couple of the others and  I thought to myself we are all riding well and everyone is being quite sensible, that is until I took a peek at the speedo and was a little shocked at how much we'd actually crept over the limit. Oops. Ah well no photos so it never happen right?

It was quite interesting to follow Rolfe on his hired Bagger up the twisties into Sofala. I thought he was going to run off the road several times, the sparks were flying as he fought that hippo bike around the corners and I think those side boards wore out a couple kilos of iron along the way.

We stopped at Sofala so the group could gather back together as we then headed out towards Hillend, one of New South Wales oldest gold mining towns. The gold rush hit hillend in 1850s and by the 1870's the town had 8000 population with 28 pubs. Now however the population is 80 with only 1 pub but is serves good cold beers so its not all bad. An interesting fact in 1860 they proclaimed the town as Forbes, which is actually a town about 2.5hrs further west, then in 1862 renamed it to Hillend.

Sitting out the front of that old pub with an ice cold beer and shooting the breeze was a great way to unwind from the stresses of covid 2020. Talking bikes and beers is always good especially with like minded friends.

Alas we moved on after one beer as the pub in Mudgee was calling. As we arrived the group was split up so I thought I'd fuel up ready for the next morning. Last thing I want to be fart assing around hung over trying to fuel up. So Doug pre booked the brewery for breakfast the next morning. They do a great bacon and eggs and it was much needed.

We took the road out to Rylstone this morning and then turned north along the Bylong Valley Way. It was a fantastic day to be riding out here, much like yesterday's weather and there were riders out everywhere today.

A quick we break in Bylong. There were bikes everywhere then on into Denman for fuel and then onto Broke. From here we made our way back across to the top of the Putty road. It was awesome fun following Dave through the 10 mile.

About half way along I pulled over to take a shot of the old girl. She had just ticked over 70,000km in the middle of one of my favourite local rides. This bike is still awesome.

Thanks for the great weekend away boys. Looking forward to the upcoming Snowy ride.