Category Archives: Rides

Ride reports

Camp at Clunes report

On Saturday, 25 Feb 2017, a half dozen or so members of the Club enjoyed the hospitality of Russell & Christine at their home in Clunes (VIC).

Paul, Jeff, Tony & Craig met at the BP Truckstop at Rockbank at 9:30am as planned, and after coffee, proceeded at a leisurely pace up the Western Freeway to the Ballarat Swap Meet. There we found Andy, Colin, and Darren selling their wares! There were not too many bargains to be had (although Paul managed to pick up a Ford Mustang petrol cap as a memento for $5!). From the swap meet, it was only a short ride to Clunes.

At Russell’s & Christine’s house, we met up with Nick & J’nel, Manny, Chris Phillips, and Denver, and were taken on a tour of the expansive shed/workshop/man-cave which houses Russell’s & Christine’s motorbike collection, bar, table football, and pool table.

A plentiful & scrumptious dinner was provided by Russell & Christine and their neighbourhood friends, and we all had a very pleasant evening.

Paul, Jeff & Tony chose to ride back to Melbourne after dinner, whereas the rest of us stayed the night – sleeping in either the house, the caravan, or the campervan.

Sunday morning, after a yummy cooked breakfast, we all went our separate ways.

Unfortunately, Craig only made it about 35 km before getting a flat tyre near Bungaree. Valiant attempts by Manny to fix the puncture were unsuccessful, so Russell was kind enough to pick up Craig and return to Clunes (and subsequently organise a replacement tyre the following day).

Thank you Russell & Christine for your generous hospitality over the weekend!

Club Ride report (5 Feb 2017)

Tony Jones reports on the Club ride he organised for 5 Feb 2017:

Originally, the ride was to have covered about 320 km through the scenic rolling hills north of Melbourne before stopping for lunch in Alexandra before returning home via Yea, Flowerdale (stopping at the famous pub for refreshments, of course!) and finishing up at Whittlesea. This was changed when I realised the Herald Sun Tour and their support crews would be jamming up the roads in the area… bloody cyclists!  Then there was a bushfire that closed the Bulla-Diggers Rest Road, which was on the revised route, and of course, Melbourne’s infamous weather which had forecast for torrential downpours and severe thunderstorms!  Perfect day for a ride, you say?!

Not surprisingly, given the forecast, the turn up for the ride was minimal.

Jeff Gillman and myself waited at BP AA Calder Hwy Outbound until 9:00am before making our way across to Bulla (via the re-opened Bulla-Diggers Rest Road). Passing through Oaklands Junction, we headed for the Whittlesea coffee stop on twisty backroads via Konagaderra Road, Darraweit Guim, Wallan, and Eden Park on the superb Janna & Glenburnie Roads.

Ugo had just arrived at the coffee stop, so the timing was perfect! While we were enjoying our coffee, there was a very brief shower, which barely wet the road, but it did prompt us to check the weather radar! The plan was to ride to Flowerdale for a counter lunch at the pub via Strath Creek / Kerrisdale / Yea; however, this was scrapped when the radar indicated heavy rain to the north of us, smashing the intended route.  To the south was clear and dry, so we headed for the Coach & Horses Inn, Clarkefield, on some outstanding roads that took us back through Wallan, Romsey, Kerrie Valley, and Riddells Creek.

After a nice pub lunch and an enjoyable ride, we headed back towards Melbourne Airport via Wildwood Road to Oakland Junction, where Jeff and Ugo turned towards the city, while I headed home to Sunbury.

All things considered, and despite dire predictions about the weather, it was a great ride of some 220 km or so on DRY roads under cloudy skies, which kept the temperature down to a very pleasant 27°C. Good roads, great scenery, good company and lots of laughs, and we didn’t get wet! Everything you need for an enjoyable day out on the bikes!

Club ride to Mid Life Cycles

On Saturday, 15 October 2016, the SR500 Club visited Mid Life Cycles in Cremorne (Richmond), to check out their premises, and extensive new Royal Enfield showroom. The staff at MLC made us very welcome, and Mike even took a Continental GT for a test ride. The visit was followed by an alfresco lunch at a nice café in Swan Street. An enjoyable morning had by all!

Tasmania 2016 Ride Report

SR500 Club Ride ’round Tasmania, 11-20 March, 2016

Friday 11: Departure day for the Tassie ride had finally arrived and it was a cracker of a day, with sunny blue skies and temperatures in the low 30s – a perfect start to our circuit around the Apple Isle! The majority of the group gathered in the Port Melbourne Yacht Club carpark and then moved on to board the ferry at around 6pm. Once on board, the riders all socialised with a few drinks before dinner and then wandered off to their various cabins for a good night’s sleep. Most of us slept well; however, there were some reports of loud snoring coming from several cabins, which made for an interesting crossing for some!

Saturday 12: Arriving in Devonport early Saturday morning, most of the group enjoyed a short ride to Sheffield (via Railton, ‘Town of Topiary’)  for breakfast. From Sheffield, we rode the scenic back roads past Cradle Mountain and on to Waratah for a fuel stop. The group then headed north to Burnie and along the Bass Hwy to our overnight stop at Stanley. With temperatures in the mid-20s and blue skies, it was a very enjoyable day’s ride which ended for most of us with dinner at the Stanley Hotel. Many in the group spent the afternoon exploring the quaint seaside town, with the more adventurous climbing to the top of ‘The Nut’.

Sunday 13: Another beautiful, sunny day greeted us as we departed Stanley for Queenstown via Hellyer Gorge. Regrouping at the bottom of Hellyer Gorge, Ryan noticed that his rear tyre had a puncture. However, this was soon fixed, with most of the group then riding on to Tullah for lunch. From Tullah, about half the group rode on to Queenstown via Roseberry and Zeehan. A smaller group took the much longer, but spectacular route to Zeehan via the legendary Reece Dam road. This road provided the riders with long sweepers and tight hairpins along with fabulous scenery around every corner. Regrouping in Queenstown, we all met for drinks at the Empire Hotel before having dinner at several different places.

Monday 14: A large group took a four hour trip on the West Coast Wilderness Railway, which by all reports was a very scenic ride and well worth the fare. A smaller group enjoyed a ride out to Strahan for lunch on the back roads via Roseberry, Tullah and Zeehan. Another great day’s riding was enjoyed under sunny blue skies with temperatures in the low 20s.

Departing Queenstown.

Tuesday 15: Most of us gathered for a group picture in Queenstown (above) prior to a 10am departure for Hobart. We all enjoyed the climb out of Queenstown on the legendary twisty roads that would lead us to the fuel stop and regroup at Derwent Bridge. The roads between Derwent Bridge and our lunch stop at Ouse were in great condition and were enjoyed by all as we had a ‘spirited’ ride up and down the hills and around the twisties. On approaching the outskirts of Hobart, the group broke up to get to their various accommodations around town. The original plan for the evening was to meet at Joe’s Garage for drinks, but alas, it wasn’t open, so we all met at Irish Murphy’s in Salamanca Place instead and enjoyed a night of socialising while listening to local young musos at the pub’s ‘open mic’ night. Thanks to the Club committee’s sponsoring of the ride, a bar tab was set up, and was put to very good use over the course of the evening. No one left the pub feeling thirsty, and possibly some were a little groggy the next morning!

Wednesday 16: Today was a rest day in Hobart. Many of the culture vultures in the Club went to the Museum of Old and New Art and enjoyed an exhibition by Gilbert and George. The less culturally aware members bypassed MONA and went on another ‘spirited’ ride on the cracking roads that lead to Strathgordon, Lake Pedder and Gordon Dam. The weather was perfect for riding again and the roads were just sensational!

Thursday 17: As the group’s accommodation was spread around Hobart, it was decided to re-group for a coffee stop at the historic old town of Richmond, prior to riding on to our overnight stop in Swansea. As luck would have it, there was a very impressive display of vintage, veteran and classic motorcycles in the Richmond Town Hall. An immaculate Brough Superior took pride of place alongside several Vincents and numerous BSAs, Triumphs, Nortons, and lots of other rare and beautifully restored machines. From Richmond, the group spread out and made its way along the coastline with several stopping at the fishing town of Triabunna for lunch. It had been another lovely sunny, but as heavy rain was forecast for tomorrow, Brendan, Gary, Matt, Jeff and Tony decided to ride the legendary Lake Leake Hwy across to Ross for a coffee and a giant, award-winning vanilla slice from the Ross Village Bakery! While the others returned to Swansea via Lake Leake Hwy, Brendan and Gary decided to ‘go bush’ to try to find their way back to Swansea via dirt roads. They got as far as Tooms Lake before the track started to peter out, and they started running out of time (daylight) and fuel, and they had to turn around and return via Lake Leake Hwy also.

Friday 18: The wind was blowing a gale off the sea overnight and the day started out with some light to moderate rain in the Swansea area. Further south in Hobart, the radar showed very heavy rain, so we were lucky to have avoided a major storm. After breakfast at the Bark Mill Bakery, we started heading north towards our next overnight stop, St Helens. Several of us stopped at Bicheno on the way, to check out the Motorcycle Museum there, which contained a very nice collection of old & new machinery, including Vincent Rapide, Bultaco Pursang, Triumph X75 Hurricane, Noriel 4 café racer, and Yamaha HL500 replica (feat. a GMC Cro-Mo frame). Some of us then turned off the Tasman Hwy and rode up a very misty Elephant Pass to Mount Elephant Pancakes for refreshments. By the time we reached St Helens, the rain had, thankfully, eased off.

Saturday 19: A rather leisurely start to the day, this being our last full day in Tassie. From St Helens, it was a short ride to the Shop in the Bush for some souvenir shopping, then on to the Holy Cow Café at Pyengana for coffee, and to watch some very clever cows at the Pyengana Dairy using an automated back scratcher on their way to the milking shed! From there, we rode up to the spectacular St Columba Falls (which had obviously benefited from the previous day’s rain!), and then on to the Pub in the Paddock for a beverage or two. Many of us were staying at Devonport this night, so we had a few k’s to notch up before the end of day! So we pushed on along the Tasman Hwy through Weldborough, Derby (for lunch), Scottsdale, north to Bridport, then west again, crossing the Tamar River at Batman Bridge, and continuing, carving up the back roads (through Frankford) to Devonport. Yet more spectacular, fast roads again today, this was what a great way to end the trip!

Sunday 20: Many of us had an early start, to catch the 9:00am sailing of the Spirit of Tasmania, back to Melbourne. For many of us, it was also our first day sailing, and we found this was a nice, restful way to end the trip – and start planning for the next trip!

Summary: All things considered, the 2016 Club Ride ’round Tassie was a fun event and was thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended. Other than our planned overnight stops, there were no other formal plans, so there was plenty of flexibility for everyone to travel at their own speed and stop as often as they wanted to enjoy the sights and sounds of Tasmania. There were no mechanical breakdowns, only ONE wet day, no accidents (worth mentioning!) and no speeding tickets that anyone has admitted to so far! The ride provided a fantastic opportunity for all Club members, and non-members alike to socialise and get to know each other better while enjoying our motorcycles and the unreal scenery and roads that only Tasmania has to offer. Well done to all who attended and thank you for making the ride such an outstanding event.

Participants

Andy Hunt Kawasaki GTR1000
Darren Marston Yamaha TDM900
Colin Warner & Andrea Chenery Triumph Bonneville
Craig Lemon Yamaha TRX850
Brendan van de Zand Yamaha SR500
Drew Jackson Yamaha SR500
John (from Warwick, QLD) Kawasaki KL250 Super Sherpa
Gary & Karen Cuthbert Honda CB500
Jeff Gillman Suzuki RF600
Matthew Vellere Suzuki GSXR750
David & Mary Ell BMW R1200RT
Marcos & Maria Anastassiou BMW R1200GS
Ian & Janet Janetzki Yamaha XV1000 Virago
David & Kerry Prior Yamaha XT600 Ténéré
Kerrigan O’Neill Hyundai iLoad
Paul Norstog Yamaha SR500
Ryan & Brodie Jones Triumph Speed Triple
Tony Jones BMW R1200GS
Michael Prior Mercedes Benz van

 

 

Tasmania 2007 Ride Report

SR500 Club Ride ’round Tasmania, 9-18 March, 2007

By Karen Cuthbert

The inaugural SR500 Club tour of Tassie attracted a great group of participants. Special mention must be made of Catherine and Lisa who rode fully loaded from Canberra to Melbourne, and Kerry and Carol, and Mark who travelled from Newcastle and Sydney to meet the ferry to Tassie.

Day 1: Everyone arrived in Devonport to travel to Picnic Point (north of Launceston) for a welcome BBQ put on by the local SR500 Club members, and tour of the local sights. Overall the fleet of SRs proved very reliable. Catherine broke a throttle cable on the trip down to Launceston, but this was easily fixed by the ever-resourceful Charlie, who had a spare back at his place. On arrival at Jill’s in Launceston, a puncture repair was required on Andrea’s SR250. Col and Gaz got to work and we were soon set for the next day’s adventure.

Day 2: We charged off for Weldsborough via Scottsdale. 60 km into the ride and Jeff flagged us down at a bakery for a scallop pie fix. On to Weldsborough and a great night’s camping next to the pub.

Day 3: Up and into it as far as St Helens, until Jeff calls a halt at St Helens for another pie. All the bikers except Charlie headed off to Bicheno via Elephant Pass. This road is bike heaven. Unfortunately, Charlie chose a short cut down the coast and collected a stray flock of sheep, killing two in the process and trowelling his SR big-time. Tough bastard that he is, he survived with a bit of a limp and completed the trip with Jill in ‘Bertha’, the backup campervan. Grief counselling for Craig, our Kiwi Vice President, was held at the bakery in Bicheno. Eventually, we all ended up in Ross for our designated camping spot. Andrea had copped another flat on the SR250, so Col and Gaz dutifully went to work to fix it. A few beers later, one thing led to another and we lost some crucial parts of the back wheel in the Ross River while testing for leaks. After cannibalizing Charlie’s bike for parts, we got the SR250 back together and we were off to Richmond.

Day 4: Left Richmond for a fairly long trip to Strahan. Highlight of the day for us was at Ouze where Col, Andrea, Jeff, Kaz and Gaz met our long lost relos Daryl, Daryl, Daryl and his brother Daryl in the pub at lunchtime. We had stumbled upon the real Tasmania! The 2nd breakdown of the mighty fleet of SRs occurred just before Derwent Bridge when Gaz’s and Kaz’s SR snapped an aftermarket oil feed line. A quick fix with a bit of fuel line and they were off again. Rain occurred for the first time of the trip and made life interesting on the glorious trip from Queenstown to Strahan. Tassie is bike riding heaven on a stick! Breakdown #3 occurred when Craig’s SR would not start in the main street of Strahan, after a day in the rain. A quick tow behind Andrea’s 250 and we were back at the campground safe and sound. It kept raining.

Day 5: Craig’s bike was quickly fixed by a bit of WD40 sprayed into the kill switch, and we headed off into the pissing rain to Wynyard. After lunch the rain eased off and a pleasant afternoon was had by all.

Day 6: Leaving Wynyard for a bit of a tour back to Devonport, Andrea had a big get-off on the mighty SR250. With a couple of smashed ribs, she showed tremendous fortitude to ride 30 km to get to the ferry on time. After a bit of sweet-talking, she was given a cabin for four for the boat ride back to Melbourne.

Day 7: After breakfast and fond farewells, Kerry, Mark, Lisa and Catherine head off for the ride home to ACT/NSW. Everyone makes it home without incident.

A fantastic trip was had by all. Special thanks to Jill Stewart and Charlie Elmslie (SR500 rally regulars and instigators of the trip) for all their support and opening up their homes to us all.

Vice President Craig Lemon and Gaz and Kaz are in the planning stages for a similar trip to New Zealand, so stay tuned for details.

Participants

Craig Lemon SR500
Catherine Mann SR500
Charlie Elmslie & Jill Stewart SR500
Gary & Karen Cuthbert SR500
Andrea Cameron & Colin Warner SR250
Mark O’Neill & Michelle Taylor Kawasaki ER6-n
Matthew Vellere Suzuki GSXR600
Jeff Gillman Suzuki RF600
Kerrigan & Carol O’Neill Suzuki 1100
Lisa Reeding Yamaha 600
Kim Pitman Virago 250
Glenn Pitman Harley Davidson Heritage