Just Going For A Ride

Walking out the door at 3:15 last Saturday morning I briefly thought about grabbing my electric vest but as it was going to be a minimum of 2 degrees C it shouldn’t be too bad.

For the next hour and a half the temp hovered between 0 and 3 degrees. Maybe I should have grabbed that vest. But as we filled the bikes up at Gundagai (150km) the sun was appearing over the horizon giving us the glimmer of hope of impending warmth.  After all it was meant to be a top of 17 in these parts today.

Thirty minutes down the road and it was -1 and falling to -4 over the next hour. At those temperatures the roads are cold and you’re watching for wet slick patches in shadows as black ice is not fun to hit on a bike. Okay, now I’m missing the electric vest! And my feet are freezing!

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A cool morning at -4

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Heading to Jingellic

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Fog hanging over the Murray River

Today as we skirt the mountains we still take in a few small ranges and ride a couple ‘gap’ roads – the first of these is Granya gap which is always fun.  From Granya we stop in at Tallangatta (400km) for our second fuel stop for the day.   We also take the opportunity to sit down at the local bakery and grab something warm for us.  To our surprise Nico (a riding friend from Geelong) also makes an appearance at the bakery.

Finally the temperature are heading in the right direction so I swap out the winter gloves for a pair of mids (grip warmers still on low).

From Tallangatta we head down a series of back roads to Tawonga and up over Tawonga Gap (another great bike road – just a pity we don’t get a clear run) and into the pretty town of Bright which was really buzzing with their Autumn festival winding down.

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Coming into Bright Victoria

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Bright in Autumn

Our destination today is Ovens for a FarRider get together.  We roll in at about 11am after 520km, catch up with a number of old friends. have a chat for a bit over an hour, and then hit the road as we have more riding to do today.

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Up over the Buckland Gap road (why is this road a 60km/h zone?) for a quick counter lunch at the Beechworth pub and then onto Rutherglen (600km) for our next fuel stop.

Heading back into NSW is quite a contrast as we’ve moved from the mountains to the wide open farm land, big machinery working the land, and flat horizon.

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A quick stop in at the Urana pub to catch up with our friend Mel and then onto Wagga Wagga (800km) for our last fuel stop of the day.  From here we head east with the setting sun over our shoulders.

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And after a great day on the bike we pull back into Canberra after 1,050km, just after 7:30pm.

Farride route

19 thoughts on “Just Going For A Ride

  1. It is so wild to read about you guys going into you Fall riding as we are going into Spring. I still haven’t tucked my heated gear away yet. The system my husband got me has a jacket and gloves both on separate dials so I can control them separately (since hands usually get the brunt of it). I’m glad you had a great time and a safe ride. Thanks for sharing!

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    • Thanks for the comment. It’s always great to get out and I love the autumn (sorry fall) colours.

      Electric gear really isn’t that common over here as generally it’s not that cold. And winterising your bike is not something we even need to think about as it just doesn’t get that cold.

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      • Same season different name. Lol. Jealous about not being that cold! Coldest I’ve had to ride in was 18F and that was before I got my gear. I’m just glad we will have a garage to put the bikes in and a spiffy little bike pad that runs the length of it to park on during the riding season…. soon. I hope. Lol

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      • Sorry about that. The husband can convert back and forth but I can’t so I forget to do it. I think that was in March of that year. We had to pull the bikes out early because his car died so it was my car and our bikes. I had to make him take my car because he’s get sick from riding in that every day (before he got himself heated gear).

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  2. Nice ride report! I have been on some of those roads. Here in Alberta our Spring weather has dropped back toward Winter! So riding in temps similar to yours but I stil taking the electric gear.

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  3. Hard core ride, you’ve got way more stamina than me!

    Our of interest, what brand is your electric jacket? Haven’t looked into them before because it’s much warmer around Sydney in winter especially when we still near the coast but this might open up the mountains for me.

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    • 1,000km isn’t that hard, a lot of it is just time management and not stopping too long or too often. You also don’t need to do that much night riding. However, stepping it up to IBA distance of 1,600km or more is more challenging.

      In regards to my vest. I’ve only got a cheap Tourmaster (not sure if they are still around). If I was getting new gear I’d go through “warm and safe” http://www.warmandsafe.com.au. I have a set of their electric socks pulled into my vest which works a treat.

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  4. It’s been raining here, usually on weekends, the days I am able to ride my bike. I need to find a new group of friends who ride more often.

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    • Or get out on your own. Sometimes it’s great to go where you want, stop where you want, and not have to worry about what anyone else thinks.

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  5. Getting up that early for a ride is dedication mate, and it’s always coldest just after dawn around 6am. I hate riding in those temps these days but I’m not really equipped for that so I don’t do it. Owning an R1 at 46 years young and I couldn’t contemplate doing 1050km in one day. Most I’ve done was 750km in one day and I was fairly well wrecked. Your bike is much more comfortable than mine though. Good read.

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    • Yes doing a 1,000km in a day on a R1 would be more work. The 14 still isn’t as comfy as a big touring bike but we’ve done a lot bigger days than 1,000km.

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      • It was a great day out as always Glen, thanks.

        Chillertek, I’m 6’2″ and did a 1600/24 run on my Daytona 955 when I was 49. Totally understand if you have a physical condition going on ( no way I could do it now at 55!) but I discovered that the main barriers to doing distance on a sporty were mental ones.

        While it is more challenging than a comfy bike it can be quite rewarding. I found that I did longer distances on mine and gradually changed the things that were stopping me riding further (within reason). Then of course there’s that crazy guy who did around the world on his R1!

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