Can’t sleep! The excitement built up over weeks of planning and preparation prevents me from relaxing. Every time the eyes close, images of winding roads, warm weather and elicit speeds form on my mind. Is it time to go yet?
Daylight. Finally. Final preparations, stuff a couple more useless things into the bulging bags attached to the rear of the bike, kick the tires one last time and kiss the wife goodbye. Time to meet the boys and… bliss.
Ron is late again. What else is new. Got confused with daylight savings he says. Blame QLD. Weather is closing in from the ocean and the radar pictures are not pretty. I decide to escape and wait for him in Murwillambah that looks to have a nice patch of blue skye overhead. The hairy one finally decides to grace us with his presence and we decide to continue west, escaping the big bad boo-boo clouds as much as possible.
We head through Uki, over Mt Burrel, where we finally get our first bit of rain of the journey. Tires are making our lives much easier on the tricky conditions. The amount of confidence transmitted by the Metzler Roadtec 01s fitted to our bikes, allow us to cover pace at a rate that wouldn’t shame any rider on the dry, much less in bumpy, unkept surface of the roads around this area. We drop down the mountain to Kyogle just in time to meet our other two companions, Dan and Ben for the trip. A quick check of the radar highlighted that our choices were to go south and drown in golf sized balls of icy water or keep heading west and avoid as much of it as possible. No problem, the Bruxner Hwy is not exactly a terrible place to be on two wheels.
After a stop in Casino for some fuel (both for the bikes and our stomachs), we started the 120 odd kms of fun in the run to Tenterfield. Drenched by rain during the first third of it, a miracle allowed for most of the remaining kms to be made on semi-dry conditions and for our steeds to stretch their legs. Not much traffic, beautiful countryside, a few mates and a great twisty road. Did I mention bliss?
Quick refill in Tenterfield and the final leg of the journey for the day started with a final belting of icy water that apparently hurt Ron’s nipples. Or so he says. Final stop at the Great Central Hotel where our host Tony made us feel extremely welcome and provided with a regiment sized meat feast that will keep us going for days. Props for the two country girls that walked 42kms of one of the amazing local walking trails in terrible weather and we’re in great spirits. You’ll make it next time girls!