Thursday, July 29, 2010

29 July 2010 - Omega Woodside

Mild and clear day today.  Rode to the Woodside Omega Transmitter which is a 432m high umbrella antenna and one of the eight transmitters installed worldwide as part of the Omega Navigation system which was the forerunner to the GPS satnav system. I remember all the fuss when it was being built in the 70's as people believed these transmitters would be nuclear targets in case of war. The system was finally decommissioned in 1997 (for further info on the Omega system see
The tower still stands a few km east of Woodside on the South Gippsland Highway and the transmission equipment is on display at the Port Albert Maritime Museum.
Returned via Yarram (lunch at the Bakery Cafe) and Tarra Valley. The mild weather and total lack of traffic made this a very enjoyable ride.
Total Distance 170km.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

25 July - Ulysses Ride to Lindenow Pub

Monthly Ulysses Club Ride to Lindenow. Great day and a great turnout - over 20 bikes. Headed out from Traralgon to Stratford along the backroads through Heyfield and Maffra.  Coffee and comfort stops at Wa-De-Lok in Stratford and by then it was actually getting warm. From Stratford to Bairnsdale along the backroad via Meerlieu and Bengworden. A quick fuel stop at Bairnsdale before turning west along the Princes Highway. Just out of Bairnsdale the Dargo Rd veers off to the right, and Lindenow is about a 20 minute ride along here. Surprisingly I had never travelled through this country. It is absolutely stunning riverflat country with fertile farmland everywhere.

The Lindenow pub offers great meals for $9.95 and superb wood fired pizzas as well as a very cosy atmosphere with an open fire place. The meals were fantastic and given the numbers in our group they were delivered quickly and in an orderly fashion. Well worth the ride.

The return trip took us briefly towards Dargo before we  turned left towards Maffra and Tinamba. Returned to Traralgon along the backroads through Glengarry. A final latte and review of the day's proceedings at the Traralgon Ice Creamery completed a great day out.

Total Distance 300km.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

17 July 2010 - Venus Bay, Inverloch and Cape Patterson

Woke up this morning to brilliant sunshine. Fired up the Honda, checked the tyres, and off to the coast. Wanted to check out Venus Bay and rode there through Mirboo North and Meeniyan. I hadn't been to Venus Bay for about 40 years. It's a small coastal town full of beach houses very reminiscent of holiday houses as they used to be before they became real estate investments. Looks like a nice spot to spend a couple of weeks during the summer. Next I rode to Inverloch for lunch at the bakery and then along the spectacular coast road to Cape Patterson. By then the wind had become quite strong but I'm getting used to that now. At Cape Patterson I called in at Nina's (sister-in-law) place for a cuppa and as luck would have it her friend Lorraine called in. Lorraine worked at the SEC in Morwell at the time Rosa and I worked there and I hadn't seen her for 30-40 years. Had a good chat about the good old days and then it was back on the bike and home via Inverloch, Leongatha and Mirboo North. A great day out on the bike.

Total Distance 275km.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

11 July 2010 - Romp around Gippsland

After an absolutely miserable Saturday, today was both sunny and mild and so about noon I set off on the cruiser for a romp around Gippsland. No real plan but headed in the general direction of Boolarra/Mirboo Nth via Churchill. When I reached Churchill I realised I had not had a look at the Monash Uni site for about 15 years so I took a quick detour. The campus has changed almost to the point of being unrecognisable since I taught there. The number of new buildings is incredible and of course the infamous Bini Shell is long gone. Must go and have a walk around one day. From here to Boolarra and up the windy back road to Mirboo Nth for a coffee at one of my favourites, the Bullock Dray Cafe. This little cafe has an external wall mural which combines a painted background with actual physical elements in the foreground. In the photo above the bushes and about two thirds of the bullock dray are real and blend seamlessly into the painted background. Quite a work of art. From here I headed down to Thorpdale and Trafalgar, crossed the railway line and headed up the back road to Westbury and then home via Yallourn North. The weather was quite mild although there were strong gusts of wind - all part of gaining experience.

Total Distance 150km.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

8 July 2010 - Yarram and Tarra Valley

Another sunny winter day. Rode to Yarram via Rosedale, Gormandale and called in for lunch at the Bakery Cafe. Rode home through Tarra Valley and stopped a couple of times to enjoy the rustic views before continuing up through the rain forest and over Mt Tassie. The handgrip heaters turned winter into summer and another perfect day on the bike.

Total distance 170 km.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

4 July 2010 - Woodside

Another one of those winter days which did not look very promising, but once on the bike it got better and better. Wanted to check some interesting dirt roads I spotted before but didn't try. Headed out past Loy Yang and Gormandale and up Powers Hill. Turned left on to Tom's Cap Rd which is a very good dirt road. Followed this all the way to the walking track which leads to the top of Mt Tom's Cap, named by Angus McMillan who explored the Gippsland region in the 1840's. At the top is a historic cairn to mark the spot where McMillan first sighted the coast. Met three guys riding trail bikes and chatted for a while. Rode back past Tom's Cap Winery and then turned on to the Carrajung Woodside Rd. Turned left on to Sth. Gippsland Highway, through Woodside, and then through the hills back to Gormandale via another good and very picturesque dirt road which for a while follows the Basslink transmission line.

Total distance 171 I'm.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

3 July 2010 - Ulysses "Fish and Chip" run to Port Albert

First Saturday of the month which means the Ulysses monthly fish and chips run to Port Albert was on. Met up with the crew at about 10:30 and on the road by 11:00. Nice run via Gormandale and the F&C were excellent as always in PA. The return trip was via Tarraville and Woodside. One or two very brief patches of rain and a bit windy but still a nice ride - aren't they all.

Total distance 172 km.