Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

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Steve
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Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby Steve » Wed Mar 08, 2017 9:15 am

(as extracted from White Tiger's daily blog)

Day 1 - 6th March 2017
Snowy Mountains – 402km.
Well, that was one of the best day’s riding ever.
We left Jindabyne at 9am and headed to Guthega. We didn’t quite make it as the last few kms were washed out. This road is quite narrow but you can go quite fast up, down and around the mountains. The road surface was in good condition. We stopped at the hydro power station for a few minutes. The station is part of the snowy River Hydro scheme and there are plenty hydro stations around the area. The Snowy river scheme was constructed nearly seventy years ago. You realise it must have been a marvel of construction when you see it.
The road to Guthega doesn’t go anywhere so we backtracked and went to Charlotte’s Pass. This road has to be one of the world’s greatest motorcycling roads. It climbs from 900m to 1835m (about 6000 feet). This must be one of our highest roads in the country. The road winds its way up and around the mountains going through a few alpine resorts, most are empty and only operate March to August each year. This road has some of the best high speed sweepers you will ever come across. I rarely hang off the side of the FJR, mostly on the track, but I was doing it a lot today. The surface is as smooth as a racetrack so you can hammer it with absolute confidence. I liked it so much, I went back for another run by myself at the end of the day.
Next was some very fast open backroads south to Dalgety then return to Jindabyne. These backroads are in really good condition. I don’t understand why we can’t have roads like that in other parts of the country. Plod doesn’t patrol these roads so you can open the throttle as much as you like.
Wherever you go you do need to keep an eye on the animals around here. We saw lambs, cattle, wallabies, echidnas and wombats. I had a really close call with a wallaby this arvo which got the heart racing.
The weather was fantastic today. It never got above 22 degrees and, even on top of the mountains, it only got as low as 9 degrees.
It’s been one of those tiring but very enjoyable days today. We have another 2 or 3 days to go in the Snowy’s :)

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Re: Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby Steve » Wed Mar 08, 2017 9:17 am

Day 2 - 7th March 2017
Snowy Mountains 2 – 362km.
Another day full of adventure today.
Syd managed to get his trailer fixed yesterday and he caught up with us last night. We left Jindabyne at 9am and headed through Thredbo onto the Khancoban road. This road is about 70km long with nothing but tight twisties up, down and around the mountains. The road is quite narrow and some of the turns were posted at 15kph but most were posted at 35-45kph. The surface was in good condition all the way. You don’t see too many other vehicles along here. You do have to be very aware of the occasional car or cyclists coming from the opposite direction though. You also have to keep an eye out for wildlife as there are plenty in the park, including the odd Brumby. I rode this road 8 years ago, almost to the day. I didn’t like it then but I guess my skills have increased since then and I really enjoyed the run. I highly recommend this road.
After a quick stop at Khancoban we followed the road further around through the forest towards Selywn snowfields, another alpine area. The last time I was here all of the trees were dead and there was no sign of any greenery anywhere. It was good to see that re-generation was well under way. This road is a little more open than the Khancoban run and has a good surface. My only negative comment would be that a few of the tight corners are on the side of the mountains and they tighten up on you way too often. I got caught out on one badly where I was grinding metal in a left hander then it tightened quickly. There was nothing I could do but do what they teach you at riding schools – lean further and throw the bike the other way. I still ended up on the wrong side of the road and was lucky no-one was coming from the other direction.
One of the other guys had a big moment here too when his highway peg dug into the surface and flicked him very wide. We stopped a few km’s down the road so Helix could change his underpants.
After Selwyn you go across the top of the mountains to the Snowy Mountains highway. This is another outstanding road. It has a few tight corners but it’s mostly a very fast open road with some really good sweepers on a racetrack like surface. Another highly recommended road!
I was leading today and the first five riders didn’t see what happened next. It was at one of these tight corners that Syd made some sort of mistake and went off the road into a ravine. Luckily one of the guys saw him go over otherwise no-one would have known because you couldn’t see the ravine from the road. We were at our lunch stop in Adaminaby and getting quite worried when the others didn’t show. I am amazed his bike is still rideable and Syd joined us for the run back to Jindabyne.
This last stage was via a back country road, Middlinbank Road which runs across a plain. Another really good fast road.
The weather today was superb. The sun was out all day. It got down to 10 degrees on top of some of the mountains but was mostly 16-20 degrees all day.
The GPS tells me our lowest point was 230m and our highest was 1578m. Great fun going up and down the mountains :)
The last excitement for the day was when Greggie was coming out of a fuel stop in Jindabyne and fell off. Very little damage to the bike but the Paramedics took Greggie to Cooma hospital with a suspected broken ankle. Even if it’s not broken, I can’t see him continuing on the tour :(

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Re: Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby Steve » Wed Mar 08, 2017 8:52 pm

Day 3 - 8th March 2017

Snowy Mountains Pambula Loop – 384km.
Another great day’s riding today.
As usual we left Jindabyne at 9am and headed out on The Snowy River Way through Dalgety to Bombala. We rode part of this road on the first day. The road drops down a mountain just outside of Jindabyne and it meanders across the countryside. This is a fast open run all the way to the Monaro Highway on a great surface. Plod doesn’t patrol this road and you can ride it at a comfortable 120-140kph. As it is a backroad, there are a few corners that aren’t marked but you. For almost all of this run, you can see the road a long way ahead of you so you have plenty of time to slow down for the corners you aren’t sure of.
We had a stop at Bombala before the run out to the coast on Mount Darragh Road to Pambula. This road runs down the Mountains through a forest and some really nice countryside. Most of it is medium twisties on another great surface. A lot of fun.
Merrimbula is a small coastal town near Pambula. Unfortunately one of our guys, Steve left us here as he had previous engagements. Mate it was a lot of fun having you along, I thoroughly enjoyed your company! We stopped here for a lunch break then headed along Candelo Woluma road to Bemboka. This is yet another awesome backroad that has some slow, medium and fast sweepers. I know I keep saying “great” or “good” roads but they really are some of the best I have ridden. The countryside off the mountains here is really beautiful. It’s all very lush and green. They’ve obviously had a lot more rain here than on top of the Snowy Mountains.
At Bemboka we turned onto the Snowy Mountain Way to go back up onto the Mountains. This road has some nicely shaped fast twisties as it winds up the mountain. Unfortunately this is a road where a lot of young riders have come to grief so they have slowed the speed limit to 60kph and is heavily policed. It’s not a great surface either. There are a lot of those bumpy asphalt corrugations right in the middle of the corner, exactly where you don’t want them to be. There is a spectacular lookout near the top of the road which is well worth stopping at for a look or photo’s.
At the top of the mountains the run through to Cooma is a fast open road similar to the Jindabyne to Bombala run. Cooma to Jindabyne is a little boring as it is a “get there” main road that is heavily policed.
The weather was kind to us again today. We had a couple of brief showers but not bad enough to put the wet on. The temperature on the mountains was about 12 degrees c when we left and was 16 degrees when we returned. Off the mountains it got to 24 which was warm with all our winter gear on.
I only got a couple of photo’s today, the roads were too good to stop.
Tonight is the last night in Jindabyne. We head North to Kangaroo Valley tomorrow.

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Re: Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby steveking » Thu Mar 09, 2017 9:31 am

Hi guys and girls. Just to let everyone know I arrived home safely about 7.45am. After leaving you all in Merimbula I had an "uneventful" (those on the Assault know what I mean) ride up to Nowra. Spent a very enjoyable night with JWM and his wife as I have not seen them for about 6 months. I awoke about 4.30am so I left very quietly and had a great ride (though wet) through the Kangaroo Valley and home. I enjoy being on the road before dawn very much. Just want to thank everyone for their friendship and company during my short stay on the Assault. Wishing you all a safe and fun time over the next 7 - 8 days. I am now able to put faces to names on the Forum and believe that i may have picked up a new name. Remains to be seen!!!!! Thanks again I had a great time and thanks Pete/Steve for your kind remarks. Have a fantastic time one and all.

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Re: Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby steveking » Thu Mar 09, 2017 9:34 am

It appears that Steve has already amended my name on the Forum. Thanks mate...I think. It wasn't my fault honest.......

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Re: Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby AHAMAY » Thu Mar 09, 2017 9:39 am

Good to hear you are home safe and sound steveking. I'm living vicariously though these diary entries, so please keep 'em coming.

Now, if only someone could 'jinx' that $%#^&*# "RalphErali" Pluckknuckle...
Nothing to see here. Move along...
2013 Gen3

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Re: Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby Werner » Thu Mar 09, 2017 9:00 pm

Nice to meet you and ride together for a few days Steve. Hope we can do it again.

Regards,

Werner

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Re: Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby steveking » Fri Mar 10, 2017 5:51 am

Thanks Werner, same here mate. Maybe we will link up in Adelaide next. As I have already said it is nice to now be able to faces to names. Have fun during the rest of the Assault and stay safe.

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Re: Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby Steve » Sat Mar 11, 2017 1:50 pm

Day 4 - 9th March 2017

Jindabyne to Kangaroo Valley – 369km.
Not a lot to tell about today’s ride. We had a few good sections of road but it was mostly a “get there” day. I didn’t take any photo’s today, there wasn’t much worth looking at. No-one got lost today or had an accident or got a flat tyre or broke down lol
We left Jindabyne at 9am and headed along the highway to Cooma where we filled up with fuel. After here it was an hour up the Monaro Highway to Queanbeyan. It was quite a slow run. We had seen a highway patrol car heading out while we were filling up and there is an average speed camera just north of Cooma so it was at the speed limit for the first 40km or so. There were dark clouds all around and we could see rain falling at various places but we managed to stay dry.
After Queanbeyan we went on some backroads across to Nerriga. There is nothing there but a pub, a popular spot for bikers. The roads were in pretty good shape but nothing exciting. In some places, closer to Nerriga, there were a lot of those corrugations on the corners so you need to take care on this section.
After a break at Nerriga pub it was off to Nowra. Now this is a fantastic stretch of road. It is a very well made road with lots of fast sweepers and a great surface that doesn’t seem to be patrolled. I had done this road about 12 months ago but had forgotten it. Very pleasantly surprised.
From Nowra it’s only a 10 minute ride to Kangaroo Valley. The Valley sits in between a couple of decent mountains and there is a great twisty road on both sides to get to it. We did come across some wanker in a cattle truck which caused some frustration but I managed to get past him without too much trouble. There are other roads trucks can take, idiots like him should be booked for driving on roads such as these.
Relaxing for the rest of the afternoon. Looking forward to the roads tomorrow.

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Re: Assault 2017 - Daily Diary

Postby Steve » Sat Mar 11, 2017 1:56 pm

Day 5. 10th March 2017

Illawarra Loop – 257km.
It was a touristy day today.
We headed towards Nowra up over the mountain. It’s a great twisty road but, like yesterday when we arrived, it had heaps of traffic so it was slow going for a bit. We hit the coast at Shoalhaven Heads and followed the coast to Kiama. Once you hit the coast the roads are choked with traffic so the going was very slow.
Our next stop was Saddleback Mountain lookout. The traffic disappeared and the roads out to the lookout were a mix of tight and fast twisties that ran over some rolling hills then a steep climb up to the top. The view from the lookout is spectacular and the countryside was beautifully covered in rich green vegetation. I took a couple of photo’s but they don’t do the view justice. I highly recommend you go have a look for yourself.
Next we took a trip through Wollongong up to the Sea Cliff Bridge. Check the pics, you’ll see what it’s all about. Somewhere south of Wollongong we had our big drama for the day. The group kinda got split into three groups. We had a leader, maps, GPS routes and corner markers and somehow we all got lost! I have no idea how it happened but I reckon it was bloody funny :D No worries, we managed to find everyone and get the group back together about an hour later.
After the Bridge we backtracked our route and ran through some more beautiful countryside and good roads to the base of Macquarie Pass (Mount Murray on the map). This is another awesome climb up a mountain with tight-medium twisties on a really good surface. I have been on it before, it seems I was lucky that day and had no traffic. Today there was heaps of slow moving vehicles, I’m told this is the norm.
At the top is the Robertson Pie shop. A must do for anyone riding this road. Lots of different meat pies and sweet pies as well, I had a cheesecake pie :)
From there it’s a short ride down the mountain to Kangaroo Valley. At the bottom is the historic Hampton suspension bridge. I’ve been through there quite a few times but didn’t stop to get photo’s until today.
BBQ dinner tonight and more great roads tomorrow….

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