Not much happened this week, probably in part due to the weather. In fact if I didn't take the bike to work on Friday, it would have been the first week since I got back into biking (nearly 2 years) that I wouldn't have used the bike during the week...that was close! I guess that was also partly due to last Sundays magnificent ride and that satisfied feeling had lasted longer. The only excitement has been watching the first week of the Tour de France, which it's a pity about the timing, but I do enjoy watching the highlights.
This weekend we were supposed to visit my tamariki and the Mokopuna in Rotorua, but that didn't happen so I ended up having two rides. On Saturday I attended a family gathering at my sister's place in Woodside (Greytown) and Sunday we joined a Ulysses ride.
Saturday was a great, cloudless day so after cleaning the cowpoos and mud off the bike from last weeks adventure, I got away from home around 1100, filled up at Caltex Kaiwhara' and hit the road. The roads were damp in places and there were signs on the Rimutaka's indicating conditions were slippery and that ice grit had been laid, so I took it easy but had no problems whatsoever and didn't even see or feel any patches of grit. Traffic was steady but didn't cause any problems and I was soon enjoying a beer and a good feed with the family. I got away around 1515 to get back over the hill before the temperature dropped and had an even better ride home as the roads were dryer. I then lit the fire before doing a bit of glasswork and settling in for an evening of sport, watching the All Black / Springbok test and Tour de France highlights and start of the days race. (The first day in the Alps).
Sunday was supposed to be another great day but it rained between 5 & 6 in the morning so I wasn't sure whether I would be riding or not. I started the day by catching the end of 'Le Tour' highlights before going back to sleep until 0830. We got up and were away by 0915, pulling-in to fill-up at Rimutex as the E-Riders and Kiwibikers were leaving (20 minutes early I would have thought). We got round the corner to the Brown Owl shops to find a good turnout with a over a dozen bikes heading for Lake Ferry. There were 2 new members on Goldwings and one on a Bandit 1250 as well as the regulars... a Goldwing trike, SV650, ZZR, Hyabusa, FJR, 3 ST's, BMW, a Trumpy, an FZR and an old Concours.
The road was good and we were at Lake Ferry before the pub opened, getting all the carparks. After a feed and coffee 7 of us continued via Martinborough and the back road to Gladstone for another stop before splitting up and Nanny Ann and I headed home via the middle road back to Martinborough and over the hill. We came onto the main road out of Martinborough as two other bikes were leaving and they followed us through to Featherston before passing us on the up the 'Hill'. We dropped back slightly through the traffic but caught them suddenly as we rounded a corner on the downhill and the rider on the pretty blue, quite new ZX14 was down. Don't know how as he was probably about 15-20 meters from the corner and was lucky not to have been taken out by the two cars following. The bike was at right angles across the centre of the road stopping traffic in both directions and the car passengers and his mate were helping him get the bike up and down to the next corner-bay. He didn't appear to be too hurt but the bike had bled about half a pint of oil onto the centre of the road and I noted a bit of damage to the fairing and plastic at the front. I can only assume he slipped coming out of the corner then highsided to get that far down the road but whatever happened he was very lucky. We stopped, but there was an abundance of help so we continued on home, a little slower......as you do after these sobering incidents.
Otherwise it was a great day, 290 kms being done in good company.
These blogs were posted on the KiwiBiker forum but I decided it was time for a change.