Another weekend with predicted foul weather, but that didn’t stop us riding today….again, although I was most surprised at how many ‘us’ was?! I had to work all of Saturday so I did the usual pre-lim’s, except for cleaning the bike and it could have done with a bit of a spruce up. ‘Oh well’, I thought, ‘it doesn’t matter, I’ll turn up, wait for a bit then decide whether to go straight home or perhaps enjoy a little detour.’
After monitoring the weather forecasts, I was fully kitted for the worst when I departed from home shortly after 0900 on a very gloomy, 10º morning, the lure of no queues had me gassing-up at Caltex Kaiwhara again, which proved to be fortuitous as it turned out that Caltex Rimutaka was out of 95 though as I made my way to Brown Owl on wet roads, the weather wasn’t really that bad. I took the turn at Akatarawa Rd just behind Lindsay on his Harley, which meant ‘ride on’, and very soon after a string of bikes pulled in until we eventually had nine bikes for departure.
With a couple not being able to fill at Rimutex, we organised our first regroup at the Featherston servo, where we would make a decision whether or not to proceed on the programmed ride, or perhaps head for a cosy inn with a roaring fire. It certainly looked like that might be the case as we made our way through the clouds and things didn’t look too great when, after filling, a brand new Bandit…sorry, make that GSXF, incurred electrical problems…damn wet weather…..but fortunately it was fixed with the flick of a switch. On On!
Next stop was a pause at Mobil Nth End in Masterton, in case anyone wanted a top-up there and to reassess the lure of a wet ride against that of a roaring fire. Two opted for a fire in Gladstone leaving seven of us to continue out to Te Ore Ore, onto Alfredton, then take the road to Pahiatua via Tane and from there back to a feed of greasies in Eketahuna. Once again, the day proved to be most odd, with wet roads but little precipitation. Care was required with most experiencing a few ‘twitches’ and the consensus was generally, ‘avoid the paint’! …‘and the slick strips in the ruts’! …‘and the green slime on the humps’!...oh yes …‘and the splatterings of cow shit’! But all in all it was quite a pleasant ride with the weather clearing more and more as we approached Pahiatua and were pleasantly surprised when we turned onto a very dry SH2….and there were even some hints of blue over the distant hills.
With the temp hovering between 10 & 11º, we were soon enjoying a much needed, cold squeeze induced, natural break, but the New Management of the 7 Days Greasy shop must have been sleeping in, so we had to venture on to the Crafts Café, where I enjoyed a fine Pepper Steak pie and Cappuccino with the cha,t for 2nd breakfast &/or elevensees at 1230, before heading for home.
The ride back was rather uneventful. The traffic was a quite thick after Masterton and once again we had to wade through the thick cloud cover on the Rimutakas, but I was home by 1505, having done 343Kms for the day at an economy of 18.6K/Ltr and now have 94,848Kms on the bike. What had promised to be a crap day was actually rather pleasant.
These blogs were posted on the KiwiBiker forum but I decided it was time for a change.