After looking after my Moko's/mates Jake and Eleni-Mei on Saturday (we played with Thomas, James, Edward & Diesel) I returned home to clean the ST in preparation for my first 'good' ride in a while on Sunday. The rest of Saturday was spent with our friends Murray & Ma'. The girls played golf at Titahi Bay while Murray & I went to the Classic Bike show in Lower Hutt.
The bike show was a rather interesting and nostalgic experience with a wide range of bikes displayed (probably 100 or so), some old favorites and some I had never seen or heard of. There was also a wide range of people viewing the bikes, old & young, bogans & businessmen, Ulyssians & KiwiBikers. I was most impressed with a couple of mint Honda 500 Fours, a Yamaha RD 350 and a couple of Kawasaki 500s. The thing I noticed most however, was how small and in particular, how low the bikes were, or perhaps how big & tall my ST is. An afternoon well worth the few $'s spent.
Sunday was ride day and I had planned to join the Ulysses ride to Mt Bruce but continue on from there to explore some new roads in the Manawatu and I advised Steve (Twosup-Hyabusa) and Adrian (DougieNZ-ST1300) of my plans and invited them to join me. I never heard back from Adrian and in the end we decided to skip the Ulysses ride and leave early so Steve, Neil (another ST rider) and myself departed Rimutaka Caltex at 0920 and headed over the hill for the Mangamaire turnoff, the Pahiatua Track and our first coffee stop in Ashhurst. From there we headed north into the Pohangina Valley, taking the Pohangina Valley East Road up to Apiti. This was good riding except for a few kms of roadworks just out of Ashhurst and the odd bit of scattered loose stuff along the way. When we emerged just north of Apiti we turned right and headed into Marton Block, not knowing if the road was sealed or not, just that this road should bring us around to Ruahine Road that runs between Maungaweka and Kimbolton. As it turned out, this road did have about 6-8 kms of hard packed gravel that didn't offer any problems but there were some great views and it was an interesting ride.
From Ruahine Road we were supposed to turn onto Karewarewa Rd and head to Ohotu, but that was gravel so we decided to head through to Mangaweka, down to Vinegar Hill, turning off at Waituna West for Fielding, on to Palmerston North and our next stop at ANZA motorcycles for Neil to look at some gear. We arrived around 1430 and as usual, you can't go anywhere in NZ without being spotted so who should turn up there but Mr & Mrs Hitcher. A quick chat, an hour later and Neil undecided about the gear we headed back over 'The Track' (a light drizzel and just a couple of twitches on the paint here), down to Eketahuna, off through Mauriceville and on to Carterton for another coffee, after which is was a quick blat through the traffic over the Hill and Home.
I stopped for a bit at friends in Upper Hutt getting home at 1900. 9½ hours and about 580 kms later. I managed to just touch a right peg on 'the hill', scrape my left toe on 'the track' (don't know what happened there) and hold it after a 'front - rear' twitch followed by a catch, then rear twitch on paint on 'the Track'.
Another great day on the road with mates.....We bikers are certainly a privileged few.
These blogs were posted on the KiwiBiker forum but I decided it was time for a change.