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[Tas] East Coast Sprint (extended by a coupla hundred K's)

Discussion in 'Roads, Touring, Journeys, and Travel' at netrider.net.au started by Iffracem, Feb 19, 2006.

  1. Yesterdays East Coaster was an absolute blast!

    Brilliant weather, low traffic on the roads, great company, no crashes (not even close), and no mechanical issues, what more could anyone want?

    Started by everyone meeting at Sorell. Techno and his Across was the only other Netrider, but also joining in were two of the local "Stay Upright" instructors, Mel (CBR600RR) and Rob (VFR800), and a coupla workmates, Bec (Balius) and John "Grandpa Guzzi" (Nevada 750). 6 is a good size for a day trip IMHO.

    After intro's we headed towards Orford, things looked like a slow trip at first, as it took two "light changes" to get through the only set of lights in Sorell, then there was an eldery gentleman in an elderly corolla enjoying his icecream while holding a very leisurely pace. (good on him, it was a great day no matter what speed you wanted to do)

    Once past him, there was really nothing else to comment about the traffic, everyone on the road seemed in a great, friendly mood. So on to Orford, where just before turning left over the bridge we all regrouped, the two "professional" riders having the longest wait of course.

    Next was the very scenic coast road to Swansea, excellent water views on the right, pleasant farmland to the left, nice curvaceous road to ride (and the view ahead of Mel and Bec wasn't too bad either :wink: )

    Stopped off at "the left bank" in Swansea for a light lunch, and let the bikes with smaller tanks get a drink as well. The "left bank" is an old Commercial Bank building, converted to a restaurant. Anyone visiting Tas and Swansea in particular MUST sample their lemon tart!! It is bloody amazing, and the coffees aren't too bad either.

    After a great round of food and energetic "extracting urine" from each other, it was off up the coast to turn left onto the Lake Leake road, except for Techno, who headed home back the way we came.

    Lake Leake road is another "must ride" for anyone in Tas with a bike, truly a nirvana piece of road. It's got the lot, straights, sweepers, constant radius corners, very little traffic, not much of that usual Tassie road menace, gravel on the riding line.

    For this leg I swapped bikes with Robs VFR, I wanted a "professional" opinion on the beast, and a bloke riding for 30+ years, the last few professionaly was the guy to do it. We stopped half way along that stretch for a head count and compare notes. Well most of us did, Mel was having too much fun and didn't want to stop! She's an excellent rider, and being the leader of this leg, and we didn't see any bright yellow/blue CBR's on or near the road, we were pretty sure that we'd find her at the next stop (Cambletown)

    I was pretty chuffed when the verdict on the GPX was great! Keep it on the "band" and it's not embarrassed by the VFR for grunt, steering is slower, brakes not as good, but it certainly doesn't feel like a 19 yo bike in comparison. Tell you what tho, I now know why people with VFR's like them so much. Bloody nice bikes, even made me look like a half decent rider!

    Next was the other half of the road to Cambletown, where an impatient, already refueled Mel was waiting in the shade. This time Bec rode the Guzzi, and John the little Balius. Interesting comments about the different bikes, suffice to say, they were both happy and relieved to get back onto their own style of bike!

    Mel and Rob called it quits here, and after a refreshing icecream headed back down the Midlands to Hobart and home.

    The last three standing (riding?) headed west to Cressy, where the Guzzi and Balius needed another drink (don't you just love 21 litre tanks :grin: ) We thought there was trouble when all the bowsers were locked!! But luckily it was only a precaution as some turds were costing the owners a fortune in filling up and driving off without paying. So visitors take note, if in Cressy, stop at the Shell servo at the northern end of town. go into the little shop, and the very pleasant owners will give you the key to the bowser :) Topped up the GPX here as well, very pleased to see only 14 litres going into the beast at over the halfway point after some hard riding at times.

    From here further west and south to Bothwell via Poatina. This is yet another Nirvana road, all that Lake Leake has to offer, with more views, and twisties that are posted at 15kph in places :twisted: Being at a higher altitude, it is very pleasant on a hot day (esp when coming from Cambletown) Bit more gravel on these roads, so some care needs to be taken on some blind and tighter bends, but the bends hold no other surprises

    For those who feel the need to "stretch the legs" on your bike, there are some fantastic long straights and sweeper bends once you clear the uphill run and turn left towards Bothwell, as you can see where the road goes for miles ahead as it follows the hills ahead of you.

    Bothwell beckoned as the final stop. It's around 6:00pm now and we started as a group at 10:30 that morning, so the local bakery, it's coffee and beeeoooootiful pies, cakes, tarts, etc etc were very welcome. Visitors, do yourself a favour, stop for a break at the "Fat Doe" bakery, next to the pub on the right if heading south.

    From there it was down to the Midlands highway at Melton Mowbray, this way only the very last stretch was done on that highway, usually crowded and boring as hell for bikes. If we had a couple more hours we could have headed to Hobart via New Norfolk and enjoyed more of the same roads, but to be honest, we'd had enough and headed in our own directions once Hobart was reached.

    Got home to Snug about 7:15, tired, but bloody happy and feeling better in myself than I have in a long time. 480K's of bloody good fun.