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[VIC] Great Alpine Road

Discussion in 'Roads, Touring, Journeys, and Travel' started by Fitty, Sep 27, 2010.

  1. I recently upgraded from a VTR 250 to a Street Triple. I'd taken it on a few rides through the Dandenongs and around Kinglake/Yarra Glen, but I was yet to go on a serious ride - until last weekend.

    Unfortunately enough, none of my mates ride road bikes, so my trip was always going to involve the old man, which probably isn't such a bad thing in the end. Saturday involved a pretty boring ride from Melbourne to Bairnsdale to meet up with a couple of blokes from Canberra, watch the Grand Final and get some sleep before the big ride on Sunday.

    Sunday's ride, however, was nothing short of amazing. Here's a link to the route we took from Bairnsdale to Bright along the Victorian Great Alpine Road. This route was fantastic, and it was sunny all day without being too hot - you couldn't have asked for better conditions, and the views from Hotham were incredible. Unfortunately we couldn't stop for photos because bikes aren't technically allowed on the road until October 2, and the guy at the entry gate had asked us to keep a low profile and just ride straight through - it would have been a bit churlish to cause a fuss after he'd been good enough to let us through.

    The route had everything from fast, sweeping corners on the way from Bairnsdale to Omeo, and then tight, continuous twists and turns on the descent from Mount Hotham (and a few reasonably straight bits to see how quick the bikes really could go). The best thing about it was that the twisty sections just went on, and on, and on... we all had an absolute blast and it was just awesome to really tip the bike in on corners and feel a confidence in my machine that I just never had with the 250.

    All in all, it was a top weekend and I would recommend this trip to anybody. You'd be hard pressed to find many roads that would surpass these ones, I reckon. One word of warning for those that haven't done the section from Hotham to Harrietville is that if you're heading south, the majority of the corners will be blind right handers in narrow lanes, so you'll have to be pretty careful of cagers barelling downhill.
  2. Fitty,
    Thanks for posting your ride details ! I am literally in the planning stage for a 'get-away', without getting too far from home, yet involving an o/night or 2.
    Part of my route prep is exactly what you travelled, from Bairnsdale to Bright, the latter being an awesome location where a group of us overnighted, around this time last year !
    I didn't realise there are so many twisties on the section of the Great Alpine Road that you mentioned - a quick (max zoom in) zoom revealed a plethora of fun to be had !
    All I need is a stretch of days off from work and I'll be keen as mustard to revisit the Great Alpine Road, this time from the South.
    Cheers mate and well down on your writeup (y)
  3. No worries mate - as I said, fantastic ride. An overnight in Bright instead of Bairnsdale would have been a good idea. Finishing the day off with a looong freeway ride home resulted in some serious saddle soreness for me - the Canberra blokes both had Airhawks though, so they were fine (pricks).
  4. Hahahaha..maybe you needed to prick their seats :) Change of story then who would be the 'real' prick (y)
    Bright is awesome mate. The same group as last year are contemplating doing it all over again, either days before/after the MotoGP. We stayed in log cabins (caravan park) , great experience.
    Rode up there on the R1 last year and 'saddle soreness' was definitely the case on the way back to Melbourne. Must be absolutely beautiful there this time of year, and in the coming weeks.
  5. Yeah, it certainly is beautiful. After all the rain we've had recently everything is green and the rivers and creeks are flowing - it was like riding through the UK (except it was sunny).
  6. i do enjoy those roads. being local to that area its always good to head up the hills./
  7. heh heh, didn't expect to see 'churlish' on Netrider :LOL:

    next time, head up to Corryong and turn onto the Alpine Highway to Khancoban and then on to Thredbo and Jindabyne; another 'must ride' road :).
  8. Theres a far riders eat and great coming up on oct 9 and I was thinking about leaving at 3am, heading up the hume to oxley then reversing your route to bruthen before heading over to bemm river for lunch.

    how were the road conditions ?? any sign of snow, gravel or black ice ??

  9. Thanks for the write-up Fitty. :)

    I'm also interested in the road conditions. TIA.
  10. After reaching Jindabyne, would you recommend one (a) head north towards Tumut on the Snowy Mountain Hwy, (b) head south towards Bombala on the Monaro Hwy, or (c) other?
  11. That's how the Canberra boys got home, I'm pretty sure. They ended up having a 12 hour day in the saddle, so it's probably a good thing they had the Airhawks. I'm thinking about doing the Snowy Ride in November, so I might get to have a crack at those roads soon.
    Road conditions were fantastic in terms of shit on the road. The only place that was a bit dodgy was right up the top of Hotham, but it's a heavily policed 40km/h zone, so it wasn't really an issue. It might become a bit more dodgy in the next month when all that snow starts to melt, though.

    As far as the quality of the roads themselves, I didn't have any complaints. They weren't pristine by any stretch, but they were reasonable for country roads. There were a few mid-turn bumps that had me swearing in my helmet, but that was probably a result of inexperience and sweating about binning my pretty new bike than anything else.
  12. Looks like I'm not the only one thinking of the far riders ride.......
    I was actually thinking of heading down to Wilsons Prom on the way to Bemm River....
    But your options sounds nicer johnno....
  13. At this time of the year the road across the top is generally chewed up from the snow chains fitted to cars and buses throughout the winter, especially the corner just north of Pelley's Pond. You can expect potholes and loose gravel associated with the damage. If anyone is contemplating an overnight Dinner Plain is a good spot: especially if you want a good rate on my house ;)

    I believe that there isn't a ban on motorbikes across the hill per se, but the issue is the VicRoads requirement for all vehicles to carry chains. The RMB chap on the entry gate is only there to take money for vehicles entering and remaining within the RMB zone, there is no charge if you are continuing on through past Dinner Plain. VicPol, however, will give you a TIN with a fine and a 3 point penalty if you are caught without snow chains :eek:

    I had a fairly one sided conversation once when the entry gate lady tried to stop me driving my (VicRoads registered) snowmobile up to the General for a drink. Snow chains were only part of the issue :rolleyes:
  14. The Snowy Mtns Hwy between Cooma and Bombala is pretty ordinary.

    Either all the way to Tumut (you can have a butchers of Yarrangobilly Caves if you don't mind a couple of km of dirt)


    turn left at Kiandra and head towards Khancoban via Cabramurra (Another must do road)
  15. Cheers mate, that's some great advice!

    I stuck the latter route into Google maps here, and read about it here, looks like a corker, and it's sealed to boot. Must be great living up that way, looking forward to riding these roads soon. :)
  16. Damn you're making me jealous. Dunno why I ever moved away from East Gippsland, right at the mouth of the Omeo Highway :\

    Anyone else contemplating this ride should consider taking this route
    (the corners nears anglers rest would have to be in my top 3 sections of road in victoria)
    if you're leaving from Bairnsdale, you can go that way, then go back up the mountain (and harrietville-hotham is so, so much more enjoyable going uphill) and stay in Dinner Plain or Omeo.
  17. Well I'm hopeing that all will be good to ride through Great Alpine Road on the 9th Oct for the far ride.
    This is the route I'm deciding to take...
    Melb-Mt Hotham-Bemm River-Wonthaggi Loop

    Real early 3AMish start as need to be in Bemm River before 12PM
  18. mmmm Joe, thats a big ride. I tend to stay on the highway and away from the narrower twisty stuff till the daylight hours..... less chance of a confrontation with suicidal fauna.
    I was planning on the same route, only up the hume in the dark , then stop for a hot drink and some brekky at before ploughing into the fun stuff, googly maps makes it AT 691km AND 9 HOURS 47 MIN...... we should make it easy, with only a lazy 300 odd km to do in the arvo.

    wanna come with ?

  19. Oz

    The more I think of the Icicle Ride and the fate of the wombat and skippy on the night, probably a good idea to stick to Hume before daylight.
    Quite happy to do it in company if it's ok...
  20. no probs bud.....