Kawasaki Z OwnersVictoria  

THE GREAT OCEAN RIDE 2019

  • Wednesday, February 06, 2019
  • 8:00 AM
  • Monday, April 06, 2020
  • 8:00 AM
  • South Australia

The following news article has been put together by our Prez! Jeff. The poor tortured soul had to deal with many issues and constant whinging like "are we there yet" - "you never said it was closed" - "you promised it wouldn't rain" - "how come you get to sleep with Lorraine every night ?"

Despite all the issues he managed to pull off another exceptional trip away for the "ZEDS" Well done Prez.

So read his detailed diary with a few photos at bottom of page, and try and come next year on another adventure.

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The Great ocean Ride 2019

Attendees

RussKawasaki Z 750 (The Sreening)

SimmoKawasaki Z 1000 (The Freeway Master)

BrozKawasaki Z 900 (The Overtaker)

BushyKawasaki Z1B 900 (The Hipster)

KrazaKawasaki Z1R 1000 (The Mountain road King)

Twiggy Kawasaki Z1A 900 (Ol’ Smokey / for three days only)

RedKawasaki Z 900 S (Lets Go!)

LeoBMW K1300 S (Gone)

LorraineHarley Davidson Sportster Tourer 1200 (The Loudest) 

SpeedHarley Davidson Ultra Glide 117ci (Hyunarley..The Oil Magician)

HendoFord Fairmont with trailer (Jurassic)

Harley JeffHarley Davidson Roadking Classic 103ci (Closed WTF!)


Places we stayed

Port Campbell Hostel 

Nelson Hotel, Nelson

Wellington Hotel, Wellington

Moonta Bay-Caravan Park

Victor Harbor-Beachfront Holiday Park

Beachport-Caravan Park

The Cally Hotel, Warrbambool

Forrest-The Wonky Stables Holiday Park


Day 1

All met at the Maccas in Rosebud for fuel and breakfast.  Simmo’s and Russ’s bikes were on the trailer to save money on the ferry trip.  The ferry trip was smooth, checked out a few properties while sailing and departed without concern. Red spent most of the trip holding onto his bike as it threatened to fall over.  Unloaded the two bikes and away we went to Moriac general store to meet up with Kraza and a quick coffee.

Headed off to Lorne to have lunch at the Swing Bridge Café……Alas, it was closed.  This was a mystery having only spoke to the owner the day earlier who assured me they were open every day.  Other locals also puzzled of its closure.

Little did I know that this scenario would set the scene for the entire ride.

Off for fuel and then to the majestic Grand Pacific Hotel for lunch.  This was the last sweltering day we would endure for the next 10 days.  Stopped at Mait’s rest to do the 800m rain forest walk.  Nice to stretch the legs.

Got to Lavers Hill enduring the vast numbers of overseas tourists who were less of better words, completely incapable of steering a motor vehicle around The Great Ocean Road.  Frequently veering onto the wrong side of the road in a corner and travelling at 25 to 30km/h.  I now consider the GOR a very dangerous prospect indeed which is a real shame.  Stopped at the café instead of the Lavers Hill Tavern.  Checked the rain radar and all hell was about to break loose from above.  We decided to head for the tavern to wait it out, but……Alas, it was closed.  So we adorned the wet weathers and off we went.

About 5 minutes into our last 45km leg, Armageddon unleashed.  I personally could barely see the mountainous roads that were twisting left and right on 30km corners. There was also concerns about the lightning directly overhead and we were in a forest.

Arrived at Port Campbell like drowned rats, checked in to the Hostel and proceeded to shower and try to dry wet boots, gloves and pants.  The accommodation was new and comfortable.


Day 2

Adorned the wet weathers again as there was some light rain about.  Breakfast was at the Alcove Café.  Nice food too!

Stopped at Warrnambool to see the George Taylor motorcycle collection.  The collection belongs to a 78yo customer which the store has taken on the responsibilities of holding the collection.  Mostly European and easily over 100 bikes.  Some very rare indeed.  Stopped in Warrnambool central for fuel, then off to Port Fairy for another walk, this time 2.5km round trip to the lighthouse.

After this, a well-deserved cold beer and lunch at the Caledonian (The Stump) Hotel.  

Off to Portland to check out the Cape Nelson lighthouse and to fuel up. Last stretch was 65km to Nelson, staying at the hotel.  Rooms were OK, some beds needed chocking, mozzies were prolific and one shower has cold water only.  Apart from that, the beer was cold and the food was great.


Day 3

Left Nelson, but fuel first at the BP which I was told for certain by the barman, it wold be open at 7.30 for sure…..Alas, it was closed, so headed for Port MacDonnell for breakfast at the Periwinkles Café………Alas, the kitchen was closed, but coffee was available.  Considering there were 12 of us wanting breakfast, they got the family to cook the meals.

Stopped at the Blue Lake in Mt Gambier for a look then onto the famous Engelbrecht Cave….Alas, it was closed.

In disbelief, we left for Millicent to fuel up.  Stopped at Kingston for lunch and to fuel up.  Got a group photo in front of the BIG LOBSTER.

Was going to stop a Salt Creek for a coffee….Alas, it was closed, Shut down actually.  Leo decided to open up the mighty BMW 1300 and off he went…Gone.  There was talk about the 220km/h mark being reached.  In 2 minutes he was no longer in sight.

At Salt creek, Speed noticed his brand new bike overheating and lost 1 litre of oil.  So we stopped to put some oil in and headed for the Coorong Hotel just up the road.  Told the publican that we would be back, gave him the dates and time for lunch and beer.  OK he exclaimed, I’ll be here…………

Off to Meningie for fuel then onto Wellington via a ferry for the night at the hotel.

The Wellington Hotel was a good hotel.  The accommodation was great in the cabins and even better in the economy huts complete with their own ensuite.  Broz decided to lock himself out of his room, but luckily Harley Jeff knew how to open it with a screwdriver.  Speeds bike used a further 500ml.  But it wasn’t burning it or dropping it.  So where has it gone????  Was it in the gearbox, no, was it in the primary chain case, no,

Apparently the motor was sumped, meaning the oil was not returning from the crankshaft, so a litre and a half of oil was sitting on the crankshaft.   Not good!

It was decided that Harley Assist would retrieve the bike and Speed would continue the ride…./ drive in a hire car.  So we took off to Hahndorf while Speed went with Hendo to pick up a hire car at Mount Barker which closed at 12 noon…….Alas, they decided to close early at 11.30am, just because, and knew Speed was on his way.  A taxi was then organised to take Speed into Adelaide airport to hire a car.  By 4 pm Speed was on his way.  Meanwhile, we got to Hahndorf in the rain again. Had breakfast and took in some of the shops including a very overpriced leather shop.

Went to Gawler via Gumeracha and Kersbrook taking a pass called Checker Hill Rd which was very steep.  At Gawler we stopped at the Southern Hotel, only to find that it must have been welfare pension day.  The place was filled with bogans, so we continued to Rhynie to have lunch at the Rhynie hotel.  A great little and very old hotel.

Got to Port Wakefield where Simmo said he will take us to the pub he visited last time…..Alas, it was closed down.  Found another pub, had a beer, fuelled up at the servo and headed off.

I checked my mirror, yep everyone is there, continued on only to see Red behind me.  Instantly I figured they turned right at the Y junction, so I sent Red to chase after them while I make a phone call to Hendo to get them to turn around.  But they were not ahead of us, but behind me attaching Lorraine’s gearshift lever that fell off.  I was mighty pissed off having sent Red 120km out of his way.

They stopped for Red and I up the road, as I waited for 45min for Red.  As we approached the waiting group, as Red pulled in, I took off, not in the mood to discuss it.  Luckily I got a call from Moonta Bay Caravan Park to conduct a late check in.  The guys caught up to me in Paskeville, then off to Moonta Bay.  This was the best place on the trip.  Accommodation was comfortable and the view was spectacular.  We spent 2 nights here.  Red Kraza and I fished.  I caught fuck-all the only thing that bit was the bloody sand flies (BASTARD THINGS), people did their own thing. We looked at a huge second hand store (found a book), beer at a pub and visited the Moonta Museum, very interesting to say the least.  We ate at two places, the Capella Café and Pier 22. Both were bloody excellent.

Day 4

Free day at Moonta Bay


Day 5

Breakfast at the Café, fuel at Moonta, then off to Port Wakefield for fuel and a coffee.  Headed to Balaklava stopped in front of the cop shop for a leak on the side of the road, then off to Birdwood auto museum via Owen, Gawler and Williamstown.  The museum was fantastic as always.  I noticed 3 bikes on display that related to me, 1950 BSA Bantam, 1949 BSA A7 and a Kawasaki Z1A, of course. (um that would be a round tank).

Lunch at the café across the road then off to Crafers for fuel.  But first we tackled the infamous B31 and the unbelievable Corkscrew Rd.  I have seen tight corners before, but not like this, plus the weather was shit.  The faster riders took off ahead of us and I suspected they would get lost in the Adelaide hills………and they did…….easy to do mind you!

We got to Uraidla via Ashton and Basket Range and adorned the wet weathers again. The poor lost souls had to tackle the Corkscrew in the wet……fuck that!

Headed down Mt Lofty Summit Rd, the road should have been a warning for me I guess, but its summer right……….wrong! Foggy, cold and wet, Oh and winding tight corners.  I came into a corner and the Roadking was just too heavy for the wet roads and slid sideways missing an oncoming car by a foot.

Stopped at Crafers for fuel, said goodbye to Twiggy as he was heading home nonstop, (Legend, and ol’Smokey did not stop) I told everyone in 600m down the freeway, we are getting off onto the B33 to Sterling.  Well we all nearly made it.  Simmo got caught in the traffic and could not exit.  Sounds very much like what happened to me in Tassie going up to Mt Wellington a few years back!!!!!!

Stopped at Macclesfield Hotel where Simmo caught up, had a beer (charming lot in there) and headed off to Victor Harbor.  The accommodation was very nice.  We were allowed to park directly outside our rooms on the grass.  We spent 2 night here.  Dinner was great at a local pub, but dinner and breakfast was even better on the second evening and morning having shopped for 11 people getting bacon, eggs, chops, sausages, Haloumi, avocado, OJ, salads, etc.


Day 6

Free day in victor Harbor


Day 7

Headed for Wellington to get the ferry via Clayton Bay and Milang.  Did not have lunch at the Courthouse Café in wellington because we were having lunch at the Coorong Hotel further on.  Fuelled up in Meningie then headed for Coorong Hotel for lunch………Alas, it was closed of course.  Hungry and thirsty (and wanting to burn the joint down), we ate some left-overs from our breakfast feast using the trailer towed by Hendo as a buffet.

Got to Kingston for fuel then headed with haste to Beachport.  The accommodation was great for those in the cottage, but very average for us in the cabin.  I was just thankful it was not a hot day, our cabin wold have been a sweatbox.  

Dinner was plentiful at the pub and breakfast was hearty at the waterfront café which was for sale for $250,000.  Good luck with that!


Day 8

Decided not to do Penola, Casterton Merino and Digby, but head straight for Warrnambool via Mt Gambia, Heywood and Port Fairy.  Got to Warrnambool, fuelled up, got separated, regrouped and Red said follow me, I know where it is.  We got to The Cally Hotel, but no Red, apparently he was looking for the Kelly.

Dinner was good and the accommodation comfortable.  This was a great pub, owned and run by a family.


Day 9

The plan was to leave Warrnambool, head for Terang to visit Brissell then ride to Cobden, visit Princetown’s 12 Apostle Inn and have lunch at Lavers Hill.  Then head for Apollo Bay then to Beech forest, Colac and finishing in Forrest, but everyone was exhausted, so we went to visit Brissell, had a coffee made some presentations. We decided to visit Twiggies workplace and have lunch at Mac’s Hotel. This Hotel was a real charm.  Lunch was great and coffee fantastic.  Twiggies workplace is cavernous.  We parked all the bikes in there along with the two cars and trailer no problem, and the place was also full of cars.

Left Mortlake to take the third exit of the round-a-bout………where did the RAB go.  Wrong end of town Jeff.  U turn then off we go to Colac.  Lost Red somewhere along the line, but we all caught up in Colac.  Got to Forrest where the accommodation was OK at best, however it served its purpose.  We had dinner at the Terminus Hotel just next door. 

The red bits have been added by Broz regarding the rides presentation day at "Brissells" thanks Broz.

No matter how much planning goes into an event like this (and in this case it would have been humongous, thanks Jeff) the elements, human nature or other sources always combine to stuff things up. But without those disasters things would have been a little less interesting and so here are this years winners:-

 

Armageddon Award. The weather which chose to dump 50ml of rain and huge electrical storm on us one hour out of Port Campbell, fortunately all riders made it to camp safely and a little damp.

Not quite Lost Award.  Simo and Bushy who managed to find the more scenic routes. Red and Leo could get a mention here as runners up.

Oops Award. According to the Duke of Edenborough, Hendo had the sun in his eyes when he reversed into a fence.

Your Not Listening Award. Red for bringing back squid bait instead of squid lure.

Greenie Award. Kraza who felt sorry for a large wasp fluttering in the breeze so he tucked it up in his jacket and gave it a 40km lift, the wasp was not eternally grateful and stung numerous times.

Wonder Woman. Lorraine for most improved rider and putting up with a bunch old farts for 10 days.

Bandaid Award.  Speeds Harley that couldn’t handle the pace and Bos’s fairing that almost Sailed off into the breeze.

Dangerous Curves. Leo apparently riding through the corkscrew.

Phantom Rider. Twiggy who couldn’t do the whole trip but was there in spirit.

 

Till next year Broz..

Day 10

In the morning, Kraza, Red and Speed were the first to leave, followed by Simmo, Russ, Bushy, Broz and Hendo about an hour later.  Leo, Lorraine and I were the last to leave.  We headed for the Great Ocean Road which we had to ourselves.  We had breakfast at the Kafe Koala, (yes Café is spelt with a K) fuelled up in Lorne, and got onto the A1 via Deans Marsh……..Home!

Things that where closed or fucked up

  • Swing Bridge Café closed (knew we were coming)
  • Lavers Hill Tavern closed (unknown why, staff were actually inside?????)
  • Heaviest rain I have ever ridden in
  • Overseas tourists driving dangerously all over the road and stopping anywhere along the Great Ocean Road
  • Uniting Church Camp Rd (still listed as such on google Maps) changed to Huxley Rd (as seen on google street view) WTF!!!
  • Cape Nelson Lighthouse closed
  • Nelson BP closed even though all the locals turning up 
  • Engelbrecht Cave Mt Gambier closed
  • Salt Creek closed down
  • Mt Barker Europe Car rentals closed half hour early even though they knew Speed was coming (pricks)
  • Southern Hotel (Bogansville)
  • Port Wakefield Hotel closed down
  • Corkscrew Road
  • Range rd in Basket Range and Basket Range Rd in Basket Range??????
  • Rain every time we hit a mountain road
  • Victor Harbor weather
  • Coorong Hotel closed even though they know we were coming
  • Last Caltex in Millicent closed
  • SA

Things that were fantastic

  • The trip itself
  • Great company
  • Ferry ride from Sorrento to Queenscliff
  • Weather in Victoria day 1
  • Lunch at the Grand Pacific Hotel
  • Alcove Café Port Campbell
  • Road from Apollo Bay to Lavers Hill
  • George Taylors Motorcycle collection
  • Cold beer at the Stump Hotel after our walk
  • Tantanoola Caves
  • Lunch at the Royal Mail Hotel Kingston
  • Cold beer at the Coorong Hotel after a long straight ride
  • Rhynie Pub
  • Moonta Bay Accommodation, region, food, view from cabins, locals were friendly 
  • Birdwood National Auto Museum
  • Visit to Brissell’s
  • Visit to Twiggies
  • Lunch at the Mac’s Hotel Mortlake

Thanks everyone for a great ride

One dummy spit….me

Two bits falling off…….Russ’s Fairing and Lorraine’s Gearshift lever

One total breakdown…… Speeds Brand new Harley

No downs, no punctures, no anger, lots of laughs……lots!

Great company

Harley Jeff Prez

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Yep! its a Lobster.

 

Russell, AKA "BOS"

 

We were expecting Mt Gambier to closed.

 

Hendo relaxing a bit too much.

 

Photo shoot with "Bristle"

 

Another perfect sunny day, "NOT"

 

O' the shame of it all. Great effort to hire a car to finish the ride. Dedication !  

 

Nothing to see here.

Race 6 number 4 and hurry it up.

© The Kawasaki Z Owners Club Inc 2018


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