The Old Bike Week Away is one of my favourite club events and I was really looking forward to riding our bikes though the South West. Even though we have travelled around Australia and New Zealand in the last 10 months it's always nice to explore more of Western Australia too because it is the most beautiful state.
Garry Blake had organised this year's week away and he had done an awesome job! All the riders and back-up people met at the info bay on the Saturday morning, everyone was keen to start the holidays.
Our first stop wasn't that far away, we stopped for a cuppa by the river in Denmark. Phillip, Bronwyn, Andrew, Wendy, John Davis and his son Trent met us there. It was Trent's first week away, hopefully we haven't scared him off. He was great company and we hope to see him again on some of our rides.
We enjoyed riding to Walpole were we stopped for lunch in the park. We always have plenty of stops along the way which is great, lots of time to chat and giving our bums a rest. Our first 2 nights we would spend in Manjimup at Warren Way caravan park just outside of town. We were allocated a huge area where we could fit tents, bikes, cars and tables and chairs.
We just sat down to have a cuppa when the lady owner of the park arrived with a big tray full of scones, straight from the oven, what a great treat and what a lovely gesture. We will be back!
Poor Colin missed out on a scone as he had left Albany later than us. There was a nice camper's kitchen with a BBQ for us to use and a microwave to heat up meals that we cooked at home.
Sunday morning we woke up to thick fog. It had a beautiful mysterious look when the sun filtered through. By the time we were ready to go for our day ride it had cleared and it was nice and sunny.
Garry had picked a lovely route and all of us did a great job at corner marking. Garry up front and who ever was behind him would stop on the corner and wait till the tail end Charlie would arrive. Then the next person behind Garry would do the same. It worked really well.
We had our lunch in Balingup and enjoyed having a chat to all the other club members and also we talked about future club rides/trips away.
That evening we enjoyed listening to Bob singing and playing his guitar. Of course there were the club's favourites with us singing along.
That night traffic was very noisy, a lot of trucks came past as we were not far away from the road. So if we go there again it might be best to spend the Saturday night there as the traffic wasn't as bad. Still we are on holidays so it doesn’t really matter.
The next day started off nice and sunny but I checked the forecast and the radar told me there was rain on its way. We all packed up quickly and yes the rain did come.
We headed off in the rain and stopped again at Balingup, this time for morning tea before heading to Donnybrook for lunch.
We arrived in Busselton at one of my favourite caravan parks: RAC holiday park and the weather was now sunny and warm. We all got big areas to camp right next to the camper's kitchen. There is also a huge veranda where we could sit for happy hour.
We were staying at Busselton for 4 nights and used it as a base, taking off every day to go for a nice ride.
Garry had done a great job organising this week and we all enjoyed it very much. Garry had printed off some route sheets so we knew where we were going but with the corner marking it all ran smoothly.
On Tuesday morning we went to the Berry Farm where we had coffee and
some beautiful berry pies.
Some of us rode down to Augusta to have a look at the lighthouse and have some lunch. We had a look at Prevelly Beach on the way back. Caves Road is always nice to travel along on but I always forget how long it actually is. We also stopped at Canal Rocks before heading to Dunsborough to get some supplies for the night.
Another very happy hour was held before dinner and there was a lot of noise coming from the games room. We had a blast paying pool, table tennis and table soccer, so many laughs and so much NOISE! But we are good people and would stop at 10 pm.
Wednesday morning was a relaxing one for most of the ladies, reading books, chatting and drinking coffee. Most of the blokes had gone to Terry Germain's to have a look at his collection of bikes and parts.
Davis showed us his “new” leather coat, it looked pretty cool on him
while he also wore Bob's helmet and goggles.
Ronnie and I went into Busselton and had a chat to Garry and Raelene who were having a coffee near the jetty.
More games of soccer, pool and table tennis that evening after we had our dinner and Bob got the guitar out and we all enjoyed singing along.
Thursday was another fun day of riding. We did have a bit of rain along the way but then the sun would come out again to dry everything. We rode through Capel and had our lunch stop in Boyanup. There was also a well stocked op shop where we had a look. The girls found some tops and Colin found some more shot glasses, he's got quite a selection now.
Very handy as every evening different port bottles come out for some tasting. The next morning it was time to say goodbye to Busselton, most of us were heading down to Pemberton for our last night on this trip.
The old bike week away is such a nice week. People come along for the whole week, others arrive a bit later in the week or leave a bit earlier.
It's all very casual and so nice to spend time together or do your own thing for the day. It's been a very popular bike event and I hope there will be plenty more to come.
Our morning tea stop was in Nannup before riding to Bridgetown where we had lunch in the park near the river. The weather was lovely there but later in the afternoon when we rode to Pemberton it got cooler and it started to drizzle.
After putting up our tents and happy hour we walked to the Sports Club
in the rain to celebrate another successful old bike week away with
drinks and nice meals. We also celebrated Steve Collins' birthday.
We could collect some firewood from behind the office and we had a nice big fire when we got back to the camp-ground.
The next morning we filled up at the petrol station before heading to
the Bakehouse in Nornalup.
Just before the turnoff to Northcliffe Colin's chain came off the Honda. Lucky he didn't come off and the Honda ended up on the back-up trailer. After the most delicious pies and coffees we said our goodbye's to our motorcycle mates and headed off back to Albany. Dreaming of future rides and weeks away.
Thanks to Garry for organising a great trip, thanks to Raelene,
Bob/Chris and Wendy for doing back up and for carting gear around. I
would like to say well done Chris R. and John D. for riding the oldest
bikes on this trip!