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Having a ball at the Gnowangerup Hotel

ITíS the middle of August and the weather looks great, so 27 riders head out for the Gnowangerup Pub. There were over 20 participants in the poker run, which was $5 in and 10 prizes at the end. First card was at Amity Tavern, the next Kamballup, this was followed by a third at Bluff Knoll carpark. I had a bit of trouble on an R80 BMW at Bluff Knoll. I was enjoying the bends on the road up to the carpark, when on the last bend, a long u-shaped left hander the bike went into a huge tankslapper when I put the brakes on. The guys behind me were wondering what I was doing as the front wheel was bouncing up and down on the road, handlebars oscillating wildly, and apparently my head in tune with the handlebars and the bike going straight ahead. So with visions of me jumping off the bike and letting it crash down the hill I managed to slow it enough to be able to let go the front brake and accelerate around the bend. So with some relief I got to the carpark and inspected the bike ó The steering head bearing lock-nut had come undone!!! The cards were dealt out and we headed off to our next card stop at Amellup Roadhouse, where most had a drink, Iíd drunk half my coffee when I knocked the remains over the sheet with who had what card - one of those days I thought, mind you there were one or two suggestions that I was trying to rig the results ha ha! Back on the road again, this time to the Gnowangerup Hotel where we were given the keys to our rooms. The pub is very biker friendly, we had two sheds to park the bikes, the one shed even had carpet on the floor. After a few beers the last card was drawn before we retired to the dining room where we had an excellent meal. Later on in the evening pool was all the go. The pub has a great pool room with an old large wood fire, armchairs and juke box. Mick and Sharlene were uncrowned champions, I think I had about 7 different partners and lost every game, canít quite figure that out!! Then about 10.30 after a bit of dancing broke out some of the locals were urging us to finish playing pool, we couldnít figure out why, but soon found out - They wanted to dance on the pool table, strange behaviour!!! Mind you one of the first up there was Zac, who originated from Gnowangerup, I got the feeling that heís a bit of a legend at the Gnowangerup Hotel. Although at one stage there were four ragers spotted gyrating on the pool table, most probably best if they remain nameless. Then it clicked as to why I was having trouble winning a game of pool - of course, it was the tableís fault! Next morning everyone seemed in good condition (must have been the dancing) and during breakfast prizes were awarded by the publican for the Poker Run. Huw had the best hand with four fives and won an extra large bottle of Scotch. As we booked in on the Saturday, the publican put our names in a box for the draw for the nine consolation prizes, these included more whisky, stubbie holders, caps and a bandana. These were very well received. After breakfast it was time to head home. It had rained in the night and was still a bit damp as we headed out of Gnowangerup. At one stage as we were heading towards the Stirlings, Merv shot past me and then Chris who was riding in front of me. Now by a bit of misfortune as Merv passed Chris he went through a huge puddle of water, it looked like she was riding through a tidal wave. I pulled into Kamballup a couple of minutes before Chris and said to Merv, "Youíre in deep trouble, wait till Chris gets here." He said, "Did I get her?" "Yep" said I. "Oh no," he said, or words similar to that. This was most enjoyable I thought, Rob from Denmark had witnessed it to - so Merv was looking a bit nervous as Chris came in, "Oh she donít look too happy," he said. By now Iíd thought it was hilarious. Chris jumped off her bike, came over to a very nervous Merv, and burst into laughter - But yes, she was wet, ha ha. The rest of the ride home was uneventful, but it was a great weekend.