Canberra to the South Coast of NSW

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by Kim F, Aug 14, 2019.

  1. Kim F

    Kim F Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Oddometer:
    71
    Location:
    Canberra, Aus
    My other half is off gallivanting around the other side of the world - Canberra is having one of it's coldest snaps ever - snowed during the Footy on Friday night. I have been eyeing off a bike camping trip to Wilson's Promontory in Victoria then ferrying across Port Phillip Bay and riding the Great Ocean Road - in winter- mid week, so no crowds and Parliament is not sitting so I don't miss out on work. Been trying to get away last week but the weather was really cold. It made sense to do a trial run down to the South Coast.

    So Monday morning, packed the bike with all the camping gear, some food essentials. It is quite an art-form to strap everything safely to the bike and I got Michael to run a last safety check. All good, first stop COSTCO for refueling. Everyone was having problems with the new card readers they have installed on the pumps. I helped one person then everyone else came to "bloke on the bike" to get their bit of assistance - Jeepers, the new card readers are just like ATMs so not sure why everyone was struggling.

    The best thing about riding to the coast on Mondays is very little traffic - I think I overtook one car and was overtaken by one car on overtaking lanes. I really enjoy the ride when one doesn't need the stresses of bad drivers on the road. The Clyde Mountain is always enjoyable - if you watch the YouTube, there may have been a little cursing when some cars were reluctant to overtake the trucks that had pulled to the side to make room.

    So around 2 and half hours after departing, I arrive at Broulee Big 4 campground. $20 a night for a tent site - the park is actually very pretty with good beach access but the actual Van Sites and Tent Sites are very ordinary. Toilets and showers were clean A few Vanners were there, not overly friendly. A bit of a struggle to get the tent up but all good in the end - I need to be more disciplined in where I put things. Went for a walk to the beach and then to see if there were any cafes open - Nope, the little local supermarket was a depressing little place but I had earned a Lemon,Lime and Bitters.

    Had an early dinner....or was that a late lunch - knew I had forgot something. One last stroll to the beach and then back to my annex where I read a book on the iPad and marveled at how cold it was getting. By 7:30, I was shivering, didn't want to put all my riding gear on so I retreated into the tent proper. At about 8:30, one last trip to the Loos then bed-time. Absolutely lovely listening to the waves crash on the beach, it almost drowned out the chattering of my teeth. My sleeping bag is rated to Minus 4, Minus 27 in extreme circumstances whatever that means. I also had a liner and an insulated sleeping pad underneath me but I froze. I could hardly sleep and the middle of the night walk to the Loo was horrible. My Sister tells me that Moruya got to minus 1 that night

    Morning was very welcome. Boiled the kettle and used my new portable espresso machine that makes a really nice shot of coffee. A Muesli bar was breakfast and then I made my way to the bike trail that runs between Broulee and Moruya Heads. There are a number of Geocaches along the trail which I had started from the other end some months ago. The walk is truly lovely, far better than on a push bike and I was happy with my world - the backdrop of waves on the beach added to the effect. Caching almost completed - will need to return one last time to get the finale of the series.

    Made by way back to camp and had some Nasi Goreng. As I watched a new neighbour struggle to put up his tent, I made the executive decision to cut my losses and not have another night like the previous one. Not sure which is easier, making camp or breaking camp - I did have difficulty in strapping everything to the bike but I did stop a few times to make sure nothing was moving - the late afternoon sun is not easy on the bike especially in and out of shadows - the wind had sprung up as well. I was glad to reach the peak hour traffic of Canberra but a few last hairy moments on roundabouts where the sun blinded me. Great to get home, great nights sleep in own bed and the YouTube will be published shortly.



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    #1
    bobw likes this.
  2. UselessOnABike

    UselessOnABike Chris McCartney

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2015
    Oddometer:
    32
    Location:
    Northern Ireland. Past: Australia, & New Zealand
    Very cool bike, and awesome trip! I lived in Australia for a few years (2013 to 2015 - Darwin) but I'm returning to Aus in a few months time (Queensland). The BMW looks like the perfect cruiser. Did you store gear under the seat too? I've had a few bikes (Honda XR125, KTM 400EXC), but never actually did my bike license (car license 10+ years though), so I'm planning to get my bike license in QLD and pick up a LAMS bike. Great to see road trips in Australia!
    #2
  3. Kim F

    Kim F Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Oddometer:
    71
    Location:
    Canberra, Aus
    Yep, under seat storage was put to good use. Now, if only I could connect my Schuberth helmet Comms to the GoPro............
    #3
  4. bobw

    bobw Harden the phuck up

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,084
    Location:
    God's country, Western North Carolina
    Nice run to "get away from it all"! I haven't ridden the BMW, but a riding friend let me try his Yamaha Executive (650 "super scooter" with all the bells and whistles) and it was incredible how well it handled, convenience of all the storage and just how capable it was in general. Rarely see them on the road regardless Brand which is too bad as they are a great option.

    I enjoy cold weather camping and when I experience discomfort like you described at or above the same temperatures I usually am comfortable in, it is most often when I am by a stream or lake where a little extra moisture in the air settles along the ground and it helps that cold bite into me. We all are different as to what will make us comfy, but I found a good wool cap along with heavy wool socks and base layers really did the trick and when making a middle of the night walk it wasn't quite the shock like when leaving a warm sleeping bag behind in garments that were challenged to begin with.

    Cheers
    #4
  5. bigjohnsd

    bigjohnsd '14 BMW R1200 GS Adv Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2014
    Oddometer:
    334
    Location:
    Spearfish, SD
    Planning on riding this area in November - doubt that it will be cold.
    #5
  6. Kim F

    Kim F Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Oddometer:
    71
    Location:
    Canberra, Aus
    I kicked myself when I got home ........ found my woolly beanie in my luggage !
    #6
    bobw likes this.