Southern Run, Sunday 17th February 2008
The weather forecast for the day was for a hot day and they did not get it wrong. Never-the-less, there was already a crowd waiting at the starting point when I arrived. Rather than ride my new Suzuki, I selected my faithful Ariel after sorting out problems with the generator, albeit with the help of Don Tonkin.
After preliminary comments by Captain Malcolm and I, Paul Knapp followed up with the roll call. There were a total of 27 bikes at the start, including Bob Gill on his 1913 BSA and Leon Mitchell on the 1914 Rudge. Dean & Audrey Govan with their car and trailer provided backup with Laurie Leibhardt as passenger, nursing his sore leg.
Leslie Jones followed with their car as Bob made an appearance on his bike. Denis Saunders & wife Rosemary also attended with their car.
Moving off with the marshals, I set a leisurely pace, yet we were soon at the Baker’s Gully Road turn off. Nearby, we found Alf Lear and Tony Morriset waiting to join us with their Ariel Outfit and HRD Comet respectively. Further along our planned route we encountered Wickam’s Hill, a winding uphill gradient that used to be a regular part of the motorcycle trials scene up to at least the mid 1950s, after which a bitumen surface spoilt the fun. Never the less, the many sharp bends still made for an interesting ride. Leon Mitchell and Bob Gill managed the climb on the belt drive Rudge and BSA, respectively, which is a credit to their ability on such old timers with no gears. We duly arrived at our first regroup stop at the Hope Forest CFS area only to find that a number of cyclists were holding time trials from there.
A quick word with their organizer and we were able to solve the congestion that could have arisen without too many problems.
Duly rested and without Bob Gill who it seems got lost somewhere, we again headed off, dodging cyclists for awhile, before following interesting back roads to Mt Compass, here, the plan was to buy some lunch and take it to our destination. However, many were unable to wait after our intrepid journey through the wilderness & consumed their rations on the spot.
The group then returned along the Nangkita Rd. to the Blueberry Patch, where the bikes were parked, some with the help of boards under stands and supplied by our thoughtful Captain.
Bob Gill on the veteran BSA joined us after getting lost and taking a long journey through Meadows.
The group soon settled in under the shade of trees, sitting at available tables & chairs. Then we soon got down to the serious business of licking the wonderful blueberry ice cream that is available at the nearby shop. Some also finished their lunch in this heavenly location and washed it down the Sparkling Honey drink also available, then headed back for more ice cream. Well, after all, it was hot and “the ice cream delicious, at least that’s my excuse. It was then time for Grant Gartrell, one of the owners of the establishment, to give us a talk on the history & growing of blueberries. This was followed by him showing some of the more energetic around the bird proof’ growing area.
No body seemed greatly interested in leaving this wonderful place, but it was time to leave and venture once more onto the roads for our return trip under the blazing sun. Some chose to leave us for more direct routes to their homes, whilst the rest completed the course, safe sound to the finish point at Black’s Rd. and Happy Valley Dr. Special thanks to the Govans for providing the back up and to the Marshals who helped make this a special day.
Those in attendance:
Bob Gill 1913 Veteran BSA
Leon Mitchell 1914 Veteran Rudge
Rob Smyth 1929 Cammy AJS
Bob Mather 1932 Scott
Harry Richards 1937 ? motorcycle
David Radloff 1939 Panther
Bob Kretschmer 1941 BSA wm20
David Cant 1947 Indian
John Deacon 1949 Norton Twin
Ken Ollson 1949 AJS
Ian Baldock 1950 Ariel
Paul Knapp 1951 AJS Twin
Graeme Bartlett 1952 Norton
Bryan Dunn 1952 AJS
Richard Kretschmer 1956 Norton Outfit
John Williams 1955 Triumph
Daryl Rosser 1956 Triumph T110 (First time out)
Ian Tonkin 1957 Triumph
Don Tonkin 1958 Velocette
Malcolm Gray 1971 BMW
Peter Langdon 1973 Triumph
Bob Jones 1974 Moto Guzzi
Geoff Thompson 1976 C.Z.
Don Cellier 1980 BMW
Roger O’Loughlin 1989 Suzuki
Ted Williams 2001 Triumph
Laurie Leibhardt and Dean Govan – Back up trailer