Upon purchasing my new Royal Enfield motorcycle I was given a years subscription to the RECOAINC in other words the Royal Enfield Club of Australia. The Club meets once a month at an inner city pub and usually arranges a monthly ride.
Due to timing of buying the bike and Fathers Day Fun Night commitments at Cubs I had missed the August and September meetings but was invited along on a club ride.
Having never been in a motorcycle club before I wasn’t sure what to expect but went along with an open mind and thought if anything I would get some more miles on the bike and a bit more experience in road riding.
I was to meet the group around 900-930 at McGrath’s Hill McDonald’s as the rest of the group were starting at Sydney Park in St Peters near the Royal Enfield Dealer Motociclo.
I got there early and had some breakfast. There were heaps of bikes around but I could not identify any Royal Enfields.
Eventually a guy on a Harley(Peter) turned up who was there to meet up with Bruce the NSW President and do part of the ride, and another guy from up the mountains (Doug) who was going to ride to the Jenolan turn off and head home.
They were staring to wonder where the rest of the group was.
I thought, maybe no-one showed up in the city or someone broke down etc….?
Oh well if they dont show I’ll ride up the mountains with these two guys and then drop in and see my mate Jim who has a Triumph and go for a quick ride out to Bathurst or somewhere with him if he had time.
Shortly after they turned up a few at a time and after introductions and a coffee etc we took off for the mountains, through Richmond and up the Bells line of road.
Photo courtesy of Doug (taken from the Enfield Forum)
We pulled over before Bell for a break and to let everyone know we were going to turn off at the Causeway and go to MT Vic.
The two big Enfields Mike’s Carberry 1070 V-Twin and Doug’s 1968 Interceptor 750 Twin
The two big super bikes that “tagged along” can be seen behind the red Carberry
Kevin’s BMW S 1000 RR and Pauls Kawasaki Ninja 1100
In this picture you can see my bike and all the junk I brought and Alistair’s bike on the right with no saddlebags and him with only a small back pack for the trip.
I was the newbie and not experienced in motorcycle touring and as such I had 2 panniers and a set of saddle bags and I seemingly found myself continually opening and closing the bags, looking for things and either getting things out or putting things away every time we stopped.
I am now tempted to remove my pillion seat ( Jenny refuses to ride on the back anyway )
That way I wont be able to run panniers or saddle bags and wont be able to take anything “on the bike”. Not only does the bike look cleaner the less room you have the less crap you can bring.
I think a leather tool roll and a puncture repair kit should do it and I’ll run that slime stuff in my tubes so I don’t have to carry a spare one.Then a back pack with some undies and a toothbrush should be sufficient for an overnight trip.
We’ll see next trip whether I’ll be eating my words but the clean look of the bike is a big incentive !
Note – UPDATE – the pillion seat is now off along with the saddle baggage !!!!
Next we went through Mt Victoria and down Victoria Pass to the Full Throttle Cafe and had some morning tea.
They had delicious home made pies and “motorcycling themed” burgers etc.
Peter and Pat look at Peter’s 2006 Harley along with Alistair’s very tidy Enfield
Notice the Suzuki on the roof
Next it was off to Jenolan Caves, a road side sign informed us of fallen trees and since the wind was gusting during the Blue Mountains leg I knew what to expect as we turned south.
Fortunately we passed an SES truck and 4WD on their way out so we assumed the road would now be clear, along the way the road itself was littered with gum leaves branches and sawdust – a tell-tale sign of the SES’s good work, with many fallen trees visible on the roadside.
We didn’t stop long at Jenolan as we wanted to get to Taralga before it got too late and the roos came out and / or it started to rain.
We left Jenolan via the back road to Edith and then to Oberon where we had a beer at the Royal Hotel and those who needed to re-fuelled their bikes too.
I put on another thermal top and some inner thermal gloves and debated whether I should put on my wet weather gear as the sky was looking ominous.
Sure enough on the Oberon-Taralga road it started to rain slightly, Roger stopped to put on some rain gear ( washing up gloves over woolly thermal inners and a nylon over jacket) and at one point we pondered whether we heard sleet on our helmet’s visors. I pulled over too since we were the last two riders of the group. I decided to soldier on in my jeans but took the opportunity to un-drink which made me slightly more comfortable.
By the time we got to the pub we were freezing, I could not feel my knee caps and all I could think was I’m glad I bought a full face helmet for this trip and looked at those with lexan screens with envy.
After finding our rooms and dumping our gear Roger needed to have a shower to thaw out but I decided a beer by the fire was the go as my knees were damp.(well that was my excuse)
We were met at the pub by Stewart and his wife Terry from Bowral and Mick and Helen from Bungendore along with Gary also from Bungendore.
After sufficient re-fulling we made our way to the dinning room and had dinner after which some retired to bed and others adjourned to the pool room.
The 9am ETD in the morning gave me time to take some photos as I am an early riser I had a shower, a cup of coffee and some toast (provided at the pub’s self serve ktichenette) and headed out to take some photos of the town with Mike.
Enfields only this end
Taralga Hotel Est 1876
The Pub was built in four stages by the looks
The original front section in 1876
The rear section in stone in 1911
The grey painted brick section on the left probably 50’s or 60’s etc
and the Cafe styled beer garden outdoor area with storm clears more recently
Post office apparently made in 2580 !!!
Lookout a car!
Cute little bank
Art Deco RSL Club
We left Taralga and headed to Goulburn for breakfast, after ditching the Bakery as it was too busy we ended up at the Green Grocer Cycling Cafe which was a hybrid of a up-market bicycle shop, a green grocer and a cafe (which took up most of the floor space).
Hanging above the counter was a carbon frame ticketed at $9500
“can I have a hamburger with egg and a can of coke”
“would you like fries with that?”
“no but I’ll have that carbon frame and a kilo of carrots please …..do you take AM-EX?”
After another excellent feed we headed off to the Southern Highlands and said good bye to the Bungendorians.
We went along Mountain Ash Rd to Bungonia then back to the Hume for a short while to Highland Way to Tallong Wingello Penrose to Bundanoon
Bundanoon Railway Station
The last stop for the whole group
After a quick break at Bundanoon the group split as from here people headed toward their final destinations via different routes.
Bruce and I decided to continue through the Southern Highlands and onto the Camden Valley passing through Exeter, Moss Vale, Bowral, Mittagong, Yerrinbool, Bomaderry, Yanderra, and a final stop at Bargo for a drink and un-drink and to take all our thermals off etc as we were approaching sea level and it was getting warm.
As we were talking Ian, Roger and Alistair turned up and asked “how did you guys get in front of us?”
Turns out Stewart (a local) took them on a more scenic route but I cant recall which way they went.
So the five of us left Bargo, Ian departed the group first then Roger and Alistair peeled of towards the M5’s direction, Bruce lead me through Tahmoor Picton Razorback Camden Park and then to Narellan where we made our way back via Camden Valley way to Cowpasture Rd then to Ferrers Rd to Eastern Creek.
From there we went along the Great Western to the Prospect Hwy then to Seven hills and said our goodbyes as he detoured to Baulkham Hills as I crossed Winston Hills home to Northmead.
What a trip !
Thanks again to all the guys for making it such a memorable first Royal Enfield Club trip.
Click on link to see map