Saturday, January 4, 2014
First Ride of 2014
Thursday 2nd January saw five of us head North for a day's ride. Those lined up for the ride were Kim on his Yamaha 3VX 2-stroke V-twin, Ian on his Suzuki GSX600F, Paul Clemoes who brought along his beautiful Yamaha RD350LC, Janet Clemoes on her Kawasaki ER-6, and myself on the Aprilia.
We headed over to Whanganui via Halcolme and Marton, and had coffee at the Red Lion. Then some fun riding up the Parapara Road to the Field's Track turn off. Here a sign told us the road was closed due to a slip, but we decided to give it a try and had no problem getting through. The track is a narrow twisty ribbon of road with wandering stock and long grass up to the road's edge. A relaxed pace seemed the best approach.
We stopped for lunch at the pub at Ohakune, and decided to make the trip home via Taihape. Once out on SH1 we were passed by the obligatory group of open- piped Harleys (lane splitting on a two lane road), and after a refuel at Taihape we carried on south and turned off at Mangaweka heading through to Rangiwahia. From there it was onto Kimbolton, another favorite stretch of tarmac for the Blue Haze. This time there were mobile chicanes in the shape of pottering SUVs to be negotiated. We stopped to stretch our legs at Kimbolton, and unfold Kim from his racing crouch! Actually the 3VX proved a very capable mile-eater and surprisingly frugal in cruise mode for a 250 stroker, and reasonably comfortable according to Kim. Paul kept a watchful eye on the LC's tank throughout the day as it had the greatest thirst. The 4-stroke 600 / 650s were miserly by comparison. We had no issues with machinery and pleasant weather, dry roads, and good company made for an enjoyable day's riding.
By Sir Al