Saturday, February 1, 2014

The Long and Winding Road

Sunday of Wellington Anniversary weekend seemed like an ideal time for the Blue Haze to go on an 'extended' ride. The plan was to go over the track, through Mangamaire and Rongomai, onto Route 52 to Pangaroa for lunch. Then an afternoon trip to Waipukarau via Wimbledon and Porangahau. The home leg would be through Takapau and Ormondville to Dannivirke for coffee, and back to Palmerston North.
There was a good turn out of 12 Blue Haze and Classic Club members. Bikes included 2 Yamaha TZRs (Kim and Dion), Honda VFR (Bruce S), Honda Bros (PC), Suzuki GSX600 (Ian), Kawasaki H2 (me), BSA A65 (Bruce), and BSA 500 (John R), MotoGuzzi LeMans (Paul), Kawasaki ER6 (Janet), Triumph Speed Triple (John L) and BMW GS (Bruce A).
After a detour to Eketahuna for petrol we worked our way round route 52 to Pongaroa for lunch at the pub. Unfortunately the wind was raging and the more exposed sections were a bit unpleasant, taking the shine off what is always a great ride. The pub lunch at Pongoroa is legendary and generous to a fault. Enough fuel to walk home on in the event of a breakdown!
After lunch 7 of the group headed back to Pahiatua to make a shorter day of it. From accounts given the trip over the Puketoi Range was quite hazardous with very strong gusts. The remaining 5 (Alan, Bruce A, PC, Janet, and Ian) took the road through Wimbledon and Porangahau to Waipukarau. After a petrol stop it was down the plains to Takapau and on back roads to Ormondville. Almost. The nav system on the H2 was a bit off the mark and we found ourselves on a dead-end gravel road missing Ormondville altogether. However a little back tracking and a turn off took us back onto the Weber Road about 15 minutes out of Dannivirke. While it added a bit of time to the trip it was good riding. After a break at Dannivirke we pointed homeward down the main road, arriving back in Palmerston Nth about 6pm.
A good day riding with good company and some new roads to experience. Doesn't get much better for an old joker on an old stroker.

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