Friday, 3 October 2014

Cruisin' the Coast...

Feeling excited this morning as I leave Mt Gambier. Today I'm heading for one of the most iconic bike roads in Australia, the "Great Ocean Road' 350 klm of scenic, winding road running along the bottom of Victoria.

The day starts out cool and overcast as I head off along the 20 k's to the border, and as border crossings go, this is probably the least memorable other than to say that you can tell you're in Victoria because the road surface instantly turns from good to crap. The further into Victoria you go, the worse the roads get. I sure hope this isn't an indicator of what's about to come.

The run down to Portland is pleasant but it's not until I get to this that things get interesting... 

At first I thought it was the 12 Apostles but I soon learn that this is just a small part of the spectacular scenery ahead.

Lunch is here at Port Campbell. I watch as a boat is launched into very heavy surf and can't believe these people are going to ride that out to the ocean.

The ride along the coast is simply stunning and getting quite warm. Scenery at every turn (and there's a truckload of twists and turns) but it gets quite hairy with Asian and Middle Eastern tourists in camper vans and 4WDs all over the road.

The worst of them is the Asians. You come round a corner to find them straddling the white line, and waving you off the road like it's all theirs and you're going the wrong way. It really is a wonder there isn't more deaths. Road rage builds within me.

Finally! The 12 Apostles. The view that every Aussie would recognise from pictures. Worth every bit of the effort to get here, except for one small thing....

The car park at the top is chock-a-block full of cars and tour buses - and this isn't the height of the tourist season. It's one of those things I guess, where you're smack in the middle of the wilderness, surrounded by mother nature, and ready to enjoy everything she has to offer. It would be a darn sight more spectacular without the thousands of tourists and the constant buzzing of helicopters flying up and down the coast. When I return to the bike I notice the choppers are on a 60 second turnaround. A new one lifts off every minute.

Cruisin' the highway was such a pleasure that I just kept riding, all day long, and before I knew it I was entering Geelong and it was peak hour on a Friday afternoon. I was knackered and busting for a pee and suddenly I was faced with a sign that said 'Freeway to Melbourne'. To move beyond this intersection was the point of no return.... Next stop Melbourne. I quickly decided on a left turn and as luck would have it, within 50 metres I was in the driveway of a motor inn. Instant accommodation. here ended my day.

Today's route.