Tag Archives: Dairy Plains

The last (?) ride before winter hibernation

That’s right, this will be one of the last, if not The last ride we get in before winter really hits. It is getting pretty cold out there at the moment.
So fore-going our usual ‘coffee run’ we instead decided to head north to Deloraine and visit my sister.

Route:Middleton to Dairy Plains via Cressy & Longford.

Weather: typical Tasmanian Autumn – mildly overcast, some sun, windy, bloody cold.

Distance and time: 275 km, 3.5 hrs. Leave home 9.30, arrive 1.30. Leaving 3pm, arrive home 7.30.

Stops: Bridgewater for warm-up stop 30 mins, Campbell Town 15mins, Longford 15mins petrol.
Stops on way home. Perth, 30mins, Hobart 30 mins.

We woke to freezing cold, frost on the ground and some sunshine. We had the opportunity to decide not to but we rarely change our mind once we’ve decided to do something, and off we set.
The weather in the northern suburbs of Hobart was foggy and cold, and we were no already frozen before we’d really left, so a quick stop for a warming coffee. Nothing beats warming the insides when the air is biting. Crossing the bridge through the fog brought the word cold to a whole new level, even if it did look pretty cool.
Briefly warmed up we set off and while there were some (small) warm pockets in the sunshine, it was mostly cold. Cold air is one thing, but moving at 100km/hr + is colder still and I think we felt every last bit of it.

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A pit stop at Campbell Town before heading off, this time taking a side road with lots of nice corners and dips, before stopping at Longford for petrol. Straight roads are good but bends are better. Loads more fun.
The final stretch took us back onto the highway then the back roads to Dairy Plains.

This map shows the main highway route rather than the one we took as it wouldn’t highlight all the parts I wanted, and then there is a part missing in the map as well. The route we took is from where it starts at the bottom, along both light shaded parts, jointing where the road number is, rather than going back to the highway.

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There’s nothing like puppies jumping at your feet, a roaring fire, coffee and lunch to make you feel warm inside. And a good catch up with your sister.

Back on the road at 3, the evening temperature drop was already in its way and I knew it would beat cold trip home. Stopping at Perth, 4pm, for a petrol top up and calling home before getting back on the bike.

My body has become accustomed to the way of sitting on the bike and does not hurt so much the next day anymore. Mind you, after 5 hours of sitting on the bike and you feel every bump on the road. From tail bone, it rattles it’s way up your spine and vibrates into your head. We stuck to the highway and it was noticeable how few bikes were out and about. Hmm, I’m not surprised.

The further south we went, the darker it got, and I got that familiar thought going through my head. Now don’t get me wrong, I love riding pillion, and while it gets as boring as the car, because I’m not in control I still love it, and am always happy to jump on board. But every now and then I have this strange thought, “what am I doing one here?” The I would never have thought seriously about getting on a bike and yet, here I am, zipping along on top of two wheels and an engine, in the wide open space that is outside. A car will never give you this freedom, there is something wild and crazy and beautiful about being completely outside like this. Then, as it got darker, I had that same thought, it’s dark and here I am riding around on the back of the bike. I think it’s still the whole amazement that I have done this and am loving it so much. I hate roller coasters, but put me on the back of a bike at speed and I’m loving it.
And riding at night is pretty cool. Not sure how often I want to do it, but especially through town, I love it. I’ve said it before, but you see so much more when on the bike, a whole new perspective. And driving through Hobart, done it a thousand times, but last night was an eye opener, almost like seeing it for the first time.

Back to the trip. Where as I? Oh yeah, we stopped at Perth and then kept going til we hit Hobart. Crossing the bridge at Bridgewater (sounds really obvious when written like that) was just as cold as the morning, but we skipped through the train crossing a split second before the lights went on. Thankfully, I wasn’t prepared to stop in there cold.
Coming through the city, we took a right turn instead of straight through and then across a couple of blocks, finishing at Maccas for a coffee.
Now, this is a mere 40mins rote mum home, surely we could have kept going? Well that’s what hubby said, but we both agreed, we would have fallen off the bike at the house, and having a rest meant the last forty km was comfortable and didn’t feel like 140. Makes a huge difference to how you feel.

I write this on Saturday, it’s taken me all day mind you. We’ve visited friends, done some shopping, washed the dog, and getting organised for our road trip tomorrow. I’m going to love it, and will hopefully there will be some fantastic pictures to show you. A little big piece of Tasmanian history.
Friday was great, Saturday busy but relaxing, and Sunday… we shall see.
Have a great rest of your weekend, a happy Mother’s Day to all mums out there.

Jennifer 🙂

bike road trip – day 1

Route: (Middleton) Hobart to Dairy Plains via the East Coast (Swansea, Bicheno, St Helens) Derby and Launceston.

Weather: typical Tasmanian Spring. Sunshine, wind, drizzle.

Distance and time: 531 km, 9+ hrs -leaving home 7am, arrive 4.30 pm.

Stops: Kingston, 15mins; Sorell, 30mins breakfast; Triabunna, 15mins; Swansea, 15mins; St Helens,1 hour lunch; Derby, 15mins; Scottsdale, 10mins petrol; Launceston, 15mins; Dairy PLains.

The day started well, out the door by 7, right on time, as I drove the loan car back to the body works and dressed for bike riding there. We were early enough to not be caught in the full onslaught of peak hour traffic and stopped for breakfast at Sorell, a good half hour out of Hobart. It was drizzling by this stage but as we headed further north and east the sun came out and was fresh but nice when we stopped another hour on at Triabunna. 20130928-134736.jpg The east coast of Tassie is beautiful. Rolling hills of bushland and lush paddocks full of sheep and froliking lambs on one side with the Tasman Sea, Maria Island and Frecynet Peninsula on the other. A perfect bike riding road in between. I was prepared to take lots of pictures, and hubby was happy to stop anytime I wanted but with the wind and hazy weather there was nothing that really stood out for me. Plus I was enjoying the ride and the feeling that comes with being out in the open air. There is nothing quite like it. Stopping briefly at Swansea to ease the sore bums, stretch legs and have a drink I snapped off a picture of what the weather was doing, and from then on it become really windy. 20130928-134841.jpg I was ok with it mostly, but its really hard to not overcompensate when taking a corner and having the wind wanting to blow you the other way. I do what i do on a normal corner but needing to push against the wind you don’t want to upset the bike and rider too much. Arriving around 12ish in St Helens we were ready for lunch and decided an easy fish and chips meal was just the thing. As most towns on the water who serve food, there is always a punt/converted fishing boat somewhere close by. I took the scallops while hubby had prawns and we shared a huge fillet of fish (flake for those in the know). 20130928-134947.jpg 20130928-134956.jpg 20130928-135106.jpg The next leg was heading inland towards Derby, an old mining town with a rich Chinese history. (If you take the bridge pictures, and signs along the way as any indication, we chose not to go through the museum this time) The wind did not let up and with road works along the way made the trip interesting but at least it was still sunny. Stopping by the river for a leg break and take a few pictures 20130928-135227.jpg 20130928-135234.jpg we were soon on our way again to Scottsdale for a petrol stop. From Scottsdale there was a range to climb up and over to get into Launceston and that’s where the fun started. We had agreed that maybe the rain would be better than the wind. Well, it pays to be careful what you wish for. It didn’t just rain, it hailed. Oh fun joy. A quick stop for rest rooms and to check the exact location of my sister’s place and we were on our way. Highway riding is pretty boring and in the rain, even more so. A hot coffee to warm the hands, clean socks and hogging the heater helped to thaw us out. And that was day 1.

Update. I forgot the maps.
Hobart to St Helens.

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St Helens to Derby.

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Derby to Dairy Plains via Launceston

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