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Feb
22
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We decided to again source Yamaha bikes since we are familiar with them and they are good and reliable and after tracking down Yamaha Dealers in the USA we decided to base our departure for our trips in Chicago for convenience for at least the first two trips we have planned and have found a dealer now who has sourced a couple of bikes for us (pictured below).

DuPage Honda Yamaha
27 W 215 North Avenue West Chicago IL 60185
Phone: 630.231.8700
Fax: 630. 231.0215

http://www.dupagehonda.com/default.asp




My bike – Yamaha 2010 V Star Tourer (Colour - Seashell)very similar to the Champagne of the bike I had in the UK, go figure!

We are dealing with Robert Moretti at DuPage Honda and Yamaha who has been terrifically helpful so while we are finalising the route, insurance and all the legalities, the Du Page folks will take care of them until we arrive and also take care of fitting handgrip heaters and more comfortable touring seats to the bikes and a power source for our GPS units as well as panniers to Norm’s bike which just gives us better capacity to stow wet weather gear and covers for the bikes…….and some shopping if I ever get the chance! They will store the bikes for us between trips as did the Faversham Bike Shop in the UK.

We are also eternally indebted to our nephew Kevin in Louisianna who is running inteference for us with some of the arranging which needs to take place. Couldn't do it without him. Thanks Kev! One of the great advantages in having such a huge family.



Norm’s bike – Yamaha 2012 V Star 950 (Colour - Liquid Silver)

Norm will again make use of our association with our local Yamaha Dealer so he can take the measurements he needs of a 950 they have in stock so he can manufacture brackets to secure our suitcases to as we did on the UK bikes.

TRARALGON MOTORCYCLES
319 Princess Highway, Traralgon, Vic 3844
Phone: 03 5176 2399
Fax: 03 5176 2530

http://www.traralgonmotorcycles.com.au


While we are showcasing the people who make these trips possible we should include our Sign writer Neil Krutop who has done our French sign (2011) and then the English one (2012) which we will use again in the USA for the back of my bike since Norm is the ever faithful leader when we are overseas.

NAK SIGNS
43 Eastern Road, Traralgon, Victoria 3844 Victoria ,3844
Phone: 03 5173 3104
Mobile: 0427 743 104

http://www.naksigns.com.au


And last but by no means least our faithful Travel Agent extraordinaire Sue Ritter. She is magic at converting our dreaming into solid routes without forgetting spectacular sights including our ‘must sees’ in both Transport and Logistics related arenas as well as geographic and architectural along the way and has done this for all but the first two of our overseas trips both with and without the bikes.

TRAVELPLUS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD
Pinewood Shopping Centre, 33-45 Centreway, Mount Waverley Vic 3149
Phone: 03 9887 8836
Fax: 03 9887 8555



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Feb
10
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Travelling (via Morwell, Moe, Trafalgar, Yarragon, Nilma, Crossover, Neerim South, Neerim, Neerim Junction, Powelltown, Three Bridges, Gladysdale, Yarra Junction, Launching Place, Badger Creek Healesville, Buxton, Taggerty, Acheron, Alexandra, Yarck, Kanumbra, Merton, Bonnie Doon, Maindample, Mansfield, Whitfield, Tolmie, Moyhu, Docker, Oxley, Milawa, Markwood, Myrtleford, Porepunkah, Bright, Germantown, Tawonga South) & return (via Bogong, Falls Creek, Anglers Rest, Omeo, Swifts Creek, Ensay, Tambo Crossing, Bruthen, Sarsfield, Bairnsdale, Bengworden, Perry Bridge, Clydebank, Wurruk, Rosedale



Meeting in Maca’s car park before we headed off on our trip



The Powelly Pub at Powelltown of course for coffee which they do well, also meals though we didn’t have one today

Well we had a great ride this weekend with the Traralgon Easyriders. To a large degree we retraced the trip we had done into the high country after Christmas but it was still great. Initially we were to return home from Mount Beauty via Mount Hotham but with fires in the Harrietville and Hotham Heights area we stayed well away. On our way from Falls Creek to Omeo this morning we encountered some rain so I hope they got that on the fires. We had a great time and travelled on some road from Bairnsdale towards Sale I hadn’t travelled on before so enjoyed that and I loved the long stretches when all the bikes could travel together in formation it looked awesome! I also realised that I am a lot more comfortable riding in a group than I was on our first ride…it’s a lot different riding in a group than just the two of us, soooo many more factors to slot into the awareness level. There were 12 bikes with 5 carrying pillion passengers as well and we had a lovely relaxed night at Mount Beauty.



The lovely leafy main street of Mansfield which was our lunch stop



The bikes were a magnet for the locals in front of the pub at lunchtime

The group worked well together with ride leaders, Ken to Mount Beauty and Graham home and tail end Charlie being Tombo with a number of corner markers it ran like a well-oiled machine and it is good to report that the emergency back up in the ute plus bike trailer with Polly and Karen was not needed (must have been a long drive for them both) so well done to the whole crew for safeguarding their own safety. Thanks also to the Bruthen Pub who kept the cook back to cook our late lunch and I enjoyed the best steak sandwich I’ve ever had which was great following on from a delicious egg and bacon roll in Mount Beauty for breakfast.







A welcome break on the top of the Tawonga Gap

Tips to remember for the roads we covered:

The roads we travelled on were cambered well and good surface overall and well signed with targeted advisory speed signs. The exception with the advisory signs is from Falls Creek to the Omeo Highway being a reasonably minor road so ride accordingly but overall it was a good road and surface, just had to watch for a bit of gravel washed onto the road at some corners…as you do.



A glorious fresh morning at the Motel in Mount Beauty as we got ourselves together to head off for breakfast.



A break for a stretch in Falls Creek and to compare notes about a lovely ride through some truly spectacular country!

Services available:
Large towns:

Fuel: Multiple choices including Premium Unleaded, most BH but also some 24hr
Accommodation: Hotel, Motel, B&B and Caravan Park and Camping options and maybe some Serviced Apartments
Food: Multiple choices from small cafes to bistro’s bars and fine restaurants
General Store / Supermarket: Multiple choices, small to large

Small towns:

Fuel: Limited and often BH only if any at all
Accommodation: Limited Hotel, B&B and Caravan Park and Camping options
Food and General Store / Supermarket: Limited and not necessarily open on weekends

Small isolated Localities:

Fuel: Not likely
Accommodation: If you’re lucky and have done your research
Food and General Store / Supermarket: Unlikely so bring your own


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