Read Part 1 here: http://cruiser.mototribe.com/discuss/canberra-cc-rally-2012-part-1
Read Part 2 here: http://cruiser.mototribe.com/discuss/canberra-cc-rally-2012-part-2
Read Part 3 here: http://cruiser.mototribe.com/discuss/canberra-cc-rally-2012-part-3
Read Part 4 here: http://cruiser.mototribe.com/discuss/canberra-cc-rally-2012-part-4
Read Part 5 here: http://cruiser.mototribe.com/discuss/canberra-cc-rally-2012-part-5
Tuesday 20 March
Our last day of the trip and the heavens give us a glorious clear blue sky to look over us for the day ahead. We’re going home now, but it’s not over till it’s over, and we’re still going to explore today.
We ride from the Tallangatta Motel out to the Bandiana Army Museum (near Wodonga). On many previous rides through this region we have wistfully seen the signage for the army museum, but we could never stop in because we were always on our way to somewhere else. Today we make time. This is the largest military museum in Australia and you could easily spend several hours looking at all the detail in here, but we do have to keep on the move so we can’t spend nearly as long as we’d (Adam would) like. Adam is more the historian, he enjoys looking at museums and castles and anything with history. I also like to visit these places, but I have a much shorter attention span and am usually 5 paces ahead. I am happy to compromise, you see if I finish quicker than him, I’m more than happy to go shopping to allow Adam all the time he needs to look at old stuff! (Doesn’t work… go figure.)
As it is we spend a couple of hours of the morning taking in the history of guns, weapons, tanks, motorcycles, other military vehicles (more than 90 total), uniforms, medals, ration packs, medical equipment, and so much more. Even my attention is held by the sheer variety of interesting collections. Just their collection of military vehicles is so varied and impressive. Eventually we have to pull ourselves away and get back on the road.
We get on the Hume and take the turn off to Beechworth. When we hit town there’s road tarring happening down the main strip, so we have to ride the long way around and find a park. We do a little window shopping here – they have some lovely stores that I love to re-visit when we come here (not often enough), and yes I do find myself a couple of trinkets to buy (lucky I packed so well and had room in my saddlebags!) We then pick out a quaint little bakery called The Beechworth Pantry for lunch and enjoy some delicious pastries. I would highly recommend this little bakery, and would return here again.
As we head back down the main street towards our parked bikes a man accosts us to speak with Adam, who is wearing his bike vest with the large Victory patch on the back. He is a stranger, but he saw the Victory motorcycle, saw Adam with the vest, and accurately put two and two together. He wanted to know Adam’s opinion of the bike, as he’s considering one himself. Adam having ridden several bikes before, and currently owning the Victory and a Harley, could give a pretty objective review of the Victory Vision motorcycle, and how it compares with other rides. The man parts with enough information to make his purchase choice!
We leave Beechworth and head towards Wangaratta, then down the Hume again and make a short pit-stop at Glenrowan - Ned Kelly country. There are a few stores we want to visit, but we don’t linger this time, as we were here recently and have already done the full experience of following the trail and story of Ned Kelly’s last stand. Also a worthwhile pit-stop if you’re in the area, because a lot of the town is signposted and you can follow the trail and explore at your own pace.
We are back on the highway again and ride on to Seymour where we take a short break for a coffee. Unfortunately this is the last pit-stop. From her we are back on the Hume Highway and it’s highway riding all the way home, from the Hume, onto the Western Ring Road with all it’s damn road works, then onto the Princes Highway, our home hunting grounds, for the home stretch. We’ve been blessed with the sun warming us the whole way home. A totally different experience to the frigid cold and wet ride up, but that’s Melbourne for you.
When we start to unpack and get our bike gear off, I find a very large insect has imbedded itself in between my jacket and vest, hitchhiking all the way home with me. I should think after all these years and kilometers of riding that I should be over my squeamishness of squashed bugs, but I’m sure glad this isn’t another butterfly kill.
2012 CC Rally comes to an end. Time to start planning 2013. Bring it on!