Our last THMCEC overnighter for 2018
With a healthy (in numbers) crew of 21 booked in for the Woodenbong overnighter 15 of us gathered at the Kirra Sports Club for a departure time of 10.30am NSW time. Carol informed us that Lorraine could not make the trip cutting the crew back to 20, We left right on time on a glorious day for riding and to pick up Marty & Fiona along the way meeting up with Dave Hamilton at the Bearded Dragon Hotel north Tamborine where our first refreshment stop was planned and then meeting up with Lyal Sarah as well as Stewart & Tracy at the Woodenbong Hotel. Being just a short ride of around 220klm we headed out through Currumbin-Tallebudgera Connection rd and up Old Coach rd to Mudgeeraba on to Advancetown and up the very steep gradient they call Henry Robert drive which takes you to the top of Mt Tamborine where we rode past Marty & Fiona enjoying the view and watching a mass of paraglyders just hanging around in mid air because they can.
As usual it was a beautiful ride over Mt Tamborine but unfortunately these days this excellent piece of motorcycling tarmac is drastically reduced in pleasure by the amount of traffic that frequents it not only on weekends but any day of the week, but still it’s a joy to know you live so close to a beautiful part of Australia and can ride there whenever you want. With Marty & Fiona joining the back of the pack we pulled into the Bearded Dragon to find Dave waiting patiently due to his getting there extra early (damn lucky the pub was open when he got there!) due to a slight mix up. Everyone enjoyed some refreshment/s and the great location for a while and then it was back on the bikes and off to our lunch stop at Dugandan Hotel just out of Boonah. After crossing paths with a small roo About 3/4 of the way out I got a phone call from Bill McCulloch (bluetooth in your helmet is great) stating that Darren & Lisa had a problem but I could not make out what it was, knowing there was a few people there with them to help out I made the decision to get to Boonah with the crew that was with me, as it turns out Darren’s Boulevard had a punctured front tyre and luckily he was carrying a puncture plug kit which had the problem fixed in no time at all and we all regrouped up at our lunch stop which was a great old country pub (Dugandan) where the meals were very good and we sat outside in the shade. 72 patched riders turned up closely followed by the Police and some anti biker mob as well, I spoke to one of the bikers who told me they had been followed all the way on their run route.
With storms forecast for early Sunday morning and continuing throughout that day Marty & Fiona made the decision to head home once we reached Rathdowney where we stopped for just one more refreshing drink whilst Joe & Sandra continued on to Woodenbong and settled in. After saying farewell and wishing Marty & Fiona a safe ride home the rest of us headed off to our final stop at Woodenbong, along the way swerving to miss a snake squirming around in the middle of the road.
Arriving at Woodenbong there was no Lyal and no Stewart & Tracy and I hadn’t heard from them so I assumed all was good and they would arrive soon, Alison and I set about re-arranging the rooms and getting the dinner & breakfast quota’s organised before taking a shower and enjoying a drink. The Woodenbong Hotel once again donated a bottle of refreshment toward our raffle and as well as that I had done up 2 car care kits and we also had several T shirts to raffle. Stewart & Tracy had arrived by this time after having battery problems with their bike but unfortunately Lyal did not make it due to last minute work commitments Our members and the locals really dug deep and the raffle was a good success in such a tiny place with all proceeds going to either the Kids In Need or the Murwillumbah Wedgetail Retreat Hospice so thank you everyone.
It was good to see several locals win prizes and Dave Harley win the bottle donated by the pub. The bbq dinner put on by the hotel was delicious and plentiful and a few of us would be needing that later that night to soak up all that good cheer. While a few remained outside enjoying a beautiful warm night the rest were inside playing pool and listening to the jukebox so a good night was had by all with some staying up later than others and somehow making their way to the accommodation as per usual on these overnighters.
We received a fair bit of rain overnight and woke to a drizzly overcast Sunday morning with Dave Hamilton heading off early as the drizzle eased to attend other commitments while the rest of us were taking in some cups of tea or coffee and digging into a lovely hot breakfast. Knowing we only had 160klm to get home it was decided to take a chance on the forecast rain/storms and go the way we originally planned to go home via Kyogle and on to Uki pub for last drinks, Joe and Sandra continued on ahead at Kyogle while the rest of us stopped for a break and a few topped up with fuel. Both the road from Woodenbong to Kyogle and Kyogle to Uki were in very good condition compared to the last time some of us ventured out that way which made the ride quite enjoyable, we did actually encounter another roo from a safe distance that morning too. After enjoying a last drink or two at Uki and saying our thank you’s and goodbyes we all slowly splintered away without a drop of rain on us the whole weekend to head home with fond memories of another very enjoyable THMCEC overnighter. I could have gone into a lot more detail but you know what they say, “you had to be there”. Thank you to a great bunch of people for once again making it a great weekend, I for one can’t wait until the next one and if you have never been on one then best you get in as soon as it is announced next year because they seem to fill up very quickly. Before I go I want to heap praise on the Woodenbong Hotel and especially Kerry as she done a bloody fantastic job of getting us sorted and looking after us no end, she really did work her butt off that afternoon/night and we cannot thank her and the meal staff enough for their fantastic hospitality. Jeff. CLICK ON ANY PHOTO TO ENLARGE IT