We spent the Christmas break with my in-laws in Benalla. The home town I share with one B. Cooke is a rural centre of 9,000 in the middle of a featureless plain, but within spitting distance of the Victorian ranges. I got a few decent rides in. The first, on Christmas Day, was a local 30k TT loop that I remember riding on my Diamondback Response Elite — the first serious bike (XT!) I ever owned.
The next day I snuck out early for a 4.5 hour loop out into the foothills. In 118km I saw just four cars a turtle and several remnants of bush Christmas. I came home, napped, ate a bunch of mumfood (even if it’s not your mum, mumfood is good) and slept.
This little guy was halfway across the road when I came across him. He didn’t look too pleased to see me, but I helped him across the road anyway. Or I might have taken him back to where he started — it’s hard to say.
And back onto the plain…
Day three was windy as fuck. I pushed out to Tatong, a tavern-and-general-store town 30k south-east. For most of the way it was all I could do to keep the speedo out of the teens. Or to keep the bike upright when the road swung across the wind. But on the way back there were long, flat sections where I could solo along on the drops at 48km/h steady.