View Full Version : ozblackbird rally in Coffs Harbour

03-05-2007, 02:34 AM
While some of you were at the Gathering of the Stroms, a bunch of Blackbird owners were also gathering for the inaugural ozblackbird rally in Coffs Harbour.

Me and the lads travelled to Coffs on Friday 27/4. The weather forecast was crap, so we threw the wet weather gear into the gear sacks and headed up the Putty Road.

We made it as far as the Halfway Roadhouse when the rain started falling. By the time we got to the twisties the road was well and truly wet. :(


The rain got steadily heavier the further north we rode. At Gloucester we abandoned our plan to head up Thunderbolts and instead headed for Taree and slabbed it up the Pacific Hwy to Coffs. By the time we got to Taree it was almost dark. We did the rest of the journey in the dark with the rain steadily getting heavier. This seemed to be the longest stretch of road I have ever experienced - 200kms of rain, boring slab, traffic and roadworks.

We arrived in Coffs soggy and glad the riding was over. We soon met up with other ozblackbirders who had travelled from QLD & VIC, including a couple of austouring.com regulars... Nev and Jo, whom I hadn't seen since the austouring Snowy rally last year.

A huge night at various drinking establishments ensued.


Next morning we were up bright and late. The rain was still with us and it looked as though there would be no riding today. However, the rain eased by lunchtime so we decided to head up into the mountains for an afternoon run. The twisties up to Dorrigo were still wet but that didn't stop some frustrated heroes from setting a cracking pace. We stopped for a photo session at Newell falls...



The weather was clearing in the mountains...


At the top of the pass we were greeted by glorious sunshine and dry roads. ;D
We piled into the Plateau Cafe for lunch and caffeine...


By now the skies were almost clear and the roads dry. We spent the afternoon blatting around the area enjoying the scenery and awesome roads.



Back to Coffs and another night exploring the local drinkeries. ::)

Sunday morning and it's time to head home. We all headed back out to Dorrigo and once again dropped into the Plateau Cafe. Some of the youngin's didn't seem to have the stamina of the older, more experienced members and were still suffering from the evenings activities...


We continued out to the Hwy where the Queenslanders headed north and the Sydney folk headed south. There was time for a final group shot first though...


and now for the bloopers....

From hero to zero...
Ben, who is a lot better at wheelies than he is at U-turns



and 'Skip' who managed to fall off his bike on the way home to Brisbane. Not hurt badly, and he did get to meet a very nice nurse apparently. Maybe thats why he's smiling...


All in all a top long weekend of riding and socialising. All good !!!

03-05-2007, 01:32 PM
meet a very nice nurse apparently. Maybe thats why he's smiling...


Looking at that face.....what was HER name ? :P :P :lol: :lol:
Sounds like a great weekend despite the rain.
Plenty of action by the sounds of it :wink: :wink:
So, that's what nev and Jo went north for....hope the rain stayed away for their long trip home.

04-05-2007, 10:29 PM
Thanks for the write up and pics Whitey - and hope the drops weren't too bad

So I take it you didn't go back via Waterfall Way?? I'm heading that way to Coffs in a few weeks

05-05-2007, 02:55 PM
So I take it you didn't go back via Waterfall Way?? I'm heading that way to Coffs in a few weeks
Yes we did...
Waterfall Way to Armidale, then Walcha, Thunderbolts to Gloucester, Bucketts Way south, then Dungog to Singleton on Bingleburra Rd. Putty rd to Windsor.

I'm thinking of heading back to Coffs for the A4DE (http://www.a4de.com) in July... spectating. Might take the DR650 and do some offroad exploring as well. 8)

07-05-2007, 08:45 PM
Our ride report...

Jo and I We left early Wednesday morning, arrived in Coffs Harbour early on Friday afternoon as planned. Left Coffs Sunday morning and arrived home Tuesday night 4:50pm, about 10 mins earlier than planned. Honda reliability! (BMW did throw me a few challenges along the way though to try to thwart my plans).

Early excitement about 200km from home on Wednesday morning when shortly after the thrills of the Streszlecki ranges around Strathbogie, something the size of a small spacecraft went through Jo's rear tyre (which already had two plugs in it from punctures on our Big Trip last year). I plugged it on the spot, then plugged it again when we got to Dookie with what I thought was a better plug for the sized hole it left.
Fortunately for us, the ANZAC Day service in Dookie was an 11am affair and held directly opposite the garage/servo in town which was closed. My theory that if we parked in front the bloke with the key would probably be standing over the road at the service and would make himself known when it finished was certainly a good one. The town mechanic fired up the compressor for us and grabbed the airhose and we were on our way again... though still a bit concerned about the 3 plugs within an 8 inch area of tyre.. especially considering the size of the most recent puncture.

Stopped that night in Forbes after spending most of the day riding up the Newell Hwy.

Sourced a new tyre for her bike in Dubbo at one bike shop and had it fitted at another shop there which wasn't so busy. Got off the highway again and via Dunedoo, Premer, Spring Ridge to Tamworth then stopped for the night in the top pub at Uralla. (An ensuite motel unit there is usually $75/night but bikers rates are $55). Left the bikes locked in the drivethru bottle shop overnight (which didn't open till 10am but that was just an excuse for a sleepin because we didn't have too far to go).. Mad-Biker and his wife drove down from Armidale and joined us for a meal at the pub.

A bit of drizzle the next morning between there and Armidale, then the road dried up, the 2nd half of the road to Ebor was dry, then wet roads again as we hit Dorrigo and more rain/drizzle from Bellingen to Coffs.

While the other OzBlackbird guy went to play on the roads on Saturday we had a relaxing day in Coffs, walked down to the Pet Porpoise Pool to watch the dolphin/seal show then back and had an afternoon nap before another schooner or 7 at the pub.

Sunday we pretty much stuck to the Princes Hwy down to the Central Coast with detours off to Taylors Arm (the gravel section is better than the sealed part but both well worth the detour) and along the coast road through Forster-Cloncurry (the last 10km of that road before hitting the Hwy again were magic) and heading to Pisshead's house where we got stuck into the beers again and discovered for a Harley rider, he can whip up a pretty mean lamb roast. Thanks mate.

Monday we hit the Old Road, stopped for an obligatory morning-tea pie at Pie in the Sky, back onto the freeway then stuck to the #1 through Sydney. Another unplanned stop midway through suburban Sydney when one of the gear shift linkage pivot bolts on Jo's BMW decided to come loose and strip it's thread... so once again I'm crawling around on my hands and knees on the side of the road fixing her bike.

Got her mobile again and we were on our way. Another detour off the Hwy through RNP, back on the #1 at Stanwell Tops, then a detour to South Coast BMW in Wollongong where the mechanic kindly interrupted his lunchbreak for 2 minutes to cut a new thread in the shifter and put it all back together again. I've never ridden through Nowra in the dry, and this day was no exception. Some more light showers between the Mac Pass turnoff and Nowra but then it cleared up for the rest of the afternoon except for some light rain on the last 30 or so km into Bega.

Tuesday morning we were off at the sparrows fart again. No rain at all, mostly dry roads and the closer we got to home the more the skies cleared. Took the #1 down to Boydtown, then the Mt Imlay Road (I love that road) across to the Monaro Hwy, south to Cann River, then followed the #1 all the way into Melbourne with some shortcuts off the Hwy to Bruthen for lunch, then the Bengworden road from Bairnsdale to Sale and straight up the #1.. the twisties were tempting, but Jo had to be up early for work in the morning.