Sitting on the station amid the party frocks and vibration from the local nightclubs, it did seem a strange time of day to be starting a ride. Certainly the body wanted bed, and there were no other helmets on the platform. Still, no knifings tonight and it was all very orderly to Flinders St. Met jeremy.c on the platform and enjoyed a chatty trip to Hurstbridge with one of the locals, as more bikes and some familiar faces boarded along the way. There were even more familiar faces at the station, so with a few final preparations and words from the GG team, a shoal of taillights rolled out a little after 1am. We soon left even token street lights behind in favour of a cloudless sky (and a sea of bike lights) illuminating the gravel.
We settled as a little bunch enjoying a chat between navigation checks, joined by a wombat for a little while and searching without success for a washer.
The gravel descents were interesting in the dark, but we saw few cars, a couple of which slowed to check we were OK. One came up very slowly as we moved left, then pulled up for a chat. Which was when we noticed the funny checkerboard pattern along the side. And the guy in blue shirt interested in our nocturnal adventure along the lines ...
'What are you doing?'
'Riding our bikes.'
'Where are you going?'
'It's a long way to Kinglake.'
'Tell us about it.'
'Do you know it's 2.30 in the morning?'
All good though, and they left happy enough.
So we rode and the navigators checked. Up and down. Up and down. And found the checkpoint.
And then rode some more. It was going to be a long night, so a couple of us decided to bail about 4am. The wildlife continued to be bike friendly, as another wombat and baby possum darted across the bitumen on the way back to the station, arriving about 5. The station guys were cheerful and surprised to find we were finishing rather than starting, but it did explain the cars in the carpark.
We weren't the first though, so either two guys made awesome time, or shortcut too. And another pulled up as the train pulled out.
Great job as always from the GG crew. Lovely way to spend the night, and great company from the ride buddies. Although bed was really
nice this morning too.