20th Melbourne Branch Odyssey at Nagambie from 12 - 14 October 2018.
A small group met at Lilydale on Friday morning for a relaxed ride up. We enjoyed criss-crossing some Yarra Valley back roads with views across vineyards, apple orchards and more. I couldn't help but notice the aroma of sprouts in the fields at Yering, which proves there is actually quite a variety of farming in the valley. After crossing "The Divide" and enjoying the view from atop Murchison Gap we had a coffee / rest break at Broadford. We then rode north via Sugarloaf Creek to Seymour and then more back roads beside the Goulburn River and past Mitchelton before arriving at Nagambie. Kris and I settled into our riverside cabin and then popped around greeting others and exchanging some disgraceful lies.
As evening approached a large group of attendees assembled outside the convention centre and enjoyed a relaxed BBQ meeting each other. The evening passed quickly.
Saturday morning provided a great mixture of experiences. Some of us attended the Victorian Breakfast Club meeting in town, some later went on a river cruise from the resort which included visits to two wineries, some did their own thing and more joined in for a ride through the hills. We rode across the flats to Longwood, crossed the Hume Freeway and then enjoyed some lovely roads and views as we climbed into the Great Divide up to the Ruffy area. We then descended some bumpy and more challenging roads before some open farmland to Yarck where we enjoyed lunch. It was quite a surprise to meet a largish group of riders from Whittlesea Branch out on their Saturday ride. The café coped well despite about 40 unexpected motorcyclists. We then rode north before using one of my very favourite roads across the Merton Gap. We then rode a bumpier (but scenic) route via Polly McQuinns Weir and Strathbogie before stopping briefly to enjoy the vista from Kelvin View. A descent to Euroa was followed by a run to Murchison where we used the old girder bridge to cross the Goulburn River. Once I had overcome my geographical challenges, we rode beside irrigation channels down to the wooden Kirwans Bridge which provides its own challenges for bikes. Then it was back to the park and a relaxed drink and chat before the Saturday night dinner. After dinner, Gary and June provided us with some great entertainment and the night passed all too quickly.
In summary, we had over 50 people attend from places as far afield, Adelaide, the Blue Mountains, Wollondilly Wanderers plus many locations in Victoria including Ballarat, a number of Gippsland Branches, Mildura and a variety of locations around Melbourne.
Once again it was great to catch up with and meet such a great variety of Ulysseans. Thank you to all who came along and made it a success.
John Cook #5048
If interested photos have already been loaded here https://ulyssesmelb.com/ride-album/2018-melbourne-branch-odyssey-nagambie
We were blessed with great weather and a great variety of attendees