A wet weekend. To give you some idea, I hung my laundry out very early Saturday morning and it is still out there Sunday evening, wetter than when I hung it out. Fortunately I have enough shirts socks and underwear to see me through another week.
Saturday I spent cleaning the two bikes though I did not polish them, as rain interrupted play. I also adjusted the windscreen on the 1300 up to see how it would perform. A quick sprint up the highway demonstrated that the turbulence around the helmet is gone, and the ride much quieter as a result. But the windscreen is much higher of course, and now a breeze comes through the half-moon shaped gap at the bottom, above the headlight. When I returned I made a temporary plastic shield to cover the gap and taped it on.
Later I found when riding in the rain, that it is pretty murky trying to see through a visor and a windscreen. Now the screen is too high to look over the top. Maybe it could be a bit lower.
The holes in the windscreen mount are a bit too far apart for smaller adjustments of height. I may have to make new ones exactly half way between the present holes, so I can try the screen at a height half way between where it is now, and where it was before.
The weather was crappy and the wind cold and i was not dressed for travel so the wee ride I had was enough. I dropped in on the person who gave me the yabbies, to tell him of the latest development. He in turn told me of the tiny one he caught in his dam and which was now in his aquarium. Somehow we managed to pass an hour talking.
I turned next to repairing a push mower I salvaged from the refuse tip. It has been a while since I played with tools and things other than on a bike. Very satisfying to turn a piece of discarded junk into something useful again.
Cleaning the bikes had not been a good idea. Brenton came around today (Sunday) and told me of a photogenic spot at lake Ewlyamartup he had found riding last weekend with his other biking friend. He suggested we ride there today. Always game for a ride, I dressed for the cold and wet, with thermal underwear and we set off.
Brenton said he would like to try the 650 so I handed her over and he left his 1100 in my garage as security.
The spot Brenton took me to was a part of the lakeside I had not explored before. Before when I went there I had fallen off into mud before I got that far. There is a little isthmus out to a small island in the lake which, had I walked it before I tried to ride it, I would not have ventured on with my bike. It was very slippery sand. My balance must have improved as I rode out there and back, successfully. I found, however, that the 1300 does not idle slowly enough in low gear for negotiating tricky conditions.
It was a lovely spot and would be good for a swim in summer. I reported before that Ewlyamartup was empty except for a salty puddle in the centre of the lake bed. No longer. The lake is full. Some rehabilitation work has been done to get a better flow in and out. This will hopefully lower the salinity too.
I found an enormous spider hanging on a web. The wind was blowing quite strongly so the web was swinging and vibrating. I was lucky to get a good shot of it
I believe this little fellow is a Golden Orb Weaver. They are famous for the strength of their silk threads which are, I am told, stronger than the same gauge of steel wire. They certainly are strong. We could tell when we held them to stop the web vibrating in the wind in order to get the photograph. I am fairly sure the spider is harmless to humans, but we tried not to disturb it anyway.
We next headed around the lake to view it from the other side. We had to cut across a field newly sown with wheat to do so, but we did not despoil the crop. We rode in the uncultivated grass and detritus around the edge.
V-stars are not off-roaders, but they were getting a good taste of it today.
The road to Corycup lake beckoned, so we followed it. This was … interesting. I have ridden roads of gravel and packed sand, and of loose sand before, but today we came to a road of hard packed clay. It was as solid as concrete, but as slick as clay can be. At 30 Km per hour it was fun keeping our balance. Could definitely do with the BMW 1000 for this sort of riding.
I love riding these back roads, but I got the impression Brenton was not as keen as I.
Then the rain started again. At lake Corycup we could see the skies ahead were even darker still, and the rain was intensifying so we decided to turn back. It was nice to get back on to a gravel road, and nicer still when we hit the tarmac again. Best of all we left the rain behind us as we came down the hill past the landfill. There we encountered a tree branch newly fallen across the road. A car was stopped on the other side. A solitary figure was struggling to move the branch so he could get his car past. He was a teacher at one of the local primary schools. We cheered him on for a bit, before giving him a hand.
The tree had not been down when we rode out, and I thought about the odds of it falling when it did, rather than, say, just as we had ridden by earlier. One never knows!
Home, and my place was nice and warm. I had left the heaters on. After a warm up with coffee and biscuits, then a quick look at the photos we had taken, Brenton jumped on his nice clean 1100 V Star, leaving me with two red mud-smeared specimens to clean again.
Later. The cold had got to my knees. Despite the house being warm I needed to have a lie down with the electric blanket. So I climbed into bed, watched Catch – 22 and dozed.
At 7.50 pm I awoke. The temperature outside 5 degrees C. Inside the house: 22. That is more like it.