Posted On 07 May 2024
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This entry is part 13 of 29 in the series AusMotorcyclist Issue#30


The wide open spaces of the Omeo Valley.

Whether you’re an experienced adventure rider or an absolute novice the annual Touratech Travel Event is for you. Billed as Touratech Australia’s main event of the year, the weekend in the Victorian alpine country town of Bright is a perfect mix of information and riding. It’s also the perfect base for day rides into the mountains.

After Friday registration there was the opportunity to test ride Triumph and KTM motorcycles or just relax and catch up with like-minded riders. Nearly all of the riders were from far away and happy to relax and chew the fat. After a smorgasbord dinner there was a first aid talk from paramedic and keen motorcyclist Ricardo Hafon, followed by a presentation by Brian Sommerville of GPS OZ in Sydney.

Touratech consultant Evelin Ritchie.

On Saturday there were two ride choices. Experienced riders could be led on an enduro ride that was navigated by the corner man system. The trails were a little more technical than the average adventure rider would experience but there were many who were happy to raise the bar on their regular ride challenges.

For novice riders there was a rider training morning for those who wanted to hone their skills. Nick Selleck from BMW Safari, who is a skilled rider, demonstrated and drilled the attending riders in various techniques. As you would expect, the feedback was overwhelmingly positive where most riders overcame their fears and felt able to take on greater riding challenges in the future.

World traveler Sherri Jo Wilkins with Glen Hough.

That night we were unexpectedly treated to a presentation by Charlie Boorman.

Charlie shared plenty of stories you won’t encounter on his shows or in his books.

His co-host and manager Billy Ward acted as the show mediator and between the two of them they provided an entertaining show. It lasted over an hour and featured stories from tense, dangerous situations to dropping his phone into a steaming pit toilet.

The Sunday adventure ride was an all-in GPS navigation trip that took the riders along dirt and tarmac roads around the Alpine country. That night Sherri Jo Wilkins, who was a presenter last year, gave a detail talk and slide show of her time in Peru.

To find out more about the next Touratech Travel Event go to and subscribe to their newsletter or phone 03 5729 5529.

Shallow creek crossings were a welcome relief from the dust.


Claude is still riding the Matchless.

Ben rode all the way from Wales – the Old North Wales.

The promise of good weather on the June Long Weekend drew the faithful out for this year’s Alpine.

I left home with the temperature hovering at 16 degrees and by the time I was skirting Lake George it was down to 10! After a pleasant night in Canberra with a mate, we launched for a leisurely run to Tumut for lunch at the bakery.

Up Talbingo Mountain and we started to see snow along the sides of the road. About a kilometre from the camp site I had a very close encounter with Skippy who seemed determined to end it all under my wheels.

Disaster was narrowly averted and we arrived with an elevated pulse rate at the rally site.

The under 23s got their badges free. Top idea.

Bush furniture – it would be worth a fortune in Paddington.

On arrival we were greeted by Henning who informed us that earlier that morning the site had been covered with snow, the last remnant was in the shade of a tree and being quickly burned off by the brilliant sunshine.

The rest of the day progressed at a lazy pace and the majority of the arrivals spent the evening around one fire watching the moonrise and solving the problems of the world.

The official temperature recorder announced on Saturday morning that we had an overnight low of – minus 8! The thick frost supported that.

From about lunchtime, bikes started rolling in thick and fast. It was a multi-denominational roll up, with at least five Can-Am Spyders, three Laverdas, an assortment of Harleys, large numbers of BMWs of all ages, and most encouragingly, a scattering of P Plates.

If anyone asks, there was NOT an excellent display of pyrotechnics Saturday evening.

Sunday morning and the official low was announced as minus 9! Sunday morning also saw the badges handed out and all 160 disappeared quickly and a number of folk left money and addresses for the mailout of their badges later. As an effort to encourage younger riders, all those under 23 years of age got their badge free! Something other rally organises might consider.

The loads of wood Henning arranged for the camp site were appreciated by all and he also announced that any profits would go to the Snowy Helicopter Rescue Service.

Bree from Holbrook – at home she rides a Postie bike.

As the temperature rose, so did the numbers of bikes leaving the site, a hardy few remained on to finish their rally on Monday and to feast on the foodstuffs and grog left by those departing on Sunday.

Another excellent rally, and next year the Alpine will be held at the Brindabella site for the final time as the property owner there has some health issues.

Will the Alpine then be permanently at Cottrells Cottage? Stay tuned .

Where did Skippy go?

A pleasant red at room temperature.

And please note:

Please consider the BMWTCNSW rally at Tottenham in September (The Far Cairn Rally) and the BMWACT rally at Geehi in October (The Kosciusko Rally) . Will we be there? Does the Bear…

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