Grand Final weekend ride to Port Campbell

Every year DOCV has an overnight ride to Port Campbell on the weekend of the AFL Grand Final. It’s a long weekend in Victoria since Friday before the Grand Final is now a public holiday – as ridiculous as that may seem to most.

This year the ride was on the 1st and 2nd of October. The group left in Melbourne early on Saturday morning and I joined them at the first fuel stop in Geelong, where most refuelled their bikes before we headed off to Apollo Bay.

The weather was terrible, windy and rainy, and it kept changing every few minutes. Throughout Saturday there would be drizzle, rain, occasional sunshine, wet roads, dry roads – very mixed conditions.

We took an inland route via Forrest down to Skenes Creek. The Great Ocean Road was still partially closed after the recent landslides, but we were able to ride to Wye River where we stopped for lunch.

Wye River pub
Wye River pub

There was some more rain between Apollo Bay and Port Campbell but later in the afternoon it was mostly dry. We arrived just in time for the second half of the match. Some of us went straight to the pub to watch it, but I checked in at the motel first and watched it in the room while getting changed. Afterwards I went for a walk around the waterfront before joining the rest of the group for dinner at the pub.

Sunday morning we all made our own breakfast arrangements and then we tried to leave at 9am sharp. The weather forecast predicted stormy weather for later in the day, so we tried to leave while the weather was still great. It was a beautiful ride back to Apollo Bay, where we stopped for refuelling.

Before heading off
Before heading off

We rode back again via Skenes Creek, up the hills through the Otways. It was painful to ride at times, since we were constantly stuck behind slow driving cars. Via Forrest and Deans Marsh we rode to Winchelsea where we stopped for fuel. Another 20km later we arrived at the Inverleigh pub where had booked in for lunch.

Inverleigh pub
Inverleigh pub

It was a great finish to a great weekend. After lunch most of us rode towards Geelong to take the M1 back to Melbourne. I left the group and rode back down the Bellarine Peninsula, still in beautiful sunshine. Just when I arrived back home, it started to become increasingly windy and rainy.