To the Gong and back

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Time in lieu and public holidays are great things, especially when a weekend falls in between them.

The Australian Alps.
I've not heard a bad word about the roads up into the Alps. Up until this point in time, the furthest I'd been is up to Omeo via Bairnsdale.

I'd rate it as one of the best rides I've been on based on the road surface, grip, vision and corners.

If the rest of the Alpine Road was of the same quality I knew I was going to be in for some fantastic riding.


The Route.
Starting from Melbourne I'd slab it to Ensay, then head up to Omeo, Mitta Mitta, Towong, through Mt Kosciusko, Jindabyne then to Cooma.

From there I'd either go north to Canberra and go coastal to Wollongong or inland and head into Wollongong through Macquarie Pass.

Road trip on the cheap.
As I was planning on doing this trip on a budget I decided I'd camp along the way at free camp spots I found using the WikiCamps app.

I don't eat a lot on long trips for some reason, I usually…

Motorcycle Review - Triumph’s Thunderbird Storm goes to the dark side.


If you're after a power cruiser that Darth Vader would be proud of then look no further than Triumph’s 2015 Thunderbird Nightstorm SE.
The dash in the centre of the tank is neat and easy to read at a glance and includes a tacho, fuel gauge, clock and trip meter. It can be thumbed through via a switch above the starter button.
Based on the Thunderbird Storm, the special edition takes darkness to a new level. Stripped of almost all of its chrome, the Nightstorm SE gets a custom ghost flame paint job using a two-tone combination of Phantom Black and Silver Frost paint schemes to create a subtle sparkle effect.
To add to this menacing look, Triumph has blacked out the handlebar, gear lever, rear brake, footboards and mirrors. The twin-skinned full exhaust also gets the treatment with high temperature resistant black paint.
Triumph’s Thunderbird Nightstorm SE doesn’t just look the part, it surges forth like a storm, devouring rubber. The 1699cc parallel twin produces 156Nm of torque, the same amount as Kawasaki’s supercharged H2. Resulting in some aggressive sub-light acceleration, a power that can be hard to resist. 
I’d even say that someone with more skill than me wouldn’t have too much of a problem getting this beast on one wheel.
The note from the exhaust sounds like a V-twin due to its 270° firing order, and the bark when you light it up will make you wonder whether it’s legal.
Armed with ABS, the twin front 310mm floating discs and rear 310mm disc are up to the challenge of bringing the 339kg vessel to a halt. Despite its massive on-road presence, the Nightstorm would be one of the best handling in its class – even at low speed; it’s quite easy to manoeuvre. 
And with its new deluxe seat, you’re not only cruising in comfort but just 700mm from the ground, allowing most of us to plant both feet on terra firma.
Whether you plan on riding solo or two-up, the rear twin Showa shocks with adjustable preload and 95mm of travel will keep your ride smooth wherever you’re headed.
If you’re looking at being a force to be reckoned with on the open roads, the Triumph Thunderbird Nightstorm is a power cruiser that has it all: dark, menacing looks and a big meaty engine with plenty of tyre-shredding torque that will leave competitors in its wake.

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