Day 2 started out chilly but sunny from Myrtleford. It was 8C and crisp. I filled the tank and then mine at Delizie Cafe which was a great breakfast. The food is fresher and tastier in the country!
I left Myrtleford on the B500 heading to Bairnsdale and this took me through Bright where everyone appeared to be wearing shorts – they must breed them tough in town! From here the road winds its way to Harrietville and then to the mountains. I last came here about 10 years ago travelling the other direction and hugged the inside of the mountain. Going up was different….
I use the word “unforgiving” for a reason – it is! Most of the road up has no safety barriers, but lots of trees, sharp corners and very steep drop off’s on your left.
As with the Snowy Mountains, the road markings are yellow to show you the road in light snow and there are signs to tell you where to be:
Choosing the left side is not a great option! Left is often a very fast descent!
This area is Gold country, first found in the 1850s and there are signs and historical markers from Harrietville and Bright up over Mount Hotham to Dinner Plains. The temperature was still low when I travelled and it was still damp in places and a fair amount of cars coming down the mountain. Clearly Mount Hotham is popular with walkers in Summer and Autumn.
At some point there has been a bush fire through the national park as the trees were a mix of black and silver. Summer time here would be amazing!
The B500 took me on to Omeo through rolling countryside off the mountain, a great run and one that everyone should do at least once! From Omeo I followed a river down to Bruthen and Bairnsdale which was also very beautiful and the road allowed a good speed to be maintained safely. The roads through East Gippsland are well maintained.
Not so once you get past Bairnsdale. I was heading west towards Melbourne and the road was getting rough, so I stopped for a break at the Wa-De-Lock winery cafe for lunch. Then it was on through Sale, Traralgon, Morwell and Leongatha before heading down towards Frankston and Mornington to Safety Beach. Now we were in Police country with several unmarked vans on the side of the road and a more visible police presence.
All up it was about 500kms for the day and another good run. Tomorrow is a “commute” run back up to Melbourne and on to Albury, mostly on freeway as we are leaving late from the peninsular.