Phil lives in the Wollongong area of NSW. This area is blessed with some great motorcycling roads. One of the favourites is Macquarie Pass. It’s also one of the more dangerous, for those who don’t respect it. But that’s just one road, just part of what are a network of great motorcycling roads. One favourite loop, often referred to as “the lap” is to ride up Macquarie Pass, then down into Kangaroo Valley, up and over Cambewarra Mountain and on to Bomaderry (a northern suburb of Nowra), and then back up to Wollongong. (Or the same route in reverse, which I actually prefer).
This is a favourite ride for Phil Hall, a friend of mine who I have mentioned and put links to his writings on a few occasions. He has a web-site also, and writes a regular Blog. Recently he rode around this “lap” again. But this particular ride was different.
The first thing was that he used the ride as an opportunity to take his “new” bike for a decent ride and assess its qualities in comparison to his previous bike.
Phil is a great fan of Honda’s VFR series, and has owned several VFR750s. Recently he had the opportunity to up-grade to a VFR800. His 1994 VFR750 was getting on for 23 years old and had 140,000km on the clock. The 800 was a 1999 model, so not a lot younger, but had clocked up a mere 53,000km. Good as a new one – well, almost. Having had the bike for a few weeks he was itching to take it for a good ride. But there were problems – the main one being this happened during the hottest January on record!
By early February – with the summer heat continuing – he decided enough was enough, it was time to “do the lap”! Now Phil is neither a mad dog or an Englishman, but defying that old saying, he chose to do this on what was forecast to be one of the hottest days of the year! At one point – in Kangaroo Valley, which always tends to trap the heat – the temperature nudged the 48 degree mark! I don’t know how he managed it, but he did. Here is his story of the ride, and an interesting comparison between the old and the new VFRs. Click here. 
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