With a long weekend at Lorne on the Great Ocean Road there’s a chance for a few long rides, especially if I can force myself to get up early and get out before the tourist buses come through and make the traffic a bit too much of a chore. This morning I was up at dawn and headed out towards Wye River, intending to go through as far as Cape Patton and grab a coffee on the way back, probably at Kennet River. Kennet River coffee is cheaper, and in my experience far quicker to arrive than the more pretentious brew at Wye River Café – there are days when I think it would be better to order a Wye River coffee on the way out, ride off to Cape Patton and back and my coffee will be ready! Wye River also can’t seem to make up their mind whether they have table service, so its always a bit confusing, especially if you arrive by yourself, sit down, then walk in to order, but then find when you go back outside that you’ve lost your table. So Kennet River “Koala Kafe” was the intention.

Well it was such good weather, an enjoyable ride, and I was making good time, that at Cape Patton I decided to go the rest of the way to Apollo Bay. After a few minutes admiring the view it was off down the hill a few minutes after a couple of guys from Wye River went through. Their slower mate caught me and the two of us rode the rest of the way to Apollo Bay, chatting and riding, and at one point shrugging in confusion at the Harley trike-tours rider passed shouting and pointing at our rear wheels – no idea what he was on about, we couldn’t hear him, the road was empty of traffic. We waved and kept going.

At Apollo Bay we parted company, he turned to go back to Wye River, I sat down for coffee – $4 – and fruit toast –$9 – and boy, what a wonderful fruit toast it was. I can heartily recommend Café 153, especially at 8 am after 45 km of riding.

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Coffee break over, time to head back. The breeze had increased a little and the sky clouded over so it felt colder although the temperature still seemed to be hovering around 10 °C. Back through Grey River, Kennet River and Wye River, and the four sets of roadworks where landslides are being (eternally) repaired. One slightly scary heart-in-mouth moment as a minibus shot past within a metre of my shoulder, doubly scary because it was head on crossing a bridge. I got to watch as the driver completely stuffed up slowing for the curve onto the bridge over the river in front of me and ran so wide I thought he’d hit the kerb behind me on my side of the road. Thankfully there was no traffic behind me or he’d have hit them head on. He swerved wildly back to his side of the road and zig-zagged back into a semblance of normality.

Coming back into Lorne I stopped and called the family, with impeccable timing they were just leaving the house for a walk so we met up for coffee and second breakfast – pancakes from Lorne Larder.

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Very different from the coffeeneuring rides; 91 km along the coast, one medium tasty cafe latte at Apollo Bay and a magnificent one at Lorne when I got back. Three coffees down, four to go.

# Where?

Gadubanud country; through the towns of Lorne, Wye River, Kennet River, Grey River and Apollo Bay