High Times

Mon­archs MCC– Dargo High Plains Rally

Old Bike Australasia - - RALLY REPORTS - Re­port and Pho­tos Se­wart Doig

13-14 Septem­ber, 2014 – Dargo, Vic

The 34th an­nual ‘Dargo High Plains’ Rally was held by the Mon­archs M.C.C. Orig­i­nally the Mon­archs pro­moted the rally with the view to it be­ing Vic­to­ria’s an­swer to the Alpine Rally. A re­mote site and chal­leng­ing ride were es­sen­tial to this aim. This year, with ideal con­di­tions of balmy spring weather, the ral­ly­ists were able to fully en­joy some of Vic­to­ria’s finest bi­tu­men be­tween Bairns­dale or Strat­ford and the iso­lated ham­let of Dargo. From Dargo the route is via the High Plains Road, climb­ing steeply in places, for about 15km to the Macmil­lan Track turnoff that marks the end of the bi­tu­men. Along the Macmil­lan Track are a few his­toric gold min­ing sites and some el­e­vated clear­ings with mag­nif­i­cent views across the alps. This track is rut­ted and quite steep in places; its 15km is quite chal­leng­ing for road ma­chines, and more so for the clas­sic ma­chines that make the trip.

Maybe due to the or­ga­niz­ing clubs mem­bers’ taste, this event has al­ways at­tracted a co­hort of clas­sic motorcycle en­thu­si­asts. Th­ese en­thu­si­asts are a spe­cial breed; they are more in­clined to at­tend to the func­tion­al­ity of their ma­chines, than to the cos­metic frip­peries. There were no con­cours d’el­e­gance con­tenders here, no trail­ered cat­walk ex­ot­ica, rather, sen­si­bly cared for, hard rid­den and there­fore, fully en­joyed ma­chines.

There were no fail­ures re­ported, and given the dis­tances rid­den and rough con­di­tions of the track, this is high tes­ti­mony to the ma­chine prepa­ra­tion skills of those in­volved. Of about 120 peo­ple at­tend­ing the rally, there were about 20 who rode their clas­sic ma­chines.

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