Monday, November 21, 2016

19 November - Walhalla

The past few months here in Victoria, Australia have been quite discouraging for motorcyclist. Rain and wind and low temperatures have all conspired to keep the bikes in the garage. I braved the weather a couple of times out of sheer desperation for short trips and one more adventurous outing to Warburton through Noojee and Powelltown. Today the forecast was for fine weather with promised temperatures in the low 20's so it was time to fire up the Honda for a quick trip to Walhalla, one of my favourite short rides.

Those of you  who have visited Walhalla will know that the first sight to greet the visitor on entering the town is the railway station which these days is the terminus for the Goldfields Railway, a tourist train operating from the Thomson River station on the tracks of the original railway. Tucked into a hill right behind the station was the famous Walhalla Log Cabin, a beautiful and cozy structure which attracted many visitors to an overnight or weekend stay in Walhalla. Earlier this year, this wonderful old building burned to the ground, fortunately without loss of life or injury - it was unoccupied at the time. I hadn't been to Walhalla since that event and I wanted to see and photograph the site.
Sadly, the devastation is complete. By the time fire services arrived from Erica the structure was totally ablaze and as shown in the photo all that remains is the chimney, which is always the way. According to news reports there were no suspicious circumstances. The owners, who only took over the property around two years ago are hoping to rebuild but the cabin is situated on crown land and I think there is a lot of 'red tape' to be navigated before building can commence.

Anyway, apart from this melancholy experience, it was a fabulous day in Walhalla with lots of visitors enjoying the sunshine. After a great lunch I headed back home through the state forests.

Total distance 105 km.