NORTHERN EXCURSION TO BEROWRA WATERS

24th May 2015

This excursion involved journeying to the Fish Cafe at Berowra Waters – travelling along the M5 , M7 and M2 and the perilous Pennant Hills Road.

Robyn and I had decided to make the journey the previous day (Saturday) to ensure that the way was clear of fallen trees, scattered boulders, rampaging Jihadis and the other normal obstacles now found in metropolitan New South Wales.

Having taken only one wrong turn on this trip (a minor miracle) we proceeded to the Fish cafe fairly unscathed. The Sat Nav in the 370Z was partially successful in getting us there ( although supported by analogue maps – ie written stuff). For some weird reason the Sat Nav always works beautifully in reverse (ie when heading home ).

After meeting up with Adrian, the Manager and an avid Z car enthusiast we gave him the good news that 20 of the Zedders would be arriving for lunch the following day. Now armed with the intrinsic knowledge of the journey – there was a new found confidence that we could reach our destination the following day. However, we did pack our normal survival pack which consisted of 40 litres of water, 10 toilet rolls , 3 packets of tomato sandwiches and a reliable compass.The main difficulty with this level of preparedness is trying to squash it into the limited confines of the 370Z. We were now ready to go.

The start of the journey on Sunday was at the ubiquitous Crossroads Hotel at Casula as this would provide easy access to the M5 – the beginning of our trek.

Minor slip at this point – we didn’t realise that the turnoff from the Camden Valley Way to the M5 also had a dedicated lane directly to the M7 ( having never used this access before) – we then had to cut across (ie the whole complementof Z vehicles) from the dedicated M5 lane – fortunately (a minor miracle in Australia) the traffic let us all in as we changed lanes.

We progressed smoothly along the M7 at slightly below the posted speed limit to ensure that the older Zs stayed in touch with the main group.

Just before the start of the journey we had been given the news that Brian Haines’s Z had died (slightly) on the way and he was waiting for the NRMA and would catch up later. Brian was given directions by Les via his mobile to the Berowra Waters destination.

As we approached Pennant Hills Rd – there was a flurry of mobile calls to co-ordinate Arthur, Melissa ,Andrew and Esther’s joining of the Z convoy as they were coming directly from the northern suburbs. Mission accomplished – apart from Brian’s Z we were complete.

We moved through Berowra and then on to Berowra Waters where we faced our first major challenge. The road leading to the Berowra Waters ferry is extremely narrow – with barely enough room for two cars to pass each other.

The locals seem to delight in charging up the hills in the middle of the road at alarming speeds as if to say “I know the road backwards – so tough luck!”. It tested the mettle and the nerves of our group (although it was much worse on Saturday – when we had to come to a complete stop to avoid  a “head on” ).

On previous advice, we had done the right thing and  arrived early at the Fish Cafe and therefore found a plentiful amount of parking.

Adrian, the Manager of the Cafe  was extremely interested in the assembled Zs and spent some time discussing the various models as well as mechanical issues.

Brian arrived at this point and the final total was eleven vehicles and eighteen people – a very good representation of support for the Sydney Z Car Club.

Everyone was impressed with the timeliness and quality of the meals at the Fish Cafe , the beautiful setting overlooking the water and the assembled boats .

Adrian and his wife, although extremely busy gave special consideration to the Sydney Z Car Club members and everyone was most impressed with the quality of the service provided.

Excellent meals at reasonable prices , great water views, excellent service  and terrific camaraderie made this a great day that will be remembered.

– Ray