Five Hills 2020

02 February 2020 / Words by Norm Barker. Photos by Rob Wilko

Sunday January 12 – Five Hills Run

This was the first run for 2020, our annual Five Hills Run, on a very smoky but warm day. Not great conditions for the tops down but a very quiet day for a cruise around Canberra’s Lake Burley Griffin, going up and down five of the hills. There were 17 MX-5s lined up in front of the Russell offices. To help with the run this year we divided the group into two and ran one anticlockwise (lead by Stephen Wakeling) and the other clockwise (lead by Norm Barker).

This year’s run tackled Mt Pleasant, Mt Ainslie, Black Mtn, Dairy Farmers Hill and Red Hill.

After a briefing, Stephen’s group headed to the first hill, Mt Pleasant which is in the grounds of Duntroon/ADFA. The second group went to Red Hill and stopped for photos of the group.

Group 1 continued to Mt Ainslie, which involved a steep climb on a winding road. Another short stop but they couldn’t see much due to the smoke. Group 2 went to Dairy Hill in the National Arboretum where we stopped briefly to take in the hazy view.
Group 1 then drove past the Australian War Memorial and down Anzac Parade. At the bottom of Anzac Parade, the group turned right and followed the lake along to Black Mountain. This is another steep and winding road but didn’t stop, just circled the car park, and headed back down (only to encounter Group 2 as they were going up. The warm, smoky Sunday evening meant the roads were very quiet and everyone was able to keep together, which made a spectacular sight going around the lake.

At the bottom of Black Mountain Group 1 made its way west to the National Arboretum and up to the top of Dairy Farmers Hill. Group two headed around the Lake and along to Anzac Parade, up to the War Memorial and then to Mt Ainslie. The group stopped at the top for a photo or two, but the smoke was so thick we were not able to see anything.

Group 1 left the National Arboretum, followed the route us past the Canberra Zoo and across the top of Scrivener Dam, through Curtin and Deakin and up Red Hill. At the top the convoy formed up in the car park for some photos. Group 2 drove down from Mt Ainslie and through Duntroon and ADFA to Mt Pleasant but did not stop.

Both groups then descended on Lennox Gardens for a picnic. People spread out on the lawns and chatted. We were joined by a mob of kangaroos who thought the green grass was just great. Everyone had an enjoyable drive and time together over the picnic, getting to know some new members. And even with the smoke, it was a successful run!

More of Rob's photos can be seen on our Chapter Facebook page.