‘dirt_bloke’ turns 50, takes the Tiger to the desert… as you do!
In the first two weeks of October this year five blokes go for an adventure to Birdsville and back. This yarn has everything; drama, arguments, getting lost, mechanical issues, chopper rescue, kangaroos, emus, dunes, nights of too much alcohol and lots more!
Buckle up spanky and come for a ride!
This tread is rated MA, there will be coarse language, drug references, no nudity (it was too hot for a nudie run) and no sex scenes (we weren’t away that long, mind you there were some good looking goats towards the end of the trip, long lonely night, bit of lipstick, good looking goat…)
Alright! I'm in. Especially interested in how that bike has behaved herself. :lurk
bring it bitch.
I'm in...for pics of the goats :D
In. Get on with the story :ear
Looks like all the cool guys are here!
Day 1 to St George.
Most RR’s have a bit of a preamble about planning and preparation. That will be in the wrap-up, we’ll just jump straight into this.
I hadn’t even left and I had to change, the jacket was going to be too hot. I opted for my body armour and light shirt, doesn’t matter how much you prepare there is always something at the last minute.
At school my daughter had heard about the early explorers who had died in the desert and was a bit upset (she also wanted to come with me to look for dinosaur bones), my son was wrapped that I wouldn’t be nagging him to get off the bloody Xbox.
I usually run a lot lighter, but as we're having a back-up vehicle I threw some luxury items in.
I got away at 9am, heading south. Looking in the mirror to check my luggage I noticed a pannier strap not attached. Stopped to check, to found one of my thongs that was lashed on by the strap missing!
In Australia this is a thong, it goes between the toes on your feet, not a camel toe, now is that fairly clear?
Oh well, thongs are cheap I’ll buy a new pair at St George, re-clipped the strap, on to Tiaro then back roads through Kilkivan, Goomeri, Kingaroy and Dalby for my first fuel stop. 325km in 4 hours, it was hot with a gustily northerly blowing, relaxed pace soaking up scenery and heat, all sealed roads just a run-of-the-mill ride.
While refueling I’ve looked over the road to see a parked Prado complete with bikes in the trailer, great timing! Blokes were in a fast food joint getting some lunch. They were running late due to Tank’s bike not firing up and couldn’t get it going. They loaded it up and hoped to fix it in the evening. Signs of things to come? Maybe.
The Brisbane crew ready to leave. Pyro, Tank, Yogi and Flash.
We punched out south west for the next 315km to St. George in the heat of the day, then on the horizon I could see a rather nasty storm front bearing down on us. About 30km west of town it hit, the temperature dropped about 15degC, the wind swung around from furnace hot northerly to blow you off the road and kick you in the head south westerly, complete with swirling rain and bits tree hitting you. That lasted only 10 minutes, but it made for interesting riding.
St. George was the last place I could find that could change my tyres. Originally the tyre change was going to be at Hungerford at the pub with tyre levers. When I got the Midas E-09’s I thought that a tyre machine would be a bit easier!
We arrive too late to get my tyres changed, Phil for Halpin Motors http://www.yamaha-motor.com.au/deale.../halpin-motors (KTM adventure rider and all round top bloke) recommended the St. George hotel and phone ahead for us. Cold beer, good tucker, thumbs up.
641km. 28.2 litres, all too easy.
good report! im keen to hear the rest!!:clap
Looks good so far. Keep it coming Pete.
Ok looks like I've got the paste thing sorted, sort of!
Day 2 New Tyres. St George to Hungerford
Looking west along the banks of the Balonne River.
I had to be at the bike shop early to get the tyres changed, I removed the wheels and Phil got the tyre changed quickly (cursing Rob Turtin’s 4mm heavy duty tubes)! I donated my rear tyre to the ‘whoever needs a tyre’ rack, and kept the front to be changed on the return trip. Didn’t think to get any pictures here. Dropped into a family clothing store to get new pair of thongs, as we’re going to the beach.
We traced Tank’s fault to a pre-filter he had put on the DR, tried a few different combinations but ended up removing it completely. He would just have to check his air filter daily, no big deal.
We met a guy at the pub who reckoned he had some bikes in his shed, as the day would be cool and the ride would be easy, we took him up on the offer to have a look. No photos by request, but let’s just say it was worth the time, country towns unearth cool stuff.
We had 370km of slab before we hit the dirt, travelling west the vegetation started to thin out, soil changed colour a few times and the amount of road kill increased. We had lunch at Cunnamulla in a rather flash café, that I’m sure had to catch, kill and prepare the food for each individual customer. Tank went to the bakery and got his food straight away.
Eventually we got to the Hungerford Road, start of the dirt, start of the adventure.
Dirt “Are you going to take the bikes off the trailer and ride?”
Yogi “Nah, the riding gear is packed away, it take too long and it will dark by the time we reach Hungerford”
Dirt “Bullshit! take some concrete and harden the fuck up”
Yogi “NO! You harden the fuck up”
Dirt “Fuck you”
Yogi “No, fuck you”
And so it goes on!
Anyway, we cruise the 115km of dirt dodging the odd emu (also seeing the remains of emus that didn't get dodged) and negotiation some rather ordinary flood ways to find the ‘Royal Mail Hotel’ at Hungerford.
If you are from the city and like flash stuff, this place would be run down, hot, dusty, with crap rooms and generally falling into disrepair. For us, this place was tops. Heaps of history, character, welcoming and relaxed.
The new tyres felt surprising good on the road, I was running 25psi in both @ 90-100kmh. Once on the dirt everything was fine, but in a few sandy sections the bike seemed a bit too loose. We’ll see how it goes the next day without luggage. Fuelled at Cunnamulla 289km 12.8 Litres then 185km to Hungerford, once again the Tiger was purring.
keep it comin:thumb
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