This weekend we took three days to travel back up to Taumaranui to do some of our favourite roads & tracks.
The run up to the weekend was a bit fraught. When I went to put the driveshaft back into the bike (after it had been inspected by Mike Dobson) I discovered a bucketload of oil in the tunnel, & some needle rollers from the Final Drive pivot bearings. Fortunately I was able to obtain replacements Thursday, & took Friday off to put the bike all back together. I will also need to replace the fixed FD pivot pin, as this is badly worn, & is likely the reason that the bearing died.
Met Mark S & Tony Saturday, at Waikanae coffee Cart at 8.00am. Good to start the ride with a latte.
Also waiting was Igormortis & Penny, who knew our schedule, but were travelling (by car) north to Penny's brothers 21st. Good to catch up guys.
Hooked up with Bart at Ashhurst at around 9.45am, then rode Pohangina Rd to Apiti, round the back blocks to Taihape for lunch.We didn't get the opportunity to do Takapari Rd or Matawhero Rd because we were keeping an eye on time. We wanted to do the 42 Traverse twice. Bart left us at Taihape to do the Gentle Annie & the round trip home. The photos Bart posted are from his period with the ride. The photo quality drops significantly thereafter....
After lunch we did Mataroa, Turakina Valley Rd, etc, then up to National Park.
Decided to attack the 42nd from the Owhango end, which would allow me to leave my hard bags locked to a tree.
Unfortunately about 1/3rd of the way in (after the 1st stream crossing) there was a bloody great tree across the track. Someone had attacked it with a chain saw, but had been unable to shift the 1.5-2.0 metre rounds. There was a side track, passable by mountain bike, but the BMW would have struggled. Given it was late in the day, we turned around & headed back for Taumaranui.
Sunday we headed out to Whangamomona early to attack the Old Whanga Rd (4WD track).
Prior to heading in, we had a coffee at the Hotel. Penny very kindly opened just for us. And reminded Mark S he wasn't welcome to track mud into her Hotel. And could we please refrain from doing ourselves any injuries on the track today because she was understaffed, & wouldn't be able to come out to rescue us without a lot of bother. I got the impression she has offered this service regularly in the past.
Rush hr at Whangamomona
The old Whanga Rd was HOT, dry & dusty. I decided to leave my jacket at the Hotel - a good decision. The slips had been made passable, but were steep & I would imagine might be a challenge in the 4WD. Most of the rut holes were drying. There were no sections that we needed assistance through.
We had lunch at the Hotel surrounded by Sprot bikes, then Tony headed off for the 5 hr trudge back to Kapiti.
Mark S & I went bck up the road to the Tahora Saddle to met with Rob & his wife, who run 'Back Country Accomodation'. Rob sold me Gus in July. We sat on their veranda & enjoyed at lemonade popsicle. I have to say I don't think they 'got' the bike. Rob's wife didn't really believe it was the same one they'd sold. I was surprised to discover it had never been thru Old Whanga Rd before.
When we left we headed for Kiwi Rd, which I was keen to have a look at. Along the way we met Phreaky Phil & Dawn on their beautiful R80GS, & had a chat about the TAT, Big & Little Wan, & melting tar. Good to meet, guys. And yes, I had read that report before.
I was well impressed with Kiwi Rd & Moki Rd & the two tunnels (thats 5 for the day). Reminded me of the Motu somewhat.
The back to Taumaranui. MarkS fueled at Awakino & we both enjoyed an icecream. I pulled the big tank trump card, but sincerely regretted it, pulling into Taumaranui with about a 1/2 litre in the tank. Long day, 8.00am to 8.00pm-ish.
Monday, we had allocated to having another crack at the 42nd, this time from the National Park entrance.
Stashed the bags in the bush again, & had a great time until....
We got to the 1st stream crossing from this end, when I dumped the bike when I locked the front wheel. In that incident I lost the clutch (there was no play in the lever). We eventually got some clutch capacity back, but it came & went for the rest of the day. I assume that I've got a collapsed thrust bearing, but will need to dive into that area to see.
We decided to turn around at that point, as it would be impossible to retreive the bike if I lost the clutch completely. A great pity.
I had huge fun on the way back - who needs a clutch as long as the bike rolling....And I'm much more confident on that slippery clay papa rock shit heading uphill. With the bags back on we were pushing things, & my heels clipped corrugations a few times on the way out. Yeehah...
Lunch at National Park - Mark chosing the cheap option. Then backroads to Taihape (more melting tar - grateful to find gravel, but then dust was a shit...), Mangaweka, Rangawahia, Ashhurst & home. I'll get overall stats later, but I think abou 21 hrs riding time, 1500 kms.