Joined: Dec 2008
Location: Dardanup, Western Australia
Fred's Kookynie Ride, Western Australia
Fred passed through Kookynie on a trip to Cape York earlier in the year and hatched a plan to revisit the area. John and I (Rob) made up the 3 amigos.
Apparently pronunciation of Kookynie is Cook-eye-knee. It took me the whole trip to stop pronouncing it as cook-inn-knee
Our trip started at the Harvey servo on a wet Monday morning (Fred – Left, John – Right). We figured the weather would clear as we headed east.
Fred’s trusty DR650 with a big fat Cheng Shin tyre and Tubliss system on the front, which he hoped would help with the sand riding along the Holland Track.
John’s KLR with a new Giant Basin bag fitted for the trip. This will be John’s first big adventure ride, having taken up riding again after a couple of decades away from mbikes.
My DRZ400. Packed the swag rather then the tent as it looked like being dry weather. Hope I didn’t make the wrong choice
Sure enough the showers chased us all the way to Kulin and beyond
We refuelled in Hyden and stocked up with beverages for the evening. The plan would be to get to our first camp site down the Holland Track tonight. The start of the track:
First nights camp and I get to test my new Helonix chair. Bloody brilliant little chair, I could see the envy in Fred and John’s eyes! I reckon, like home DIY projects are an excuse to buy power tools, Adventure riding also requires new toys!
The sun popped its head out just before dark. The light from the setting sun with the dark clouds behind looked pretty impressive
Ive done the HT a couple of times before, but its always been wet. Interesting to see the size of the bog holes in the dry. Terrible the damage us irresponsible bike riders do…..?
The diversion around the old dingo fence before crossing Banker Mt Day Road
John approaching Banker Mt Day Road
We rode on to Thursday Rock and then to the end of the HT at Victoria Rocks Rd
Into Coolgardie, refuel and pick up some more supplies. We then rode north and found a campsite near Mt Burgess. Next morning we were off early. First stop was the ruins of the old Kunanalling Hotel.
Further north to the Ora Banda Pub. Doesn’t open until noon, so we had a quick look around, kept our heads down, and moved on.
Stopped again at the line of graves at Siberia. This history of the boom and decline of the goldfields last century is fascinating. Given that all we can see now is piles of rubble, its hard to imagine the extent of activity back then. Survival must have been a real struggle; makes our mbike rides around the outback look pretty soft in comparison. Next stop Davyhurst. Again, only a few bits of rubble remaining from what was once a boom town
Next stop Menzies, coffee and a pie. Stopped at the servo to look at the number plates on the building. John’s KLR wouldn’t start, but luckily it was just a loose battery lead and we were soon on our way again.
From Menzies we headed east to Lake Ballard and the famous sculptures created by Anthony Gormley in 2002
We WALKED up the hill on the lake. Riding across the lake and up that hill would be a really bad idea…
We then rode around the back of Lake Ballard and back east into Leonora. Somewhere between Mt Ida and Leonora:
Refuel again, then on to Kookynie for night
Arrived at the pub and a nice cold beer. It was interesting to chat to the publican, Margaret, about the history of the Kookynie. She’s made a book about it which is interesting reading. Again, its hard to imagine what the town must have been like 100 years ago
Next morning, it was head off early and drop into Niagara Dam
Then, we cut through Donkey Rocks Road. Just a station track really, which eventually came out on Yarri Road
We then followed Yarri Road into Kalgoorlie, with a little deviation up a rocky hill on the way in. A little mishap on the hill left Fred with a sore knee.
Checked out the Super Pit, then slabbed it to Coolgardie to refuel as the next leg to Cave Hill, Peak Charles and Lake King would require a range of about 530km. Woodlines tracks around Cave Hill:
More motorcycle damage
Next morning we started heading west to Victoria Rock Road, then down to Lake Johnson, where we followed tracks past Scamp Rock and Plover Rock
We then headed south along Honman Ridge between Lake Johnson and Lake Hope. This track had been graded up for mine drilling crews since I last went through, which made for easy going, but not quite so much fun. Due to the traffic, there was some bad bulldust though
Our last destination of Peak Charles
We then headed due west back to Lake King where we grabbed a room at the Tavern and enjoyed a hearty meal and cold beers. Next morning was to be the 400km of slab back home. My DRZ was geared up to 15/44T and handled 100kph cruising easily, however the seat is another matter. I made a cushion that I stuffed down my trousers, consisting of 3 layers carpet underlay. This was dubbed the “nappy”. It reduced the pain factor from about 9/10 to 7/10, NOT ENOUGH! An Airhawk or Seat Concepts seat is definitely on the cards for the next trip.
Thanks Fred for organising a great trip. John, well done for punting the big KLR around on your first multi-day adv ride. Total distance was around 2,500km.
Muddler screwed with this post 10-28-2012 at 08:00 AM