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Old 08-22-2013, 03:43 PM   #1
farawayman OP
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Joined: Feb 2005
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Melbourne to the Rock

It all started about 14 months ago, over coffee, a suggestion was made for a ride. Not just a ride day, or even a weekender, but a real ride. A destination was suggested and the maps came out, a route was planned and leave passes obtained.
The waiting commenced.

The group grew, some dropped out others joined.
I wasn’t happy with the route, I had ridden those roads before. There was another road that ran more or less parallel so I suggested a change, a less travelled road, with interesting things to see. More of a challenge, a road with history, and one with views that I had not seen.
My suggestion was met with scorn, not even given due thought. I even offered to help them fit knobbies, but was told it was not to be.

So I told them I would meet them at the Rock and save me a drink.

The rain caught me just over the Slide, hail, before I got to Yea, I sipped a coffee and watched the weather map on my phone. I wondered if it was too early to get a room. I pushed on, through the freezing showers, heading north and warmer places, I hoped.

Ouyen Pub

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Old 08-22-2013, 03:48 PM   #2
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Torrita



Still cold at Mt Bryan



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Old 08-22-2013, 03:49 PM   #3
farawayman OP
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It was still cold and wet. I wanted to explore the Flinders Ranges a little but with this rain . . .
. . . perhaps I should rethink it a little. Decided to spend the night at Orroroo with memories of a great steak in the pub there some years ago. That pub now looked rundown a couple of old Junker cars out the front, so I turned around to go back to the other pub. A footy fundraiser was on, several wheel barrows with ice and drinks where being pushed around the town. This pub was crowed, I couldn’t get in the door let alone get to the bar to ask about a room.
Quorn may be quieter, better to think and plan what I should do. Looks like my plans are coming apart.

Just out of Quorn SA

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Old 08-22-2013, 03:50 PM   #4
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I was moping around in some strange pub wondering if all my plans had gone to . . .
At lest they had an open fire to worm up by.
Heading up to my room 3 guys where in the lounge area discussing all things bikes, we got talking and they invited me to join them in the morning for an exploratory ride.







First stop in the morning was Warren Gorge.













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Old 08-22-2013, 04:08 PM   #5
farawayman OP
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Then we went up this road



To get to some hill to see if there was a view







My new best friends

Pete





John



I've forgotten



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Old 08-22-2013, 04:13 PM   #6
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Then the old bloke on the BMW fell off just before the end of a dead end road.



And muddy patches got longer and more frequent.





A late lunch was taken at Wilpena Pound
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Old 08-22-2013, 04:20 PM   #7
farawayman OP
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After lunch my new mates needed to start heading south, Pete's cows where calling and I headed north and my original plan. Thanks for sharing your ride guys, I would love to do it again one day.
I stopped to take a few pictures. I would love to spend more time around here just to catch the light.















But the Roo's were out early and the weather was closing in . . .

Stopped at Angorichina as the sun set and the rain moved in.
It's all dirt from here

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Old 08-22-2013, 04:38 PM   #8
farawayman OP
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There was some rain over night and I was worried about the clay roads, things had dried out enough by the morning. One advantage, it kept the dust down.
Still heading north.









Some aboriginal carvings







Arkaroola







My camp

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Old 08-22-2013, 04:39 PM   #9
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I had a spot booked for the Ridgetop tour so it was up early and pack and get myself up to the lodge.















It really is spectacular

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Old 08-22-2013, 04:43 PM   #10
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We got back at lunchtime and I was itching to get going. Pete on the KTM had recommended a track out of Arkaroola and I had tried to get some information, some said it was closed, others said it washed out in storms a month before. I had rode in the front on the way back from our tour to get some information from our guide. He said the storms had washed things out and they weren't maintaing the track but I should be ok.

Lunch







I didn't stop to take photos, I had a distance to go and the track was a challenge in places. My instructions were to follow the main track and turn left, but there were many turn offs to interesting places and it was hard to distinguish which was the main track.









It was getting late, I had to be in phone range tonight. I had arranged to ring Bluey, to arrange somewhere to meet in the morning. That meant I had to get to civilisation and theres not much of that up here.

Riding directly into the sun was hard on the eyes, I missed the peak on my off road helmet. An occasional vehicle raised a lot of dust and it hung in the still air. I have left the rain behind.
Text from Bluey,
"Hope your ride going to plan my plans have gone to crap. Project manager stood down, builder in hospital and job needs to be kept going, have been asked to postpone my holidays"
I was to meet the the others at Yalara in 2 nights and they were living it up tonight just down the road at Port Augusta

What to do?
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Old 08-22-2013, 06:58 PM   #11
SpineDr
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Fantastic so far. Love the photos.

Next installment please:
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Old 08-22-2013, 09:34 PM   #12
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Great stuff. It's causing me to flash back to a very,very similar trip I did a couple of years ago. Just love the Flinders.
mungo
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Old 08-22-2013, 10:07 PM   #13
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Following this closely cause I will be following much of this route in a couple of weeks
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Old 08-23-2013, 12:50 AM   #14
farawayman OP
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They had 1271km of good wide sealed roads with speed limits of 110km/h or above to Yulara.
I had 1238km a big part of it unknown dirt with speed limits of . . .

Who cares never seen a speed trap on dirt.

And we all had 2 days to do it in.

Although I hadn't done the math at the time.





Stopped in here for a look around. The flies attacked me and it stunk.
There were a couple of camps scattered around, a group indigenous australians that the local plod was talking to, a few of camels and a couple of guys sitting around a fire with a KLR parked in the background. So I walked over and said hi. They told me there was a big party the weekend before I should have been there. Looked like they were still recovering. I couldn't handle the flies or the stench so I moved on, a pity really it would have been nice to wonder around the sculptures a little more.







Lake Eyre



An original Ghan railway siding





Mound springs









Lunch at William Creek













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Old 08-23-2013, 12:51 AM   #15
farawayman OP
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On to the next stop. One of the longest bridges in SA.





There is a story of one of the locals trying to get home on night when the floods where on, so was using the railway bridge. He was using sleepers to drive on and passing them over the roof of his old Holden to place them in front of his tyres and moving forward and passing the next sleeper over the roof of the car. Hard work by your self, well of course the Ghan came through.
He made it, but the holden didn't. The wreck is still there.



Must be Indian country . . .
all the wagons pulled up in a circle.





I crossed the road and rode in a mile or so, a lovely water hole with Pelicans. To good a camp site to pass up.



My camp



A great spot, a Dingo checked me out just on dark and the stars where bright.
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