‘dirt_bloke’ turns 50, takes the Tiger to the desert… as you do!

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by dirt_bloke, Oct 20, 2013.

  1. dirt_bloke

    dirt_bloke No idea

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2007
    Oddometer:
    995
    Location:
    Wide Bay, Queensland, Australia
    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!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    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…)

    [​IMG]

    #1
  2. jorrizza

    jorrizza newb

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    69
    Location:
    the Netherlands
    Alright! I'm in. Especially interested in how that bike has behaved herself. :lurk
    #2
  3. What's his Face

    What's his Face lost as

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2006
    Oddometer:
    3,673
    Location:
    bundaberg australia
    in :D
    #3
  4. touser

    touser canned fruit

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    358
    Location:
    NSW South Coast Aus
    bring it bitch.
    #4
  5. GuiltyParty

    GuiltyParty drifter

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    Oddometer:
    318
    Location:
    London
    I'm in...for pics of the goats :D
    #5
  6. Xbt2

    Xbt2 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2007
    Oddometer:
    248
    Location:
    Your back yard
    In. Get on with the story :ear
    #6
  7. Radioman

    Radioman Moto rider

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2005
    Oddometer:
    5,208
    Location:
    HOME (at least for now)
    :thumb
    #7
  8. dirt_bloke

    dirt_bloke No idea

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2007
    Oddometer:
    995
    Location:
    Wide Bay, Queensland, Australia
    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.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    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!

    [​IMG]

    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.

    [​IMG]
    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.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    641km. 28.2 litres, all too easy.
    #8
  9. mecheng

    mecheng Adventurer

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2011
    Oddometer:
    57
    Location:
    Sydney
    good report! im keen to hear the rest!!:clap
    #9
  10. Dave Nolan

    Dave Nolan left from woopwoop

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,823
    Location:
    Australia
    Looks good so far. Keep it coming Pete.
    #10
  11. verdelac

    verdelac Rust never sleeps

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2013
    Oddometer:
    289
    Location:
    Cleveland
    in!:evil
    #11
  12. Merlinzen

    Merlinzen Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2012
    Oddometer:
    122
    Location:
    Mackay QLD AU
    :lurk
    #12
  13. bigdon

    bigdon Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,700
    n
    #13
  14. dirt_bloke

    dirt_bloke No idea

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2007
    Oddometer:
    995
    Location:
    Wide Bay, Queensland, Australia
    Ok looks like I've got the paste thing sorted, sort of!

    Day 2 New Tyres. St George to Hungerford

    [​IMG]

    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.

    [​IMG]

    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.

    [​IMG]
    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.

    [​IMG]
    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.

    [​IMG]
    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.
    #14
  15. WILL_S

    WILL_S OUTLAW POSTIE 001

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2,389
    Location:
    goodly satisfactory place, qld
    keep it comin:thumb
    #15
  16. dirt_bloke

    dirt_bloke No idea

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2007
    Oddometer:
    995
    Location:
    Wide Bay, Queensland, Australia
    Day 3 Currawinya National Park, Hungerford to Mt Wood

    Hungerford is on the edge of Currawinya National Park, two blokes Frank Manthey and Peter McRae have been on a crusade to save the native Bilby. http://www.savethebilbyfund.com/
    They have got this u-beaut enclosure in the park to protect the Bilbies which I had contributed to funding (I reckon native animals are generally pretty cool). So I wanted to see how things were going, so we set off after breakfast to have a look around the National Park.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macrotis

    [​IMG]
    (Pyro and his very well set up Toyota, I’ve been riding with Pyro for over 25 years. He’s done a lot of four wheel driving with his family and is one of those quiet understated people who make things look easy)

    On advice from then park ranger and publican we set off in the Prado. Firstly to the ‘Granites’ then to the ‘Woolshed Complex’. All the while keeping an eye out for the elusive Bilby.

    There are two types of Bilbies, the ‘Greater Eared Bilby’, they are cute getting all the attention and then there are the ‘Lesser Eared Carnivorous Bilby’ (thought to be extinct in the 1950s, but that was a government cover up) they eat Swedish Back Packers. Here at the ‘Granites’ Yogi points to a burrow with the remains of Inga the Swedish Back Packers bones.

    [​IMG]

    As we didn’t has any Swedish Back Packers to lure the evil Bilby out, we continued on to the Woolshed Complex. Now we weren’t sure if there was lots machinery components that made the place complex or that the place was small and it had a complex because of that.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    This place was a bit of a gem, lots of the old machinery, well preserved shearing shed, tally office, shearer’s quarters, butchers chop shop, boss shearers quarters, pretty much a Woolshed Complex.

    Right next to the woolshed was a Bilby information display complete with funky sculpture, information panels and a 15 meter replica of the fence. You see the location of the enclosure is a secret so people won’t upset the bloody Bilbies! FFS I’ve donated money and rode 1000km to some God forsaken hellhole next to the bloody desert, I don’t want to see some figgen replica, I want the real thing.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Large pick of sign> http://people.aapt.net.au/~groovin/desert_ride/d306.JPG

    As the day was getting on a bit, the others weren’t keen on looking for it, so we went back to Hungerford and got kitted up to go riding.

    [​IMG]

    Notice how clean, happy and shiny we all look. How long do you think that will last?

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Heading south across the border into New South Wales, this is the Dog Fence. Personally I think this fence is locked when the State of Origin Football is on to keep the southerners out of the Pub.


    With the cool change came a howling southerly that blew all night and still a gale. The track to Wanaaring was loose with plenty of drifting sand, Tank and Yogi struggled in sections. This was supposed to be an easy run. At the intersection of the Bourke road we were warned the surface was a bit dodgy for the 10km ride into town. Dodgy is a good way to describe pot-holed corrugated loose sandy rocky poor excuse for a road!

    At the Wanaaring Caravan Park & Store (well critiqued from the OCR – Off Centre Rally held every two years with at least 200km of dirt riding) their supply trailer had succumbed to the poor road conditions to Bourke and there was no fresh food for sandwiches etc, so we settled for some fried chicken pieces.

    Riding west from town the road was in far better condition and we made good time. Arriving at Mt. Wood camp site in the Sturt National Park, 20km east of Tibooburra with a couple of hours of day left. We set up camp with the only argument being about how beer there needed to be in the fridge.

    [​IMG]

    The Brisbane guys had pre-cooked meals, tonight it was Tank’s spicy spare ribs. Everything was going along well, then a group of four wheel drives rocked up, setting up camp. They were nice enough but insisted on lighting up the camp site with all their LED flood lights and sang ‘Kumbaya’ type songs!

    210km riding for the day 1430km total, Tiger making the ride easy (especially with no luggage). In the soft sections it was a case of point, roll the power on and the bike just does it. Yogi took a while to get on with the DRZ some of the clips from his GoPro were entertaining, Tank, making a return to riding was slowly getting into the groove.
    #16
  17. dirt_bloke

    dirt_bloke No idea

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2007
    Oddometer:
    995
    Location:
    Wide Bay, Queensland, Australia
    Bloody windows 8, cannot edit the last post. *argument being about how much beer*, shits me.

    Also forgot the map:

    [​IMG]

    That's better.
    #17
  18. ozzyal

    ozzyal Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2012
    Oddometer:
    50
    Location:
    waranga basin vic
    keep going :ear
    #18
  19. dirt_bloke

    dirt_bloke No idea

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2007
    Oddometer:
    995
    Location:
    Wide Bay, Queensland, Australia
    Good to see we have a few people along for the ride, these RR's take a bit of time!

    Day 4 Mt Wood to ‘The Old Strzelecki Track’

    I was up before the sun woken by sound of snoring that cut down a few rain forests, so did a bit exploring. Here I found a ‘Sturt Desert Trap Door Spider’, they feel the vibrations in the ground, hide under the web and pounce on the unsuspecting Swedish Backer who ventures too close. BTW these little fellas are venomous so best not to get them cranky.

    [​IMG]

    After yesterday’s ride our breakfast was supplemented by various prescription drugs containing Codeine as the old bones were a little sore. By the time we packed up camp the pain killers had kicked in and we were on our way to Tibooburra.

    [​IMG]

    Pyro was riding Yogi’s DRZ and Flash was doing some filming while Yogi was driving, this image is from the clip. The running commentary goes like this:
    Yogi “Welcome to the metropolis of Tippaburra”
    Flash “It’s not Tippaburra, its Tib-or-a”
    Yogi “IT’S TIPPABURRA even the people of New South Wales call it Tippaburra”
    Flash “Do not, only you call it Tippaburra”
    Yogi “Alll right we’ll see”
    Flash “We will….see the top of that motel sign-
    Yogi “Tippaburra”
    Flash “Tibb-oooo-ooo, Tib-ooo-burra, it’s hard to say actually”

    Anyway we get into town and fuel up. If you are trip planning and looking for Pub accommodation, Tibooburra looks like it would be a must stay. Heading west the vegetation started to disappear.

    [​IMG]

    The day was starting to heat up, out to Cameron Corner conditions were a bit more challenging with lots more sand. At some sort of treed area with not much shade we took a break.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    (I like my personal space)

    Dropped into Fort Grey Compound and camping area for a quick snack and drink. This place had been mentioned in other RR’s, if you are trip planning I reckon it would be a good place to camp with better facilities than Mt Wood (part of the Sturt National Park).

    [​IMG]

    There were quite a few more sections of soft sand and having to dodge kangaroos before we made the border fence. Then over to the Corner Store had some lunch, looked around, took touristy photos and fuelled up the Jerry Cans.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    On the road heading west into South Australia marks our start of the ‘Strzelecki Desert’. The road was generally well made but corrugated and sandy in parts and crap in other parts.

    [​IMG]

    We had been warned of some dodgy patches of road marked with red flags. Usually these were just over a crest of a dune, so after the first red flag (a Flag Marshal had raided the flag kit, sticking the flag in the ground by the handle!) we knew what to look for.

    At Merty Merty we continued headed north along ‘The Old Strzelecki Track’ coming across this:

    [​IMG]

    Always up for a good photo opportunity! Not really surprising as we were in the ‘Wherethefugarewe Oil & Gas Fields’. (Somebody here will know what these pumps are called).

    With a couple of hours of day light left we found large flat area to camp. This was good as there had been complaints about Flashes snoring (he feels the complaints were unjustified). So he was banished an appropriate distance to put down his kit.

    [​IMG]

    324 km for the day. First trouble for the Tiger, with the corrugations the left hand bolt on the Centre Stand had come loose and fallen out also losing the bushing. This bolt also secures to side stand. Pyro had some spare 10mm cap screws with a ‘Nyloc’ nut. This was quickly fitted with bolt head helping to locate the Centre Stand, cable ties did the rest.

    Precooked meal was an outstanding Chicken Korma prepared by Flash. Alcohol and bullshit flowed around the camp fire under a new moon with the full brilliance of the Milky Way on display. These adventures with good mates gets burned into you being for your life time.

    [​IMG]
    #19
  20. mettalique

    mettalique Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2012
    Oddometer:
    126
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    Oh now I'm envious. Wish it was me on this


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
    #20