Gone, Again... ( Random Adventures in Oz )

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by GoneAgain, Dec 23, 2009.

  1. GoneAgain

    GoneAgain Huh?

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,822
    Location:
    Bendigonia, Vic.
    Day 6, still in the Grampians..

    todays rough idea is to end up somewhere towards the bottom of the 'west leg' of the Grampians.. Phil has to be back in Melb in a couple of days, so today will be our last day in the Grampians..

    some great scenery in here..

    [​IMG]

    and surprisingly, some big open roads every now and then..

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    there was actually an airstrip next to this one...

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    so yesterday was a mud day....

    today was to see a bit of rock action...

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    no damage here...
    but i scored a nice set of scratches in my right pannier a little further on..
    (no pictures...but unfortunately, in this case that doesnt mean it 'didnt happen' :cry )

    [​IMG]


    plenty of great views out here..

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    .

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    we finally started down the 'west leg', think it was called "Goat Track"..

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    after we came down out of the range, the track was sand......lots of it...all of it..

    Phil wasnt likin it at all...

    we got to the bottom of the west leg and were pretty knackered so decided to just roll up the centre of the Grampians a little and set camp...

    it was off the beaten track again..

    with lots of dead ends..

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    after a fair bit of 'nope, this is a shit spot'.. we decided to gun it down to Dunkeld and camp there...

    It was getting dark and we had about an hour to travel..
    a few close calls with roos and rabbits saw us slow (maybe)

    then of course the weather changed and the wind picked up..

    we hit asphelt but it was windy as hell with leaves and stuff constantly blowing over the road (and small branches blowning out of trees)

    We made Dunkeld in the dark, hit the campground and the caretaker was 'out'..

    found a spot and i left Phil to start settin up his tent while i gunned it down to the pub to grab us a couple of beers..

    walked into the pub to cheers from the locals "told you you'd be back!":lol3

    grabbed some take-aways and then the thunder and rain started bucketing down..

    gota go i said.."be back...soon" :D

    hooned back to camp in the rain to a swearing Phil who still didnt have his tent up.. :lol3


    i gave him a beer,

    the lights went out..

    i set my tent up...and watched Phil finish seting his up..

    then the rain stopped... :rofl

    we decide to hit the pub for a few..

    walked down the blackend street wondering how long the power would be out, got to the pub where the lights were out too..

    "sorry guys the powers out, we had to close.."

    "what, whats wrong with your generator?" i enquired..


    "we dont have one..."

    what sort of yuppie pub with a pool and $150 per head dinners in the middle of no-where doesnt have a generator i wondered...

    back to camp, crack out the cookers and torches.. oh and of couse a bottle of red that Phil had been carrying this whole time...:clap

    Phil had a cup, i cut the bottom off a coke bottle... we ate and drank..and hoped it didnt rain like this tomorrow......:freaky



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    #21
  2. 1coolbanana

    1coolbanana Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2,649
    Location:
    NW Sydney, Australia
    Bloody ripper :thumb :lurk
    #22
  3. dirtsurfer

    dirtsurfer Thread killer

    Joined:
    May 10, 2006
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    Location:
    Foxtel Chillout Longe
    well done
    #23
  4. Medic

    Medic Window licker

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
    598
    Location:
    Tanah Merah, Queensland AUSTRALIA
    Great ride! Enjoyed the read!
    #24
  5. mattherat

    mattherat it was like that when i got here

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    197
    Location:
    sydney australia
    lovely xmas story, excellent pics :lol3 :clap
    #25
  6. BigM

    BigM Hello :-)

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    766
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    Great RR GA, looks like a blast :)
    #26
  7. oziexplorer

    oziexplorer fugarewe tribe member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,169
    Location:
    Perth, West Oz
    Fantastic Ride report
    I reckon you've encapsulated a great ride for us to join in on.

    (also a great ad for the BMW GS800's all-round versatility if you ask me)
    #27
  8. Shmerel

    Shmerel

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2007
    Oddometer:
    11,152
    Location:
    Where my soul takes me
    brilliant!
    btw, the pub in nelson is full of charm esp on sat'dy nites if there's band.
    #28
  9. GoneAgain

    GoneAgain Huh?

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,822
    Location:
    Bendigonia, Vic.
    so day 7 was to be a run down from Dunkeld to the south coast and start the Great Ocean Road,

    weather was crap, windy as hell and a bit of rain...

    that didnt stop us of course from detouring through any 'green patches' on the GPS..:D

    [​IMG]

    (yep, that muddy 's-bend' track is mine...and yes, i did stay on :evil)

    Phil, of course, wasnt so lucky... just as well he likes playin in the mud!

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    anyway, we survived the mud,wind and rain and made it to Port Campbell..

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    some (dodgy) coffee and time to scoot down the coast and have a look at a few of the sights..

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    wasnt long before we'd had enough of the bitumen though..

    and headed off down the 'old' Ocean rd..

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    and whatta ya know...

    wasnt long before we'd had enough of dirt roads..

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    so the afternoon was spent carving around the Otways on all sorts of muddy tracks..

    lunch (even though it was around 4pm) and fuel started calling, so we poped out at this place:

    [​IMG]
    #29
  10. GoneAgain

    GoneAgain Huh?

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,822
    Location:
    Bendigonia, Vic.
    so it was a late lunch at Gelebrand..

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    top feed at Gelibrand, lots of chats with the owner 'Paul' and his wife (Paul may be on here? pretty keen rider...)

    anyway, after about an hour of 'hospitality' we headed off with full bellies, full tanks, and some extra stuff for dinner (Thanks again Paul!!:clap)

    Definately recommend you stop in at the 'general store' at Gellibrand sometime!)

    the evening was spent looking for a good camp site.. found a few waterfalls..

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    and then we found "the spot":evil

    the view 'up' was great..

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    we setup camp just on dark

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    cooked some dinner, had a couple of cold ones,

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    and called it a night...

    (end o day 7)
    #30
  11. 1coolbanana

    1coolbanana Long timer

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2,649
    Location:
    NW Sydney, Australia
    :thumb
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    :lurk
    #31
  12. GoneAgain

    GoneAgain Huh?

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,822
    Location:
    Bendigonia, Vic.
    so woke up on day 8 at 'the' spot..

    the view as i opened my tent in the morning..

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    yep, a good spot..

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    .

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    time to pack and head off for another misty day in the Otway Ranges...

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    the day was spent zig-zaging our way from top to bottom of the Otways, slowly heading towards Melbourne..

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    every now and then our track would drop us out on the "Great Ocean Road"..wouldnt stay on that long before finding another track to explore..

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    that chewed up the day, but soon it was time to split up, Phil had to work in Melbourne tomorrow...i didnt :rofl

    We split just east of Geelong,

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    Phil heading to Melb, me heading north.....

    Made it to Mums place that night for a good hot shower and a home cooked feed..:D

    ...
    #32
  13. hihosliver

    hihosliver Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2006
    Oddometer:
    62
    It's cold and raining/snowing here in NYC and the only thing I want to do after reading through this is ride somewhere...I think I'm gonna have to wait a few months. So, I guess I'm just gonna have to live vicariously through you.
    Keep up the great posts and all the photos.
    You're making a lot of guys stuck in the snow very jealous.
    Great stuff.
    #33
  14. GoneAgain

    GoneAgain Huh?

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,822
    Location:
    Bendigonia, Vic.
    So after a refreshing night in a house, i woke, had a big breakfast and headed off..

    a short spurt west on the Western Highway, then off north through the Lerderderg Forrest..

    up "Blue-Gum Track"..

    [​IMG]

    down Fire break Number 1..

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    and down fire break number 1............

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    and thru the mud and up the other side..:D

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    another hour or so winding around fire trails, then a short break at O'Briens Crossing...

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    then on thru Blackwood and into the Wombat State forrest

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    decided lunch would be at the Store in Glenlyon... went thru there a year or 2 ago and was a great spot...

    unfortunately it aint no more....:cry

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    she is up for sale though... hopefully, the 'right' people will start her up again....

    so, off, around the back of Mt Franklin, into Newstead (via a 'shortcut' through the Loddon river :D )

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    on to Maldon bakery for lunch, a scoot arount the hills there then north east, over to Sutton Grange, Metcalfe then on up thru Eppalock and Rushworth,

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    shortcut thru some more state forrests..


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    continued north..

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    continued north, sun started to drop so figured it must be nearly dinner time...

    decide it was time to find camp..

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    made it to Barmah, just in time to get some take-aways as the pub was closing.. then set up camp on the banks of the Murray River again...

    [​IMG]

    end of day nine.....:D



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    #34
  15. GoneAgain

    GoneAgain Huh?

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,822
    Location:
    Bendigonia, Vic.
    so, sorry for the break, Christmas (and another ride:D ) got in the way..

    day 10... woke up to a beautiful day on the banks of the Murray river at Barmah... rought plan was to just "follow 'er home"....

    [​IMG]

    stayed on the Victorian side around to Echuca,


    [​IMG]

    Old paddle steamers:

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    crossed over at Echuca into NSW and out Perricoota rd, however, i soon left that for smaller tracks through all the state forests, conservation parks etc..

    some of these tracks would be a real nightmare in the wet....

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    and since it was a hot day, i'd stop every now and then for a swim...

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    a lot of the tracks still had 'mud holes' in them, so the bike was looking pretty nice by now....

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    cant remember where i crossed back into Vic, think it was at Swan Hill..

    the tracks were much the same, baked dry (mostly :lol3 ) so made for good running..

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    the day was getting away, so time to set camp again.

    found another nice spot by the river, someone had had a fire there before me so i figured, 'why not'...

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    you gotta love camp-fire-lit bike photos! :D

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    hell. just camp fire lit photos!

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    ,
    [​IMG]

    and one last one:lol3

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    then off to bed...end o' day 10. :D
    #35
  16. Thorne

    Thorne Sherpa-ing around

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,206
    Location:
    Lone Pine, ON, Canada
    Gotta love the fire photos...............
    #36
  17. GoneAgain

    GoneAgain Huh?

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,822
    Location:
    Bendigonia, Vic.
    so i woke up on day 11, stuck my head out the tent, and it looked like it was just gonna be HOT...


    [​IMG]


    up and into it, cleaned up (squashed and bagged the beer cans:D ) had some breakie, admired this great spot:

    [​IMG]


    It was another day of crusing thought forests along the Murray..

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    went here, but was dissapointed with what i found:cry

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    oh well, at least the river was there for some company..

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    by now, i was starting to get close to Mildura, thought some civilisation would be nice for a change..

    the landscape was changing..

    [​IMG]


    spent an hour or so in Mildura, "civilisation" just wasnt working for me, so i decided it best to 'bugger off' and spend my saturday night 'out there'..

    time to cross over into New South Wales again..

    [​IMG]

    went to Wentworth and made it worthwhile by pickin up some 'provisions' (fuel, beer, mince:evil )

    stopped down by the river for a break and a 'map look' to see where i was heading..

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    decided to head out towards Lake Victoria via the Renmark road..

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    it was a stinker of a day, the first 40 (?) kms were bitumen,
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    the country was really opening up and becoming more 'marginal'..

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    i'd stop every now and they and either stretch the legs:

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    or to take a gratuitious bike shot :D

    [​IMG]


    or to just add to the 'modern art' :rofl


    [​IMG]

    anyway, the bitumen soon ended and it was into the 'marbles' for a while..


    [​IMG]

    with the odd bit of 'high speed hard baked clay' :D

    [​IMG]

    the day was (again) getting on, so i cut down to the river to start my daily search for a good camp spot... was kinda surprised to pop out on the river at Loch 7...

    [​IMG]

    i backtracked along the river a bit, came to the 'perfect clearing' but it was set-up for what looked like a fair mob of people (and like they were gonna stay there for a while!)

    kept going, but ended up coming back to the 'next best spot' which was only about 500m upstream from them, started the campfire, got dinner on and then had a couple of blokes pull up in a boat... it was the (only) 2 who had the camp next door... they were just coming in for the day but had seen the fire and thought they'd best check what was going on.. brought me dinner down to their place, had a good feed, a few beers, great conversation, moseyed back to camp, took another gratuitous campfire shot and hit the sack..

    [​IMG]

    end o' day eleven.......




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    #37
  18. GoneAgain

    GoneAgain Huh?

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,822
    Location:
    Bendigonia, Vic.
    so day 12 was to be the last day of this trip... :cry

    it was another hot one, sitting around 40 degrees most of the day...

    usually its a bit of a hassle to just 'pull up' somewhere..

    not out here:

    [​IMG]


    not sure i'd want to stay out here for 6 weeks!

    i continued on past Lake Victoria, heading for Renmark via the Old Wentworth Road...

    [​IMG]

    there wasnt a hell of a lot out here...

    can imagine living out here would be pretty dull..

    would perhaps need to fill your time building massive front gates...


    [​IMG]

    or perhaps building mail boxes..

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    the day moved on, getting hotter and hotter, the road got worse and worse, marbles, deep gravel, sand...

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    by the time i got to the border and crossed into South Australia, i was over this road... the last 70km would have to have been the worst i've riden on so far.....

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    road improved after crossing the border... so did the 'modern art'...

    I didnt contribute to this one :D

    [​IMG]


    got to Renmark and fought the flys for my breakfast.. great looking town..

    then went via Berri and Loxton, stoping to cool off in the river at both..

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    then, not wanting the day to end too soon, headed up to Bamera and around Lake Bonney..

    [​IMG]

    started heading out to Morgan, and ended up taking a detour to a nice little pub called the 'Overland Corner'.. bloody old pub, and even though its a fair way (maybe almost 1km?) from the river, it has been under water a few times...

    seems they have a fair old bash out here on New Years eve, had a beer or 2, and added the place to my list or options for NYE...

    [​IMG]

    back on the bike and into the heat... decided to skip Morgan and start the ride home..

    lots of dips in the river along the way to try and dull the 40 degree day a bit..

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    she really was a pretty scenic river to follow home...

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    by time i left the river towards Mt Pleasant, the sun was starting to set.. it had been another long but fun day in the seat..

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    I'd started the climb up into the Adelaide Hills, a quick glance behind me summed up the hot wide open country i'd just traveled thru..

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    I knew i was just about home... and was perhaps getting a little sad that this ride was over....

    it had been a long 12 days, with a bit of 'everything' thrown in there.. and no problems with the bike:deal

    But then the breeze got cooler, and 'home town' Adelaide popped into view and i got excited about being home again soon...

    [​IMG]

    I started wondering about where the next ride would take me.......


    To be continued...................:evil





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    #38
    Tomocan likes this.
  19. banshee

    banshee hi

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2004
    Oddometer:
    6,263
    Location:
    Virginia
    nice report, thanks!
    #39
  20. NotHome

    NotHome Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2009
    Oddometer:
    148
    Location:
    TTG, South Australia
    :clap:clap:clap:clap:clap:clap:clap:clap:clap:clap:clap:clap

    Great story and photos
    #40