Savannah Way or Melbourne to the gulf and back.

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by AngryAndo, Jun 10, 2013.

  1. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Well it's time to get back to reporting on the ride. After my bike was collected Simon, Tim and David headed off and slabbed it to Swan Hill for a late Pizza dinner then on to Nyah our planned destination.
    They arrived at 10:10 pm (sorry fellas) and camped on the banks of the Murray.

    At this point I want to thank the three guys for getting me and my bike sorted

    No pictures yet except for this one.

    [​IMG]
    #21
  2. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Day 2 Nyah to Bindara Station.

    After a late start they managed to follow my track notes through the Hattah and arrived in Mildura.

    From Mildura on to Wentworth then followed the Darling river on the West side. They crossed the river into Pooncarie then crossed back and headed on to Bindara Station arriving in the dark at 7:45.
    #22
  3. BayBags

    BayBags Rough As

    Joined:
    May 15, 2012
    Oddometer:
    27
    Location:
    Byron Bay NSW.
    Hi Ando. Good to talk yesterday. Hope all goes well with the plan to catch the guys up on the way north. I was tempted to catch a plane and come too! If you have a back up vehicle you may as well have a back up rider!!
    Bags
    #23
  4. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    It's been a couple of days since I did an update. The guys have been making good progress although it appears the planned km were a bit steep for some days.

    Day 3 they departed Bindara and headed for Hungerford but eventually stopped just on dark at Wanaaring. I have no real details of what happened today or for day 4.

    Day 4 Wanaaring to Quilpie for the guys on the bikes and I left Melbourne in a rented 4wd with my wife Yvonne to catch them up hopefully at Chillagoe. We ended up at Hillston for the night.

    Day 5

    The guys made good time today and are now at Muttaburra and back on schedule.
    Yvonne and I are in Charleville and on schedule to catch the guys on Saturday.

    I will post photos from the riding at the end of this RR.

    [​IMG]
    Crossing the border into Qld

    [​IMG]
    Now this is outback Australia
    #24
  5. TonyRDR

    TonyRDR Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2004
    Oddometer:
    298
    Location:
    South Australia
    Shit that is the quickest turnaround from hospital to back on the road I have ever seen. You must really be keen. :clap:clap:clap

    Keep up the good work :lurk
    #25
  6. Not the Messiah

    Not the Messiah Not the Messiah

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2013
    Oddometer:
    472
    Location:
    Melb'n, 'Straya
    Glad to hear you're back on the tour GA.:D
    Now does this mean you have to do the painting yourself when you get back, or did Mrs Angry do it in the 0.6 days she had at home by herself?:lol3:lol3
    #26
  7. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Finally caught the guys today. We are in Chillagoe tonight.

    [​IMG]

    May even get some riding photos tomorrow.
    #27
  8. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Here are a few photos Simon took over the past few days.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    #28
  9. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Day 8: Chillagoe to Mitchell River near Dunbar.

    A late start today leaving at 9:00 after a good night in the Chillagoe pub.
    We headed north about 30 km to the first crossing of Walsh river. Our original plan was to have a night camping here, nice place.
    [​IMG]

    The road was a bit boring for the first 200 km as it had been recently graded and in fact they were still working on sections.
    There were even a few sections of bitumen in the first 100 km.

    After that the road deteriorated a bit but was still quite good condition.
    [​IMG]
    Having a rest along the Burke Dev Rd

    Just under 300 km from Chillagoe is The turnoff to Kowanyama, we took this turnoff then immediately turned right again towards Koolatah station. 8 km from the turnoff we reached the Mitchell river crossing where we camped the night.
    [​IMG]
    "Koolatah crossing" over the Mitchell river

    [​IMG]
    This guy wandered past our camp site.

    [​IMG]
    Sun sets over the Mitchell River



    Day 9: Mitchell River to Karumba

    Another casual day with only 280 km planned for the day.
    We headed back to the Burke Development road where we headed south past Dunbar station. No facilities or fuel available at Dunbar these days.

    The guys leaving Koolatah station.
    The dust was unbelievable.
    [​IMG]
    Tim

    [​IMG]
    David

    [​IMG]
    Simon approaching

    [​IMG]
    Simon
    The road condition at this end is quite mixed but lots of bulldust and rough sections.

    Arrived at Karumba around 1:00 pm. Booked in for a fishing trip tomorrow.
    #29
  10. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Had dinner at Sunset Tavern Karumba Point tonight.
    Very disappointed at the poor quality. Won't eat here tomorrow night.
    #30
  11. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    OK I'm back, we have hardly spent a night with phone service since my last post so I have a bit of catching up.

    First here are a few more photos from our trip to Karumba.
    [​IMG]
    David raising a lot of dust just past Dunbar station

    I also have some video to download but have to get home for that.
    #31
  12. Not the Messiah

    Not the Messiah Not the Messiah

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2013
    Oddometer:
    472
    Location:
    Melb'n, 'Straya
    Hi GA,

    Figured you were out of range. Glad to hear you're still going.

    BL
    #32
  13. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Day 10: fishing day at Karumba then bike maintenance.

    No photos of the fishing and no fish!!!

    [​IMG]
    Oil changes all round?
    We shipped rear tyres to Chillagoe but it turned out to be a bit early for tyre changes, the guys now have over 4000 km on the bike and the tyres are showing a bit of wear but not ready for a change.
    #33
  14. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Day 11. Karumba to Adel's Grove

    After the rest day I think the guys were pleased to be on the bikes again. We headed to Normanton then followed the Savannah Way to Burketown before turning towards Adel's Grove next to Lawn Hill NP

    [​IMG]
    Crossing Little Bynoe River on Savannah Way between Normanton and Burketown

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Leichardt Falls, not much water but I suspect it would be quite spectacular in the wet season.

    We stopped in Burketown for lunch, the old pub was burnt down about 18 months ago and the new one looks like being finished fairly soon.

    Finally arrived at Adel's Grove mid afternoon after several long sections of road works.

    [​IMG]
    We saw plenty of these, some with four trailers.

    [​IMG]
    I got a puncture as we drove in to Adel's Grove, thanks to the guys for changing it for me.
    #34
  15. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Adels Grove is quite a tropical paradise and a good spot for another rest day for a bit more maintenance. The DR's rear tyres were just about finished. 4500 km on a Dunlop 606 was better than we had expected.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    The rest day gave the guys time to relax and also change tyres and air cleaners.

    [​IMG]
    Simon also changed a tyre, the front tyre. The KTM 990 seems to be a bit harsher on the front, his rear a Dunlop Rally Raid was still going strong and seems to be a great lasting tyre for the big bike.
    #35
  16. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    I've just worked out how to add Videos so these may be out of sequence a bit.

    <IFRAME height=315 src="//www.youtube.com/embed/yEMNvpPsKCo" frameBorder=0 width=560 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>

    Simon on the road just out of Dunbar
    #36
  17. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Day 13 Adels Grove to south of Dajara

    After another rest day we headed south through Riversleigh. The section through Riversleigh and on to the Gregory Downs-Camooweal Rd was a great road for riding and also had several good camping spots along the way.

    There were also a couple of very slippery floodway crossings.
    Tim hit the front brake on one and hit the deck so quick I missed it on my video.
    It was almost impossible to stand up let alone pick up a fully loaded bike.

    [​IMG]
    Tim picking up his bike

    <IFRAME height=315 src="//www.youtube.com/embed/JnXgEfgMCxc" frameBorder=0 width=560 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>


    [​IMG]
    David crossing the same floodway

    Once we got to Gregory Downs-Camooweal Rd we headed south then turned left onto Yelvercroft rd which was bitumen.
    from here the rest of the day was on sealed roads into Mt Isa.

    We stopped in Mt Isa to get my puncture repaired and restock before heading south towards Boulia. This road was also bitumen but quite narrow.
    We found a good camp site for the night about 40km south of Dajarra.

    <IFRAME height=315 src="//www.youtube.com/embed/AWQu9SCKpmo" frameBorder=0 width=560 allowfullscreen></IFRAME>
    Leaving Mt Isa

    [​IMG]
    A good camp site about 40km south of Dajarra.
    We enjoyed Sausages, baked spuds and vegies all cooked over and in the fire.
    [​IMG]
    #37
  18. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Day 14 South of Dajara to Birdsville

    The next morning we headed off early towards Boulia. We were surprised to find Boulia was quite a large town with fuel and a fully equipped supermarket even if it did have a dog wandering around inside.

    After refuelling we headed further south to Bedourie where we refuelled and had lunch.
    We then headed out to the local race course where the annual Camel races were under way.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The road had been sealed all the way to here but once we left Bedourie there were a few sections of unsealed road.
    [​IMG]

    This is one of the sealed sections.

    Eventually we arrived in Birdsville, the boys had headed straight to the pub (as you would)
    [​IMG]

    We booked into the caravan park
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Then headed to the pub for dinner.

    Day 15 Big Red Day

    Today was set aside for a trip out to Big Red for a bit of a play.

    The guys had a great time.

    [​IMG]
    Tim taking the hard line up Little Red
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Simon gets the 990 up Big Red
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    then celebrates.

    [​IMG]
    This was the result on his first attempt

    [​IMG]
    Looking along the top of Big Red

    [​IMG]
    David gets good air at the top.

    [​IMG]
    Looking West across the Simpson towards Mt Dare

    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/DOaHHq2Fwiw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
    David and Tim playing on Big Red
    #38
  19. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Day 16 Birdsville to Innaminka

    Yesterday was the last planned rest day for the trip, from today it will be riding every day until we get home.

    We departed Birdsville fairly early as we have a long (slow) trip to Innaminka via Walkers Crossing but not before we get the mandatory photo in front of the Birdsville Pub.

    [​IMG]

    I have been to Birdsville several times over the last 14 years and Walkers crossing track has been closed on every occasion.
    This year has been so dry that Walkers Crossing is open.
    The Inside track and Warburton crossing are also open which is not always the case.

    Time and daylight restrictions meant we were not able to take the inside track so it was down the Birdsville track to the beginning of Walkers Crossing track.
    Whilst there is no sign pointing to Innaminka right on the side of the track there is a sign just off to the left indicating the start of the track.

    [​IMG]
    This sign is just off the side of the Birdsville Track

    [​IMG]
    Here are the gps coordinates at this corner.

    Walkers Crossing track has just about every condition you can encounter in the outback all in one track.
    We started out with a fairly basic track across bare country.

    [​IMG]
    Rain over night and over the last week made it wet and slippery.

    [​IMG]
    We then moved into sand dune country

    [​IMG]
    And then Tim got a puncture.

    We had encountered plenty of wild life on this trip (Starting with my Kangaroo)
    David tried to save this lizard by moving it off the road
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    But he was having no part of it.

    [​IMG]
    The track then turned to a white sand with plenty of water.

    [​IMG]
    Later in the day we got into the gas fields area where we followed some mining roads interspersed with the original track.

    [​IMG]
    We arrived in Innaminka and refuelled (Petrol 202.5, Diesel 205.00) the most expensive for the trip.

    [​IMG]
    Before setting up camp in the town common then headed to the pub for dinner

    The bar in the pub is pretty much like many other outback pubs,
    the dining room is nothing like it with much more up market meals and d├ęcor.
    Good food but a bit pricey.
    #39
  20. AngryAndo

    AngryAndo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Oddometer:
    109
    Location:
    Ferntree Gully Victoria Australia
    Day 17. Innaminka to Brachina Gorge in the Flinders Ranges

    Today was to be quite a long day so we had fuelled up last night so we didn't have to wait the shop to open.
    The pitfall of this was it was quite cool as we headed further south. It was hard to imagine we had been wearing shorts and tee shirts just a few days ago.

    We chose to take the "Old Strzelecki Track" down to Merty Merty.
    The first half of this was a good ride until we crossed the Strzelecki Tk, after that the road condition improved.

    [​IMG]
    Along the way the gas wells we had been passing since yesterday gave way to oil wells.

    [​IMG]
    The temperature of the oil coming out of the ground was quite warm and gave the guys a chance to warm their hands.

    [​IMG]
    At Merty Merty we turned west and headed out to join the Strzelecki Track again.
    Along this section we stopped for breakfast on the side of the road.

    Once on the Strzelecki track we headed south again and turned left at Mount Hopeless making our way to Balcanoona.
    This is another track with many variations along the way.

    [​IMG]
    Tim passing through the gate at the beginning of this road

    [​IMG]
    David showing his riding skills

    We continued on to Blinman and then into the Flinders Ranges where we camped in Brachina Gorge at East Brachina camping ground.
    Its an awesome place where I have camped several times before.
    There are several individual camp sites for both 2WD & 4WD vehicles (and ADV bikes) and a couple of drop toilets as well.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
    The creek at the camp ground was starting to flow after recent rain ensuring 2WD's cannot get into the 4WD camp sites.

    This was a long day and fuel was tight. Without the 4WD we would have been required to go into Arkaroola to refuel adding an extra 64 km to the day.
    #40