Team 690 on the APC (going round oz till we're dizzy)

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by excTC, Jul 23, 2012.

  1. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Well we have been readying for the APC rally for months. The Internet shopping is slowing down and the bikes are assembled and covered in tanks and bags. We are starting at Woodenbong 2 hours SW of Brisvegas and heading to the Simpson desert the down to SA across VIC and back through NSW mostly offroad. Total distance 7500 kms over 14 days for about 550 km a day.

    We headed out for a last minute shake down.
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    We head out on Friday 27 July and will post when possible.
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  2. CordR

    CordR Been here awhile

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    Best of luck.....looking forward to hearing how the 690 works for you.

    C
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  3. Mike_drz

    Mike_drz Banned

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    nice ktm :norton
    #3
  4. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Thanks for the encouragement. Still things to finish off. 1 more day to go. I am still waiting on a spare air cleaner, warm gloves and balaclava. We are running sena blue tooth gear which we have found to be great but which still has some setup to learn about.
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  5. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Set off at 4 to arrive at 6. Last minute shop on the way to get micro SD for the cam. Nice sunset and twisty range before he town and thn settle in to bundy, steak and chips. Very civilized. It started to get colder up in the hills. Tomorrow is scrutineering and the start. Up at 6.
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  6. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    An early cold start fighting with zippers. I found my two smallest fingers on each hand would't work properly. I thought that my new gloves were stiff until I took them off and the fingers were the same. Fuel up.

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    Ride 10 k to the start at urbanville.

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    Great views.

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    Ready to roll.

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    Along with a few others.

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    Follow the pink line on the gps.

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    Across the falls and dodge the press and groupies.


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    More crossings on the way to Tenterfield.

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    Big rocks along the Rocky river. What else would you expect.

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    Another find for my collection of old buildings.

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    And another but a church.

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    On the way to Emmaville which we found was an attractive little town lost in time. We stopped off to look at the abandoned Arsenic mine.

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    Another dwelling that has seen better times.
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    Arrived at Goondiwindi at 5.30 having made 530km. What does that mean. The Victoria hotel agreed to put us up for 52 per room and the bikes got ridden into a vacant shop and locked up. A super hot shower, super large Tbone steak, drinks and do it again tomorrow. People are talking about making charleville but that's 800 k. Have to wait and see. Bollon is about 500k. A bit too few kms.
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  7. ABuck99

    ABuck99 0.0

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    Good Luck on the Journey!
    #7
  8. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    The roudy football fans singing into the night didn't keep us from sleeping and we were up at 6 bikes extracted from the shop/lockup and fueled and away by 7.

    We turned off trying not to get giddy.


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    Animal encounters we're frequent.


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    We rocked up to the Ningilly pub after 200k but it was shut.

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    So was the bridge over the moonie river.

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    In oz a moonie is someone showing bare buttocks.


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    but the express lane was open and welcome after drinks the night before.


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    A few more bikes turned up and the place was crowded and we left.

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    The trail took us past Cubby station and black soil roads.

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    Somewhere in front of a servo I found that I had a bent brake pad and had to a padoctomy. It was successful as luckily I had the old pads that I had taken out to put in the nice new ones that promptly bent. A lesson there.

    Through lots of gates and track.

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    Where you learn good gate manners. First one there gets stuck with the gate. Closing that is.

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    And arrived at Charleville at 6 right on dark. There was talk of camping and some did but we didn't and found a comfortable pub. Steve found his expensive aftermarket gear lever wasn't,t a gear shift any more and after making calls all around the country looking for a replacement found that the person next to him had one. So it was duly fitted and we retired to the bar to discuss animal encounters. For me it was eagles, flying backwards to my helmet until I braked. A flock of pigeons that exploded around me, a roo that raced me and then skidded out of the way (I won that one) and a emu that knew he was beat and beat a retreat squeezing through the fence. What will tomorrow bring.
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  9. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Set off from Charlaville.
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    All geared up, chain lubed, zips zipped, gloves helmet, spot on, then worked out we should get food. Rode round the corner to the bakery and had Coffee and donuts and with the added energy we were off.

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    Came across this rock that recorded that the first flight that was made to aust by the smith brothers landed here in a biplane bomber. Adventurers crossing paths.

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    Modern conveniences by the road.

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    Your mind wanders on the ride I began to see these signs as set up for riders.

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    Lots of nothing at times.

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    And then the Adavale pub. The question I have is why. And they have a surf club.

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    A station called maybe. Another was called whynot.


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    Some of the riding was easy and fast and fun.

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    For the guys that missed the donnuts this was breakfast at about 12.

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    Smiles all round at Quilpie.

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    We started looking for a place to stay. Cheap?

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    We stopped at one of the guys who's 640 had quit. Andy later towed him in and he was out. Bummer.

    We made it to the river crossing and I talked to Steve on the intercom to make a splash but I could tell he wasn't completely trusting and sure of the depth.

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    Got to Thargaminda at about 4. Some of the last of the track was smooth and brilliant. Stopped at the hot bore where the water pressure was used to generate power.

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    We bought some basic provisions, rum, coke, salami, mandarin, (there wasn't a huge choise) and we went on to gain a few more kms and camp. On at a gate opening met up with Stuart and Rod and found a low cost spot by the road with fuel and space. Fine and dandy. Stuart and Rod were old hands and came chairs with there names monogrammed on the back. We on the otherhand fought with our camping gear until it submitted and we had comfortable accomodation.

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    #9
  10. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Broke camp well before sunup. *Stuart's idea to save getting dew on the tent.


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    Stuarts f800 showed on its dial that the temperature rose to 1 degree at daybreak.


    Bulloo downs.
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    off cross country over earth manipulated by cattle houves.
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    We followed an obvious track along a fence line that ended up at a river. *Backtracking we found the correct track slightly further away.

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    The track took us across swampy ground that every so often had holes designed to swallow up a bike front wheel.

    One mud hole did swallow up a 990 up to the tank and threw its rider. Both survived.

    A deviation on the GPS route took us out in virgin bush and back along a faint outline of a track. We got lost up a dry gully that turned wet and eventally found our way back to an open track.

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    Signage in the bush.

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    3 dingos looked us over at one of the gates as if we were to fall they would clean us up.

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    The scenery was spectacular in places with big views.

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    We came out onto the road to Cameron's corner where the road got sandy and red.

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    Taking time to stop to smell the roses (or other yellow substitutes).

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    Cameron's corner where we got into a bit of a state.

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    Well actually 3 states, Qld, SA, and nsw all at once.

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    A stopped bus rather than a bus stop. Why or what for I don't know.


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    We stopped in front on an oil pump. *There were lots of them. *The brand was Lufkin which we know for making tape measures. *Wonder which came first the pumps or tapes or did they make the tapes to help make the pumps.

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    The geothermal drill rig was next to the road so another photo op. 4 km down is where the action was happening.

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    On to Ina. Big views.

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    In inaminka we fueled and did a lightning fix to Steve's muffler. *At the trading post we were able to get some sheet cut it to size, bent in the vice and pop rivet over epoxy all in the space of 15 mins before closing. *

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    Luckily we got fuel before it was shut others did't and were stuck waiting in the morning till opening.

    We also got beer and good steak.
    #10
  11. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Packed and away at 7 and left Ina. *

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    The road was easy at first, crossed the river at foot peg depth and then deterorated into sand.*

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    A little close inspection of the line.

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    Ron and his team racing past.

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    Closer to the inland sea.

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    Quick action averted the hole.

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    The rocks rattled us physically and mentally. *You had to constantly work to miss jagged teeth wanting to take a bite of your tyres.

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    Rock, rocks, rockies and more as far as you could see.
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    My rally raid bash plate rattled itself apart and had to be modded with high performance accessories.

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    By the end of the track we pulled up and felt ruined at this ruin.

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    We made the remote fuel stop and then onto birdsville only stopping at the bakery to eat pies. Great pies but a long way to go to get them.


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    A photo op in front of big red.


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    Big red and all the other reds. *We headed off to give Steve his first lessons in sand riding.
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    It was hard bit after much perseverance we made the course turning point.

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    ready for camping and so we set up.

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    Simpson sunset

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    We set up camp at the park sign and were standing by the fire about to go to bed when we heard strange sounds. Lions possibly. *Nothing to be be seen then again. *WTF. *They were getting loader. A flock of bloody camels that seemed to think they should be where we were. *I walked out and in the dark I could see 20 or so. Maybe there were hundreds. *Do they attack or drop like drop bears. *Camels after dark what next and would they walk on us in the night.*
    #11
  12. Wilmo

    Wilmo Orange Fever

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    Following with interest!
    #12
  13. michael1968

    michael1968 Been here awhile

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    Great stuff, wish I was out there with you!
    #13
  14. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Broke camp and headed back accross the 60 dunes ( I counted them on the way).

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    As we got closer to big red the morning riders started coming till we met the group waiting in the traffic jam. We also saw a spectacular high side on a red F800. Jeff I think was the culprit.

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    We set off to tackle big red on the origional line. You can't follow the origional track because on the birdsvilles side of big red it's a lake.

    We crested and took the victory photos.

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    We then burned back to Birdsville, fuel, pies at the bakery ( great pies but a long way to go to get them) and set off down the track.

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    A long way great scenery but over and over again. To break the monotony Steve ran into a cow. No photo's but the sign tells you what you have to do.


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    Steve went over the bars got battered and bruised but luckily the bike was ok and he rode it the 70 k into Maree. I think I noticed the bull on the way past with an evil glint in its eye.
    #14
  15. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    We had a late start out of Marree with first Steve pulled apart his bars and tightened up to remove the bull damage. All the gear on then well do I need a toilet stop. At least they had one on the way.

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    We were up a dry creek until we did another fix on Steve's pipe which blew out again.
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    This time a thicker piece of ally and some hose clamps. Noise abated and more better was that the petrol tank next to the pipe wasn't getting hot.

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    Next a turn left to the flinders ranges.

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    Blinman for a quick look at the old copper mine and a coffee stop.

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    Can't help but stop to look at a bit of mechanical gear. This was a grader drawn by trucks or probably even bullocks. I remember that our family business had a similar one.
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    Epic photo shoot from the lookout. As you would expect my new ion helmet camera decided to play up as soon as the best stuff came along. I managed to get it partially working by finding a bit telephone wire on the side of the road and using that to reset it. Proves you can fix anything with a bit of wire even camera firmware.

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    Gourgous gorges.

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    Out of the ranges the track took us along the service road of the ghan railway with 200 or so gates. It was coming on the end of the day but the riding was spectacular with no civilization and the backdrop of the ranges.


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    Long shadows

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    It was dark when we arrived at hawker both with fuel lights on and then pulled up in the street for orientation only to find chris's tyre shop full of DR brothers fixing every thing.

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    We also managed to fuel up get on new tyres find a room, clean aircleaners, oil chains, change brake pads and have beers and a steak all before 11.

    Needless to say the thread did not get done.
    #15
  16. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Like military precision we were the first of the 16 riders that were at Hawker to get out of the gates. We talked to Rod and learned that Stewart, that we had camped with at Thago and who, had later waved us past on the track in Bulloo downs, had had a fall and broken his collar bone and busted 6 ribs. He was out after riding 150 k to a hospital. We arranged to meet Rod on the tracks, as yesterday he told us he had fallen in the sand and been trapped for an hour with the bike on him, until he managed to dig himself out. He was a bit reluctant to ride on his own after that.

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    Again long shadows but this time morning.
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    I rode up to the top of a hill and got an awesome view.

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    The riding was again spectacular with lots of animals. Rod caught us up only to be never seen again. Well not by us the same day. Later we learned he had ridden into the Hattah sand, had a fall and set up camp next to the bike.

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    The sign places us.

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    The arsenic plant. Don't lick your fingers after visiting.

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    This truck was just waiting.

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    This is where I began riding and found my tyre was flat. I pumped it up with the new electic pump. That was a sucess and can be recommended. Did another 100 k of sand only to find it going down again.


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    Managed to pull into the yamy shop and he owner let us do the change. A really nice and helpful guy. I pulled down the tyre and found a 5mm pyramid piece of steel. Probably the tyre changer.


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    At least now I new that I could change heavy wall rally raid tyres with heavy duty tubes unaided if needed.

    We had planned to go to the hattah section and camp but ended up at the pub with beer and steak. Not all a bad outcome.
    #16
  17. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    The Hattah sand tracks caused some concern amoung the ranks with talk of diversion but we dove in. The start was a run down the state border.

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    We met with Lee and graham and they opted to miss the track and follow a road across the Hattah and we never saw them again.

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    At the end of the run down the state boundary we turned left to do 80 k accross the sand tracks. We met up with Andy and Tony and grouped for a pic.

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    And into it.

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    A rough patch.

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    And again in the middle we met Andy and tony and left them to ride off for a few kms over rough sand only to find we had gone the wrong way.!!!!

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    The pink lake.

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    The gate out.

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    And at the Hattah shop again Andy and tony.

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    The shop was covered in small funny bits of info. you may need to find ways to entertain yourself in a place like that.

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    From Hattah it was tracks through the bush and farms.

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    Lots of straight roads running east, then south then east. It was a grid and when riding south we had a serious cross wind to contend with.
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    We saw Andy and tony's bikes parked a the first b town but rode on. We arrived had it and in the dark after pushing on and on and on. There was no other option as we were travelling along the Murray and there was nothing except black and cold.

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    as luck would have it the lady of the hotel motel had a room for us, gave us beer and cooked us meals late on Sunday night. The dr brothers were there also and we compared notes and gos. Who was in and has dropped out, damage to bikes and riders.
    #17
  18. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    We left Barmah and hit a closed gate.
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    Bummer. There was some serious flooding in places. Back track but luckily we found a bakery and were soon fed and back on track.
    I have heard of the rabbit proof fence but a fox fence.


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    Little church in the middle of?
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    Riding along enjoying the serenity of bike exausts.

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    We found a wet patch and could see that the dr brothers had gone round.
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    Steve found a hole.

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    And a water hazard.

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    And country lanes.

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    Closer to wodonga we wound through a bunch of parks and hills. In wodonga I picked up a new rear brake rotor and pads to replace the damage done on the first day. I was by now pretty comfortable with the front brake only.

    Off to the hume and the mountains.

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    We caught the ferry.

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    Beautiful riding along rivers.
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    And into kosy park.
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    Some parts were slippery.

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    And snow. Well a dusting.

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    We pushed on again and reached tummit to again catch up with the dr brothers. Into a pub, bikes out the back, food, beer, bed. Do it all again.
    #18
  19. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Up at 5.45 out and ready, fuel up and off from Tumit at about 7 as usual. We headed out and up into the forrest for a leg though pine plantataions and then into native forrest. We met up again with the DR brothers and then rode on passing each other back and forth.


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    Puddles on the road were frozen.

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    Flying along I pulled on some front brake and staiught up had a wheel slide and luckily let it off to straighten up but next next moment there were bikes going down everywhere, one in front of me one behind. We had ridden on to a clay surface which we found out was frozen and slippery as.

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    Serious Frost

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    I had a moment when flying along on country roads i moved to the lieft on a crest and found as i dropped off the crest that the road had moved right and whereas i had been a metre off the edge i was now 100 mm from a few m drop off. I did nothing and managed to keep going with out going over the side. Another lesson learned.

    Down out of the mountains and onto country roads to Murrambateman. Steve agian had to do a repair on the mufler but found a helpful hardware and was soon going again.

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    Again funny little houses on the side of the road.

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    I was riding along and the first thing i noticed was guns point at me. A second later i realised that they were only lifesize toy solders.

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    They were in a mock battle with Ned Kelly on the other side of the road that was standing his gound as a letter box.

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    Next I was riding past a spied a full cricket match in a field with watchers making up about fifty mock people/scarecrows WTF. Someone has put some time into this frozen artwork?

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    We later ended up in the forrests behind the blue mountains. We had to find the road diversion that was texted out. We navigated and found the tracks but ended up finding the Dr boys with a bike trapped in a washed out gully. We helped them extract a DR from the hole and then headed off to find the way around the gully where the earlier riders had gone.


    Then into the jenolan caves and then into the blue mountains proper.

    We pushed on past the Pub at Mt Victoria at 4.30 following a good sealed road that end up in a dirt track. We pushed on now in the dark and ended up on a range road long abandoned and one of the most technical sections (trials riding) with kms of rock drop offs and washouts. Slow ahead full we eventually popped out on a good road and still trying to figure out the that the riding notes were wrong not mentioning technical we bailed out and headed down to outer sydney for the night leaving the ride to Wisemnans ferry for the morning.
    #19
  20. excTC

    excTC Carbon Ktm lifeform

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    Cold as can be.

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    At Wisemans Ferry we again caught up with the Dr brothers having breakfast.

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    The signs advised not to stop due to falling rocks. We tried to work out much safer we were going fast rather than being slow or stopped. Obviously rocks couldn't hit you if you were moving.

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    History on the roadside.

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    A spot for a rest stop and past by the DR Brothers.

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    Again we past the DR Brothers when they missed a turn. I found that again my back tyre was going down and got the pump out and gave it some air. What a pain. Was it more metal in the tyre or a sharp roack on the road. Again we were past by the DR brothers.

    We passed through Singleton and headed out into a new set of hills. The riding trail was fantastic.

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    We followed a small road up a valley and met the DR borthers coming back with a DR with a broken clutch lever. A slip on a grid had done the damage and they were heading back to find a lever. They wern't able to do the next part of the trail which was to be a steep technical section. We wound our way up and up some of it slipery. Then down the other side with a fantastic backdrop.

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    We were trying to get to Gloucester but when we saw the moonan flat pub and the sign for accomodation we decided to have an early mark at 5. It was another 2 hours to Gloucester and we would be in the dark if we tried to get there.
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    We were in luck again as the restaraunt had been closed for 2 weeks but we were told it opened tonight. We had beer, a bed and meals and breakfast.

    We wondered but didn't find out till later that the DR brothers had been to Armadale and got a clutch lever and made it to the top of the technical hill in the dark and camped being as far as the energy levels would get them.
    #20