A Dirty Week End Away With The Boys

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Oldfatbeerman, Apr 16, 2009.

  1. Oldfatbeerman

    Oldfatbeerman Enroute to a PUB

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    After several months planning and a frenzied few days of bike preps and packing along with last minute shopping , the Thursday before Easter arrived and I was up at 0230 to load the car for the 0400 hrs departure to pick Josh up in Manly , the trip to Manly and the pick up of Josh and his handsome 990 Dakar went smoothly and we were away a bit earlier than expected , we went via the Sydney Harbour tunnel which was a first for me , just gotta keep an eye on the speedo through there as the speed cameras are savage from all accounts .

    The plan was to meet Dan and Craig at Marulan Sth BP Garage along with Jake and Pete and have a bite to eat and a stretch before continuing south to Jindabyne and our car parking spot at Rowdy's home. I had to stop at Sutton Forrest as my fuel was getting low and as I fueled the ute Dan wandered over and informed me that the bike shop had sent out the wrong brake pads for Craigs KLR front caliper and so he was going to attempt to find some suitable pads in Canberra on the way South so he would see us in Jindabyne so as not to delay us if possible. Josh and I met Jake and Pete at Marulan Sth as planned and had a brunch and a coffee while chatting , the conversation was about how small a world we now live in when low and behold , a riding mate that both Jake and I have known for a long time stops to say hello , yep small world alright .

    We all arrived in Jindabyne around the same time and met at Nuggets crossing for the final purchases of food and such for our 5 day trip , when I came back to my car after being in the pharmacy , who should be leaning on my ute , Sidetrack Bob , thats who , yep , small world .

    We convoyed the cars around the corner to Rowdy's place and began unloading and gearing up , both riders and bikes

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    Rowdy's back yard

    About an hour went by with tying down bags and putting protective gear on and we were ready to depart . We said our goodbyes to Rowdy and family and hooked into the 50 or so km's of tar out through Thredbo .

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    Tom Groggin is where the Dirt begins . A few short Km's later and the Murray river had to be forded.

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    Josh and I waiting to cross
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    Pete exiting the crossing with craig stalled halfway across
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    She no go .:cry
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    My SE kept turning upstream for some reason :dunno
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    Got the beast under control :wink:
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    Josh makes it look easy !


    Five of us got across the Murray and we waited for Dan to get on his bike and cross as he had been taking pics from the NSW side as everyone else crossed. I didn't see it but I sure heard it , a loud revving engine going under water ! I hoped it was a false alarm but soon found out is was not ! Dans bike had gone under ! Big time.

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    Dan , down for the count :cry

    With Dans bike fully drowned , Dan had decided to pull out of the ride , his engine oil looked like a caramel milkshake and the paper oil filter would most likely swell and disintegrate in short order. We worked out a plan to get Dans ute out to Tom Groggin and Dan set off on the KLR back to Jindabyne to fetch his ute. In the mean time the remainder of us rode back across the river and found a campsite at Tom Groggin waiting for dan to bring the KLR back for Craig and the ute to cart his bike back to Sydney.
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    Milkshake oil

    We set up Camp just off the tar at Tom Groggin and made ourselves comfortable for the night and awaited Dans return to collect the drowned 640 Adv . Well after dark we heard the sound of a KLR coming down the tar , it was Dan back on the bike :confused , we soon learned that rowdy had changed his mind about aborting his ride by giving him a filter and a filling pump bottle to do an oil change as well as sending him to the service station for enough oil to do an oil flush as well !

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    The next morning dawned cold and foggy but Dan was on the job by 6 am , dropping the oil and cleaning all the parts he was able to , we got a sump full of new oil in it and then had to tow the 640 around with the KLR for a Kilometer or 2 to get her to fire up , once it was going it was ridden around for 10 minutes to warm it up and then the oil was changed again , this time most of the milky oil was gone and the new oil looked fine , however Dan was unable to find the filter that Scott had given him so it was decided to go without as there is another filter to do the filtering so should be fine for 1000 or so km.

    To be Continued
    #1
  2. Utah Bones

    Utah Bones Gas X ready!

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    :lurk :thumb
    #2
  3. header

    header Chris

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    Dude this looks awesome! Im in :lurk
    #3
  4. Oldfatbeerman

    Oldfatbeerman Enroute to a PUB

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    Continued :clap

    We were all ready to leave Tom Groggin the second time by around 1030 hrs Friday , and this time the Murray was in our mirrors in a flash and we were riding in Victoria and climbing the Davies Plain track

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    The Davies Plain track is a good easy intro into the Victorian High country , you just have to avoid some big nasty sharp edged rocks and enjoy the incredible scenery.

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    Craig was not able to find a set of brake pads for the front of the KLR on the way down to the high country so was trying to avoid using the front brakes to keep some pad for when they were really needed , so a few falls happened where control was lost due to too much speed and too little experience , he learned very quickly though to keep the speed low and the bike going straight . That is after this little bush bash though ! :lol3

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    We turned off Davies Plain track onto Mt Misey track and the surface improved somewhat , less rocks and more flowing , swooping type turns and twists . We stopped on Mt Misery Tk for a midday snack as lunch was still a couple of hours away.

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    I salute you !

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    Pete is happy , snakes are only sweets.

    After a quick bite to eat we saddled up and wound our way down out of the heavily forrested areas onto the high plains where the beef farming takes place.
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    Once we hit Benambra we confered and decided to do a quick slab into Omeo to get some premium fuel , lunch and some liquid refreshments for the evenings campsite. Along the way we turned into a lookout , extensive 360 degree veiws was the reward for taking the time , outstanding !

    Then into Omeo
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    The GS on the left was on its way home from the BMW safari in Tassie , the rider seemed a nice chap too ( for a bloody BMW rider :lol3)

    WE feasted on pastries and sanga's from the bakery , fueled the bikes and stashed our alchoholic beverages in our gear and set sail out of town looking for a camping spot for the evening . The Great Alpine Rd took us out of town and we then went bush via Birregan rd , along Birregan rd there is a hut , strangely called "Old Hut" dunno why , looked new enough to me , perhaps it has been renovated recently :evil.


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    We got the fire going and four of us decided to sleep in the hut while Josh and Pete went the tent option .
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    Craig , warm inside and out . :1drink

    We had some spider issues in the hut , a pair of aracnaphobes in the group caused some mirth and serious belly laughs during the evening but eventually everyone settled down and went to sleep , some sleeping a whole lot easier than others :evil.

    Morning came and we packed up our bikes and kitted up and headed west to the start of the Dinner plain track , we turned North onto the Dinner Plain tk and made good time into Dinner Plain.

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    Josh on Dinner Plain Tk

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    Heaven for a dirtbiker this place !

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    Great to be able to ride through areas like this.

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    Dinner Plain Village

    From Dinner plain we slabbed it into Mt Hotham , nothing was open for a Brunch stop so we continued on to the Dargo turnoff.
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    It was a wee bit foggy leaving Mt Hotham , no actually it was not fog , we were riding in the clouds , yep , cold , damp and almost zero visability at times , was exciting stuff.

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    Jake was waiting at the Dargo turn off and we regrouped and headed South on the Dargo High Plains Rd .

    Next turn was West again on Blue Rag Range Tk , and a slipperry steep ride was had along this one .:lol3

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    We turned left onto Basalt Knob North tk and went further South before Jakes rear tyre went flat , we worked in harmony to get it fixed quickly .

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    Josh's slime compressor was a treasure , no human sweat pumping this tyre up :clap:clap

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    The Tyre fixed and refitted we were off again headed south down the Basalt Knob track with Talbotville our lunch time destination.

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    Going Down now !
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    Looking back up !
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    Craig doing an enormously good job with little use of his front brakes.
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    The angle of the trees gives an indication just how bloody steep this section is , I stopped a few times on this track to allow my brakes to cool down , we all did !

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    Josh again making a difficult section look easy .

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    Still going down ! That is Talbotville top center of the pic.
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    This even LOOKS steep in the pic...... no prizes for guessing it IS Farken Steep !


    More to come soon !
    #4
  5. bigdon

    bigdon Long timer

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    Look
    #5
  6. bigdon

    bigdon Long timer

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    Looks like fun!:D
    #6
  7. bigdon

    bigdon Long timer

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    I may have a st st stu:D der!
    #7
  8. Oldfatbeerman

    Oldfatbeerman Enroute to a PUB

    Joined:
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    But wait there is more !

    The lunch stop at Talbotville was reached but a discussion occured and it was decided to take the Crooked River track out and then go up the Bull Town Spur track , this was also quite steep .
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    Craig climbing Bull Town Spur Track
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    Regroup at the top of Bulltown On Macmillan Rd.

    We made our way into Dargo and booked into our lodgings for the night , Dargo Hotel . Our luggage was removed from the bikes and stashed in our room , the we went back out to tackle the real big steep stuff.
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    We headed North out of Dargo on the High Plains Rd until we went left onto Grady's Creek track , this dropped away steeply down to a small creek crossing and then climbed again back up the other side and was great to ride sans luggage .
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    this track came out at a junction and we went directly across and along Link rd which then came out on Hibernia Rd where we turned left and went down hill again , a few turns and twists and some steep downhill pinches and we reached the river near the Kingswell bridge to cross and head West to the bottom of Billy Goats Bluff Track.
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    Helicopter pad on Billy Goats .
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    Leaving the Helicopter pad for the top . Yep , you go down before you can go up :eek1

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    Dans Pumpkin with the Billy Goats ridgeline track snakeing up in the back ground.
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    Jake on the CRF 650 R had a few problems on the loosest steepest pinch , which in turn stopped the rest of us as we could not get past his bike , took him 3 or 4 goes but he finally made it up.
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    At this point Craig decided to head back to Dargo without conquering Billy Goats Bluff due to the difficulty and his inexperience on a bike . A good call if you ask me !
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    Jake wheeling it around to have another crack !

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    Pete did it easy
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    Spectacular views from the top
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    Jake and I trying to sort out where we should go to return to Dargo

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    Our destination , this is the next morning.

    Once we topped Billy Goats we began our ride back to Dargo , but , we differed on which route to take and I led us back to a point where Jakes plotted route on his GPS came into screen and we then began following that , as luck would have it , the route Jake had plotted in did not actually link up , the track stopped about a Kilometer short of the road we were trying to reach , by now it was almost pitch Black dark ! We back tracked to the previous intersection through numerous creek crossings and turned up a steep pinch , I dropped my SE twice trying to get up this first pinch in the dark as I could not see where to put my wheels and was constantly bounced off line by large rocks and lost momentum causing wheelspin and stopping and falling due to short legs and uneven ground. I was also quite nearly exhausted ! Pete came back down the hill and gave me enough assistance to allow me to gain the first erosion mound which gave me some respite and allowed me to get some forward movement happening so I then was able to reach the top. We wound our way through numerous tracks and eventually reached a tar road and turned to head back into Dargo , we arrived at about 7.15 pm. It had began raining with a fair old lightening show as well . I showered and made a beeline for the Hotel Bistro for some food , the others stood around talking and stuff and missed the food , the bistro closed at 8 pm and they didn't get to it till 8 .15 , they had to cook some food in the room on their camping stoves !

    We had a relatively early Night and were all in bed by 10 pm , the band played till well after midnight and kept me awake till at least 1 am. The patying Pub goers did their best to keep us awake too .


    Sunday we had a slow start and ended up getting on the road about 10.30 am , heading North out of Dargo to Upper Dargo Rd and swung East then again swung right onto Jones Rd

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    Ready to leave Dargo
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    Crossing the River on Jones Rd as the bridge has been washed out.
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    Jones Rd is wide and smooth on the Eastern end.
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    Along Baldhead Rd we split the group , Jake , Josh , Dan and Pete went down one of the side roads to Huanted Stream track and Craig and myself stayed on the ridge tops and wound our way around to Tambo crossing to avoid Craig having to use his now metal to metal front brakes .

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    Pete chose the last water crossing on Haunted Stream Track for a little swim ! Dan managed to catch a pic of the begining of the fall :lol3.

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    And the recovery of the wet bike !
    We regrouped in Tambo Crossing and after a bit of mucking about managed to navigate our way to Buchan through the back roads and bush tracks . In Buchan we got some supplies and Jake got a bed in the backpackers hostel. I got directions to a camping spot just out of town and we were set .

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    We were all camped around a small clearing within 15 meters of each other . Was a great spot too , junction of the Buchan and Snowy rivers , Bally Hooley Camp ground I think its called.
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    Craig and Josh both swam in the river , it was too cold for me , I had a quick wash to get the dust off and reduce the BO , but swimming was out as far as I was concerned, I washed my insides down with a six pack of Black beer though ! :1drink
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    WE got a raging fire going and did our feeding and drinking before going to bed reasonably early . A big snore night for me I think !
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    In the morning the river was quite pretty with the foggy mist .

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    Packing up done we headed out of the campsite to meet Jake at the turn off to our next direction change , but Jake didn`t show , so we went back into town to find him .
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    Jake was having front brake issues too , Pete soon sussed out the problem and some brake fluid was purchased and put in with a bleed then performed for a good result .
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    Just after leaving Buchan we again split into two groups , Craig Josh and I turned off the basin Rd onto Tulloch Ard rd while Dan , Jake and Pete continued on the original plan to cross the Snowy and ride the Deddick trail .
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    North end of Tulloch Ard Rd

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    Through to the Snowy Crossing
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    Craig on Seldom Seen Track
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    Pete Crossing the Snowy River at Jacksons Crossing .
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    Across the Eastern side of the snowy
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    The Deddick Trail
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    All of us back together at Mackillops Bridge

    Josh , Craig and myself had a ball riding Tulloch Ard Rd , then turned North on the Tar for all of 500 - 600 m before going left onto another dirt rd and then right again onto Robertson rd , this Rd is a pearler if you like sliding around corners at a fair clip , I loved it , find of the trip for mine ! Our trio of riders went down to meet the other trio at Mackillops bridge and rejoined the original plan . We all then rode West to the Snowy River Rd where we turned North Again Headed for Jindabyne , we pulled up at the Pinch river and 4 of us decided to camp there for the night , Jake and Pete left for Jindabyne and the car to get home Monday night while Myself , Josh , Dan and Craig elected to camp and ride out to Jindabyne in the morning , we had a good night around the campfire and just after retiring , it began to rain a bit. In the morning we all packed up early and went up the hill and into Jindabyne for a cooked Breakfast .
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    Wallace Craigy Lookout , over the Snowy River Valley

    After a feed and some great coffee we motored around to Scotts to load up the cars and do the drone up the highway to Sydney .
    It was a great ride with a great bunch of blokes , I am looking forward to getting down that way again for some more exploration !

    Most of the pics in this report were taken by DannoJ , :clap Great work Dan , some excellent shots among many, many very good ones.

    I would like to thank Rowdy ( Scott ) most wholeheartedly for 1 . allowing us a safe parking spot for our cars and 2. for setting Dan straight on pulling out of the ride THANKS A LOT SCOTT , you rock mate .

    Cheers Alan
    #8
  9. HoldoninAus

    HoldoninAus Been here awhile

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    Awesome stuff guys. :clap Definitely adding some high country riding to the to do list. Thanks for the cracker of a report.
    #9
  10. Willwilkins

    Willwilkins Dr. Topbox

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    Much respect to you guys. I was up that way in a 4wd not long ago - it is full on steep! Some of those river crossings look pretty tricky as well. Fantastic ride, well done
    #10
  11. ChrisCrossed

    ChrisCrossed Now sans KLX...

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    Very nice!
    #11
  12. grumpyoldbstrd

    grumpyoldbstrd Been here awhile

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    G'day Alan,
    Great report and pictures, thanks. You mean you didn't go to Dargo for the Ute Muster and the loud C & W music 'till 3:00 am??
    Which track do you reckon was the worst &/or toughest?
    Cheers,
    Lloyd
    #12
  13. MymoJoe

    MymoJoe Ride Ride Ride

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    great pictures, I have always wanted to explore that country, did a bit of it on my old Super Tener'e some time ago, but lots more to see..

    Joe
    #13
  14. NSFW

    NSFW basecamp4adv Super Supporter

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    :wave very nice rr....:thumb
    #14
  15. Stuntman

    Stuntman Been here awhile

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    Great RR! :clap Thanks for sharing!!!
    #15
  16. Oldfatbeerman

    Oldfatbeerman Enroute to a PUB

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    G'day Lloyd , No the ute muster and the associated shenanigans I could do without , the band that came on late however were VERY good, played lots of Pink Floyd and some classic Aussie band covers , I only heard them from my bed but I still enjoyed listening to good music played well . The drunken , loud bushpigs outside our room I could also have done without(at 3am) gottem back though by starting our bikes next to where they slept before 9 am :thumb.

    On the toughest tracks question , before dark fell Billy Goats going up was the most difficult , just that one steep, shaley, loose section about 200 m long was the problem . In the dark it was another hill , Black Range Tk , off Castleburn Creek tk leading up to Mt Budgie , I had serious issues with traction and momentum on that one !

    Good to see you again in Dargo and to meet your mate (Rob ? yep bad with names me .) Hope you had a good weekend on your GS too.

    Cheers Alan
    #16
  17. Run n Gun

    Run n Gun Adventurer

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    Great looking country !!! Love the way you write .

    Now please tell me , is this a fuel tanker or a KTM ??? How much fuel does that tank hold ???

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    #17
  18. poppy

    poppy Slow and Steady

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    Great report & pics guys . Well told ofbm.

    30ltr run & gun.
    #18
  19. Sylvia

    Sylvia vir sapit qui pauca loqui

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    Al,
    Some of your best work mate. :thumb

    An excellent report. Looked like a hoot. Well done boys.
    #19
  20. Oldfatbeerman

    Oldfatbeerman Enroute to a PUB

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    Thanks Ross , I was quite disappointed with my photographic results for the ride , so I spent some money this week , been reading the D 60 instruction manual for the last day or so , I got to learn how to operate this jigger now I've bought it . :deal From the instruction manual I've learned that a lot of my preferred type of shots are going to have to be manually focused , shows me why the compacts have issues with focus for my style of pic I guess , learn something every day ay .

    Cheers Alan
    #20