some video of the day's ride. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VMmmvNSk90U The last ride I put together was enjoyed by all concerned so I decided to try for another good one on Fathers day. With nine or ten possible starters, the pressure was on to come up with a decent day out. With much blood sweat & tears on the computer, switching madly back and forth from Mapsource to T4A to Google Earth, after a couple of evenings a route slowly emerged. Dayboro-Mt Mee forest-Kilcoy-Conondale ranges-Kenilworth-back into the ranges- out to Imbil for lunch. Then west up into the Kadanga range-south to join the Jimna range and back to Kilcoy where where we would travel home our different ways. Four hundred klms of riding through quite diverse country. As the route was made up of unknown areas & tracks as well as sections of previous rides, there was enough uncertainty to add the element of adventure, the name of the game for us ADVers. Friday night & saturday morning brought the first proper rain the area had seen in a couple of months so with memories of the tracks through the Conondales being extremely greasy, I gave up the idea of squeezing one more ride out of the 606 on the rear of the DR and fitted the new E-09 Dakar. By Saturday evening the forecast for Sunday was clear and a quick ring around confirmed seven starters (inc Me) who would meet at Dayboro bakery at seven the following morning. The day dawned bright & clear, with very little chill in the air, perfect! I met Mick at the end of his road and we headed in to Dayboro to find Perry, Rob and Steve having coffees. Soon after Bevan arrived and we all sat and drank our caffeine hits until Hodgo showed up with a bag of gear on the back. He explained that he had an rdo the following day and would jump off the ride somewhere up north and stay the night. We had a chat with a couple of cops (one of which is a dirt biker) who had shown up at the bakery for their obligatory doughnuts, and also gave them a little bit of cheek in the hope that they would give Steve a zap with the tazer, but to no avail. On this ride we would have:- 4 DRs, an Africa Twin, a KLX400, and a Kato 950Adv. We did the usual but nice run through the forest trails up to the Gantry picnic area at Mt Mee where jacket liners were removed before continuing northwards to Kilcoy. A quick fuel stop and a nibble on a muesli bar and we were ready to hit the Conondales. My gps had played silly buggers as I left home in the morning so was relieved that it behaved itself when I needed it ( I have no detailed paper maps of the area). As my gps is not a navigator unit as such, it can be a bit tricky to follow and three of four times throughout the day we had to backtrack a couple of hundred metres when it directed me to turn up a side track just as I was passing it. No harm done, just a little inefficient. We encountered some wonderful riding as we traversed the range from west to east, lots of lush rainforest which was damp but not too wet from Friday night's rain. In several parts it was so overgrown from lack of use that it was almost single track. I was lucky enough to see a Regent Bowerbird fly right across my path, and Perry saw one too later in the day. We popped out into the Conondale valley where we took a scenic back road to Cambroon then rode into Kenilworth for another fuel top-up. Heading north, we did a 15klm circuit on a couple of backroads that turned out to be bloody boring. Next time I'll come up with an alternative for that bit. The aforementioned circuit ended at a road that heads up into the ranges, or at least it should have! After 15 minutes of searching, Rob brought out a paper map and we found that the track we were looking for joins onto a side road that runs parallel to the main one. There was no blaming the gps for this one, it was entirely due to my poor route planning. Back in the ranges again, we rode through a bit of dry sclerophyl before wending our way up the flanks of mountains cloaked in plantations of pine. We passed plantations in all stages of production, from newly planted saplings to tall mature trees and areas that have recently been harvested. As everyone had a breather at a lookout point, I shot off on the bike to confirm the direction out of there, as the gps was giving mixed readings on which way to head. Within five minutes of setting off again we came to another lookout point with a view down onto Borumba dam, which was followed by a fairly steep & loose descent that led out to Yabba Creek Rd. It wasn't a desperately hard hill but Perry and Hodgo certainly knew they were on bigger bikes! A ten minute run into Imbil was followed by lunch and a fuel stop. It was here that Hodgo decided to leave the ride so we said our goodbyes and rolled out of town a little later than expected (bigger groups always seem to go slower than small ones). Twenty minutes into the run out to the Kadanga range, someone (who shall remain nameless) said that time was running out and he was going to head back on a more direct route. I said If he knew a better way home, he could lead all of us through, so we back tracked a little then headed off into the ranges again, covering some of the ground we had travelled earlier in the day (which was considerably more dusty in the afternoon). We eventually came to a T intersection and the nameless one says to me "this isn't what I expected, I don't recognize this place at all". I consulted the gps and told him that the lookout above the dam was just around the corner, to which he replied "It better f*#^ing not be!". In the past my gps has lied to me but not on this occasion and a quick look on Robs gps confirmed our position. An hour and a quarter after leaving Imbil we rolled back in to town. Everyone thought it a great hoot as nothing was lost and it added a bit more adventure to the ride! But we were now running short on time so we slabbed it back to Kenilworth and ducked into Sunday Creek Rd for a speedy trip through to Jimna with a stop along the way to splash the boots. Isn't it funny how everyone needs to go at the same time? We hit the beautifully curvy blacktop again for a good run down into Kilcoy where Steve Perry & Rob headed home on the bitumen while Bevan, Mick and I fuelled up then turned the bikes toward the bush and did the run from Kilcoy to Dayboro in the dark. Here we said goodbye to Bevan and started the most boring bit of the whole ride, the run from Dayboro to home. I parted with Mick at the end of his road and made a dash for home up "The Goat Track" where I came across a good sized python ( an eight footer) crossing my path, a nice finish at 8pm to a great day's riding. Many thanks to everyone for a fantastic ride, and special thanks to Bevan for being sweep for the day. It's amazing how the company can make or break a ride, and this company was the best! No attitudes or egos, no one had anything to prove, we were just a bunch of blokes out for some fun. Ciao....XT. .