Solo Trans Australia Ride

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by diamondjoe, May 28, 2009.

  1. diamondjoe

    diamondjoe Kris

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2009
    Oddometer:
    15
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    My Garage
    <o:smarttagtype namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" name="PlaceType"></o:smarttagtype><o:smarttagtype namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" name="PlaceName"></o:smarttagtype><o:smarttagtype namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" name="country-region"></o:smarttagtype><o:smarttagtype namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" name="Street"></o:smarttagtype><o:smarttagtype namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" name="address"></o:smarttagtype><o:smarttagtype namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" name="City"></o:smarttagtype><o:smarttagtype namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:smarttags" name="place"></o:smarttagtype><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <w:SnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> </w:Compatibility> <w:BrowserLevel>MicrosoftInternetExplorer4</w:BrowserLevel> </w:WordDocument> </xml><![endif]--><!--[if !mso]><object classid="clsid:38481807-CA0E-42D2-BF39-B33AF135CC4D" id=ieooui></object> <style> st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) } </style> <![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 10]> <style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman";} </style> <![endif]--> [​IMG]During May this year I traveled with my KTM 640 Adventure from <st1:city><st1:place>Melbourne</st1:place></st1:city> (where I live) to <st1:city><st1:place>Perth</st1:place></st1:city> via the Oodnadatta Track and the <st1:street><st1:address>Great Central Road</st1:address></st1:street>. Being a novice to Adventure riding and doing the trip by myself, I think I did a good job at transiting across <st1:country-region><st1:place>Australia</st1:place></st1:country-region>, with only a few days of finding that I’ve bitten off more than I could chew.
    <o:p> </o:p>
    [​IMG]I left home in the 3<sup>rd</sup> of May with the goal of riding the Oodnadatta Tk and then crossing the <st1:place>Nullarbor Plain</st1:place> to <st1:city><st1:place>Perth</st1:place></st1:city>, but first things first I had to see some friends before I got off the bitumen, luckily they were day rides in the direction I was going. I took two days to get to <st1:city><st1:place>Adelaide</st1:place></st1:city>, with a surprise stop off at Keith, Andy Caldecott’s home town. Day three was my first dirt road, riding through the scenic <st1:place><st1:placename>Flinders</st1:placename> <st1:placetype>Ranges</st1:placetype></st1:place>, finishing off the day at Parachilna.

    [​IMG]The next day was disastrous at the private conservation park named Warraweena, the track that I had to pay to ride on was a shitty slatey goat track. I dropped the bike about 15 or so times doing some minor damage to the tank (note to self and KTM: Put a side stand on your bikes!!!) and the panniers. The worst was an assent up a hill that I ended up pushing the bike up after the 3<sup>rd</sup> attempt. After getting back to the parks homestead feeling rather bruised and miserable I made it to Copley before sun-down.

    [​IMG]So the next day I planned to ride around the Gammon Ranges NP, dubious of finding myself on another goat track, I was planning to skip the internal loop track in the park. A park ranger changed my mind by saying I’ll miss some beautiful country, he was right, the track was in good condition with a few sections of bulldust and some steep but not ridiculous assents, the afternoon I rode around the north of the park using public access roads through sheep stations, back to Copley. A great day, my bruises from the day before healed over and my confidence back.
    [​IMG]From Copley I meet up with three riders from NSW, we were going the same way so I rode with them for the day to <st1:place><st1:placename>William</st1:placename> <st1:placename>Creek</st1:placename></st1:place>, the next day we separated and I rode onto Oodnadatta, the most boring place on earth. The morning I could not wait to get on the bike and high-tail it out of Oodnadatta heading for Coober Pedy and the <st1:place>Painted Desert</st1:place>.
    <o:p> </o:p>
    [​IMG]In Coober thinking the Oodnadatta Tk was way to easy contemplating to end of dirt roads, a random “grey nomad” suggested the <st1:street><st1:address>Great Central Road</st1:address></st1:street> as an altnative to the Nullarbor. Instantly interested I spent an extra day in Coober to organize transit permits and research road conditions and fuel stops, before heading to Alice Springs.
    [​IMG]I’ve been to Uluru before, but its still striking to see again and couldn’t miss the photo opportunity with the bike and the rock. While camping at Yalara I meet some BMW riders, we compared the two manufactures over a beer.
    [​IMG]On the dirt again; heading to the Western Australian border fueling up at Docker River with Opal fuel and a quick chat with the managers of the roadhouse, then over the border to Warburton where I camped the night in a roadhouse camp site that looked and felt more like a mission compound. Unfortunately, due to the nature of the community my bike had to be locked up in an alarmed shed and for a “dry community” the sounds from outside the compound didn’t sound dry.
    Up early, having separation anxiety from not having the bike with me I packed up camp; I got my bike back, but I had trouble starting it, the opal fuel is not the greatest for the KTM. Made it to Laverton where the dirt finished and the tar started, this was to be my last day on the dirt. At the camp ground I meet up with a fellow KTM rider named Pezza.
    [​IMG]The next 3 days I rode to <st1:city><st1:place>Perth</st1:place></st1:city> via <st1:city><st1:place>Kalgoorlie</st1:place></st1:city> and Southern Cross, I arrived in <st1:city><st1:place>Perth</st1:place></st1:city> the day after a large storm, I also hit strong winds and pelting rain.
    That’s about it, I enjoyed 4 days in <st1:city><st1:place>Perth</st1:place></st1:city> seeing the sites and catching up with some family then flew back to Melb and got the bike trucked back. I plan to learn riding in sand, so next trip I’m not intimidated by sandy roads and maybe ride around tassie this summer. In total 6460 kilometers in 19 days, with a few rest days. The bike performed beyond my riding skills and it was a true adventure.
    Thanks for reading, Kris
    P.S. Sorry about the small photos, its just the way they turned out.
    #1
  2. GB

    GB . Administrator Super Moderator Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2002
    Oddometer:
    67,171
    Looks like a great ride! and you covered 6400 km and only managed to show us 9 pics? :lol3 Surely, you can show us some more!! We love those Aussie dirt road reports! thanks for sharing your trans oz ride :thumb
    #2
  3. stormsearcher

    stormsearcher Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2008
    Oddometer:
    985
    Location:
    blue mountains, nsw, australia
    glad you made it and had fun.i am the bloke who met you in erldunda roadhouse/:D
    #3
  4. diamondjoe

    diamondjoe Kris

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2009
    Oddometer:
    15
    Location:
    My Garage
    To Stormsearcher
    Thanks mate for the sand riding advice you gave me, it came in handy!! My tyres didn't give any probs, I'll definatly need more traction training. Keep in touch.
    Kris
    #4
  5. stormsearcher

    stormsearcher Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2008
    Oddometer:
    985
    Location:
    blue mountains, nsw, australia
    no worries.get aggressive knobbies next time.u will have fun.try mitas e09.u'll love the dirt/sand
    #5
  6. Matt

    Matt Dirt Virgin

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,169
    Location:
    Newtown,Sydney
    Great report for a "novice".

    More piccies will be appreciated.
    #6
  7. RockerC

    RockerC Fuck Piece & Quiet

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Oddometer:
    194
    Location:
    Lake Maquarie, East Coast Australia
    Nice ride diamondjoe, and welcome to the asylum.
    #7
  8. sturleyau

    sturleyau Monarch 42

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Oddometer:
    217
    Location:
    Avonsleigh, Victoria (that's near Emerald)
    Great report, reminded me of Melbourne to Perth return trip in 1974, 250Miles of dirt in each direction on road bikes.

    [​IMG]
    #8
  9. tripodtiger

    tripodtiger Off riding around on bitumen circles.

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2006
    Oddometer:
    5,555
    Location:
    looking for a smaller house & bigger shed.
    More like that, please.:lurk And more snaps next time, too:nod
    #9
  10. pacman6009

    pacman6009 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2009
    Oddometer:
    19
    Location:
    Down Under - Australia
    [​IMG]
    I’ve been to Uluru before, but its still striking to see again and couldn’t miss the photo opportunity with the bike and the rock. While camping at Yalara I meet some BMW riders, we compared the two manufactures over a beer.


    Hey Kris, its Mark here, one of the BMW riders (mentioned above) you met at Uluru.

    Great to see you made your way to Perth safely. Hope there wasn't too much bull dust and sand on the track in WA for you.

    I'll put together a RR in a few days when I get the pictures off Charley - thats if he ever makes it out of Alice!

    Paki
    #10
  11. diamondjoe

    diamondjoe Kris

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2009
    Oddometer:
    15
    Location:
    My Garage
    Unfortunately riding by myself means I don't take too many Photos, but due to popular request here are some more.
    [​IMG]Thats Willpena Pound from the out side, I didn't walk the 3 hrs into the pound, the ranger suggested I was being watch if I attempted to ride the walking track.
    [​IMG]
    This was just a nice spot to have a snack, in Flinders Ranges.
    [​IMG]
    This is one of my favorite photos, I rode up the walking track to this look out, parked the bike up on the dead Callitris and had miso soup with rolls, in the back ground you can see Willpena Pound, I'm still in the Flinders
    [​IMG]
    This is about as "touristy" as I got, I walked up the hill to look at an abandoned shepard's hut, the good thing about these places is their are other tourists, and 9 time out of 10 someone will ask about the bike and have a chat about there your and their own adventure.
    [​IMG]
    This is left of the shepards hut, still in the Flinders.
    [​IMG]
    This photo would have been taken just out side of the Flinders, somewhere between Blinman and Parachilna. I was supprised at the size of the roads esp. when there still called tracks.
    [​IMG]
    This is in Warraweena Private Conservation Reserve, not the worst of the assents but a challenge to me. I'd like to go their again with the bike setup for off-road, The think the tires Pirrelli M90 were too road orientated for these tracks. I would still recommend this park to other riders though.
    [​IMG]
    This is in the Gammon Ranges NP, the track was much more civalised, and this day I had alot of fun. I still appretiate the park ranger convinsing me to ride the track, I would have missed out on seeing some amazing country. I liked the Gammon Ranges more than the Flinders!
    [​IMG]
    The differnce with the Gammons compared with the Flinders is the Dryer environment, its still the same rock, but the plants are starting to change and the trees are becoming more stunted, the Flinders does have the better lookouts and scenery, but lots more people.
    [​IMG]
    This is Lake Eyre Sth, the only point on the Oodnadatta Tk that was accessable from the main road with out hitting sand.
    [​IMG]These were the first mop of bikers I meet on the trip, I rode with for the day. On the left is a V Strum, center is another KTM 640 Adv and in fount is a Kawasaki something 650, all very capable bikes.
    [​IMG]I got off the road for this guy, near the Painted Desert. Just a single trailer; on the Great Central I came across a three trailer road train, luckily they can be seen from miles away.
    [​IMG]
    Just after the Painted Desert the road signs became weird first there was Lollipop Lane then Moon Plain, the person how named the areas had a sense of humour, but if you lived out here wouldn't you need too. The names were accurate descriptions of the landscape.
    [​IMG]This is as good as welcomes get at the NT/WA border on the Great Central Road.
    [​IMG]Camels, I had a close encounter with a mob while focusing on the road. They noticed me about the same time I noticed them, we were only ten metres away, but I found myself on the other side of the road very quickly, thinking 'how did the fuck I get here so quickly'. Camels their BIG!!!
    [​IMG]The only bit of sealed road between the Olga Road/Tjuninanta Tk turn-off and Laverton WA.This was either near the Tjukayiria Roadhouse or the Warburton Roadhouse, I would say the Tjukayiria roadhouse because I arrived at Warburton with the sun in my eyes in the west.
    [​IMG]More Camels, they stay in the covered ground, other than these ferals I didn't see much wildlife or livestock. Near here was Cosmo Newberry Community, I had run out of cash and the Tjukayiria RdHouse wouldn't let me use there internet to transfer funds onto my card, I left the Tjuk RH with lack of fuel even though I had warned the white managers I had lack of range to make it to the next town, they did not care and were quite unprepared to care about me continuing on. I made it to the Cosmo Community on my reserve and spare fuel. Understanding my desperation the Aboriginal managers gave me a self addressed envelope and $15 of fuel to make it to Laverton on the promise I sent the money back as soon as I could transfer funds. I'm very grateful for there generosity.
    That's it again, thanks for all the replys to my trip and it will be nice to catch up with some the people that I meet on the trip and those that have read my Ride Report.
    Enjoy, Kris.
    #11
  12. Cariboostrom

    Cariboostrom Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2008
    Oddometer:
    654
    Location:
    Quesnel, B.C. Canada
    I really enjoyed your ride report Kris! Great photos. I grew up in South Australia and have been to Wilpena Pound.
    #12
  13. Detlef in Oz

    Detlef in Oz Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    606
    Location:
    Wagga Wagga Australia
    Thanks for the extra photos Kris, nice trip. I'll have to remember the track the ranger told you about and the Gamon ranges.

    I'll be in that area in September :clap , can't wait.
    #13
  14. sebas

    sebas Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 10, 2008
    Oddometer:
    40
    Location:
    Madrid, Spain
    Nice report and pics Kris :thumb

    makes me miss Perth, my hometown :cry
    #14
  15. parrankin

    parrankin par

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Oddometer:
    72
    Location:
    Burra, NSW, Australia
    Kris, thanks for e repot well done! How did get on loaded wihout a side stand?
    One of the first things I did to my 640 was put a side stand on it!

    Good stuff..

    Peter R
    #15
  16. choccoloco

    choccoloco Cabin Fever....

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    Oddometer:
    798
    Location:
    CBR, AUS
    Enjoyed your RR mate.

    Some awesome pics. I love getting out there in the middle of nowhere, do you have a SPOT or an EPIRB?

    I personally would be weary if I was to do the same route without my SPOT at the very least, but that's just me.
    #16
  17. whitey222

    whitey222 occasionally adventurous

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,134
    Location:
    Glossodia NSW, Australia
    I think so too ! :thumb

    Well done, and I look forward to more RR's from ya.
    #17
  18. gaspipe

    gaspipe Wandering Soul

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2004
    Oddometer:
    11,436
    Location:
    Pickwick Lake, Tennessippi
    Nice. I enjoyed reading this and seeing images of your adventure. Thanks!
    #18
  19. StinkyCheese

    StinkyCheese Red or Green? Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2008
    Oddometer:
    949
    Location:
    Las Cruces, NM
    Well done! Nice trip!

    :clap :clap :clap
    #19
  20. diamondjoe

    diamondjoe Kris

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2009
    Oddometer:
    15
    Location:
    My Garage
    To choccoloco
    I was a bit reckless without any comms besides a phone card and regular planned phone calls to loved ones. I made sure that distances and track conditions were reasonable, using (reliable) local knowledge. All the roadhouses had public phones and their were plenty of people on the roads to give assistance.

    What's a SPOT?
    Cheers Kris.
    #20