Hello. I thought I would put together a short ride report on a trip I did late last year. I have got so much out of the Advrider brotherhood over the years, and thought it was about time I started to contribute. I was introduced to motorbikes at a very young age, and have been riding since I was about 10 yrs of age, or basically when my feet could touch the ground - mostly Ag-bikes and motocross bikes mustering cattle, kangaroos, and anything else that moved. Whilst studying at University I rode a Honda Elsinore, to and from, which was deadly with knobby tyres on the wet tram tracks in Melbourne, but a lot of fun. The intervening period involving career, marriage, kids, overseas postings meant a hiatus in interest in riding, though it never quite left me. I came back to Australia after a 7 year stint and needed to include something else in my life. Charlie Boorman and Ewen McGregor’s “Long Way Around” inspired me (and subsequently Sibirsky Extreme, even more so). Heres me. So with my wife’s blessing, about 8 years ago I went and did a “Stay Upright” rider training course and have never looked back. BMW had just brought out the F800GS detuned, which was a good bike to ease back into riding on - though I wanted something bigger. In 2010 I was planning a solo trip around Australia and upgraded to the, then new, Camhead. So enough with the intro’s. The ride. This trip was about resetting my dial i.e. I had, had a gut full of work. Our day to day city living can be poisonous to ones soul if you let it be - I have always found solace in the bush, and recently, solo trips on the GS. I love my family dearly, but have to have self time. So, the only focusing question now was “how far west could I ride to escape in 6 days?”. It turns out, quite a long way, or at least far enough! I decided to head to Birdsville, in the far southwest of Queensland, and back as per the track below. Planning started in earnest. I put my steed in for her 30,000km service and had her re-shod with TKC70’s front and back. I did have two sets of Anakee 2’s since she was new, and they had served me well on the Big Lap (roughly 15k km’s a set, with some more to give) though on this trip I needed something more dirt orientated, but not a knobby. I was recommended the 70’s and have no regrets, and proved to be confidence inspiring in the highly variable road conditions - rock (gibber), loose gravel, bitumen - though sand proved troublesome. Not only due to tyres, but more on that later. I was going to need to carry additional fuel and water on this trip and I purchased, respectively, the Rotpax 3.8L water/fuel versions and mounted them, via removing the pillion seat, and replacing with a pillion luggage plate (MC Products). I then mounted the Giant Loop Great Basin bag over the top of the Rotopax, and then a duffel (which had sleeping gear - tent, self-inflating mattress ) behind that. You will see the set-up in the following photos. Additional water was carried in aluminium bottles in the bag, and I also had a Camelback. A 5L jerry can was used for additional fuel. I also signed up for the tracking feature on the SPOT, which turned out to be a great investment. Day 1. Brisbane to Mitchell, Queensland (560 km’s) I left Brisbane at 0730, 23 September heading out against all the inward bound traffic feeling despondent at leaving the family behind though excited at escaping the throng. It was not until I arrived in Toowoomba (approx. 125 km’s) that I started to get into the groove with the bike - this sensation is a bit like scuba diving, when for the first time you reach neutral buoyancy - sort of euphoria. Anyway, the smile returned as we negotiated the traffic and headed out west on the Warrego Hwy. Dalby, Chinchilla (lunch) , Miles, Roma - unless you are into sorghum and cotton, not much to report on. The Coal Seam Gas boom has really injected much needed investment out there. Arrived in Mitchell just on dusk, perfect spot in the camp ground overlooking the Maranoa River - $10/night. There are “hot baths” here from an artesian well, though too late for that. Would have been nice though.