FarRide #17 to Eungella, Oct 1st, 2011.

For this ride I will ride from Cobar and Start my nominated minimum of 1,200km for the 24hr from Walgett, I will then head up through St George, Roma and overnight in Emerald. I will then head off to the finish location, Eungella. I had prepped My Vstrom for the ride over the previous 2 months. Unfortunately while transporting my bike from Goolwa to Cobar I had broken the screen mounts and lost the windscreen, along with it was my SPOT2 unit. So i purchased a Madstad bracket and Givi screen. Installed them and am very pleased with the results. Not only have I got more wind protection but improved fuel economy. I also replaced the tracking unit with another SPOT2. I gave the drive chain a fair amount of attention also. It is starting to show signs of wear, but should be good for this ride. Bike was good to go.

Woke at about 4am on Friday morning Sept 30th. I had just finished night shift the previous morning and the body clock is still out of wack. Anyway had plenty of time to get ready for the ride. Malcolm had sent me a link to his Spot tracker and I checked this. I knew he had stayed in Cobar overnight by his Spot. He was on the road early and was 2 hours ahead of me. I had no idea of his planned route and assumed he was planning a big day.

Taken about 7am prior to the ride.

Bike packed and ready to go before the scheduled 8am. Odometer reading 83,262km. Needed fuel before I left town so headed off to the local BP station. Fuel receipt said 07:48. Looked like I would have time for a luxurious lunch with a Cappuccino and all.

Off to Bourke. Seen a few goats and Roo’s along the table drains, but no real problems to mention.

Departure side of Bourke heading to Brewarrina.

Refuelled at Bourke and headed for my start location Walgett.

Had some time up my sleeve so had nice lunch with that Cappuccino that I mentioned earlier. Finished lunch and checked the time. Still before 12.00 noon so rode to the servo and was about to fuel up and who turned up behind me? Malcolm. Seems he woke early got bored as you do and took on the goats and Roo’s before sunrise for entertainment. We both refuelled and proceeded to get our start dockets. Seems I timed it just right tax invoice docket read 12:00. Mind you the card receipt read 12:04. Malcolm paid and got his start docket and we proceeded to leave. I was just moving out when I seen a familiar bike parked at the exit to the servo. Seems Gags had the same plan as Malcolm and I. So it seems we had company for the ride. A bit unusual for me as I sure it is for them. So off to St George. Our next planned stop.

A couple of likely suspects at St George.

Refuelled at St George and off we went. Next stop Injune. The road and weather has been good. Dry roads and a good temperature for riding. A bit of wildlife on the road in this section. I was following Malcolm and noticed as we were taking a left sweeper that a snake (a 4’ Eastern Brown I think) just managed to slither from the oncoming tyres of Malcolm’s bike and into the grassy edge. A few lizards also scampered off the road as we approached. Sun was setting as we rode through Roma and pushed onto Injune. Stopped for fuel at Injune.

Refuelling at Injune

We all made our obligatory phone call after refuelling. Prior to leaving a group of young people arrived from the North and gave us warning of Cattle on the road ahead. And right they were. Quite a few cattle. I was in the lead and had my HID’s beaming down the road and managed to spot the groups of cattle in plenty of time. Had to put the lights down due to oncoming traffic. Perfect timing for a mad cow to become skittish and bolt out in front me. Fist full of brakes and the cow had almost past my path so started to ease of the brakes and it decided to do an about turn. Brakes fully applied again. And past it at walking pace. Gags told me later that it changed again and the oncoming truck struck the cow in the head, but did not kill it and it trotted off. Up the road a little further and there were what i thought was several more cattle having a snooze on the roadside, wrong it was cattle carnage. I guess a truck must have cleaned up half a dozen or more at speed. On we pushed to Emerald. Gags had accommodation booked there and I also found accommodation there. Malcolm had accommodation booked further up the road about 60km.

Emerald accommodation prior to departure.

After a good night sleep it was time to hit the road again. so fuelled up an d on my way. Had a great run and stopped for fuel at  …… Nebo I think. To be honest, I’m not truly sure. Just need to ask the other dozen FarRiders that pulled up to refuel .

Last refuel before Eungella

Left here following Malcolm again. Thought I could do some sightseeing and let Malcolm do the navigating. Noticed an increase in temperature after refuelling also. Took a left hand turn and….. found the stuff “Dusty Butts” are made of. Good road though and still made good time to the check-in.

Included a little dirt on the ride. Shaved a few K’s off I guess though.

Arrived at Eungella in plenty of time. What a great spot. But I must say thanks for the warning about the road in.

Thanks Clint, Carlene and Steve for a great location.

I checked in and had a nice lunch. I had itchy feet and wanted to get moving again. I had a quick talk with Clint about wings (sorry to disturb your lunch Clint). On my way again. I planned to get south of rocky and only just achieved it. Ox34 kept me company for about 100 – 150km south of Eungella. Fires on the highway slowed the advance. I met some other FarRiders and we were all held up by the fires. But only for about 30 minutes. Stayed at the Kabra Motel for the night. Booked in and unloaded to the room. Made the usual call to the wife. Noticed that I was sharing the room.

One of the 2 frogs in the room.

Also whle talking to the wife I watched a mouse run from under the bed to the bathroom and make a hasty retreat out the opened window. Window promptly shut. Time for a shower and a feed. Seem someone wanted to share the shower with me aswell.

Peeping frog at the shower window.

Shower window promptly shut. Didnt fancy bending over to wash my feet and have the frog use my bum as a landing pad. Had a great Steak and a few cleansing ales and of to bed. After a good night sleep i was on my way to the second purpose of my ride. Papaya seed dressing from the tropical fruit farm near Murwillumbah.

Sunrise south of Rocky.

Achieved mission B and headed further south to Lismore. Was caught by a little rain but not a lot. What can I say about the ride from Lismore to Tenterfield. Great road. Managed a stop on the way though. Checked out the riders rest. Keep this in the diary for a stopover. Love the antitheft parking.

Headed south at Tenterfield to glen Innes, Coldest part of the trip. Then took a right to Moree.  Past through Warialda on the way. Seen some interesting things made from tin.

More cows

All made by a lady for the honey festival.

Rest of the ride home was uneventful. Home at 6pm on day 4. Completed 4,072km for the trip. Oh and #1 rule obeyed. Home safe.

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