The plan was clear!
Cruise down the highway, turn off at D'agular pub, head over Mt Mee, then onto glorious, refuel at fernvale, head back over glorious, over nebo, then home for a cold beer!!
Put a random post on NR regarding the ride to see if anyone was keen. CaffeineMonster put his hand up. He was keen to play in mountains!
Meet him at Nudgee Shell, he tells me he's only had his license for 5 months...... Could be a casual ride in that case.......
Head off on the adventure, get as far up the M1 as the Deagon Deviation, and the big 1299 has a couple of pops from the exhaust, and then the engine light comes on! (Just got it back from a crash repair...... its not appropriate to write the words that were going through my head at this stage!)
Pull over to check it out, the DQS light is flashing, and I notice my gear lever is stuck in the down position, corrected this, did the old "Turn it off and on again" trick, fault cleared...... ready to rock!!
Highway merges into the Bruce, then BOOM, traffic stopped..... all lanes! Can't filter because there isn't enough room between a group of trucks........ Head to the hard shoulder........ Thank you speed limit above 90!!
Get past that ordeal (looked like a pretty bad nose to tail!) and turn off to the D'agular highway, then........ roadworks!!
Sadly this stop/start riding isn't the Panigale's strong point, the heat coming up from under the seat is becoming borderline painful! Finally get moving, and we're stuck behind slow traffic, not being able to deal with this heat anymore I make a stop at Wamuran servo for some hydration and a rest.
Get going from the servo, and get about 500m up the road.......... Roadworks.......again!
Luckily we weren't stopped for long!
Not long after we turn on to the Mt Mee tourist drive and instantly get stuck behind a truck carrying a tractor........ Great!!! This ride isn't exactly going to plan!
The driver waves us past, an opportunity that we take with gusto, I drop back 2 gears and open the taps, tuck down under the fairings..... and there it is......... that feeliing, the angry 1299 engine ceases vibrations and angry pops from exhausts, and just becomes silky smooth as it gets to belt out what is one of the best soundtracks of any bike on the market........ pure bliss!
As the road winds up the mountain, the corners become tighter and tighter, shifting with the quickshifter, making the most of the semi active supsension, tipping the bike into the corners and its just flowing beautifully..... this is what this bike was built for!
Come to a really tight corner with increasing incline right in the middle and notice a lot of fine white powder-like dirt. As I go to point the hazard out I realise that CaffeineMonster is no where to be seen, not wanting him to have a mishap, I nervously wait hoping that Ive just left him behind and nothing has happened while I've been shooting off round the mountain like a moron!
After a short wait he rounds the corners, notices the hazard and we keep going! A some what spirited ride through the mountain, minimal traffic, great fun!
Stop at the look out for a rest, and let the bikes cool down, we've been pushing pretty hard and they're both starting to get a bit warm.
Get on the road again to head down the other side...... the fun was short lived as we caught some traffic. One specific ute we were stuck behind for a while, just about running off the road at every turn...... my quick risk assessment determined that it was a bad idea to try to pass!
Once off the other side we continue on and have a good lunch at the Samford Pub...... I highly recommend it! Their burgers are awesome!
After lunch we chat about the game plan from here.... sadly all the delays mean that its taken us 3hrs to get this far!
Stop for some fuel (the 1299 had done 145k's since the last tank) Normally she'd be pretty thirsty by now, usually get around 180k's before the light comes on.... to my surprise it only took 9 litres! Its almost done 2000k's now so economy seems to be improving with age!
We make the decision to head to the cafe on Mt Glorious and then head home from there rather than going over the back..... time has just gotten away from us!
After a coffee, and an awkward chat with a fellow rider who believes that the Australian Government is guilty of treason..... or some such..... We get going, down glorious and onto Mt. Nebo.
Being very conscious of high risk hazards on nebo, (you know, rock falls, tree branches, wildlife.......policemen) Especially now its a 60 zone, its not hard to lose your licence on this section of road, we had a spirited ride down the hill.... I wasn't pushing the straights hard (the whole 60 zone thing), but I was really into the corners.....
This time something was different though, Several times I started looking for a place to stop and wait for CaffeineMonster, but every time I slowed down to wait..... There he was!
I was in disbelief that he was keeping up on his little monster......... For someone that's only had a license for 5 months, he can ride!!
The ride ends as we get back into the monotonous congestion that is Brisbane..... Luckily early enough to beat most of the traffic!
We part ways and head to our respective homes. I get home, I park my bike at the end of the driveway, I take off my gear, sweaty, tired, and mind blown, I grab a beer from the fridge sit at the top of my driveway, looking at the beast I just rode over 3 mountains in one day....... I am once again content!!
My bike doesn't take very good selfies!