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Taking the Straightest Roads, 8769klm in 13 days....

Discussion in 'Roads, Touring, Journeys, and Travel' at netrider.net.au started by firetiger, Jan 22, 2008.

  1. For those who are bored and need a little sleeping material ;)

    This is what i did over my Xmas Break :D

    Nullarbor Road Trip...

    27-12-07
    start – 6953
    finish – 7625
    trip – 672



    today I started my trip to go across the Nullarbor and into western australia. I rode off at approx 7.45am after being farewelled by my family.. I knew what I basically wanted to do but had no game plan or time line to speak of… I didn’t know how many klms in a day I was going to be able to ride especially over consecutive days…. would my endurance get better or worse as my trip went on?? ….. and the best layed plans always go astray anyways… so I felt it far better just to see how I go as I went along… so basically, the only firm plans I made was to get a new rear tyre fitted on the 28th in Adelaide as the old one was about had it… I assumed that I could do around 600klm in a day with breaks etc… and with that average the trip would take around 16 days… not firm of course, but just a very rough guess….
    The first days riding went well, a little cool in the morning and then by late afternoon things get very hot…. The temp was just right in the middle of the day.. hmmm… sounds like a familiar story…
    I stopped at heywood for a pitstop pushing on the Mount Gambier for a refuel… took another stop an hour down the road briefly for a quick drink and luggage check before continueing on to Kingston where I refuelled and had a bit of lunch… I talked to this old dude there that I had passed a couple of times.. he was interested in my bike and where I was going etc…. I always felt refreshed after each stop which are very important when bike touring… this area is all familiar to me with round and square hay bales still sitting in the paddocks of the dairying industry but as I pushed on into south australia I noticed small lakes that had dried into salt beds…
    Ther was lots of traffic through this area as I pushed on towards adelaide as it’s a bit of a touristy region along the coast here….
    As I reached adelaide and into traffic the temperature rose dramatically and was very uncomfortable…
    As I got to adelaide earlier than I had anticipated I tried to talk the service guys at Peter Stevens into putting on my new rear tyre that afternoon as it was only 3.30 and there were guys standing around doing nothing… but the dude there thought it would be touch and go to get it finished by knock off… as when it’s knock off time they knock off….. it was going to be a scorcher the next day and I wanted to get going as early as possible.. I thought that this guy was very unenthusiastic with poor customer service and it pissed me off a bit considering he knew where I was going… I find this a lot in the motorcycling industry…. But anyways… I took off to find a park to stay the night which took me another hour… a site cost me $37… “because it’s tourist seasonâ€â€¦. I unpack my bike and set up my swag and after unzipping my personal bag I find that my mrs has pack teabags and sugar in with my clothes which are in plastic bags…. I had asked her to put the sugar in a sealed container… the sugar bag had burst and was all through my clothes and stuff… I guess some things you just need to do yourself… grrrrr x 3 ….. the bike went well on the day, I felt pretty good with only a little muscle soreness which I’d expected after a long days ride, especially with no “ride†fitness going into the trip…my camp was set up quickly and without hassle… all in all, a pretty good day with a couple of little hiccups…

    28-12-07
    Start – 7625
    Fisish – 8206
    Trip – 581

    OMG – what a day it was today… very hot, it had to be up around 40* +…. Even worse being on the road as I also had the heat of my bike, the surface heat and the heat of other vehicles!!! It had to have been 50* + riding and it was almost unbearable… got my tyre fitted this morning.. they done it in an hour which they could have done the night before.. grrr… but anyways… took a lot of stops today due to the heat, wind, retying my stuff on the bike and taking a couple of pics etc…. a lot of broad acre wheat farming in the area which always makes the land hotter not having any trees for thousands of acres… more bigger and larger dried up lakes through this area up through to Port Augusta…. I passed Rail tracks as I drove which reminded me of what I had been thinking of doing around 12 months back… which was doing this trip by train on the famous Indian Pacific train… and on a blistering day like this I imagined myself sitting in airconditioned luxury… aah well.. I can dream on… but anyways… I push on and stop at Redhill to retire that damn bike cover again… as I sit in the shade having a drink of water I suddenly here train bells going behind me which are behind the roadhouse… I look back expecting to see a goods train…. ding ding ding ding… and then the train emerges from behind the roadhouse… holey crappers, it’s the Indian Pacific!!!! I can’t believe my eyes as I stare not thinking to grab my camera to take a picture… so I throw on my gear and take off after the train as fast as I dare which was not fast as on this road there was still traffic around etc and maybe officer Plod… but when I seem to be catching it a little it disappears inland as the hwy swings out west… and just when all hope seems gone of catching it… it reappears as it’s slowing to go into another town that is off the hwy.. .so I thinks to myself.. I’ll go out to the other side of town and take some pictures there… the rail goes under the hwy so I park my bike at one end of the overpass and in all my riding great dash back to the centre of the bridge in searing heat with beads of sweat dripping from my brow.. and I wait… and wait.. damn!! The train stopped back in that town of Crystal Brook…. As I have already lost a lot of time in this day I decide to push on with my tour…. By this stage sweat is soaking through parts of my leathers it’s so damn hot… I stop at Port Augusta for some lunch… I go to Subway for fresh food deliberately avoiding fatty lethargic fast foods… I feel refreshed again and push on towards Kimba…. As I turn off at the Whyalla/Iron knob intersection the traffic subsides and the roads open up to long straights where I increase my speed ever so slightly ;) ;) I think about staying in Kimba but it’s a grubby little hole and I'm unimpressed with the fuel and water prices… I drink down 1.5lts of water in around 10 minites and decide to push on to Wudinna.. I'm glad I did as it was a nice little place with welcoming people… it’s still hot, the park is just dirt with lost of ants, I'm a little dehydrated so I decide to take a basic room with air conditioning do that I can recoup for $60… omg.. that AC is so sweet… I try to have a cold shower but after 15 mins the water in the cold tap fails to get cold staying at around 30*… there is no mobile coverage here and the land line is down the road somewheres so I send an email back home… I really enjoyed myself today apart from the heat… a lot of small shrubs etc through this area today with a redish type soil… I only travel during the day to avoid the animals that come out at night.. I believe everyone should do this, it would save a lot more lives and wrecked cars of which I saw many off in the coming days… skid marks at regular intervals skidding from one side of the road to the other… looks as though they went to sleep and lost control skidding off and crashing… I don’t feel hungry tonight because of the dehydration so I force myself to eat something and to keep the fluids up… I even forced myself to have a couple of beers ;) lol …
    I'm going to bed early tonight to get an early start in the cooler temperatures… hehe…
     
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  2. 29-1-07
    Start – 8206
    Finish – 8933
    Trip – 728

    I leave Wudinna real early this morning to get a few hundred K’s in before the heat of the day… I hadn’t toped my bike up with fuel the night before and plan to get some in the next town that’s around 100 clicks away… Wirrulla… there is only one place to fuel at Wirrulla and when I get there it’s shut… this was the first and last time I didn’t refuel the night before, it was a vital mistake and whats worse it was Saturday morning and he didn’t open until 9am on a Saturday… omg!! it was only 7.25am and the temperature on the gauge outside of this little shop said that is was 28* already.. I talk to an old couple to see if they have any extra fuel on board but they have a diesel car.. my plans were going out the window.. I already had around 215klm on this tank and the most I had ever taken it to was 265klms… hmmm.. what to do… the next town is 95 clicks away… I run the sums through my head of what fuel should be left in my tank and then I rerun the sums again… hmmm… I think I can make it… hmmm.. maybe not… F@#* …. I rerun the sums again and technically I should make it… ok… I'm going for it!!!! I stay with the best talk range of my bike which is around 110 kmph and I slowly catch up to a truck of which I slipstream all the way to the next town of Ceduna…pheww!!… I make it with 311klms on the trip clock which now becomes very handy in knowing my limits and giving the the knowledge and confidence to push longer ranges before stopping for fuel… unfortunately I picked up a bit of grit in my left eye by following the truck :( … my eyes are also straightened by bright reflecting light and I buy a new set of sunnies that are Polaroids of which I should have been wearing in the first place… my eyes are much better after this… Polaroids are the only sun glasses to travel with!!
    From Ceduna I keep pushing west travelling past about 350 billion acres of wheat lands which are stinking hot…. The water I was carring on the back you could have made a cuppa tea with so I pull into Nundoo which is a hot dusty hole with a few brothers hanging around waiting for the pub to open.. lots of small aust gums in this area that only grow to around 15 – 20 ft high with light scrub lands below…
    I get to the Nullarbor roadhouse, another hot dusty hole with over priced fuel… I had some lunch there and cooled down in their air conditioning… a lot of small eucalypt shrubs and saltbush in this area and not a tree in sight… I ride on in the heat across the Nullarbor and suddenly the wind changes from my right side to my left side which makes it instantly cool… huh? is this some sort of cruel trick? About 5 mins later the wind shifts back to my right and becomes hot again… bah!! That’d be right!!…. but after another 10 or so clicks the wind shifts back to my left again and remains on that side…. I had reached the Head of the Great Australian Bight which was blowing in a cool sea breeze… oh thankyou dear Lord!!!
    I drop into a park along the Nullarbor where you can observe whales, when in season, and there are huge sand dunes and 80 meter cliffs… there are a number of stops like this along the Nullarbor of where you can take pics etc… I push on to the SA / WA border where they check your vehicle for food.. fruit mainly… not far from here is a little place called Eucla… no mobile service, only $10 a camp site and a $1 for a shower… I guy that I talked to at the Nullarbor roadhouse has also caught me up and is camping next to me.. his name is Mick…. Anyways… this place is near the ocean on the hilltop and is nice and COOOOOOOOL…..

    30-12-07
    Start – 8946
    Finish – 9846
    Trip – 913

    Ok… early start from Eucla today and I have made it all the way down to Esperance… I can now talk about Mick in my diary, as I did want to yesterday due to the possibility of him over seeing what I have written…
    Crazy Mick I call him….he’s riding an old GS1000 Suzuki… I had only talked to the guy for a few minutes back at the Nullarbor roadhouse to be polite.. you talk to heaps of people on this road at every stop… while talking with him he asked me where I was staying the night and I had told him that I may stop at Eucla… he was pushing on to a town further down the track which suited me as the more I talked to him the creepier he seemed…. He’s a scrawny chap and hasn’t shaved for a number of days… his skin is flaking under his goatee, and, it gets worse… I see his teeth and they are rotting bad and eroding away… they are green/grey and I feel sick at the sight of them.. argh!!! they look like that horrible picture that that use for the anti smoking campaign…. He tells me that after his stop at the Nullarbor roadhouse he increased his speed to try and catch me in which he nearly does as I stopped along the Nullarbor cliff tops to take pictures etc… he also asked about me at the SA/WA Border crossing where he finds out that I was only about 15 to 20 minutes in front of him… I saw him enter the Eucla camping grounds to look for me.. he goes back and books a site for the night and comes back to put up camp right beside me a few meters away just on the other side of some bushes…. F#@* I think so myself… as I talk with him for a little while he’s sussing me out of where I am going but I am vague about my plans… he asks me to come to Broome with him but I tell him I haven't the time… he asks me when I go back to work and then insists that I can make it to Broome with him and back in time for work… so I have to decline the offer again… geesus.. some people just don’t get it… does this guy want to play mummies and daddies with me or what?? argh!! he’s freaking me out… he gives me all the inns and outs of a ducks bum of why using a tent is better than a swag of which I have.. but I have my swag up and camp set up, and, I have even had my tea before he gets his tent set up… I laugh to myself… he even needs to borrow my hammer as the ground is very solid.. he bends his pegs as they are the pissy little type…once set up he’s in his tent and I hear him having a pommy shower… pshhht pshhht… so ok.. I go take a real shower myself.. on my way back I see him coming back from the kiosk with a towel… he says that he’s forgot his and had to borrow one.. yeh what ever…. but when he comes back he says that it’s the best shower since 3 days ago… this guy left melbourne and had stayed in motels up until now and he never took one shower with all of the free hot water, towels and soap?? I don’t like people that don’t look after themselves but crazy mick is making an effort on this night… lol.. he also complains about his footwear and I suggest that he may have been better with a pair of flipflops like me… he tells me that he had a pair of sandals but he left them at a business that he worked for but didn’t want to go back as he ruined the business on the owner… uhuh :| …. I say nothing.. then he says… he stuffed me around so I ruined his busyness.. then adds.. legally of course… I don’t ask him to elaborate, I don’t want to know about it… omg.. how on earth did I end up with this freak following me?? he asks me where I plan to spend the next night and I tell him Norseman.. he says that that’s where he plans to stay as well… oh dear…. So while he’s off trying to find out the real time of day I slip off to bed with my alarm to go off EARLY…. Real EARLY…. 5am … I was getting up early anyways, this was nothing new… but when I did, I was EXTRA QUIET…. I packed everything up and tied it all on my bike before I heard him unzipping his tent… lol… I was trying to leave but he was on for a chat again about some shit… I cant remember as I wasn’t listening… and then all of a sudden he grabs for his doodle and jumps a bit and says.. .â€oh !! I nearly pissed myselfâ€â€¦ like wtf???
    But this doesn’t deter him from what he was crapping on about.. he thinks for a few seconds and then restarts his conversation… lol… omg.. he also has this nervous itch happening too… so I walk to my bike and he says he’s off to the loo… I think about just riding off without saying anything but think better of it and say.. “well, mick, I’ll catch you down the roadâ€.. he’s surprised… he says, but arent you having breakfast? I say… no… I usually don’t have breakfast until I get a couple of hundred K’s under my belt.. his head shakes in disbelief and does a double take.. lol.. wish I had it on camera.. oh no.. you have to have breakfast first up… I says.. well I don’t… and start to put my jacket on etc… but he starts crapping on about his Ipod and bluetooth conection etc… omg.. cant you take a hint?, I think to myself… I put on my helmet and gloves as well and give him the impression that he’ll catch up to me anyways as I take many stops etc and if not I’d probably see him down in Norseman anyways… he stands there and watches me ride off like my mrs did when I first left home… lol… “see you down the road mickâ€â€¦. .NOT… and this is why I was doing this ride solo.. I do what I want when I want without having to consider others and there habits etc if you know what I mean… I can ride as many or as little klms as I want, get up and go to bed when I feel like it….
    So away I go… I'm now riding onto some of the biggest stretches of roads in australia and down past cocklebiddy the longest stretch of road in australia and perhaps the world… it’s 146 klm long, dead straight…so I already know that I wont be doing any side trips etc on this day and if I do see something interesting I’ll make note and stop on the return trip…. now, as I ride down the road I quickly do some sums in my head comparing crazy micks bike to mine… he loses a lot of fuel economy over 120 clicks so he wont be riding over this speed.. his bike also doesn’t have the range of my bike so he will have to stop and refuel more frequently so I go long doing 272 clicks to cocklebiddy in one hit…. he’ll have to stop and refuel at Madura, he’ll then ride passed cocklebiddy and then refuel again at Caiguna… I’ll drive on by Caiguna going straight to Balladonia…he’ll also refuel at Balladonia but by this stage it’ll be over 5 hrs down the road and I’ll be long gone…. Also, if he asks about me at his first two fuel stops as he did the previous day no one would have seen me and he wont know how far in front of him I am… hehe…. My bike cruises at 130 clicks just over 3000rpm due to it’s massive toque curve that comes in at around 2500rpm and I ride like the wind for 700klms all the way through to Norseman… it was a cool and still morning with the road to myself with the ever changing landscape and this is without doubt the best ride I have ever endured… the best ever!! there was lots of scrub with eucalypts and salmon gums.. salt bushes… at times very thin then turning very dense.. the landscape never stopped changing with big cliffs out to my right to followed me for over 100 k’s…
    I pull into Balladonia as scheduled and refuel… I had been carrying a water backpack but hadnt used it because the water in it tasted like plastic… but as the day was heating up into the afternoon and I didn’t want to stop for drink breaks I decided to empty the water out of it and put fresh water in it to I could constantly sip on it down to Esperance.. this was a big mistake.. it was certainly refreshing taking frequent sips but the more I drank the odder I felt and then I felt a little gurgle in my stomach… hmmm.. whats that all about… soon, I have to pull over to take a leak and wonder is that’s all I need to do… I walk back to my bike when a sudden urge comes upon me to have a poop… omg… I rip open my tank bag for my travellers tissues and head for the bush to find a tree branch to sit on and let fly…. Omg… where did that come from? after the welcome relief of pressure came an ungodly smell… did that just come out of me? smelt like the devil himself had a piece of my ass… phewwweee… but anyways.. I digress… I push onto Norseman and the heat is blistering by this stage and I feel the need to unload again… other people come into the toilet and I hear them whispering and giggling.. lol.. I guess they can’t believe the smell either…. ROFL… I switch back to bottled water and I feel better immediately but I wonder what dehydration effect this saga has had on me… Esperance was calling me as it was on the coast and most likely cooler with sea breezes…. Sweat was pouring out of my body at an unbelievable rate… it’s seeping through my jacket, my jeans are wet, beads of sweat drip off the end of my nose and eye lashes and I have to stop at Salmon Gums for a rest, liquids and a sandwich…. I push on again only to stop in the next little town as I feel sick… I rest and take on more fluids.. it seems a little cooler here… I press on again and the wind finally swings around into my face and the temperature drops quickly.. so much so that I was cold by the time I get to Esperance…. I set up camp and I have escaped from crazy mick, lol.. I also get my mobile coverage back :)
     
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  3. 31-12-07
    start – 9846
    finish – 10664
    trip – 818

    I get up early again and I feel great!! I feel strong and energised and I seem to have good riding fitness punching out some big klms… I pack up my things and I'm a little annoyed at the noise of last night… there was loud music, loud mouthed Rsoles with foul mouths, kids running amuck, dogs wandering around unleashed, at least four of the mongrels and with one mutt sniffing around my sway at 1.30am… “goonnnn ya mongrel!!!†he runs for it… then a thunder storm came rumbling in and one of the dogs ran off which was followed by an hour of people calling out for their stupid mutt.. the managers at this park pull down the shutters at 6.30pm and then live off base… so basically, people do what they damn well please after that…. I’ll never stay there again… anyways.. I ride out to Ravensthorpe and up to Hyden to a place called “Wave Rock†where there is a huge granite rocks with formations shaped in then from the weather… I ride through another billion acres of wheat lands on the way up… Wave Rock was good…. I don’t think that I’d ever go back there again… been there done that etc … there’s no mobile service out here either and I decide to head back to Albany… there’s no direct rout and after a lot of pissing around I get lost and spend the next hour on dirt roads wondering where in the fking hell I am and feeling really pissed off at myself… I finally make it out but way down range of where I need to be… I finally get back on track and head south through the Stirling ranges… the roads are tight around here and I slow my pace to suit… the traffic also increases as I get closer to Albany…. I find a cabin for the night as it’s New Years Eve and go across the road to get a few beers and whiskies.. turns out my eyes are bigger than my stomach.. but anyways.. “Happy New Year!†to me :D

    1-1-08
    start – 10664
    finish – 11212
    trip – 548

    Started of from Albany this morning a bit later than normal after a few drinks for New Years Eve. Travelled along the southern coast today, past farms and into woodlands and mountains. Fires have gone through of late. Some nice big gum trees through this area. Decide to travel to the outer south west corner but after a wrong turn and some bad roads I decide to come back to the main road of the Western Hwy. Although I had lunch in Pemberton which was quite a nice little town. The Western Hwy is fast but windy with nice long sweepers. My tyres take a pounding on the sides because of the reverse turning and sharp angles. Its great fun but I don’t want to replace another rear tyre at $450, fitted!! It gets very hot by Bunbury as I continue to push towards Peth. I stop at a little place called Lake Clifton. Quiet park, unlike in Esperence!!
    Looks to be hot for the next few days so will have to get some early starts!! But tonight I have my bush esky, consisting of a bag of ice, couple of beers and a couple of bottles of water. Can’t go wrong! Just had another guy come up to look at the Rocket – everyone loves it! Oh, he’s back yet again. This time to take pics, ha ha, and again. The ride from Albany to Bridgetown was fantastic. I’d rather ride that road than the Great Ocean Road due to the high speed sweepers and overtaking lanes.

    2-1-08
    start – 11212
    finish – 11699
    trip – 486

    Ok, this morning I plan to make it from Lake Clifton, into Fremantle and then out to Kalgoorlie. The ride starts well as I’m up early and on the road by 6.30am. I make it into the port of Freo and consider this half way in my journey as from here I start heading back East. The traffic thickens as I head out of town, which pisses me off at times. This is the first time I get annoyed with traffic in 4000kms. I think they breed imbicile drivers in the city! As I curse once more I push through the Perth Hills, it’s a little windy with a few spots of rain. I welcome this as they predicted it to be hot today. I see a sign, “Great Eastern Hwy closed at Southern Cross†er what??!! That’s right. They had fires in that area and 3 truckies died. Damn it!! I stop in a small place called Clackline near Northam, for a bit of breakfast. The guy that runs it is another bikie and check out my bike. He has a Goldwing 1996. He tells me that he reads that the road will be open at 7pm tonight so I continue on towards Southern Cross rather than back tracking over 1100kms of roads I’ve already ridden. I push through to Southern Cross and its getting very hot again. The road is blocked and they can’t tell me when it will be open, not today, not tomorrow – fcuk me!! Part of the detour is 175kms on dirt road. Apart from this it’s going to heat up even more, is this possible?
    They predict 45* for tomorrow but I have come with my phone which is a bonus as a lot of WA seems to have a lot of DEAD areas. Shit! I’ve been stopped dead in my tracks and I don’t like it, not one bit!!
    There’s no internet in this town either – damn hillbillies! The hotel is booked out with fire fighters so I go the motel. I feel caged but at least I have air conditioning, TV for the cricket and a fridge for a few cool beers. The road would be open but for the mistake that cost 3 truckies their lives. I see on the news of other drivers driving through the fire and wonder how stupid people can be. If there is fire in front of you and it’s clear behind you, what do you do – stop and go back or drive through the fire?
    Well, these people kept driving straight through the fire with flame licking over their cars. Sensational TV footage Yes, but I’m afraid all I see is morons! I have a conversation with police the following day and we all agree on this.
     
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  4. 3-1-08
    start – 11699
    finish – 11699
    trip – 0

    Not much to report today. Road is still closed due to the trucks being burnt out and three guys dying.. They say it’s because of the fires but that’s crap. I’ve talked to the CFA guys on the ground and they tell me that the road would be open but for the accident 2 days ago. I also have to shift rooms due to things being booked out. Smaller room and older, but its ok. I’ll watch the cricket. There is a short cut on the detour but it’s more dirt roads. Saves you 200kms but it’s slower, so no advantage that I see, and more dangerous. I talked about it to the CFA guys yesterday and they tell me it’s like driving on marbles. I talk to my Mrs about this road as I saw a guy on a Harley go on it a couple to days back when I was in Hayden…. She says to stay off it as well… I agree as there’s no comms on it either. I’m reading the paper today and to my shock there has been as accident on that road. Mum, Dad and daughter. The car spun out of control and the daughter died. I think they said she was 19 yo. Very sad and one more reason to avoid that road “always talk to the locals†about conditions of local areas. I walk outside to the loo at 3pm. The heat is stifling, absolutely stifling. It’s as hot and dry as a dead dingo’s donga in the desert. My feet burn on the footpath that’s in the shade. 45* is hot and India is having a good batting day in the cricket – damn it!! I call for an update on the Great Eastern Hwy closure. They say maybe open Friday, after a meeting, goddammit!!!

    4-1-08
    start – 11699
    stop – 12475
    trip – 775

    again, more pussy footing around and no answers from the cfa and the WA road control and I’ve had a guts full of hanging around Southern Cross so I decide to pull back to Merredin where I can either keep going down through the detour or if they have an answer on the roads to open it I can come back up to Southern Cross… I bump into a resident of the motel I'm staying at… I talked to her the day before and now this is their fifth day in southern cross… I tell her of my plans to pull back out of southern cross.. she is getting annoyed as well… so after breakfast I pack my bike, pay my tab and head off.. when I get back to Merredin and having a think about the situation, I have this feeling that the road is going to remain closed for more days yet and continue on… after checking my maps I start to cut back down to Narembeen and once I get on the right road all I have to do it to go straight.. so away I go…. the wind feels as if it’s on the wrong side but I decided that it must have changed direction and continue on only to find the road deteriorating and then turning to dirt… I have to be on the wrong road… and I get very angry as I'm 40 clicks down the road by this stage… by the time I get back my fuel range is reduced and I have to get back into Merredin to refuel.. as it turns out, the map is slightly out… about 8 k’s down the road you had to do a right hand turn… not just follow the road as the map said.. I curse… the air is blue inside my helmet… I ring for an update on the road and it is to remain closed with no hint of when it’ll open so I push down to Esperance which adds on 1100klms using the detour… but at least its cool again and I can get a good nights sleep… I go to another park in Esperance keeping away from the trouble of the Pink Lakes that I stayed in last time.. it is full and it’s getting near the end of the day so I take the final spot in the park… when I walk in, the park manager is on the phone with the woman I spoke to back in southern cross that had been there for 5 days.. shes sick of it and is going to use the detour as well the following day.. I always like it when I drive into a full park.. people stare at you like you have two heads or something which makes you all self conscious… I set up my site quickly and become park of the park which also seems to come with acceptance as well… one woman is staring at me when I walk over to put something in the bin to I say “gday†to her… her return was, “are you going to sleep in that thing tonightâ€â€¦. wtf? I feel like telling her to get stuffed.. but I smile and say.. “yeh sure, its like living in luxury†;) …. Old bag!!
    I'm really glad I got shit swag… it’s not too heavy and not too light… it’s 210cm x 900cm… it’s a free flowing air design with top or head entry and a micro mesh that is guaranteed to keep the mozzies out.. I can fit myself in it along with many other articles down the sides to keep them safe etc and to answer someones question from earlier as to what I wear at night… errr… nothing.. ;) … oh… it’s also big enough to have a shag… lol.. just ;) … so I hear..
    at this stage I have learnt to have my showers in the mornings to avoid the heat, kids playing in the crappers and old mens smells of taking a dump in the evenings… omg..

    5-1-08
    start - 12475
    finish – 12940
    trip – 460

    up early again at 5am and I have the shower block to myself and it’s nice and cool… I pack up all of my stuff and head off before most people are out of bed… one young kid is up and bored because none of his mate are up so he hangs around watching me pack and ride off into the distance… I push back through Salmon Gums and Norseman from a few days back and head for Kalgoorlie… I push up to and into Kalgoorlie… I plan to stay at a motel tonight so that I can get out and about a bit to have a good look around…I drive through town and about the place and I find the SUPER PIT…. And it’s super!!! I'm very excited and I watch all of the massive equipment go about it’s business like a large Tonka Toy set operating by itself… it’s great!!! I go back and get a room for $80 then head into town to the tourist information and try and get a tour of in and around the SUPER PIT!! …. But they are booked out until the following Tuesday… DAMMIT!! I txt the mrs at my disappointment :( … she txt back asking me if there was other stuff to do.. I txt back… yes… I'm going to tour a brothel.. is it ok to use the services while I'm there? … lol… she txt back.. “only if you never want to come home again!!â€, this was the oldest brothel in australia.. at one stage they used to have 18 brothels in Kalgoorlie as there ratio of men to women had been as high as 100 to 1… other figures say 20 to 1.. either way, it’s a broke back Mountain awaiting to happen and with all of that back pressure building up the sensible thing to do was to provide an outlet for that built up pressure... they were run with very strict rules and if the rules were broken the brothel would be closed and never reopened… if the girls came into town by themselves they’d be escorted to the train station and banned for a week.. is they stuffed up again they’d be banned out of Kalgoorlie for life… the madam there told us some really great stories… these days, the brothels can at times make more out of the tours than they can with the working girls… I really enjoyed it… after that I went up to the gold museum… and then after that I went back to the SUPER PIT again!!!! and this time they had there daily blast at 5pm…. The shelter that we were in shook as hundreds of charges detonated!!! I found it all very exciting and was happy with my day… :)
     
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  5. 6-1-08
    start – 12940
    finish – 14033
    trip – 1093

    Left Kalgoolie this morning to what turned out to be my biggest day on the bike. My alarm was left on early so I thought, eh, what the hell, may as well get up and get moving. But heading south, southeast meant that I’d have the sun in my eyes being an early start. So when I got back down to Norseman I stopped for brekkie before I headed directly east. This road is familiar as it was the road I came over on. Lots of long straights and increased cruising speeds, wink, wink…. So now, today, I just feel like going home. It was also breezy today as well, which annoyed me somewhat as it was moving my gear which I had to re-tie a couple of times. But still, I had the chance again to soak up this magnificent countryside of ours in Australia. Lots of road-kill on the roads this time through which is ok, because you get to see lots of wedge-tailed eagles. They take off only when you get close. They are magnificent in flight!!! Lots of pairs mainly and they fight the crows over the road-kill. It’s worth driving the Nullarbor just to see that. Most road-kill seemed to be on the longest straight road in the world, between Balladonia and Caiguna. I think the roos come here to commit hari kari. There are also areas along here where the Royal Australian Flying Doctors land on the freeway. There are signs and lines painted on the freeway for this. Could you imagine looking in your rearview mirrors and seeing a plane coming up behind you? I bet everyone checks their rearview mirrors through those sections. I know I do. There are also a lot of little interesting things to see apart from the rocky outcrops, eucalypts, salmon gum and shrubby salt bushes etc. If I stopped and took pics of every little interesting thing I’d still be riding now. Some people like to decorate the trees. One that I saw was full of miners different coloured hard hats, another had pots, pans, kettles and other kitchen utensils. One was covered with plastic bottles and a stuffed man. Another had ladies underpants on it – the mind boggles.
    The Cocklebiddy roadhouse pissed me off today. Stopped to re-tie my load and have some lunch. Tried three time to get service only for staff to walk past me and ignore me. So re-tied my load and drove off. Seems have a smoke was more important. Foul mouthed deadbeat…. I won’t be back….EVER!!!
    Ok, once you get to Madura you drive over Baxter Cliffs which travel beside you for maybe 150kms. Amazing sight. This is my favourite part of the ride across Australia’s Nullarbor.. The land is dominated by Western mallee scrubs and salt bushes. Once you cross the boarder into SA you hit the “real†Nullarbor Plain. If it’s a hot day you will get a welcome relief of cool wind coming off the GREAT AUSTRALIAN BIGHT and not a tree in sight!! Just millions of mallee eucalypts and saltbushes… Also, the Baxter Cliffs form part of the Aust. Bight cliffs. Best seen while heading east to Eucla from Madura. You would assume that that part of the road was once under water, very powerful sight!! Nulla or Nullarbor means treeless or something. I finish my day at the Nullarbor roadhouse. Dusty, windy place and I don’t like it much. $5.35 for a stubby of beer, my ass!!!! So I get a 6 pack for $20.. I stay here the night in a backpackers shack down the back for $35 out of the persistent wind and cosy enough for a dump, LOL.
    Back into more small towns and traffic tomorrow. Will have to back off my cruising speed of today. I have travelled through 2 time zones today but since I have no reception on my mobile it hasn’t updated the time. Not that it matters. I’ve only been living in the sun.. Oh, what day is it? Can’t say I care.. This is a road trip of a lifetime!!!
    I wonder what the poor people are doing?? LOL

    7-1-08
    start – 14033
    finish – 14909
    trip – 876

    Started off at around 7.30am from the Nullarbor, heading east. Conditions are very good this morning and continue to be so until I hit Port Augusta where the wind picked right up and makes things very uncomfortable for my last 110km stint to Crystal Brook. So anyways, I leave the Nullarbor and it seems like I’m leaving a different country behind me as it’s so unique. I thought that this would be a once in a lifetime road trip, but having done it I alreay know I will crave to do it again one day. Next time with Kathleen. It’s funny, on the way across the first time, you are like this scared little rabbit, not knowing where you are going or what to expect. Eyes wide open with a map in hand looking around for services and roadhouses etc… But on the return trip you are full of confidence, picking and choosing where and when you want to stop. Having your favourite places while avoiding the places that gave bad service or were a dump. Kimba was one of these places, along with Cocklebiddy. They won’t get another cent from me – ever!! Unless I break down of course. He he.
    The Yalata roadhouse was aboriginal owned…. it is closed now and there are no services there… I’m not surprised about that, in fact, there seems to be a lot of aboriginals in the Ceduna area. The ones I came across spat a lot and smelled. Smelt like bad body odour, real bad. While at the BP servo this morning a lot of them pulled in, in the latest model landcruisers or dual cab utes and I wonder how they got these vehicles. They all looked like bums, smelt bad, had bad habits and listening to them, had no education, and yet, drove more expensive cars than most people…….. hmm go figure??
    From Ceduna to Wudinna was mostly broad acre wheat farming which made the temperature increase. I saw signs of the Gawler Range but pfft, don’t make me laugh!.. nothing but bare broad acre wheat paddocks… I really enjoyed the ride from Wudinna to Port Augusta. The whole country looked different from when I first went across. Maybe because I was delirious from the heat the first time through or possibly seeing it from a different angle. Beautiful country… different shades of green, blues, green/blue, blue/grey, reds and oranges – fantastic!!!
    From this direction Iron Knob looked far bigger…. Australia’s first iron mine and the view of the Flinders Ranges on the way in and out of Port Augusta were breathtaking!!!
    The sun has gone down almost today. I have my bushman’s esky and camping out for what looks like to be my last night out from home…..Cheers big ears :)


    8-1-08
    start – 14909
    finish – 15722
    trip – 812

    Trip Total = 8769 klms

    Today is my last day on the road barring no accidents and I can hardly contain my excitement.. I roughly work out that I have to do around 900 klms or so to make it home.. my riding durability has grown from day one and 900 k’s should be easy enough given I get up early enough… travelling east means you have the sun in your face but travelling from Crystal Brook to adelaide is nearly directly south so the sun will be to my left for the first couple of hours… I have my tinted visor and motorcycle buff to cover my nose and cheeks from the rising sun… as I come in to adelaide I see a car on the opposite side of the road franticly flashing his lights… hmmm… better wash a few klms off my speed… a few K’s down the road I see officer Plod and his hand held laser speed camera hiding in some bushes… I hate travelling through adelaide, there’s no easy way around it and I'm running out of fuel… plenty of fuel stations on the other side of the road but none on this side… hmmmm…. finally a servo appears and I pull in… just in time too.. only about 1.5 litres left in my tank… some dude cant start his car there so I help him push it around the back until he can get help.. then I push on out of the adelaide hills where I encounter an unpredictable female driver that can’t hold a steady speed.. speeding up and then slowing down dramatically… grrrr… I follow a couple of quicker cars and we leave her behind in the distance by at least 1000 meters.. as we go down a steep hill and up the others side the two cars in front of me pass a slower truck and I put my indicator on to follow suit only to find that same female again with her friend in the lane right beside me… she is a dangerous driver and when we get passed the truck I indicate my displeasure with her driving ability… she must have had that thing hammering down the previous hill at 160klm + to recatch our driving group… and again, she slow right back down and we lose her again… I stop in Tailem Bend where I top up with fuel and have some breakfast.. but as I go for a park here is the car of the same woman that was driving erratically parked across two parking bays… OMFG!!! … she comes back out to the car to get something and I suggest she get some driving lessons… but anyways. I digress….. after my bacon and eggs I continue on south/east… there’s two way I can get to Mount Gambier and I decide to take the inland route as it is still cold… it’s a nice ride and mainly covered from the elements due to the heavy vegetation on both sides of the road which is a bonus… I also pass like a billion acres of grapevines due to the huge wineries in that region… I push down to Mount Gambier and refuel the bike and myself with a chicken, cheese and mayo sandwich but I only eat half… I am not hungry and I want to keep moving especially heading back into victoria where the speed limits are slower.. when I go past the vic border I feel as though I could get off my bike and walk faster and it’s a little frustrating…. I push back through to Heywood where I was planing to have a break but I feel good and continue on to Port Fairy where the traffic is thick and slow… but finally… finally.. I make it home at around 4.30pm… mrs Blue is surprised to see me this early but glad and after such a long time away from home.. 13 days… and the second thing that went bang was the front door ;) ;) …lol

    Post trip… I'm still hyped.. I’ve cleaned and packed everything away but I still feel like pushing on… I think back and there was hardly a stop, if any, where I didn’t talk to some friendly stranger wishing me well in return for good wishes.. there are a lot of good people out there… old people, young people, truckies, bikes, the grey nomads.. everyone… even your Crazy Micks.. he was ok I guess… they are all out exploring this great land of ours.. and I don’t blame them.. this trip has fuelled a desire to travel and explore more around australia and I cant wait!!! dare to dream, and then dare to live that dream… I know I did.. and I didn’t regret it one bit… I loved it!!!!
     
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  6. so there you have it... nearly one word for every kilometer i road... fair deal i say ;)
     
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  7. wowsers, I felt as tired as you were just reading it.

    You didn't say what bike you were riding, gear, etc, I know that's secondary to the tale, but it would be good to know :wink:

    {and somewhere, on another sort of forum, Crazy Mick is saying, "I met this mad Victorian......."}
     
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  8. Nice work mate. I have driven the Nullarbor several times, and can relate to the parts about crazy fellow travellers and inconsiderate people at camp sites.

    Have never ridden across the Nullarbor though. Maybe some day :)

    Would love to see some pictures if you have any.
     
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  9. I enjoyed the read. Will be travelling that way for the second time in October, and am looking forward to it.
     
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  10. i'll get some pics up soon over the next week...

    lol @ that... maybe ;)

    not sure if these clips will work on this forum but i will give them a go..

    th_nullarbor.

    th_kalgoorliesuperpit.
     
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  11. Interesting read, what an adventure!

    That Mick guy sounded like a serial killer, I would have gotten up extra early to escape him too :)
     
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  12. Nice one firetiger. I really enjoyed the read, thanks for that!

    I'm also planning a trip that starts by heading across the bottom like that, so it was nice to read what you did and your experiences.

    Butz. :beer:
     
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  13. Nice story, it was a god read.. I just wish I had your stamina, I'm exhausted after one days riding, I couldn't imagine doing 13. Well done!!
     
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  14. Pinky, I'm sure you’d do ok… to tell you the truth I didn’t know whether of not I’d get past Adelaide as 12 months back I went up to Kingston SE and back over 2 days and was having trouble with my back… but on this trip I had my swag etc strapped into the passenger seat which gave me a backrest.. you also pick up ride fitness as you go along…. I’ve also got a nice big screen and wind deflector lower down and not having that draining wind on you all day makes a hell of a difference.. I rode my mrs Bonneville back from melbourne when we bought it a few months back which hasn’t got a screen and I was buggered after a 3 hr ride… so, yes, you have to be set up properly, or be superman… I’ve been out of the ARMY for 7 years now and believe me… I'm not fit… ;)

    Redhill, where the Indian Pacific came rattling by..

    wheatfields.

    some good old aussie scrub in the iron knob area

    ironknob.

    ironknob-1.

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/ironknob2.jpg

    the giant galah at Kimba

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/galah.jpg

    some early morning shots and one of the many (hundreds) wheat silo’s

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/earlymorning.jpg

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/earlymorning3.jpg

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/earlymorning2.jpg

    my burner in action

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/food.jpg

    more pics to come :)
     
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  15. Pics of Crazy Mick please. :LOL:
     
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  16. Great story!

    Great description of Crazy Mick. So funny how you said he grabbed his dick because he said he nearly pissed himself! :LOL:
     
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  17. i can assure you... it wasnt funny at the time... i was like.. wtf :shock: lol

    oh,,, and i have no pics of mick... didnt want him to know i had any valuables... if you know what i mean ;)

    here’s the next instalment of pics… thanks to you guys that read my notes… much appreciated…. :D

    these pics are from Esperance up through to Hyden where the “Wave Rock†formation is..

    turbine.

    this was from the second time in Esperance
    esperance.

    DSC06078.

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/DSC06087.jpg

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/DSC06082.jpg

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/IMGA0627.jpg

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/IMGA0629.jpg

    then from Hyden down through to Albany and around to Fremantle

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/DSC06093.jpg

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/DSC06092.jpg

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/DSC06100.jpg

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/DSC06105.jpg

    then through Freo and along the Great Eastern Freeway where they have many small towns with little interesting museums of tractors, aviation and military history… you could spend weeks investigating all of this little places..

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/DSC06109.jpg

    http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c376/bluekats/DSC06111.jpg
     
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  18. ok.... here’s a map of australia marked with red dots to the rout that I took across to the west starting at the black dot ;)

    map_australia.
     
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  19. Top write up and thanks for adding the pics :cool:
     
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