Author Topic: Leigh & Ray bisect New South Wales  (Read 5086 times)

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March 24, 2014, 11:14:03 PMReply #15 on

Offline rf9rider

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Better writing and pictures than some of the articles i`ve read in magazines  :thumbsup

March 26, 2014, 09:53:27 AMReply #16 on

Offline LeighSA

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Better writing and pictures than some of the articles i`ve read in magazines  :thumbsup
Yep he strings words together really well, it was a great trip, looking forward to our next trip, my side of the country this time

March 28, 2014, 04:57:32 AMReply #17 on

Offline Tripodtiger (OP)

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Thankyou for the positive comments.  I'm not finished yet!  I had a few days work, so I avoid the computer.  I had hoped to be buting the elsie back together today but the machining still isn't done. Not even started. If that's the worse thing that happens today, oh well.



Saturday 28th September Bathurst to Sidecar Enthusiast's Rally - Bridle Track (track no more, it's just another road)



Being a team of three did nothing to alter our un-hurried approach to departure.  It’s supposed to be a relaxing tour, and you can’t relax if you’re hurrying around trying to make time to the next stop.  It must’ve been after 11 before we finally left Kelso, heading for the Sidecar Rally on the Bridle Track.

Troy was expressing desires of having a go at a sidecar.  Since Leigh didn’t know him from a bar of soap (and Troy needed one of those on Friday night), it was obvious that he’d be taking the Tiger for a gallop.  The bitumen bit of The Bridle Track seemed the logical place.  He didn’t even seem to scare himself, except for maybe one downhill, off camber, left which may just have generated a bit more of his attention than he was comfortable with.

I found his KLR horrible, with the amount of gear he had on it and the extremely flattened rear tyre. Having noted that, I can understand why these things remain as popular now as they were when I had one 25 years ago.  It would make for a great, light weight sidecar, eh Leigh? :sign13


Andrew2 rode up with his son & dog in his GS / Gnome - bigmutha!

The Bridle Track no longer holds the image that it once did, for me anyway.  I’ve been up and down it so many times now that it’s is just another road.  The scenery along the Macquarie River is pleasant, the track is often dusty and very rocky but is just the same.  I suspect that many rally goers of the past feel the same way.  Numbers have dwindled and the event isn’t even put on by the Sydney Sidecar Owners, as the club has folded.  I recall times when my boys played with twenty or thirty other kids, running around during the gymkhana for lollies and draining the torch batteries playing spot light, sitting with sticks, threatening to poke eyes out between igniting marshmallows,around the various fires.

We did catch up with various folk; Brownie and his now adult son who had first come to the rally when he was barely a couple of months old; rally stalwart Adrian who now brings his grand kids; ‘Phillis’, who spends much of his time wandering around, with Leigh, in deep technical discussion about the merits of various sidecar manufacturing techniques and ideas; Troy seemingly spent the entire weekend talking about what he needed to get a sidecar started.  He was now ‘convinced’ that it was a bloody good thing to have and that he kids would be wrapped when he got one built.  Troy is better than handy with any tool made for the home workshop (bastard).  He could do a lot worse than take heed of what he learnt from our two experts;  ‘Beno’ –an emigrant from the US now quite happily living a far more relaxed life than he expected in his native country and; Chris, who we’d first met the week prior in Euston, pottering through the country side at 80km/h, enjoying the breeze.  A special prize must go to Andrew, whose farting & snorting was so bad that his dog left the tent! :nod

Since this is 'Tigertriple'









The sidecar is a 'Gnome'  ie built by Gnome.


There were plenty of good outfits but I find that there is an ongoing lack of finesse in the actual construction.  That simply re-enforces the notion that sidecars are cheap and nasty.  Mine is neither.


cheaper than leading links. Probably as effective. I don't know.






cheers
rayb
'73 RD250, '80 XS11, '81 RD350LC,
'96 Steamer - 'Tiger Trek' outfit.
'02 Girly - 'Envy'
"Faster Daddy, Faster!" (aged 7?)

March 28, 2014, 04:58:13 AMReply #18 on

Offline Tripodtiger (OP)

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Sunday 29th September

It’s nice to be able to sit and do nothing, because there is nothing for you to do, apart from cook your food, clean the dishes, drink a beer or three and chat.  Most head off on the Sunday, Leigh and I have followed Adrian’s lead in resting until Monday.  Adrian and his crew wandered off up in the hills.  Ben was the only other person remaining.  He jumped on his KLR and disappeared until late in the afternoon.  Our only real concern for the day was that the NX’s chain was far from pretty.  Some more time spinning spanners.

cheers
rayb
'73 RD250, '80 XS11, '81 RD350LC,
'96 Steamer - 'Tiger Trek' outfit.
'02 Girly - 'Envy'
"Faster Daddy, Faster!" (aged 7?)

March 28, 2014, 05:11:02 AMReply #19 on

Offline Tripodtiger (OP)

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Monday 30th September   Bridle Track to Crookwell (because we took to long & didn't reach Burrenjuck Dam)

It was time to get lost.

We had an early lunch in Bathurst and I took the opportunity of assisting a bloke and his daughter identify the various fluid adding and measuring points under the bonnet of the ‘new to her’ Renault.  I think he was an Aussie Six type bloke and a front wheel drive, east-west thing just got him confused. Understood.

The GPS had been employed to plot a two day route back to Wagga.  I don’t know why I bothered, really.  I had a couple of roads that I intended using, Black Range Rd south of Yass being one, trying to connect those legs in an adventurous manner.  Not too adventurous, mind.  I figured we may be able to get to Lake Burrinjuck to lay on the ground that night.

South now, through Perthville and then left, past Chifley Dam and Rockley and leading to Burraga.  Big town?  Perhaps not.  Our maps, not just the GPS, suggest that we might find a way across the Abercrombie River that was neither Crookwell Rd nor Taralga Rd.  Short story is, we failed. 


I hate those signs

Arkstone Rd took us south toward the river and the pine plantations.  Emdenvale Rd, where the information was to continue straight ahead, was another ‘no through road’ sign.  Although it was signposted ‘Abercrombie River National Park’.

I went point, whilst Leigh sucked all my dust.  And it was that fine, choking, hang-in-the-air dust that a thousand tyres from a hundred timber jinkers churn up.  Down this hill.  Up that hill.  Turn right.  Turn left.  Straight ahead.  Almost nothing on the ground matched anything on the GPS.






No tracks through there.


And the one that was supposed to go through there was impassable.

After about an hour trying to find a way through, we finally came upon a signposted intersection where I threw in the towel.



We pointed east towards the Taralga Rd and stopped.  Why? Because the Tiger took its turn to refuse to play.  Just nothing at the starter button.  Everything worked, except the starter.  Sometimes it seems to not play and then I press again and she goes, she goes,she just goes.  I’ve pulled the starter bits to pieces and cleaned the various contacts that I am aware of and it’s been ok.  Not this time.  Having started to rant and rave, it decided, for no obvious reason, to respond.  Leigh opined that the neutral switch may be malfunctioning.  Why do we need all of these fancy switches and stuff – to save idiots from themselves?  Or, to protect manufacturers from those idiots?

An absence of camping in Taralga forced us to keep going to Crookwell where we found the little council camp ground to be an excellent option.  Clean showers with heaps of hot water and a small population of caravan and motor home grey nomads, including one bloke who needed a chat.  The cost of the chat was some metho for our cookers, which we’d forgotten about.  Seems he was enjoying his new ‘wannabeabago’, having turned over $200k worth of 4wd and caravan about 12 months earlier.  Three weeks after delivery of the newsetup and, they’d done a whole 190km.  His wife wasn’t anywhere near as chatty.
cheers
rayb
'73 RD250, '80 XS11, '81 RD350LC,
'96 Steamer - 'Tiger Trek' outfit.
'02 Girly - 'Envy'
"Faster Daddy, Faster!" (aged 7?)

March 28, 2014, 05:48:31 AMReply #20 on

Offline Tripodtiger (OP)

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Tuesday 1st October.  Crookwell to Wagga Wagga (home and my 31st wedding anniversary :icon_salut:  "Yes Boss, ah, Dearest")




Last day for me.  Burrinjuck would’ve put us 200km closer to home but, we weren’t there. Who cares? Obviously not old mate with the ‘bago.  He was up for another long chat and then we got some breakfast.  The bloody weather turned nasty whilst we were sitting in the main street watching the busy people of Crookwell head into their day.

Heading along Kiala Rd, I was a bit concerned that one of us would be clobbered by a falling branch or, maybe tree? It’s not quite self evident that that didn’t happen.  Thankfully, it didn’t.


Old 'Golden Fleece' petrol station thingos seem to be popular on fence posts

I followed the GPS route off the bitumen into a property.  Across a cattle grid, with the property name on the fence.  Unfenced road that had been built up, with proper culverts and guide posts led me to the conclusion it was a publicly maintained but, it is sometimes hard to tell.  It accorded with the GPS, and the hard copy maps, as an unpaved road.

Ultimately, it probably would have been just as effective to stay on the sealed road as, about 5km further we were back on it anyway. (But not really the point of it all, eh).

First turn off the bitumen that looked promising, I turned.

Looking for Lerida Rd, I used the line of wind generators in the distance as my marker.  We ended up crossing the Old Hume Highway between Breadalbane & Cullerin, cruising south between the historic homestead & wool shed on one side and a line of towering generators on the other.  A slow crossing of the Hume Highway, were I was so convinced there was something wrong with the rear wheel of the NX that I rode it whilst Leigh looked for the non-existent symptom, followed by the next section of Lerida Rd.  Really quite nice riding along a twin track road between cattle, sheep and the occasional horse or two.



Next was the ridge on the western side of Lake George – Marked Tree Road – that leads directly to Gundaroo.  The wind up here was strong enough to tear the skin off a custard.  I stopped at the lookout point above the lake and the Tiger decided to taunt me a second time.  We got the tools out but I don’t recall what we did or whether the tools actually affected any repair.  Maybe it just decided to comply.


Lake George, not far north of Can'tberra - our Nations' capital - the bush capital.  It's probably not a bad place to live, as far as cities are concerned
 
Gundaroo came & went.  Yass River Road found us relenting into our wet weather gear.  There were a few spots and it didn’t look as though it was getting any drier.  Normally, when one puts on the wets it doesn’t rain.  And so it proved until we were through Yass.  The only stop before there being when my odometer turned up a line of 6s.



I thought of my youngest son, the little devil.

We weren’t far along Black Range Rd before it started to belt down on us.  Sidecars on wet, earth and gravel roads can be fun!  At least one is looking for mud, not trying to avoid it.  There is much less risk of falling down if you lose the front tyre.  Still, you could plough into a tree, I suppose.




We followed our noses through to the bitumen at Burrinjuck Rd, turned right and headed for the Hume.

Again, as soon as I found the turn off, we headed into the country side.  Whitefields Rd, Coppabella Rd.  Leigh was out in front, my instructions just to keep heading until the next intersection.  It wasn’t until the familiar bits faded that I decided I should have a closer look at the GPS.  No, we weren’t supposed to heading back north.  Jobs right, never been along here, not in this direction anyway.   Where does it come out?  Leigh belatedly stopped at an intersection where I passed on the information and we U bolted back south. 









The short scenic deviation did prove positive in that it led us to a causeway across Jugiong Creek, at a really beautiful spot.


Somehow, I resisted the temptation to take the never before seen photo of a flat tyre (& that IS how it's spelt!! :icon_study:)

The quiet was disturbed by the sound of escaping air.  That was replaced by the sound of my electric pump re-inflating my rear tyre.  Nothing was found in the tread face and it wasn’t until home that I found that a small timber stake right at the edge of the tread.  The stake had taken on the same colour as the mud adhering to the tyre.  Anyway, it didn’t create any further drama.  If you are going to have a problem, it’s much better to be in a pleasant spot.  Maybe that begs the question, “Why do people ride bikes out in the desert, fixing tyres out in the open and on sandy tracks?”  ‘Cause we can.

Back on track, the path led us to Jugiong.  Pleasant little village alongside the Murrumbidgee River. 





I’ve always liked the views across the valley and today it was another variation, with deep, dark storm clouds in the east, highlighting the colours of the trees and fields.  It is one of those points where the Hume does actually pass a scenic point, being only a few metres west of the lookout on the old highway.  We were back on the Hume for the next few kays to Coolac.

Turning off again, I was looking for the eastern end of Yammatree Road, which would lead towards Junee or Nangus.  I was adding yet another section of farm road to my local knowledge, having only ridden from the west about half the length of the road.

Yammatree property has plenty of signposts imploring travellers to remain on the road.  I appreciate the idea that the owners and employees derive their livelihood from the property and travellers should respect that, especially if we don’t want locks on gates. 

Taking care around stock is probably paramount in these areas too.  Stock may not be familiar with traffic and can be spooked very easily.  There is a limit to our ability however, as was clearly evident when we came upon a mob of sheep that ran into a corner as we approached.  Some decided jumping a fence was an option, others managed to jump a cattle grid.  Proof that neither should be regarded as failsafe in controlling stock.





And so the tour was essentially finished.

Familiar Oura Rd, where I sometime ride the classic bikes for an ‘oil warmer’, brought us back to my family and the comfort of home.


One last stop to top up, 50km from the end



Time for some more preventative maintenance on the NX.

Leigh still had a bit to do, with another 1000km at least.  We stopped in Wagga for a couple of days before loading the NX into the back of my ute and driving to Ballarat for the Australian Trials Championships.  I’ve never been to a Trials competition before and was suitably impressed.  Old farts, tiny people, shielas & blokes, families all puttering around a hillside, riding as slowly as possible whilst keeping their feet off the ground.  Unfortunately, I ran out of battery power on my video, ten seconds before a spectacular rollover of a sidecar down a hill.  No significant damage, except to the score card.  That’d be ‘5’, I’m told.

Leigh took a further two days to steer the NX back to Adelaide’s north east, cleaning it up and replacing parts that had worn out over the 5 or 6000 km that old thing had been ridden, before handing it back to Brian (who is trying to buy all the remaining NX650s in South Australia, if not the country).  Maybe one competitive, ‘reliable’ may be closer to the objective, road trials outfit can be assembled from that lot.

And the construction of Trek Too continues.  We are hoping to get across the to Flinders Ranges (South Australia & maybe 'iconic Australia' at it's most iconic) in September.  Last I saw, Leigh was fabricating the new knuckle for the 'slightly modified'  :bowdown  rear end of his 900. 
cheers
rayb
'73 RD250, '80 XS11, '81 RD350LC,
'96 Steamer - 'Tiger Trek' outfit.
'02 Girly - 'Envy'
"Faster Daddy, Faster!" (aged 7?)

March 28, 2014, 08:43:30 AMReply #21 on

Offline HockleyBoy

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Great trip report and fantastic pics, thanks for sharing.

Would love to get down there one day for a trip of my own.
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March 29, 2014, 01:15:17 AMReply #22 on

Offline Tripodtiger (OP)

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Thankyou, happy that you enjoyed it.
There is plenty of space and it'snot all crocs, spiders & Ivan Milats.

I'm hopeful of getting over that way before too many years pass me by.  Soon enough to be able to spend some time on a bike at any rate.
cheers
rayb
'73 RD250, '80 XS11, '81 RD350LC,
'96 Steamer - 'Tiger Trek' outfit.
'02 Girly - 'Envy'
"Faster Daddy, Faster!" (aged 7?)

March 29, 2014, 04:48:04 AMReply #23 on

Offline Tripodtiger (OP)

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About halfway through the trip, Wellington where we had a cabin so we didn't get robbed, I checked the air filter... :icon_razz:




nah, nah nee nah nah!!!
cheers
rayb
'73 RD250, '80 XS11, '81 RD350LC,
'96 Steamer - 'Tiger Trek' outfit.
'02 Girly - 'Envy'
"Faster Daddy, Faster!" (aged 7?)

March 31, 2014, 08:26:43 AMReply #24 on

Offline Bixxer Bob

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You should market that idea mate, you'd have plenty of takers!
I don't want to achieve immortality through prayer, I want to achieve it through not dying...