Sunday, June 27, 2010

Yarrowitch Trail Ride

My lovely lady had informed me one of her workmates had a bike similar to mine.

I mentioned to her that I'd enjoy a shared trip out through one of our national parks maybe?

She passed on the message and John contacted me re a trip to Yarrowitch.

I'd arranged with John to meet at the Donut carpark near Wauchope.

Our bikes were quite similar in setup.

Similar? Same bashplate, same exhaust system, same mirrors, same tyres, same tank.

He even had the same helmet!

Apart from the colour they were peas in a pod.

Oh, and my crappy XL350 headlight fairing.

The weather looked a bit ordinary but we were both keen to get going.

A big deadfall log stumped us for a while until we worked out a detour.

Kangaroo Flat Rd was an option, but John decided to follow Cobcroft Rd.

He'd never travelled that track, and the GPS inidicated an exit to the Oxley.

It drizzled steadily for most of Werrikimbe State Forest.

I found a new respect for heated handgrips.

I repeatedly reminded John of how good they were.

Mainly because he doesnt have any.

John set a cracking pace and I was happy to try and keep up.

Some extremely greasy red clay had us both sliding about.

It eventually gave way to a yellowish sandy surface which was somewhat easier.

This Landrover looked a bit worse for wear.

My bike started to weep oil from behind the pipe somewhere. The flow wasnt bad initially.

Its a beautiful place.

I used what was left in my chain oiler to top up the crankcase just slightly.

I had all sorts of trouble keeping John in sight. He's incredibly fast.

In one trip of 240 odd kms, we'd seen Doyles River State Forest, Cottanbimbang National Park and Werrikimbe Wilderness.

Not bad for a days ride.

We exited the dirt onto the Oxley Highway and made our way down to Gingers Creek Cafe.

A pie and a coffee warmed us up somewhat. Great cafe and nice people.

By the time we'd hit some roadworks on the way down to Long Flat, my bike was smoking badly.

Hot oil was piping straight onto the exhaust.

It appears as though the pipe has little clearance between the oil feed line to the head.

Over time its worn a divot into the line until a pinhole was created.

My engine was low enough on oil to start worrying about seizure, and was flowing faster all the time.

I rolled down the hill as much as possble hoping to make Long Flat.

We made it but I didnt think it would be practical to roll on to Wauchope and Kempsey.

Even with a topup, I'd turn into a fire hazard eventually.

Plus oil was running onto my rear wheel, which made the handling "interesting".

I called my lovely lady, and requested she hook up the trailer to my old Hilux.

John and I enjoyed a few beers at the pub and talked to the locals until nearly dark.

I convinced John to make his way home, and not long after Michele arrived with the trailer.

We had tea in Wauchope at a great little shop called the Top Takeaway. Highly recommended.

We all saw the recovery as part of the adventure and were glad to arrive home.

Thanks for the invite John. Where do we go next time?

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