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Great Kalbarri Ride

Story by Marilyn Smith

Bondy abandons BMW for VW in CorriginAnother fabulous ride, with over 20 bikes setting off from Albany on a pleasant Saturday morning. First night was Corrigin - with a warm welcome by the caravan park owner supplying afternoon tea for us together with a fridge, barbeques and fires for the evening.

After dinner at the pub it was back to the much appreciated camp fire. With the temperature going down to minus 3 we all awoke to a thick layer of ice covering our tents and bikes. So cold in fact that Warwick had to be taken from the annexe and into the caravan in the middle of the night by Tony and Ray and warmed up by them - didn’t ask how but quite a bit of laughter took place when we were told this story.

By the time we departed for the next leg of our journey it was sunny and warming quickly. Through some beautiful farming country picking up Marg and Des from Bruce Rock on the way and then to York for morning tea or another feed of fish and chips for Pete, then to Toodyay for lunch where most of us discarded our thermals etc.

Fran and Ron also joined us at this point - then onto Carnamah for our next overnight stop where Murray and Erin joined the mob. On the way Brian, thinking he was doing the right thing, pulled over to the side of the road - Bob enquired as to why he was stopped on the side of the road -”Waiting for that lot to come back” was Brian’s reply.

Chris setting up for lunch in ToodyayBob laughed - the riders coming back were another club going in the opposite direction. Carnamah seemed deserted - but we soon learnt that the local team was playing in the grand final of the football competition at Dongara - they won - and the riders who were staying at the local hotel had a rather restless night with the celebrations going to the early hours of the morning.

The campers weren’t without incident with Des and Marg’s new air mattress deflating during the night and Fran and Ron not to be outdone had a very cuddly night on the single mattress and realised they weren’t 16 any more decided to detour to Geraldton for a double one. Garry seemed to be getting his tent up and down quickly, perhaps we have been unkind - maybe it has been Raelene holding him back on previous runs. We will not be nasty to Garry anymore.

Day three and we all headed for our destination - Kalbarri - Des and Wes took the lead to show us a short cut through Walkaway, but took off so fast the rest of us were left in the distance and missed where they turned off - guess they were forgiven as their better halves - Betty and Barbara had flown in to Kalbarri to join us and they hadn’t seen them for about 3 days!

At Dongara, Lynette was warned off by one of the three musketeers, Russell, for having the audacity to pass them. Well done Lynette! After Dongara John Gillam decided he knew another way to detour Geraldton - through Walkaway - so he was our next tour guide. Straight past the sign to Walkaway we rode! Now we are in the middle of Geraldton’s huge roadworks - but John has redeemed himself and we are now on a picturesque, very good riding road heading for Northhampton where we again meet up with Wes and Des.

Still haven’t been to Walkaway! By this time Bob had lost his sunglasses, fell over about 10 times, set his valves too tight, taken a wrong turn and given us a cooks tour of some real estate etc but we all made it safely to Kalbarri.

We all enjoyed fish and chips around the camp that night and with a few drinks to wash it down and a few jokes we were all happy little campers albeit a little deflated with some of the remarks we were receiving. Firstly the Fish and Chip shop man at Kalbarri - when told by Lynette to make sure the order was right or our bikie husbands would be around to sort him out replied - “If that is the group I saw ride into town today, well I saw them take their helmets off and I am not afraid”.

And a lad from the Netherlands visiting our camp - when leaving said “Good night all old motor bike people in tents, have a good sleep” - perhaps it was not us but Wes and Barbara and Des and Betty departing our campsite in a disabled taxi.

The next day was a rest day in Kalbarri - some chose to take the river cruise, or just do their own thing around the town before heading to Finlays for dinner that night, then back for a few more hours around the camp fire.

Day five and we are heading south again - down the highway to Dongara for lunch, then the scenic route along the coast to Jurien Bay. Jan Bond while going along in the side car used to dry her undies by holding them out in the breeze, unfortunately let go of them - so if you find a pair of pink undies on the Jurien Bay Road please return to Jan.

Speaking of undies - the President’s wife - relieving herself behind a tree at the camping site at Jurien was spotted by the 3 musketeers returning from the pub. Apparently she was beautifully silhouetted from behind by the street light and full moon. Heard she left a wee little trail all the way back to her tent.

Tea at the pub that night with Murray’s description of the skimpies “a bit of string at the back and fur in the front”. Still beautiful weather for day 6 as we headed towards Perth to Armadale where we re-grouped for the next leg to Dwellingup and our last camp site. As we have mentioned before this is a beautiful caravan park - and we all enjoyed a bbq, camp fire and photo shoot that night and reflected on the week that was.

Friday, and riders go their own way with most of us heading to Albany Highway and home again.
This is just a brief story of the events of the week - remember what happens in camp stays in camp - and that goes for you especially Garry - hear you have a very nice photo of the lady with the little black book!

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