This account of
the 2005 trip undertaken by the Club, is by no means a complete tale.
It is only from my perspective, and from notes made by Chester (aka
George W). Any persons or events not mentioned, take no offence, and
fill us in next time we meet around a camp fire!
I started preparing for the ride in July, new tyres, chain, fork oil
changed etc. Des (Biggles) rang to see if the accommodation was booked,
so I did that, including Ray (Rembrandt) and we were set . . . just
waiting . . .
Saturday 1st October: I got a phone call from Ken McWhirter to say he wouldn't meet me as planned in Gnowangerup as his Ducati had serious illness and was at the doctor's in Albany. So I set off to meet the rest of the mob in Kojonup. It drizzled and blew all the way . . . but it was great to be on the move.
Arrived at Kojonup around midday and caught up, fuelled up and headed for Boyup Brook. After a cuppa and some lunch for some we rode off to Mumble - mumble- up, and met Ian Jury and Heather. Collie was the next port of call for fuel, then a nice ride down Rowlands Hill, Harvey and Waroona to the first night at Lake Navarino. An interesting place with camping and chalets.
Biggles, Rembrandt and I had a chalet. After lighting the fire, using BMW instant fire-lighter fuel, (detachable float-bowl - editor) we took some instruction from the Teacher, and cooked a steak under the watchful eye of the custodian, a big black cockroach.
George W: Albany-Kojonup-Collie-Waroona. We were glad to have a camp fire in the drizzly conditions. John and Bob entertained us with song and fellowship. The management saw fit to lock the Gents toilets, but we soldiered on. However, apparently Clive was discovered in the ladies ablutions with Chris and Marilyn by his wife (another Marilyn) - he reckons the gents were locked - much ribald humour - but it was good, clean fun !
Ron,the water bottle boy joined us for the evening, vowing to make the trip on any sort of bike he could beg, borrow or ...
It was the Jury's only night with us, and was great to catch up. Meanwhile Russell and Julie were having a smoke-filled honeymoon sampling some local wine . . . so far it was all good!
Sunday 2nd: drizzle greeted us but cleared at Pinjarra. However, riding back through the hills to Dwellingup, Boddington and Crossman we were cooled by some more wet stuff. John wanted to go his own way and disappeared at Boddington. Cuppa at Crossman and through the clearing mist to Pingelly. We fuelled up and were joined by Mervyn (Flash - you know why!). Rembrandt and I were the first to York after a scintillating fang through those wheatbelt roads . . . who said we knew where we were going?
More riders were waiting here, The Bruce Rock outlaw bunch on a couple of Goldwing trailer combos (any more Wings and we'd be reaching for the Chinese cook book!). Rob’s wife (another Marilyn) had bought her poodle . . . a nice touch! John turned up after a pleasant detour through Perth and took all the ribbing well!
I led the way through to Northam and Goomalling. We all stopped for cuppa and stretch before heading to Wongan Hills, the night stopover. We three pulled up at the pub to a welcome from some of the local lasses. Rembrandt was most impressed (he was almost dragged away by her later in the evening, saved only by the amorous advances of another local). Murray and John pulled up just after us and I got out that cook book (chicken wing sauce and all). Dinner at pub and bed were the order.
George W: Heading up through to Wongan Hills, the crops were magnificent, wheat as far as the eye could see. Ron arrived on the "trusty" water bottle and camped with us. He was having some problems with its gear selection however.
Monday 3rd: Bob and Chris left to ride back to Albany, having tired of the motorcycle life, touring most of Europe just the month before! We three joined the crew at the camp grounds, leaving for our next stop, Wubin. Barry and Ron stayed back to work in the pits on the Suzuki. We stopped at Wubin where fuel was taken on board and our first ice cream (it was warming up at last!) That rough looking dozer pilot ruffled the driver of a Subaru, only just escaping with his life! It seems that Volvo drivers must have traded to Subaru’s on this ride.
Leaving the agricultural areas behind we made good time to Payne's Find. There wasn't much gold left, but the servo owner was making his own! As we approached Mt Magnet, strong wind blew some red dust our way. It was a challenge to keep upright and we rolled in mid afternoon We three stayed at the Miner's Rest. (Jim Nash . . . Miner's Rest, Mt Magnet, 9963 4380) I've no hesitation recommending this place.
We feasted at one of the pubs under the watchful eyes of some attractive backpacker girls (behind the bar!).
Lurl stayed back at the Rest and offered to ferry us back later in the sidecar. Obviously, we declined, not wanting to put her out!
George W: Journeyed into the real outback at last! The wildflowers were sensational! Yellows, purples, reds, oranges carpeting the bush all around! Barry made it on his own to Mt Magnet. Ron turned back after experiencing more mechanical woes. However, Tony swarmed into town, bringing his locust mates! Apparently, Harley provided some entertainment, serving up the locusts, marinated in Tony's boots! Choice!
George . . . your notes mention some one playing with big knobs . . . and receiving a reprimand from an unappreciative, big lady? Maybe I shouldn't mention the names?? I think the crew in the on-site cabin might need to be fined for placing disrepute on our club . . . !
Still . . . it was all good!
Tuesday 4th: We three and Flash, saddled up for a side trip to Cue. Glorious weather there and back. We checked out some interesting buildings and photographic displays. Being part of the latte set, we partook of coffee in the Cue Pub. Talk about throw them into confusion! You don't drink coffee in Cue at 11 am!
Lunch at Mt Magnet and We Four headed to Sandstone. All this riding was being undertaken in appalling conditions mind you! Wind and sun on our backs and great company. I had an old mate here who worked for the shire, watering gardens etc! (CEO) Wow . . . more European backpackers at the pub!. And we ran into a bloke we all knew from mulie fishing days at Bremer. So, all in all it was old home night.
The White House: We had a quick look around Mt Magnet and headed off to Sandstone. Phil and Lurl had more luck than the six numbers on Saturday night. Deciding to leave early, they broke the BMW. That saviour in leather pants, Dave, towed them to Leonora behind his bike and trailer. I think Phil was disappointed that his parts turned up the next day! Story has it that the fuel consumption was way down, Lurl was encouraging him to go faster and the locals along the way thought that the sidecar was racing the Goldwing.
A few of us stopped for the cleansing ale in Agnew, after enduring 4 kilometers of corrugated gravel. Rob slipped a spring on his trailer and with the help of the skimpy at Agnew (I think that's what your notes say) it was made . . . all good!
Leinster and then Leonora for the night. Rest day tomorrow.
Wednesday 4th: Sandstone: We three checked out the local museum and fuelled up. I have photographic evidence that there are women in Sandstone. (Barbara) Riding to Leinster, the road kill was messy, but obviously attractive to the large numbers of eagles. I got fairly close to one as it lurched into the air ahead. Flash had left for Leonora early, (aboard Airforce 1) for a date with The President.
We called at Agnew and banged our way down the gravel road too. The local mining company is assembling a display of old mining equipment, battery and mine head, with assorted memorabilia here.
Rembrandt suggested the early cleansing ale would be the go. The non-skimpy girl at the bar was fun and . . . you guessed it . . . was all good.
Leinster for lunch. John turned up here while we ate. I don't know where he came from, may be a detour via Geraldton? He performed what may be described as an inelegant strip, in the service station. The cries of delight from the local women were testament to his obvious talents!
A dozy trip took us to Leonora, where we three checked in at the White House pub (George W was roughing it at the camp site). Rob, his wife and daughter run a good business here. We stored our bikes in a shed at the back.
After a team meeting with the campers we all dined at the White House. When you get three Marilyns and squatter Hall in a room it can only mean ribald and off-colour stories! I can't imagine what drove the other diners away with indigestion. Was it the coffee break story? The food was great and beverages . . . all good!
The Bush Report: Leonora. It was our lay-off day. We made an early start and checked out the old Gwalia mine site and town. What a step back in time. I was impressed with the efforts of the local volunteers in restoring the site.
Meanwhile Mawson made a dash for Laverton! Several of us rode there too, taking in the old buildings and general attractions. Flash caught me up here, landing in time to join me in an underground mine visit, at Sunrise dam. Awesome workings underground, and we rode back to Leonora just on dark. Not a good time to ride amongst the road kill!
Rob and Marilyn and the poodle met an old friend who took them on a guided tour of Leonora. As rest day it turned into a fairly full one! Russell and Julie headed to Kalgoorlie for a two day respite. Apparently the KTM seat was causing problems in their relationship! (narrow seat).
Meanwhile every one back at camp relaxed and had a great day off, with Phil performing the necessary job to get the BMW sidecar back to some sort of fuel consumption.
Thursday 5th: We rode out of Leonora, vowing not to drink beer today! Stopped at Menzies for a cuppa and chat. Tooling along into Kalgoorlie we were overtaken by another Subaru. You know the style, passing a line of us and overtaking Rembrandt on a white line around a corner. I guess we are the lucky ones.
Some had stopped at the Miner's Hall of Fame and took the tour. Talk about the dollars not being spared. It's huge monument to something (my opinion!) We four travelling vagabonds called for lunch at Monty's. How lucky can you be? Whilst waiting for some careful food arrangement it rained. Still, its all good!
A quick photo opportunity at the other halls of fame (I must mention that Biggles guarded the bikes!) and we were off to the Super Pit. It's growing faster than my credit card bill! All of a sudden it was getting cooler . . . we were leaving the warm friendly Goldfields.
We three overnighted in a chalet at the caravan park at Coolgardie. Dinner was a relaxing affair at the Denver City Hotel. You'd expect to leave your guns at the door with a name like that?
Biggles and Rembrandt had been talking very strongly to the Teacher, and she was nearly empty. Luck was with us, Flash saved the day with a generous night cap of port.
Pentagon Dispatches: Packed up for Kalgoorlie. We stopped at Menzies and called in at the Broad Arrow pub. We checked out the Super Pit and museum here too. Some of us dined at the now famous Monty's. The food was OK, but surviving the wait may have taken its toll.
Several of the crew stayed in Kalgoorlie, and Mawson led now a famous expedition into the unknown night life. These trailer jockeys from down south are a special breed . . .
Friday 6th: Coolgardie. Squatter Hall made his getaway early. Was he checking out more land or investments?We three had breakfast at the servo, and I instructed Biggles and Rembrandt in the art of making money appear from the ATM. I find getting to that point the hardest. I reckon the Great Eastern Highway is a fairly ordinary ride but we made the most of it.
Lunch was at Merredin, in some nice warm weather. Did you see the monster truck? Apparently Flash wants the engine for his ute. A nice trip on the road to Bruce Rock ended the touring for Des and Margaret, and the poodle owners, the Sedgwicks. We may have been legless on occasion, now we were getting Wingless!
Another relaxing burst to Corrigin saw we 3 and the KTM team at the Windmill Motel. The other campers stayed at the very welcoming caravan park. The manager supplied a shelter, two gas barbies, two wood fires, a fridge, a micro wave! The fella is enormous!
We three were welcomed to the town by the supermarket manager . . . some place eh? John, the GS Suzuki pilot from Kendenup stayed at the pub, raving it up to the early hours, or so he said! You know that the yarns around the camp fire were fun again and I think the rodeo rider got the Guernsey!
At this stage of proceedings The Secretary of State handed me some dispatches . . . confessing to have had made a promise . . . sound familiar?? The war was over but we had to write the report!
Saturday 7th, Corrigin: It was decidedly cooler here. The plan was to stop at Dumbleyung, and check out the lake. We waited for Biggles and team KTM before I left to do a recce. The remnants of the tour saw some lake sights and left for home. They must have made it !
I found sign of the other two riders (and Julie) at Lake Grace, so deciding all was OK I went home via Pingrup and Borden. Biggles had left intelligence for me at the Moana turn off. So armed with this comforting note I fired up the Ducati for the last 100 or so kays.
So . . . every trip we do I reckon it was the" best" so far. And this one was ALL GOOD.
Tell me next time we meet if I
have left you from this list: Des Gaze
(Biggles), Ray Macneall (Rembrandt), Merv Drew (Flash), Phil
& Lurl Penny, Chester Powell (George W), Des & Margaret, Rob
& Marilyn, Clive & Marilyn, Dave & Marilyn (Phew!), the
Jurys, Murray Hall, John (Suzuki), Barry May, Harley (more at home on a
dozer), Russell & Julie, Ron from Jarrahdale, Bob & Chris, John
on his BMW RT, Tony (from Geraldton), Warwick Jones (Mawson).
If I left you out . . . well you gotta catch me first !
Thank you all for a great time.