With no back-up vehicle the adventurous (some might say foolish)
ride to Bunbury consisted of Andrew on his 1959 250 BMW, Don 1944
Indian 1200, Matt 1956 AJS 350 and me (Bob) 1951 AJS 500. We were
averaging around 50mph with a tail wind and warm weather - perfect.
This was to change after the Northcliffe turn-off when it started
drizzling, turning into rain. I stopped to put my wet weather gear on
(a little late as my jeans were soaked) catching up with the others in
Manjimup. There’s roadworks riding through the town and by the time
we’d got there it was sloshy mud, well that was a waste of time
cleaning the bike wasn’t it? The rain eventually stopped by Bridgetown
so we were able to take our wet gear off when we stopped at Balingup
for a coffee.
We then had a good run through to Bunbury where we turned into the Motocross grounds which the Indian Harley Club were using as the base for the Rally. Jan and John were already there, John riding his BMW sidecar outfit and Jan towing the camper. Mike and Gloria were also there after trailering their 1956 BSA 350.
After saying our hello’s to various people we put up our tents. Don, Matt and myself then rode into town for some dinner.
We parked in the centre of the main street enjoying a nice meal and
deciding to head back before dark.
Unfortunately Don’s Indian refused to start, it had decided to stop charging and the battery was dead.
Matt and I headed back to camp looking for a trailer. Dave Weeks volunteered his services and we returned to town with trailer in tow getting Don’s bike safely back to camp.
The next day Don bought another battery, cleaned up regulator and
generator and success - back on the road. Matt had a bit of trouble
with the rocker oil feed pipe and had to remove the tank to clamp it -
problem fixed. Huw and Elina arrived on his 1964 600 BMW. Then the
Rally started, with around 160 bikes. It was as usual very well run and
we passed through some beautiful country part of which took us along
the Donnybrook to Kirup Road and from Kirup to Nannup via the Cundinup
Road ending up in Nannup for lunch.
The afternoon section of the rally took us on the Nannup to Balingup
road (one of the best in the State). We eventually finished back at the
Motocross grounds where we camped. Matt and I did a bit of maintenance
- mainly chains and oil, ready for the next day’s Rally and the ride
home. The evening meal was superb and the quiz that followed was good
fun. It had been a great social day catching up with different riders I
hadn’t seen for a while and meeting new people.
Next morning it was a shorter ride, but once again through some very
nice country, it's great having a change from riding our Albany
regional roads. Morning tea was supplied at Waterloo and the ride
finished around lunchtime.
Don had to be home early and left that
morning. Matt and I decided to pack the tents once the Rally finished,
say our goodbyes and head off towards Nannup where we would stay the
night. We had a great run through to Balingup and once again down to
Nannup, by the time we had the tents up and bikes sorted (Matt adjusted
the tappets on his AJS) it was nearly 6 pm and it was down to the pub
for a brilliant roast dinner, beers and games of pool.
Next morning we packed and headed towards Bridgetown, what a great
ride, weather and road perfect. We met Andrew there and took the
Winnejup Road (what a great road this was) to Frankland. We stopped at
Tone River and Doug Simcock pulled in on his Triumph - small world
isn’t it - last time I’d seen him was Coral Bay some years before.
When we left Andrew’s rear tyre was a bit flat, so he pumped it up
and this took us to Frankland. Shortly after Andrew was at the side of
the road with the tyre flat again, we put some of that slosh stuff in
it, but it wasn’t long before it was again flat. We took the tube out
and tried patching it - but there was too many holes.
In the meantime a local had offered to look after it at his place.
So eventually Andrew hopped on the back of my bike for the rest of the
trip to Albany. I think he’s taking a spare tube in future ha ha.
But what a great weekend thanks for the company and the Indian
Harley Club for organising the event.
P.S. The AJS ran beautifully and we covered 646 miles - over 1000kms.