Was it to celebrate Pottsy’s birthday last Monday? Let’s see what Meg has to say…
Pottsy and I trailered the bikes down to Port on Sunday, dropped them at his mate’s place and took off for Gloucester via Comboyne and Nodingbul Road. The 42-degree heat was knocking me around a bit. It had us stopping and sitting in any creek that had the slightest trickle. A couple of slight detours and we reached Gloucester in time to catch up with some of his mates, have a couple of drinks at the pub and set up the tents on his friend’s dairy farm just as the sun was setting.
The next morning we had a quick look around the farming area where Pottsy grew up before a hardcore adventure rider brekkie (or so I’ve been told) of strawberry milkshakes and cappuccinos.
The plan was to ride over Barrington Tops and to Walcha for the night, but an overly helpful man had me on edge when he talked up how rough the roads were and how he got three busted tyres on the 4WD while I was refueling. I sooked out and Pottsy took me on a nice little detour around the base instead.
It was only a quick blat up Thunderbolts Way before the heat took its toll on me again.
As I pulled into the lookout, a bloke in a 4WD pulled up close, opened his fridge and handed us some cold cans of softdrink. I’m still amazed at how responsive people are to bikes. We must’ve sat there for half an hour chatting and cooling down. People would wave, and kids stop and look. What a great community of strangers all drawn to the one thing.
Walcha via Nowendoc was another awesome gravel road through spectacular farming country. The smell of the pine forest, paddocks and of everlasting daisies and the storm clouds chased us onto Walcha. With neither of our super expensive Big W tents bring particularly waterproof, we made a decision to head home and hightailed it down the Oxley and back to Port.
Well, hightailed may not be the right word. I was wrecked. It was the longest I’ve spent on the bike and my knees were in agony. I would have just about set the record for the slowest ever trip down the hill from Gingers Creek.
It was my first proper camp on the bike, where I’ve carried everything I needed to cook and sleep, and although it ended a day early I still got enough of a fix to want to do it again.