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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
The V Strom Creed

Repeat after me!!!:biggrinjester:



This is my v strom. There are many like it, but this one is mine. My v strom is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I master my life. My v strom, without me, is useless. Without my v strom, I am useless. I must ride my v strom true. I must ride straighter than any enemy who is trying to beat me. I must roost him before he roosts me. I will... My v strom and myself know that what counts in this ride is not the talk round the fire, the noise of our burst, nor the smoke we make. We know that it is the hills that count. We will rip...
My v strom is human, even as I, because it is my life. Thus, I will learn it as a brother. I will learn its weakness, its strength, its parts, its accessories, its frame and motor. I will keep my v strom clean and ready, even as I am clean and ready. We will become part of each other. We will.... Before God I swear this creed. My v strom and myself are the masters of my country’s tracks and trails. We are the masters of any insability. We are the saviors of my life. So be it, until victory is ours, and there is no enemy, but Peace



Humble Apologies to the Riflemans Creed.
More apologies because I dont have many photos. I will post some soon so dont get too cranky.This RR will be mostly talk.
The game plan was to ride from Newcastle down into the Gippsland high country doing maximum dirt and minimum of tar, with total abhorrence for freeways......



Day 1
3 Riders ....one on a 955 tiger, one on a dl650, and me on my dl1000....depart Newcastle after work Friday[around 5.00pm] heading for a motel at bomadery[near nowra, NSW].
An exuberant start that takes us through sydney... onto the M's....and for dinner at bowral. Down through kangaroo valley in the dark, I wonder where it got its name from??? methinks as we chortle down. down. down.....

Day 2
The plan said to ride from nowra to nelligen by a circuitous route, all dirt[mostly], on through to the merricumbene fire trail and pop out at bodalla. The destination was flexible but cobargo was the best outcome
The alternate plan was to ride up through nerriga and into braidwood, over to snowball [on the back road to nimitabell] turn east down through wadbilliga/deua national park, through the belowra valley, try to find reedy creek road and pop out at cobargo.
Recent rain and some local info from the bike shop had us executing' plan b'.

Plan b was looking good......nowra to nerriga is mostly sealed, has plenty of scenery, and is an absolute must for anyone riding in that area. It is a fast road, with good surface, and plenty of fanging bends-or a slow road with lots of nice views and good places to stop and take photos[I selected the former!]. We stopped for smokho at braidwood where we added an extra rider on a dl1000 [from canberra], and then on into the' nadgery' proper.
I was testing out a 'hitherto untried' modification to my bike. [The mod was 18" and 21" spoked wheels from a KTM 950 including the *********** forks and brembo brakes] I was hooting along listening to a song when it became obvious I was too hot for the next corner... I braked and washed off as much speed as possible while still cornering but to no avail.
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The corner was tighter radius than I was turning so off the edge I go. Turned out the edge was around a 3 or 4 foot drop off, with a nest of large rocks backed up by plenty trees. As I was passing through the thin stip of bracken fern lining the apex of the track, I failed to see the ski jump rock till I was half way over it, causing the bike to jump like a bucking pig, arse up into the air, and onwards.[Mulga bill would have been proud] into the large rock pile, I landed the jump, but bailed left off the bike instantly leaving the beast to decide its own fate. I have plenty of experience crashing off my trials bike, a kinda knack, of not getting injured, and so it was here. I sprang straight up, and the bike was parked upright in the rockpile.
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I was expecting it to be bleeding, dented, and for my ride to be over, but NO BLOOD, nothing spewing out, the vstrom had survived. There are some photos of it on another camera that I will post when I get them. The other riders arrived presently and expressed concern for both me and the bike. I checked it out, started it and trials rode it up the bank and out... Inspection revealed a bent crash bar[fixed with some help to drag the crash back to straight 'ish], the footpeg hanger was bent and cracked but still in position, and one soft pannier was disemboweled. Rather than attemt to straighten the hanger it was decided to leave it alone so I could have somewhere to rest my foot, though it was obviously not strong enough to take my weight standing up. I do all my dirt riding -standing.

As good form dictates, a slightly less application of vigorously applied throttle was attempted from this point... but only lasted around 50 meters... till I was back in speedway mode again. The ride down over the scarp here is excellent and one of my favourites[still]. It goes from the high tableland, and twists down into the belowra valley. The surface can be a little slippy, but is a joy to ride. The scenery is awesome, pockets of rainforest, big trees, ferns, fast mountain rivers and beautiful green rolling farmland. Its kinda a hidden valley, with a great farm road right through the guts.

On top of the hill [east] out of the belowra valley we turned right down cadgee rd, river rd, old eurobodalla coba rd,morts folly rd, and onto reedy creek rd. We got a bit bushwhacked here, but all roads come with a good outcome 'en route' to cobargo. We ended up at Wandella up behind cobargo, and easily cruised down to our destination. All riders agreed the ride was drop dead brilliant. I could have called it quits here and I would have had a brilliant ride. I think around 450km all up, great mates, high drama, adventure,plenty ales, pub grub, showers and reasonable priced accommodation, does it get any better than this???


I think so but you will need to judge and wait for the next 4 days RR.
This will be forthcoming, but not now.


PS
I was dubious as to whether the wheel/suspension modification may not have contributed to the crash, or if it was even a positive modification. The bike felt different. It had however performed well and passed the first acid test.

.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Day 3 RR

Day 3 Cobargo to Omeo
A gentlemans breakfast was followed by some rather excellent riding -east from cobargo toward Yowrie, twisting tar turned into slightly wet gravel and thence into the Wadbilliga crossing. The twin track was a little wet and slippy in places, but passes through tall timber forests and climbs up to a concrete crossing over the wadbilliga river. A road closed sign with warning of locked gate ahead had some of the crew dubious, but onward and upward. The climb up to the tableland is a little steep in places, and I have been reliably informed not suitable for novice riders. The track was washed away so cars could not pass, but the bikes had no such problems. At a couple of points the track doubles back on itself and is arched over with tree ferns to form a tunnel...as pretty as a picture. This is perhaps called conroys gap??
On the top is an 'alpine heath' looking low scrub and considerably lower temperatures, the twin track gets more rock based, and has a couple of gates, but none were locked.
I call this area 'kybean' but I could be wrong. A river crossing is required here and I think it is either the numeralla river or the kybean river.

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I entered the river with a 'devil may care' attitude when I saw the other riders baulking, as the example of how its done, but the vstrom soon seemed to be behaving more like a submarine. It cut to one cylinder and I was very glad when I chugged out the other side bank. The group was suitably impressed at what a dickhead I was proving-and decided to bulldog their machines through he shallows [now I had found the deep route- which is on the right side of the photo].

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At this point the canberra rider [as planned]exit the ride- stage left- back home for working , and the group was back to three hard core adv riders.
We rode along a nice smooth and winding dirt road towards nimatabell, and tuned left onto [i think] steeple road, [well out of town]. This was nice gravel, and comes out to the tar road between bega and cooma, at the top of the brown mountain.
A tar ride was required from here over to bombala, quick lunch, then more tar to delegate. From delegate a bit more tar and we were lookin to get onto the road to mckillops bridge. What a road it turned out to be, I had no idea how good it is. Like manicured 'pea gravel' winding through and climbing up and over the snowy river. big scary cliffs and fast mountain streams makes this a ride absolutely worth paying for.Its that good.... Up the top we stopped at Daves petrol station, and he told us we missed the turnoff if we wanted to ride to omeo by dirt.
A little 1km double back toward mckillops bridge, and we turned left up the barry way- heading toward suggen buggen. A further 15km from that turn was another left turn toward benambra, dave had said something about brumbies on the road. What he should have said was every brumby in the district did a shit on that road. There was great piles of it. The road started as the black mountain road and turned into limestone road. It was getting very late in the arvo at this point and speeding through brumby infested dirt roads at ***kmph felt a little foolhardy. So we amped it up some more for good measure, the road was a speedway sliding delight. By the time we got to omeo it was dark [around 8.15pm], but the pub kindly cooked us a 'parma' each- and the day ended with beer and sleep.

This ride is getting better and better.
 

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....but can't help thinking you should have bought the rest of the 950 :green_lol:
bwahahahaaaaa

What a road it turned out to be, I had no idea how good it is. Like manicured 'pea gravel' winding through and climbing up and over the snowy river. big scary cliffs and fast mountain streams makes this a ride absolutely worth paying for.Its that good....
:yesnod::yesnod:

And at a more relaxed time of day, there are some short tracks/ forestry roads off the Limestone, which make that a far more attractive proposition, too. Unbelievable views towards the south/ Gippsland and west. There are also remnants of old gold diggings etc.
Gotta get up there again, dammit!

There's also word around that the old Benambra copper+ zinc mine is going to start up again, which should make for a few more new and re-opened tracks hopefully.
New plans for old Benambra mine - 02/05/2011
 

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me thinks gary's legs need to c the sun...glad he is on a wee now and the beema is sleeping...sounds like it was a great ride so far guys.....greg:thumbup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Day 4 Carnage

Day 4 commenced with me organising to get my footpeg hanger welded- the guy at omeo was good -and I was able to resume standing on the pegs. The other riders planned this days ride with destination -Dargo. We rode out of omeo on tar, and turned right up cassilis rd then turned again up Livingston creek road ,then up birregun road, past seymours hut, the road was nice and wide and with good grip dirt, plus lyre birds everywhere!
Next turn was onto dinner plain track.... now this is a bit more like it! It went up and down and turned this way and that, twin track, and glorious, as we climbed there was a few more puddles here and there but good solid bottoms and no nasty surprises. As we got to within 1 or 2 km of the dinner plain resort, one of the riders [dl650] made an oopsy- and crashed/fell over breaking ribs. No damage to the bike though. He was assisted in righting the bike and re- mounting decided to POQ... and head for home on the smoothest tar he could find.
The remaining riders[2], followed the mornings plan, and rode from dinner plain, on the tar, up and over Mt Hotham, through the ski village and down to the dargo high plain turnoff. This was spectacular, and I did not mind being on tar one bit.
The dargo high plains road was, big and well maintained- in places resembling a dirt superhighway- wide and fast. It got cold as we hit what looked like the actual high plains, and i was wishing I had the liner in my jacket. Nice riding but we had high expectations, and it was OK... but not great!
Dargo was somewhat of an anticlimax as well, I had heard so much postitve information about the place, dirtbike’ nirvana’ i thought .Great pub, great riding, great place.... Indeed dargo is beautiful, but the pub was under new management and the barman seemed standoffish when I asked for a schooner.
The ‘coup de grace’ [for an old tightarse that I am] was the $60 each to stay. What the? we spluttered, its only $45 at omeo. Well go back there he says....So it was to pass that we headed back after phoning, and booking our rooms at the hilltop hotel. But a different route needed to be decided and it needed to be quicker as it was late in the arvo and we certainly did not want to be out after dark in them there mountains.
We headed out of dargo -back toward the dargo high plains road[the way we came in],and shortly turned right onto the upper dargo road. Things were going good until we turned next right onto the jones road and were heading in the wrong direction [not knowing]. A couple of kays down this road the big tiger had a compression lockup and spat its occupant down the road, nasty really, then managed to lose its oil[the blood] out through a hole in the sidecover.
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Crap on a crust, it was around 5pm and the shop at dargo shuts at 5.30, we had tools but no epoxy putty, and no oil. So the tiger was pushed off the track into the bush,

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the gear all loaded onto the big vstrom, the fallen rider perched on the pillion seat and off we go 22.6km back into dargo for help. The shop was shut but the people were inside and curious as to why we were back? so soon. The owner has a small bike repair setup out the back, and was sympathetic to our plight. He soon had us fixed up with the resources to attempt a repair and back into the scrub we rode. He also told us we were on the wrong track and gave instructions to the short way to omeo. The repair was straight forward, and the epoxy putty applied to our satisfaction, but it said 2 hours for minimum cure time, and it was getting real late by then. After ½ an hour it was still as soft as when applied...so give it another 15 more minutes, fill er up with oil and hope the heat from the engine will speed up the hardening.
It did , but it did not stop us from taking a succession of wrong turns, that culminated in alot of pitch dark dirt riding in conditions that were horrific, we must have climbed up high and it became freezing cold, and visibility dropped to less than 10meters. The road was sopping wet and slippery as an eels back. We needed to be back at omeo at 930pm- latest as the pub shut then. I was relieved when we finally emerged form the scrub, but we were at swifts creek, not omeo as anticipated. Double crap on a double crust...the big tiger pointed up the tar road , and proceeded to travel at .... well ....way too fast...to say here- all the way to omeo.
I was riding rear guard and thinking that this speed seemed like a bad idea, given the amount of wildlife I suspected lives in that area, and given we had seen a couple of deer earlier in the day. But some stuff you just do and get away with, and this was one of them.
We arrived at the pub at 9.30pm sharp, we missed dinner , but were glad of the beer. Whew what a day...
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Nuts

I take nuts as a compliment...you better not read the next installment, cause even I think it got a bit crazy. I would go again tomorrow but I would try to find a harder /bigger hill.:jawdrop:



You guys are fuking nuts :thumbup:. Most Dero riders are a bunch of soft cocks, that wont go near the dirt :thumbdown:.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Day 5 Tom Groggin and Mt Pinnibar

Day5 This day started with a fine breakfast, as every good days riding should. The notion of riding to tom groggin was floated as we consumed beer at dargo on the previous day., and we absolutely confirmed that intention over bacon and eggs. I looked at the map and determined that we ride back past Benambra, continue past the limestone road and take the first or second turn to the left toward tom groggin. Riding up the road there was actually a sign, so the turnoff decision was made easy. The road was wide and a bit dusty on the corners, and the presence of logging trucks soon was obvious. The dust trail they pulled was so thick I had to stop after they passed. The road we were on was the mt hope road ,and an unmarked fork in the road [we went right] heralded the beginning of the tom groggin track.



It was twin trail, and had some ripper big downhill sections, near the bottom there was a turnoff to the left,

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but we continued down to the dog man hut.

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The last decent to the hut was pretty rutted, and wise decisions need to be made to avoid becoming ‘rutted’. The hut was nice and the tiger rider decided to swim in the murray.

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Around the table we convened a map session to determine our next move. Originally we thought we would cross the river and ride on to overnight in Canberra with our dl1000 riding mate. But we had enjoyed the ride in and both wondered how hard the rutted hill would prove to be as an ascent.
I also had a notion that Corryong was worth a visit, so a route was planned on the map, and away we go. The ruts were great, the big bikes ate them up and cried for more. The turn at the bottom of the hill [as noted previously- and called stoney ridge track] was taken, and nasty old river forded shortly after. We turned next left up mt pinnibar track, which went up and up and up. Each stoney climb section seemed steeper than the last, then the sections started to have around 300mm stone vertical steps. This riding was too good to be true, the grin was nearly bursting out of my helmet
’fuking a’

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Was all I could think too myself, over and over.

I started the stone hills in second gear , and was slipping back to first ... well...just because it felt right to do so...then I thought ‘try and hold second all the way to the summit’ of the section. So the big girl went up and up. Towards the top I noticed the tiger clawing up the section in front, crabbing for traction, and using mucho care in line selection. At this point I realised I was doing this easier than that, and I started to try just any ol line up ....and second gear. It just ripped, so methinks perhaps the 21”/ 18” wheels were doing their stuff. I also had new Metzler sahara 3 tyres on, whereas the tiger was running bald tourance [ went to canvas next day] on the rear.

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What a blast

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At the top we stopped and took photos, and continued on toward Corryong, the decent was paltry in comparison, not much steep sections at all.
Drat.
The next part of the plan was to meet up with the Benambra –corryong road and cruise into town, but there were, road closures and we ended up riding on the marginal track, north, until it went off our map. I had been fretting prior to the marginal road for lack of fuel, but when we rode off the map my imagination was running amok.” Big adventure dudes perish for stupidity and lack of map” I could hear the 6oclock news headlines in my own head...
But [as needs to happen in all good rides] fate guided us to a road crew with the track dug up for stormwater improvements. Rowan the excavator operator, kindly directed us to ‘the good pub’ some 40 km further down the track , and the day ended at 4.00pm with a beer, our earliest day so far
 
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