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Pre 1931 Motorcycles and related stuff

Holland Track May 2017 on 650 Dual Purpose and Adventure Motorcycles

Posted by pre31 on June 3, 2017

In late May 2017, 6 riders rode modern 650 Dual Purpose and Adventure Motorcycles down the 4WD section of the Holland Track in WA.

The ride started in Perth, went mostly via dirt roads/fire trails (Mundaring through to York) and onto Hyden, overnight at the Breakaways (on the Hyden to Norseman Road) and then on to Mcdermid Rock via Victoria Rock Road and the top of the 4WD section of the Holland Track, to then ride down the track to return to Hyden and then back to Perth. This loop was leaning towards extra dirt and was over 500 km between fuel/supply stops. Overall it was around 1,400 km, with over half dirt and around 200 km 4WD tracks.

The bikes and equipment are really bordering on being too big and heavy for the harder sections and it was slow going in parts.

The intention was to ride the track in one day but a late start and sections of deepish sand slowed things up and we camped 2/3 down the track, only for there to be localised moderate rain that flooded many of the southern bog holes and resulted in even slower going as the mud was like grease that stuck to the tyres (even the aggressive off road patterns) and then locked the front wheels of the bikes with lower guards (BMW G650GS’s). We had to remove the guards and had no option other than to push ahead as we has insufficient fuel to return via the more sandy northern sections. It took as long to complete the southern muddy 1/3 as it did to complete the more sandy northern 2/3.

A GoPro camera was used on day one, but the spare batteries were thought to have been lost (they were in fact located deep in a corner of a tank bag) so we only have video of the first half day and a mobile phone video of part of the second day has been grafted on to the end of the video. Some still photos from day 2 are also included.

Perhaps the most difficult aspect of day 1 was the narrowness of the track and the need to ride the bikes in  the wheel track depressions with the handlebars brushing the bush along side the track, every now and then a stronger bush/small tree would hit and deflect the handle bars unsettling the bike, over correcting and then sending it towards the raised softer center section, of the six riders only one managed to ride the track without an “off” and some were off multiple times. The softness/muddiness of the tracks would then make it difficult to pick up the loaded bikes.

 

 

 

 

Some background on the Holland Track from the ExplorOz Web Site

https://www.exploroz.com/treks/holland-track

On 14 April 1893, John Holland, Rudolph Krakouer, David Krakouer and John Carmody left Broomehill with 5 ponies, a light dray, a 100 gallon (450 litres) water tank and provisions for 5-6 months. Their mission was to cut a track through virgin bushland from Broomehill to Coolgardie providing a short cut to the Goldfields from the port of Albany. Using a small compass they aimed for Gnarlbine Rock, the goldfields main water supply. Holland would go ahead each day and scout for water and horse feed, while the others cut the track. They arrived at King Rock (now Emu Rock) on May 15th, Mt Holland around May 20th, Sandalwood Rocks on May 27th, Vistoria Rock on June 14th and arrived at Gnarlbine Rock on June 16th. They reached Bayley’s Find at Fly Flat (now Coolgardie) on June 18th, having covered nearly 330 miles (538 km) in 2 months and 4 days, cutting the longest cart road ever made in one stretch in Western Australia. Prospectors could now land in Albany and make their way to Broomehill and on up the Holland Track to the Goldfields, cutting off more than a fortnight to their journey.

Most of it has been maintained as part of the modern road system, but a roughly 200 km section was left to deteriorate and become impassable, in 1992 a small group of enthusiasts understood the importance of the Holland Track and re-cut the track so that it wasn’t forgotten for ever

(more details are at this web site)

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2016 UK Tour

Posted by pre31 on September 29, 2016

 

 

After riding the Manali to Leh Highway in India Carl M traveled onto London where he meet Rebekah M (wife) and then then toured the UK and Ireland over a period of 8 weeks. The tour pretty much covered a large part of the UK coast as well as Ireland.

Lands End to John O Groats (the 2 extremes of the UK mainland) is 847 miles (1,363 km) apart via the most direct route via road – during the 8 weeks over 5,200 miles were travelled in a car and over 700 miles on a vintage motorcycle – all up almost 6,000 miles or around 9,500 km.

Spot tracker of most of the route taken (but with some missed days)

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On the way around the following museums were visited:

Brookland’s, The Morgan 3 Wheeler Museum, Beaulieu Museum, Cotswold Motoring Museum, Lakeland Motor Museum as well as a Steam Traction Engine Display in Cornwall.

Most of the UK’s/Ireland’s main National Parks were visited and explored including:

South Downs, New Forest, Exmoor, Dartmoor, Brecon Beacons, Snowdonia, Peak District, Lake District, Yorkshire Dales, North York Moors, Northumberland, Loch Lomond,  Killarney National Park, Connemara National Park, Ballycroy National Park and Glenveagh National Park.

 

 

 

This is a short video of the manual turn table ferry operating between
Glenelg to Kylerhea in Scotland – it is the only ferry of its type still operating in the world.

Some photos of the tour:

 

 

 

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2016 Manali to Leh Highway (India)

Posted by pre31 on September 28, 2016

These are the spot tracker records of the trip                                    

 

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Delhi to Manali to Leh and return

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Manali to Leh and return

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2016 Manali to Leh Highway (India)

Posted by pre31 on September 28, 2016

The 2015 Manali to Leh Highway trip was rescheduled to 2016 and this year it all came together as planned.

In June/July John W was touring the UK and after the tour travelled to Delhi, Carl M travelled direct to Delhi to meet John on Monday 11th July.  The evening of the 11th was a 12-14 hour bus journey to Manali arriving Tuesday morning. Two hired Enfield motorcycles were picked up and pre-tripped and packed on Tuesday with an overnight stay in Manali and then start the Manali to Leh Highway ride on Wednesday as follows:

Wednesday – Manali to Keylong (including Rotang Pass at 3,980 m)
Thursday – Keylong to Sarchu (including Baralacha Pass at 4,890 m)
Friday – Sarchu to Leh (including Lachunglang La Pass and Taglang La Pass at 5,079 m and 5,360 m)
Saturday – Leh to Khardung La Pass and back to Leh (Khardung La Pass 5,602 m )
Sunday Leh to Karu to Chang La Pass to Kuru and then onto Satchu (Chang La Pass at 5,391 m and Lachunglang La Pass at 5,079 m and Taglang La Pass at 5,360 m )
Monday Sarchu to Keylong (including Baralacha Pass at 4,890 m)
Tuesday Keylong to Solong Vally (including Rotang Pass at 3,980 m)
Wednesday Solong Valley to Manail, de-hire bikes and overnight bus to Delhi.

So:
Rotang Pass at 3,980 m was ridden twice
Baralacha Pass at 4,890 m was ridden twice
Lachunglang La Pass at 5,079 m was ridden twice
Taglang La Pass at 5,360 m was ridden twice
Khardung La Pass at 5,602 m was ridden once (by push bike)
Chang La Pass at 5,391 m was ridden once

The locals claim that Khardung La Pass, Taglang La Pass and Chang La Pass and the 3 highest motor-able passes in the World and there does seem to be a some dispute about this but the passes are nevertheless extremely high and somewhat challenging.

John W stayed a few more days in India touring Jaipur and then traveled back to Perth.

Carl M traveled onto the UK to tour the UK/Ireland for 8 weeks and enter the 50th Irish National Motorcycle Rally.

This is a you tube video of the highlights it is condensed down from over 7 hours to 28 minutes, it gives a overview of the range of road conditions, scenery and difficulty of the ride. Included is a tricky water crossing due to a damaged bridge. 

Manali to Leh Highway and back on two Enfield motorcycles with detours to Khardung La Pass and Chang La Pass:

 

This is a video of the highlights, it is condensed down from over 7 hours to 28 minutes.

It gives an overview of the range of road conditions, scenery and difficulty of the ride.

Included are highlights of a tricky water crossing due to a damaged bridge.

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Riding down the lower part of Khardung La Pass by Push Bike,

Khardung La Pass is claimed to be 5,602 meters high and is around 40 km from Leh (@ 3,500 m).

The upper part of the road was about 14 km of rough dirt and we felt too rough to mount the GoPro. The last 36 km was mainly sealed and able to be videoed.

It snowed at the top and then when about 1/3 down it changed to rain so it was cold and wet.

BTW John and Carl didn’t ride the bikes up, they were trucked up and ridden down.

John and Carl were part of a group of 4 riders (there were had two Indians accompanying them), one of the Indians lost it on a corner, came down hard and badly broke his leg.

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2016 Manali to Leh Highway – John and Carl were on their return trip just before Sarchu and came across a damaged bridge and the traffic was having to try to cross the river upstream.

A car had become stuck and a truck tried to assist but also became stuck, eventually an excavator got the truck moving and some cars were able to get through.

John was able to successfully ride his bike through at around 9.00 minutes on this video.

By the time Carl was ready to have a try, a minibus had blocked the main path and Carl tried to forge a new path upstream and immediately hung the bike up on submerged rocks blocking both wheels. Eventually the bike was manhandled over the rocks and able to progress bit further on,. At this stage (and at a height of around 4,300 meters) the effort that had been used by Carl required a mid crossing 5 minute break (edited out) to allow his breathing to drop back to manageable levels (and avoid vomiting up a lung) and his heart rate to drop back below 200 bpm and the feeling of an imminent heart attack to dissipate a little.

If it was easy there would be no challenge.

A few photos of the trip:

 

 

 

 

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5th VMCC of WA Roaring Twenties Ride

Posted by pre31 on July 7, 2016

Ken V. arranged another fantastic VMCC of WA Roaring Twenties ride around Nannup in SW of Western Australia.

A great 2 day ride with a Gopro video some photos of the bikes below:

 

 

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2015 MotoGP / Philip Island Tour

Posted by pre31 on July 7, 2016

After completing the 10th National Veteran Motorcycle Rally, a couple of riders intended on winding their way through Victoria and NSW from Ararat to Philip Island and then return via the long way. One rider couldn’t make it so Carl M. pushed ahead by himself riding a 1983 Honda CX650E.

The route was:

Ararat to Tumut via the “avoid all main roads option”

Tumut to Jindabyne via the Snowy Mountain Highway then onto Khancoban (via Alpine Way with a Perisher Valley/Charlotte Pass side track). Still snow at the Ski Fields but plenty of parking

Khancoban to Wangaratta via the Murray River Highway. then through to Omeo via the Great Alpine Road with detours to Mt Beauty and Falls Creek (and return as the High Road was still closed)

From Omeo up the Omeo Highway to Mitta Mitta and return – just because

Then from Omeo down to Bairnsdale and down to Tidal River (Wilsons Promontory)

Wilsons Promontory onto Philip Island for the racing and then back to Ararat via the Great Ocean Road and the Grampians

All up around 2,500 km to travel around 700 km

 

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10th National Veteran Motorcycle Rally – Ararat 2015

Posted by pre31 on July 7, 2016

The 10th National Veteran Motorcycle Rally was held in Ararat Victoria in October 2015 with around 120 entries over 20 of which had traveled across from Western Australia. Some of the bikes at the rally:

 

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1930 Sunbeam riding through the “Lake District” – England 2015

Posted by pre31 on July 7, 2016

After completing the 49th Irish Rally,  Dave A. Eric A and Carl M. rode around the passes of The Lake District for a day.

 

 

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1930 Sunbeam and 1929 Matchless riding through the Yorkshire Dales – England 2015

Posted by pre31 on July 7, 2016

After completing the 49th Irish Rally,  Dave A. and Carl M. rode around the Yorkshire Dales.

 

 

 

 

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2015 IOM Classic Races

Posted by pre31 on July 7, 2016

After completing the 49th Irish Motorcycle Rally Dave A. John W. and Carl M. traveled up to Belfast and then across to the IOM to watch the last week of the IOM Classic Races and enter a couple of events with the IOM VMCC.

 

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