celebrating 40+ years of motorcycling

“The Ride That Shall Not Be Mentioned.” A Touring Diary Pt1

The following is a documenting of a ride to Queensland and back that was undertaken by a mate, Damien, and myself, in 2006. It is an “as it happened” recount, consisting of the extracts from the daily reports that we posted on our motorcycle forum as the ride progressed. It has not been edited to reflect a more formal travelogue so please read it as the forum members would have, a story that unfolds, day-by-day.


Hi guys and gals.

This is Damien and Phil checking in with you from a very cold Walcha, our first stopover on the “Ride that shall not be mentioned.”

We lit out from Wollongong about 0715 this morning and headed straight for Wilberforce where we took a detour to have a look at “Ebenezer” the oldest church in Australia, with family connections. A cup of coffee from Damien’s thermos (Yes, he brought one and 2 cups) and then it was up the Putty to the Halfway House.

Too early for lunch yet so just a gas and pit stop and back on the bikes northward-bound again.

We didn’t stop at Singleton either (I had a singlet on, dunno about Damo) and lunch at Dungog Bakery.  Bucketts gets a bucketing for me, damn that road has deteriorated. Pit stop and gas at Gloucester.

Then it was up Thunderbolt’s to Walcha where we were dodging thunderbolts for the whole 148kms. I kid you not, the sky was black in the west and we could see the sheets of rain falling on the tops for nearly the whole journey. But, each time that it looked like we were heading straight into the storms, the road changed direction to the North-East and we skirted around the rain, not once, not twice, but three separate times..nothing short of amazing.

Running into Walcha the road was wet but navigable and we really wicked it up for the last 50 k’s or so. It was getting cold and we could sense the end of our first day drawing near.

Thurnderbolts was smooth as compared to Bucketts and the long flowing corners are really a treat on a well-handling bike.

It’s very cold here. We’ve booked into the Aspley Hotel ($35 per night for room and breakfast) and we’re going to grab some tea then sit down in the lounge in front of their open fire.

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