no politics...just ridin'

Oh my.......

He who buys one of these definitely rides to the rear!


Bikers Dream

Our planned meeting spot was the Park Ridge Tavern car park early on Saturday morning. Kat and I packed what we needed for the weekend (minus my poor camera) into the bags and headed out into the gloomy, wet weather. Out on the Gateway, the rain was light and intermittent making riding conditions not too bad. About 25 minutes later we rode into the tavern car park and there were already a couple of bikes there - Grasshopper and another couple on a Trumpy (I am hopeless with names) who had ridden up from Ormeau. We waited for about 1/2 an hour watching the others arrive - all up there were 7 bikes (being Grizz, Panda, Eddie, Grasshopper, Koff, the Trumpy and us), 1 trike and Lynne & Tamara in the ute. We ended up ringing Dodge to find out if he was coming and he said he would meet us at Aratula - no worries!!

Hit the road and headed out west along the Logan Mwy, Ipswich Mwy and then onto the Cunningham Hwy - the further west we went the heavier the rain became and a few of the guys were still riding in jeans - man it must have been cold for them. Kat and I had all our wet weather gear on and this made the ride ok, although it was still cold. Rolled into Aratula and pulled into a servo to re-fuel and wait for the Dodge. After finally getting hold of him on the phone, he advised us that he was still working and would come up later - yeah, yeah.

From Aratula we headed up Cunninghams Gap - that was a freaky ride - lots of fog/low cloud and the higher we got, the thicker it got. It was also raining which added to all the fun. Panda led us up and most of the time all I could see of her was her brake light. Just on reaching the top I reckon that visibility would have been down to about 20 metres. Once over the top of the range however, the low cloud and rain disappeared and we cut a fair pace to the turn off for Goomburra. It was this part of the ride that I learnt you never try to keep up with Panda - she assumes that she is holding everyone up and so just keeps increasing speed - think we hit 160 at one point but the roads were dry and in good nick. We pulled into the driver reviver stop to re-group, grab a free coffee and have a chat - the turn off was right next to this stop and it was only another 30kms down a sealed back road to Bikers Dream, so we agreed to get there and have a few drinks instead of doing a ride as initially planned.

Rode the short distance to the Goomburra Valley Camping Ground Ground (Bikers Dream as we know it) and met up with Grimace who had already spent a night or two in a tent there with his family. We sorted out our accommodation, parked the bikes/trike under cover and then proceeded to warm up with a few drinks. This place is perfect for a weekend getaway when you're on the bike - everything is supplied, plenty of undercover areas and the surroundings are fantastic. It was originally called Bikers Dream but some of the local farmers assumed that the 1%ers would be attracted and have a negative affect, so the owners made a commercial decision and renamed it - seemed like the right thing to do coz there were plenty of people in the camping ground.

Anyway, we had a few drinks and then ate - the feed that was provided for us was spot on. After eating - well...more drinking whilst standing around the fire chatting. Eddie brought his tennis ball cannon along for a bit of fun (boys and their toys!!!!) - it is a length of PVC with a screw-on end that has a piezo igniter mounted to it. To activate it the end is unscrewed, tennis ball inserted, hairspray sprayed into it and the end screwed back on. It is then just a matter of clicking the igniter. Now this thing has got some force behind it and after a few shots up into the night sky, the man once known as Koff decided to see how powerful it really was. He stood against a tree with Eddie aiming this thing at his ass from about 20 metres - after a couple of false alarms Eddie actually fired it, hitting him fair on the ass cheek. Man did it leave a mark!! This is how Koff became Bullseye.

Grim & Bullseye (formally known as Koff)

The next morning Kat and I got up early and headed for the showers - man it was cold but the water was hot which was good. After finishing our shower we sat around outside and waited for the others to surface - they slowly appeared one by one. About 8am we ate a fantastic cooked breakfast that had been prepared for us, and finally geared up for a ride further west through Stanthorpe and out to Texas. The day was bloody cold and we seemed to be riding into a pretty stiff head wind. Rode from the campground onto the main highway and headed out through Warwick - it just got colder and colder the further west we went. We finally arrived on the outskirts of Stanthorpe after battling a bitterly cold headwind and pulled in to re-fuel - whilst there we all decided that it was too cold to continue any further and decided to head back to the warmth of the campground. We re-fueled and whilst waiting, the local police drove past and then returned to have a chat with us. I am sure they thought we were lunatics riding in these conditions. We also got a call from Dodge who had just missed us riding out of the campground - we arranged to meet him at Warwick on our way back.

We rode the short distance into Stanthorpe to have a look (I had never been out this way) and then turned around and headed back towards Warwick. The return ride was much easier as the wind was now behind us and as such, we made pretty good time. Pulled into the McDonalds at Warwick and finally met up with Dodge. He brought his dog Regal with him in a lap bag that sits across his chest - she looked cute sitting in the bag with her doggles on, but she must have been absolutely freezing on the ride up. Dodge decided to let her ride in the ute with Lynne and Tamara for the journey back to Goomburra. We conferred and decided to head to Allora, not far from the campground, for lunch in one of the pubs.

The ride to Allora was interesting to say the least - we decided to stay off the highway and took the back roads from Warwick. Of course when you get onto a good road with no traffic, one tends to wind it up a little. Grizz decided to go for a squirt along a long, straight and flat section of road not far out of Allora, and most of us followed. I know that I had my bike up to the fastest speed I had ever had it to (won't say what coz you'll think I'm irresponsible) and he was still pulling away. Now just as we started to back off we were passed by a police car heading the opposite way - I kept one eye on the mirror and noticed that as he reached the last of the group he did a u turn. We had now spread out a little and he slowly moved his way through the group - he tailed the guys at the rear for a short period, then passed them and tailed us in the middle and finally passed us and tailed Grizz and Dodge at the front for a while, checking our speed as he went. I think we were lucky that there was a group of us.
We stopped at a pub in Allora for a couple of hours and had a few drinks and a feed - it was nice to get out of the cold and a good little pub! Once we had all finished, we headed back towards Goomburra. This was another spirited ride along the narrow bitumen track out to the campground - no major dramas except for Kat getting up me because of my riding. The thing she doesn't understand is that the bike is a lot more stable with a pillion and I find it easier to ride at speed when she is on the back - with no weight on the back it tends to jump around a bit. Anyway, we arrived back late afternoon and had a few quiet ones before dinner. Once again, we were served another fantastic meal for dinner and spent a few more hours around the fire. I ended up hitting the bed pretty early on Sunday night.

Grasshopper looking more like an orthodox priest everyday...

Well Monday morning was a different sight around the camp - lots of fog and really still. I decided to get up and get the fire going again from the still smouldering ashes. I watched as one by one the others emerged from the bunkhouse/ute. The fog was slowly lifting and you could see the day was going to be cloud free. We ate our last breakfast together for the weekend and then moved the bikes from under cover round to the bunkhouse so as to pack. Well Grasshopper was the only one riding a Harley and guess who couldn't start his bike??? Battery must have drained overnight - it was funny watching the guys trying to push start it. In the end they ended up towing it behind a ute and dropping the clutch - after the fourth or fifth try it finally started.
As the weather looked good, we decided to head home via Queen Mary Falls, near Killarney. We left Goomburra at about 9:30am and headed back to Allora to refuel. After that was done we took the road back to the Cunningham Hwy and rode east for a while before turning onto one of the backroads running towards Killarney. These roads are fantastic for bike riding as they are in relatively good condition and have very little traffic - just gotta watch out for farm machinery. We rode at a moderate pace in an attempt to all stay together, following the signs towards the falls. Finally made Killarney and then continued on to the turn off to the falls. This road is very picturesque and windy so we took our time on the short ride to the falls.
Queen Mary Falls is a popular destination for tourists and day trippers from Brisbane so it was relatively busy when we all rode in. We decided to have something to eat at the store there and sat outside in the sun. No one bothered to go and look at the falls - they would have been almost dry anyway. From the shop onwards the road decends down from the range and gets narrow in some spots and there are also unfenced portions of road where stock roam, so you need to be on your guard. There was no rush to get to the bottom so we all rode at our own pace enjoying the sights. About 20 minutes down the track we pulled over to take in one of the many spectacular viewpoints - all the others had either already stopped or did so after us. Eddie pulled out the tennis ball cannon to see what kind of distance he could shoot out over the valley below - we witnessed his first that seemed to go on forever!!
Kat had an appointment to get to so this is where we had to leave everyone - we said our goodbyes and headed off down the range. The rest of the ride down to the highway was really enjoyable. Once we reached the highway, we turned towards Brisbane and made good time to Boonah, but not long after was when I had my encounter with Mr Policeman. No point in denying what I was doing - he said 119 in a 100 zone. Ended up costing me 3 points and $150, although I thought they were doubling the points on long weekends - maybe not!! Anyway, we finally made it to Kat's appointment (albiet late and a little poorer) and then proceeded home.
Was a great weekend - all I need now is to get hold of some more of the pix!!

Grizz & Panda


An Expensive Weekend

Unbudgetted Expense No 1 - Unavoidable and Inconvenient
My camera looks like it is dead - went to check it before leaving for our trip on the weekend and it just died with the lens fully extended. I did try to power it up using the 12V adaptor and nothing happened. It seems like something has blown in it, so looks like I will be visiting the camera store to get this one fixed. Consequently, my post for the weekend away at Bikers Dream will be picture free until I can get hold of some of the other guys to mail their pics my way.

Unbudgetted Expense No 2 - Totally Avoidable and Stupid
Kat had to get to an appointment mid afternoon on the Monday holiday, so we left the Bikers Dream group at a lookout on the road coming down the range from Queen Victoria Falls. As we were riding towards Ipswich, just after passing through Boonah, I passed a police car doing 119 in a 100 zone. We were heading up to the top of a crest in the road and so I thought I would give the bike a bit to reach the top - next thing the cop car came over the top of the hill heading in the other direction. Doh!! Of course as soon as I looked in my mirror his lights came on, so I just pulled over there and then. He turned and pulled up behind me as I sat on my bike cursing and swearing while Kat tried to calm me. He slugged me 3 points and $150 for the privelage. I feel like putting a smart arse comment in here about what a prick the guy was, but he was only doing his job and it is me who was the idiot!!

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Some pix....

What a view - kind of puts everything into perspective - I know it's not really bike related but I thought this photo of a boat, taken by Killboy near Deals Gap in the US, was spectacular...

Check out more of his pics at

Now for some bike related stuff - just had to include this one (NOT from the Killboy site) which I got a laugh from....

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The First Days of Winter

Winter is definitely here and , wow, am I feeling it!! It is so cold but so very dry - my lips are just starting to show the first signs of cracking from the open face helmet. I now try to cover my face when riding and apply lip balm every time I get off the bike. As a point of interest, the Brisbane City Council has declared that as from next Tuesday, 13th June, we will be on level 3 water restrictions, mainly due to the fact that our total dam capacity is due to fall below 30% and we wont really get any real soaking rain for another few months. The government seems to have been forced into action by announcing plans for 2 new dams and other water saving initiatives - but it isn't going to help us now - they should have been looking at this a few years back - must be an election in the pipeline!! This is the dryest I have ever seen Brisbane. I must admit, it is great weather for riding but we really do need some decent rain.

Anyway, didn't do any decent riding on the weekend as I had my daughters, but did manage to slot in a Sunday afternoon cruise around my local area. Rode over Mt Cotton then out to the Redland Bay Hotel for a bite to eat while we soaked up the afternoon sun and admired the bay views. From there we headed back to Cleveland Point and then to the Grand View Hotel - sat out the front in the sun. Really nice way to finish the weekend.

Looking forward to another 3 day break this coming weekend - we are heading out to Bikers Dream, a biker friendly camping property near Warwick, with some of the Logan Village guys so that will be another excellent few days of riding and nights of entertainment.

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Custom VTX

How is this for a custom VTX1800?? Very nice looking bike built by the Viking Motorcycle Company - click here for more pics, specs and details of the build. That paint is just awesome and a 300 rear end - I'm starting to drool a little!!