Ya know when your work happiness just doesn’t meet your own expectation anymore and you need to get away, well this is certainly the medicine for it.
Nindigully the Pub in the middle of the proverbial nowhere what a fabulous destination!!!! and somewhere I haven’t been before.
Friday start from North Richmond BP after a nice lunch in Hanna Park under the trees waiting for 12noon to tick over before heading up Bells Line of Road to Lithgow heading for Bathurst. BUT…..me being the woman “of little detours” took the Mudgee turn off just outta habit…oops uey and back on track. LOL!!!
Quite lunch in the park
Uneventful really, tootling along with the sunshine and the breeze which helped keep the heat acceptable. Into Bathurst with 50,000 others some Expo thing on….argh, through Molong and down the long stretch towards Wellington but not before grabbing of pic. Fuel and off again no mucking around, the traffic and roadworks to get here have been crap but then you get that.
Dubbo, Gilgandra and a pic of the big golf ball.
Gilgandra- the Big Golf Ball
An unscheduled stop in Tooraweenah to borrow the facilities and of course take the opportunity of another beautiful country pic.
Heading into Coonabarabran I’m now loosing the light of day and Dudleys spotties are again getting a workout before coasting through Mullaley and into Gunnedah just after 7:30pm.
Grabbed fuel and thought I’d get some KFC for dinner but it seems the town has been overrun by kids for some sporting event and the little buggers were all lined up at the counter unable to make any decision about what each of them wanted. I waited 10 minutes then walked out. Down to Maccas, not quite as infested with kids and only waited 2 minutes before being served. On the way out two gents approached me & Dudley….turns out they are FarRiders and one of them was going to Nindigully…what are the chances!!! LOL.
Red Chief Motel is my stop for tonight. Unpacked, checked in with Karl and then hit the hay….gotta big day tomorrow. Basic motel but has all you need for a place to rest your head. Bed was comfy and the proprietor is lovely and very accommodating to special arrangements and motorcycles.
Saturday, event day and a big day in the saddle. On the road just shy of 5:30am and it’d rained (poured) overnight, oh well that happens and they certainly need it. The sky doesn’t look to promising either at this hour
Just out of Gunnedah
Into Narrabri and the weather still isn’t looking too promising.
Oh look…….OX, I didn’t know you had you’re own oval….LOL
Thankfully so far I haven’t had any wildlife encounters but am forever on the look out as the rain brings them out to the verges. Continue onto Moree for another unscheduled stop after getting pissed on from great heights. Raisin toast & coffee at the new Airport Puma servo with built in 7th Street Cafe. Very clean amenities…looks like I was the first to use them.
While having breaky Johnny Whitehead pulls in and then while we are inside a few more FarRiders heading to the same destination pull in also.
A local gives me the heads up that the rain is now in front of us heading north east so we should be good for the rest of the journey. Between Moree & Mungindi Johnny & I encounter a few roos and a turtle.Scheduled stop at Mungindi and our friends from Moree have caught up with us.
Finally we reach Nindigully
We are a little early but that’s ok gives you time to do the social thing and take some pics before check-in.
Did you know that Hugh Jackmans’ film – Paperback Hero was filmed here…….I didn’t!
FarRide 49 done & dusted. Awesome place in the middle of nowhere
Time goes all too quickly and it’s time to get going again. My plan is lunch in Goondiwindi before pushing on to Tenterfield for the next 2 nights. Johnny and I leave at the same time so are happy to have each others company for the next however many kays until he turns off for his destination.
It’s a lovely day to be out riding and this is new country to me…I love it!!
The poor farmers and graziers though are struggling with the dryness and are resorting to sending there cattle out onto the road verges to get a feed.
Cattle grazing on the roadside
Into Goondiwindi for lunch and fuel and what a surprise bump into a few FarRiders heading home – Clint & Drain. Inside there are more and I join them for a quick bite, check in with the Tenerfield Lodge Caravan Park to let them know I will probably be in after they close so make the necessary arrangements before heading out to complete my journey for the day.
Countryside out here is magnificent!!! Wide flat plains with the back drop of glorious mountain ranges. I decided to take what I thought was a “B” road and stay on the NSW of the border. Well I can tell you it ain’t no “B” road….looks totally different to what the map says. I weaved and wove my way through a road that was barely a cars width wide and with the ever changing skyline that indicated that I was going to wet “again” today.
Just a tip, the road signs are very big in the back country and I was a little uncertain a couple of times about making the turn off. Signs say “to Bruxner Highway” so you turn and find you are going through someones property – well that’s what it seemed like. Having the road to myself, I did open up a bit to try and make up some time so that I would hopefully make it to Tenterfield before 5pm.
Into Texas for a pic and to let the caravan park how far away I am…..should make it they say but we stick with the plan just in case.
Across this little causeway is the border……
FINALLY, me, Dudley and the Honeymooners (that would be Smurfette and Bobby) reach the Bruxner Highway (very loose turn at this end, I tell ya).
YAY!!! Just a little sigh of relief…LOL
According to the GPS, if we keep a good pace we will make it into Tenterfield in time. The weather gods are threatening again and I’m just hoping they hold off. You can tell the storm has been though as all the roads are wet and the roos are starting to come out……saw six but now that caused any potential harm.
We made it to Tenterfield in plenty of time…phew
Welcome to Tenterfield
All the trees are finally coming into their Autumn colouring
After ~820kms for today I pull into the caravan park at 4:50pm – phew! Pick up my power cord and get directions to my campsite and just as I get back on Dudley…yep…you guesssed it, the heavens opened up…ARGH!! So, had to set the tent up in the rain and the ground was so bloody hard it took forever to get the pegs in. Pics tomorrow of the camp Kimmie….2 fing dark. Dinner & a coldy at the club now….I got a taxi 🙂
What a wild & woolly night that was. Had a shower got into bed & the heavens opened up..phew! The thunder & lightning show that went on for the hour that I was awake was a tad scary. Had to put my neck sock over my eyes to keep the brightness out.. was like kids shining a torch in the tent.
Camp Kimmie survived though and dry!
Today I am playing tourist but not before breaky at this quaint little cafe in the old courthouse. Lovely setting & the breaky & coffee was good.
Now to walk it off and see some of what Tenterfield has to offer. Quick trip to the information centre and armed with my trusty map and book…off I go.
First stop Stannum House – A-MAZ-ZING!!! I have to bring Karl back here and we HAVE TO stay here!!
At the top of this rickety old staircase is the “tower” and outside you can see for miles……..
More to see now……so many old buildings, some closed some re-purposed. The locals are all very friendly and happy to spend time to tell you about “their” town.
Tenterfield Post Office
The old Tenterfield Bank which has been re-purposed and you can book afternoon high teas here.
Now, you can’t come to Tenterfield without paying a visit to the Tenterfield Saddlery – made famous by Peter Allans song about his grandfather. What a moving place!!! You step in the door and back in time and a feeling that touches your heart in a way I cannot describe. The establishment is owned by a gentleman in QLD but run by volunteers and up kept with donations from folk like me…tourists. I was reading an article about George Woolnough on the wall and didn’t realise that it had actually moved me to tears.
Visited a couple of other museums and made a small donation.
Now out to visit Bushranger Captain Thunderbolts Hideout….one of many I’d imagine. The ride out is lovely and only a sign on the roadside makes the spot and you have to walk through the bush to get there…..it’s a well worn path now though.
views from the cave
Mother nature really is putting on a show for me!!
Back to camp for lunch and a chill out. It’s pretty windy today and I end up having to move inside the camp kitchen. After a bit I decide I should start to pack Dudley up in preparation for heading home tomorrow. Go to lock a pannier and discover “I don’t have the key”!!! Back tracking everywhere I’ve been in the park and checking pockets and bins then PANIC sets in as I can’t find them. The Grey Nomad Brigade ask “what’s wrong love”, I explain and they all start searching the grounds as the windy could’ve blown them anywhere! God love ’em 🙂 I also let the park owner know in case someone hands them in.
About 30 minutes later I found them. Where? … I’d put them in my computer bag….LOL didn’t even remember doing it. I thanked everyone for their help and get about the task at hand.
Back to the club for dinner and the cab driver from last night and some mates greet me as I walk in. Needless to say I spend some time swapping stories with these guys…..one of them who used to live on our street…way back when.
Monday morning and another good nights sleep but it’s time to head home to Karl and Ella-Jane. Packing up and the sun comes up to greet me.It didn’t seem that cold when I got up, but as I started down the road a bit I discovered that I should’ve put on the extra layers and winter gloves….brrrr
Unscheduled stop in Bolivia…..for those extra layers
In no hurry today, so take the opportunity to take some more pics….besides it a beautiful day to be out riding.
Through Glen Innes, Guyra, Armidale and into Uralla for the pic of Captain Thunderbolt
Now, it seems I should’ve listened to the GPS and gone into town to head down Thunderbolts Way. Instead I was obviously in auto-pilot and continued on the New England Highway….doh! Down a bit there is a sign on the road saying Kentucky Cafe Open turn left….sounds good to me. What a lovely little detour through some scenic countryside. At one point I did think to myself, “oh Kimmie what have you done” but then I was in Kentucky! Got a pic as proof and proceeded inside to be advised that the power company had an outage and he had no fuel and NO COFFEE!!! Tragedy. But what a lovely bloke. Will have to go back and have a coffee there….just because.
Who knew I’d travel the world this trip…..Texas, Bolivia & now Kentucky!!!
So back on me bike and off in search of Walcha…not quite sure where I was going to pop out at. Turns out Kentucky leads you to the Old Walcha Road and there is a little pub there just before you take a left onto The Oxley…that 20 odd km west of Walcha. Awesome run into Walcha not the direction I had planned..LOL but a wonderful way to get there.
I meet a bloke who has NEVER done the Oxley….motorcycling nirvana!!! An Oxley Virgin…didn’t think there were any around. Gave him the run down over our coffee’s before we parted ways.
It’s a pretty easy run down Thunderbolts Way – the road hasn’t improved but just being out on Dudley puts a smile on my face. I even get a little spirited down here!!! Through Gloucester (only stop here for fuel these days if I have to) and head on to Stroud for late lunch. The Crepe Myrtle Tea Rooms is “THE” place to be. It’s quirky, quaint, peaceful and have great food and coffee. Check in with Karl before heading out.From here it’s just a transit leg to get home. Fuel in Heatherbrae and then the slab down the freeway to home.
Well the adventure has come to an end. Home safe & sound, showered & mostly unpacked. The love of my life Karl is cooking a scrumptious dinner while I sit my butt on the couch with a lemonade😚
What a fabulous 4 days riding around the country. A tidy 2150kms for the total trip & Dudley ticked over 63,000 kms.
Thanks for reading…..see you again next adventure!