This year’s bike trip was another great ride with plenty of good banter and fellowship, although we had some challenges (full detailed itinerary is attached on the IFMRA web site).
Riders from all over Australia joined and left the group at different stages of the ride which made the trip interesting and ensured the mealtimes had great fellowship.
Starting from Orange NSW, we had 12 riders leaving in sunny weather riding to Tamworth. However, after lunch at Dunedoo, we had a quick stop at Coolah to put on our wet weather gear which we maintained for the next two days until the weather improved.
The next few days we rode towards the East Coast of QLD to Bundaberg where another three riders (plus Bill’s wife, as a pillion passenger) joined the group making a total of 15 bikes. However, just prior to leaving Bundaberg a rider tested positive to Covid-19 and reluctantly, decided to return home to Orange with two other riders joining him for support.
Unfortunately, due to Covid19, we had to cancel the proposed boat trip as previously arranged at Airlie Beach which was disappointing but understandable.!!
So, we were back to 12 riders leaving Bundaberg making our way up the east coast of QLD.
At Cairns another rider left the group as arranged and at Townsville another rider joined the group as arranged, and another rider left the group So, we were down to 11 riders.
We all arrived at Cooktown, our main FNQ destination for two nights, prior to making our way west to Karumba for two nights.
However, again just prior to leaving Cooktown another rider was feeling unwell and decided to remain in Cooktown for another day and return home to Noosa reluctantly.
So, we were down to 10 riders leaving Cooktown.
When we left Ravenshoe in the morning on our way to Karumba, two riders left the group as arranged, and returned home to Gympie and Bundaberg. Now down to 8 riders.
The weather was sunny and warm in the Gulf, and we had a great time relaxing and took a sunset boat trip which included nibbles/prawns and drinks and of course, magnificent Sunsets.
During the next few days on our way to Longreach, near Julia Creek, a rider was not well.
He returned home to Townsville. Now our group was down to 7 riders.
We continued on and had a great night in Longreach with live entertainment in the evening at the Woolshed Pub, which is onsite at the Longreach Tourist Caravan Park.
Another good stop overnight was at the Nindigully Pub, where if you could eat one of their BIG pies/hamburgers which costs $100.00, then it was free! Needless to say, we did not part take of this…
Then back in NSW, we arrived at Lightning Ridge, on the same day they commenced their annual 3-day Opal Festival which made the town very busy. A few guys brought some lovely gifts for their family and close friends...
Leaving Lightning Ridge the next morning, two more riders left the group early, as arranged and returned home to Melbourne. Now down to 5 riders.
Our last stop over was at Byrock, The Mulga Creek Hotel was another great outback pub with good food.
The next morning following breaky at Nyngan, two riders left the group to return home to Clare SA (via Broken Hill) and Rutherglen.
Now down to the 3 Orange riders returning home mid-afternoon same day in sunny weather (a cool 8 degrees).
Overall, a great time riding and fellowship, I want to say a BIG thank you to all the riders that made the effort to join the group at different stages during the ride.Distance travelled approx 8000 kms over 4 weeks… (Orange to Orange)
However, Bill Ivory and his wife have just returned to WA and completed around 13,000kms
Until Next Ride,
NSW IFMRA rep
M: 0411 118 506