kwaka's and Liz's Parkes Muster SS1600K


Premier Member
The Ride Report
Part One of Three

IBA Australia inaugural muster - 2nd July 2016, Parkes Services Club, Parkes, NSW. Check in between 10:00 and 14:00.

As the distance to Parkes from home base is approx. 820kms the plan was simple, knock over a SS1600K and arrive within the check in window. Of course the chosen route envolved Liz and me riding Kwakatoa westward before turning aournd and heading east towards Parkes. A route with a turn around at Port Augusta seemed quite fitting as this would take us past Horrock's Pass and the Memorial Plaque then at Nyngan, turning right towards Bogan Gate and then left to Parkes itself. This route and the end result would prove to be so very special on so many fronts for us, individually and as a 2up team.

For me, Horrock's Pass holds special meaning as it is via this route that my first official foray into long distance riding started with the 2007 Border Run. It was this ride that I first met Davo Jones at Penong on the way out to the Border Village. My next big ride was the following year for the 2008 Border Run. Again in that year in October, I completed my first Iron Butt Association (IBA) rides completing both an SS2000K and a BB2500K/36 enroute to Bussellton, WA for the GTR-AUS annual meet. Had I known at the time I could've turned the BB into a SS3000K/48 such was my unfamiliarity with IBA rides. I also attempted my first BBG on the return but due to Nullarbor being closed for fuel, missed by 15 mins, I failed. I did however complete an SS1600K but, like so many of my SS1600K rides, have not sent this in for certification.

In 2010, a small number of us commiserated the loss of Davo at the cairn at Horrock's Pass around midnight in early September, singnifying one year of Davo's untimely death in the 2009 IBR. Also in 2010, I completed my first BBG2500K ride, again via Horrock's Pass and beyond, playing into my knowledge of these well travelled roads.

With the western side of the route planned the eastward leg would be a turn around at Port Augusta and head to Nyngan, NSW then turn right and head to Bogan Gate. Then left for the short squirt into Parkes. Simples.

1 July 2016
Unfortunately I don't have the receipts or log of our ride as these were submitted at Parkes but from memory, the Broken Hill Shell Servo start docket reads 11:36 CST (12:04 EST). Liz gets two dockets, one for her and one for me. Yeah, need to submit one log for Liz and one for me.
The end docket is at the BP servo Parkes 2 July 2016 11:16 EST.
1656 odd kms for the Saddle Sore.

No start pics, too keen to get riding in the daylight hours because we'd be doing too many kays in the chilly dark o'clock hours!

We left the servo in good spirits but not much sleep for either Liz and me. I suppose we were just too excited and worried all at once. Family issues played their part on both sides of our families but off we rode into a fairly cool, cloudy day. This section is well known to us and it is a two hour ride to Yunta for the first fuel stop.

The western side of Cockburn, SA.

Unbekown to me, Liz had decided that as we rode past she'd try and take photos of the pubs along the ride. Onya Liz!
Olary, pronounced Ollerrie as how TOURA called the place. He was a funny bloke. It was here he dropped his FJR chasing a photo opportunity.

Just a road.

Very clever.

Mannahill and onward into the BP at Yunta. We don't muck around, Liz visits the "ladies" while I'm filling the tank. I finish fuelling up and head to the "mens" and when I come out Liz has finished paying for the fuel and gives me the dockets to record odo, GPS, time and double check all is in order. It is here that I note that the SPOT is showig a red LED but as I finished my notes, the LED is back to green again. Hmmm...

Check Point Charlie. Tucked away in the Oodla Wirra hills, this signifies halfway to Adelaide from Broken Hill.

Next stop was to be the Plaque to lay some wreaths as we failed to make the Memorial meet at Wilmington last year, thanks to a failed bike battery. Through the Quarantine station (which is closed for a few weeks in winter) at Oodla Wirra.

Then short few kays to the Peterborough turn off. Always a thrill coming this way because Horrock's Pass and beyond beckons.

Peterborough Railway Museum.

Although it's cold...

..I love these places.

Orroroo, Morchard and then the long straight stretches into Wilmington.

It's along here that I wonder, do they know at the Wilmington pub of Pat's passing?
Should I stop and find out? What if they ask when he passed away?
Here I started to well up because not only did he pass away two days before my birthday, the date was Liz's birthday! Yeah, this ride was jammed packed with very special, personal meaning in oh so many ways.

Then glorious Horrock's Pass comes up and memories of all the Memorial Rides here.

Up until now, it's been cold and in keeping with the sombre mood of the moment but popping out the other side of the Pass, it's bright and sunny. Down near the Plaque and I look for any identifying markers for where the Plaque is but can't see any. The sun in the eyes was making it difficult. No matter, fuel up at Port Augusta for our turn around and then worry about it. It funny to see so many sheep in the paddock behind where the Plaque is as I've never seen livestock there before. There were hundreds of sheep out there.

Into the blue.

Fuelled up at the BP, another efficient stop

Back searching, looking for the Plaque. I know the area well as Cliff and I bloody set the thing back in 2011 but I still can't find it. I should have the co-ordinates in the GPS but as I had the screen replaced, meaning I received a refurbished unit in return, I didn't think about the co-ords. Liz dismounts and starts walking along and I ride up a tad further and as I'm about to pull up and dismount when bingo, there it is. No markers of any kind, the paint has faded both off the fence posts and from the road.

We're not worried about time as an SS1600K has plenty of give time wise. We unwrap the wreaths which Liz has made out of rosemary, I say a few words as we lay two wreaths of remembrance and we take a moment to pay our respects.

With a tear in our eye we give each other a hug. The sun is wonderful, is low on the horizon meaning the cold dark night will be upon us some enough. Off we head back through the Pass and that cold air mass, each of us with our own sombre thoughts. Neither of us are looking forward to the cold that lays ahead.

A reminder of our insignificance.

Wilmington, Morchard and Orroroo where its time for body fuel.

Tucker time at sunset. Just outside Orroroo heading east.

Peterborough, Oodla Wirra and into the Caltex at Yunta dodging two lots of a pair of young roos enroute having a chin wag in the middle of the road. These buggers are not as road smart as their taller cousins feeding on the verge!

Our fuel stop is, as always, very efficient with little down time are back on the road for the two short hours to home base for warmth, a hot meal and some shut eye before the final push east into the very dark and chilly second half of the ride. Into the Shell servo without further incident around 21:00 with 826kms done then, home for that hot tomato soup with prawns and crab meat with heaps of toasted and buttered rye bread. Yummo!

I fire up the gas heater in the lounge room and kick up the foot rest on the LazyBoy and we both settle in for an hours kip.

End part one.
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Premier Member
Part Two of Three
2nd July 2016

Oops! I had forgotten about the 1/2 hour time difference but we still have wriggle room within the ride window. We don more layers and head for an ATM to get the end rest period docket, just to make the ride log easier, and then off we ride into the chilly dark night around 01:45 on the 2nd of July. This is it! It is here! Today is the day! The day of the Parkes Muster!

Being honoured with the task of being MC for the muster (I wish TJ had given me a tad more time to prepare), I tried to go through my speech cum notes but without those words in front of me, it was a lost cause. Besides, I'd need to run it past the IBA Australia team and add or make amendments later on no doubt.
The road east to Wilcannia and beyond is also well known but even though the roos are not troubling us, the cold night air is and forget about the 110kph speed limit. 100~105kph is just fine thanks. When I feel the air getting a little warmer, 110kph is revisited but as soon as it gets that chill again, down goes the speed. Amazing what a 5~10kph difference can do to the chill factor.

Of course there is no servo open at Wilcannia so the 10 litre jerry can will be needed and the plan is to empty said jerry into the tank at Bulla Park rest area, which is about 120 west of Cobar. I know we are heading into very low single digit Celsius temperatures and worry that Liz, being the pillion, will end up with very cold hands and feet. As I'm thinking this again I need to hit the anchors to avoid a pair of young roos frecking about in the middle of the road. I stop just to the left of them as the one closest to me hasn't got a clue if it wants to jump left or right. His mate gets the message and hops away to the right but his mate, jumps straight into my bike! What the....?

Even then this roo doesn't scarper and continues down the middle of the road. I get the bike a rev, flash the lights and beep the horn and finally, it heads off into the scrub. I stop to see what damage has been done and looks like the roo has knocked my right hand side HID light out of alignment, left a mark on the Tupperware, taken some chrome of the Kawasaki badge but thankfully, no serious damage done. Bloody roos.
Off again and it is cold. I don't have a temperature guage but I can see frost on the vegetation on the verge, ice is forming on the windshield and riding even at a 100kph makes me start to shiver. I slow to 95kph and it is bareable. No, apart the the heated grips, we don't have any heated gear because you could call us, fair weather riders.

We pass Emmdale and its not too far to the Bulla Park rest area for that fuel stop and once there, I need to don on another layer. It's that cold that the plastic jerry can has started to suck the sides in! In goes the go-go juice and when we head off again, the first hint of a new day dawning can be seen in the cloudy sky to the east.

As the sun rises, it is great to see so much standing water, some creeks still running and the countryside so green. Green from Port Augusta to here, amazing sight compared to the drought colours and dust which had been the norm for so long.

Cobar. A welcome stop for fuel and pit stops for man and woman. Again a fast stop considering. With a full tank we ride off with the sky showing promise of clear skies as the dawn extends its colours and then its Nyngan for more fuel. Heading into Nyngan and the Bogan River is running in flood. With any luck, the dry Darling River might see some of this and the "fresh" might even make it into the dry Menindee Lakes back out my way.

Over the bridge but where I normally use the now 24hr BP here and as this is a corner, I use the Caltex straight down the road just past the Tullamore turn off. This fuel up should get us to Parkes but I fill the now empty jerry can because, well, ya never know. The sun is up in a clear blue sky now and its warming rays are a welcome relief although, I suspect that riding into the sun earlier gave us both a touch of sun burn.

Tottenham, Tullamore, Trundle and Bogan Gate lay in wait for us.

Damn zips!

Tottenham is another special place for me because it was the location back in 2008 of a FarRide there. For me it was my first proper FarRide as the my only two previous were the Border Run FarRides of '07 and '08. That Tottenham FarRide was also special because my son was riding up from Adelaide on his first big ride on a twin pot Suzuki 500cc, the naked one. He arrived in Broken Hill two hours before my return from Tottenham. It was here that I also first met Mel and her crazy Mohawk helmet. From memory, she'd nailed her first IBA ride on that FarRide too. Also, on my return I scored my first puncture on Kwakatoa and thanks to the TPS system, I had plenty of warning about this slow leak in the rear hoop. Nope, didn't carry a puncture repair kit back then but I was fortunate enough to make it into Nyngan and the mechanic at the Shell servo, chucked a plug in to fix the leak. Whew!

Glorious riding.

Next was Tullamore. Also having special meaning because Liz and I doing our first FarRally together nabbed Tullamore pub as a bonus location. While there, we encountered another FarRider grabbing the bonus points on offer here.

Remembering now too that today, the 2nd of July 2016, was election day. Yes. Australia was having a federal election and as voting is compulsory, there were lots of people out and about in Trundle including, our welcoming party on entry into the town.

Bogan Gate also had special meaning because it was here, on the very first FarRider rally, FarRally RTM 01 – 1st and 2nd April 2011, that I needed to procure a Garter Belt! Here at Bogan Gate I also came across Frans Van Der Merwe on his Goldwing, also a rally participate. Here too I could not make or received phone calls or send text messages on my mobile phone but could receive text messages so the Rally Master texted and asked if I could press OK on my SPOT to acknowledge receipt of the Rally Master's SMS, this would also act as my Call In bonus. I did find a Telstra public phone but no surprise, it wasn't working. Oh man! Who knew one could do so much, in so little time, it the middle of Bogan Gate!

Bogan gate
Here, like Nyngan, we needed a corner docket but with no fuel, pub or general store open, my fall back was my SPOT tracking and photographic metadata evidence. Fortunately the Arts and Craft centre in the old railway station was open. I sent Liz in as she is the Dept. of Finance and Treasury, to buy anything that would furnish us with a receipt. Ah that's my girl! She returns with said receipt and a fine Bogan Gate stubbie cooler.

The one and only shot of Bogan Gate.

Now its the last 38 or so kms east into Parkes.

Very easy ride in following my Zumo into the Henry Parkes motel. My idea here was to use our motel accommodation receipt as our end docket but we paid in cash (from Liz and my riding kitty) and have Belinda run off a couple of copies only to find, no time stamp! What the???. She obviously knew why we required the end receipt because there were many other Iron Butt riders and their machines staying here too. She asked, "Can't I just date and sign it?"
"Hmm... yes but no. Rather have a receipt with the location, date and time printed, just to avoid any hassle." I reply. I guess in this case, money didn't talk because if I'd used plastic to pay, there'd be a time stamp on said receipt. Oh well. I ask where the nearest servo is as I might as well fill the tank up to get that all important end docket in the process. BP Parkes gets the nod and apart from filling out the ride logs and getting an end witness signature, we are done. In more ways than one too I might add.

The cold and lack of sleep has taken its toll and we are in no rush to head to check in. Well we were but we still have plenty of time so a nice hot shower and a change of clothes is always refreshing so we do that, fill out the logs, sorted the receipts, got Belinda to make a copy of the Bogan Gate receipt and then we finally headed to check in, at the Parkes Services Club.

Enroute to check in.

We headed up to the Starlight Lounge and no sooner than we entered, we were "escorted" by Lynne (LTP) to the check in table where Michael (fatman) marked us off as arrivals. We then proceed to receive our prepaid merchanise and, getting talked into scored a pair of IBA coffee mugs. LTP then "escorted" us to the verification table where we handed in our ride logs and receipts. Here, Kimmie become our witness and once we were both verified, our ride is officially over.

Wow! This very special 2up SS1600K, so full of meaning was in the bag and what a very special bag it was too.

Yes, we are here!

I'm at pains to disclose on what transpired at the actual muster. I'll leave that for others to divulge should they so desire. Sure there was the comradarie, the jokes, the catching up, the taunts, the serious stuff, the good will but more so, those of us there shared in something very special, history was being created and from what I experienced, deep, strong foundations were laid for IBA Australia. Big kudos to all involved and I will say this, long may we ride!

Pleasure to make your acquaintance Nevertire Nic.

Ah, mates!

Liz, meet Daisy.

Liz, meet TJ.

What's a photo shoot without a selfie?

Serious business this!

Glen and Russell.

Skidoo and Skidette.

Skidoodle and Skidette.

Big Dogs.

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Premier Member
Part Three of Three
3rd July 2016

For those staying overnight and for another group photo, after meeting at the Services Club we all headed to the Parkes radio telescope at 07:40.

Once the photo bombing of the telescope was done, Liz and I made tracks for home. Heading back via Narromine. It was cool but not as cold as the previous two days and by the time we were nearing Narromine, we had blue and warm sunny skies.

Peak Hill.




One for Skidette. Cobar without a bike in sight.

This changed as we headed to Nyngan and we entered a cold air mass, then sunny skies again just the other side of Cobar.

Long may we ride!

As we were not on a timed ride, the pressure was off and the riding relaxed as we put the kays under the hoops. Stopped for a feed from our stores at the new Lilydale rest area about a 100kms west of Cobar and before I was even off the bike, I was listening to some bloke commenting on what a great looking FJR we were riding. Lol, I had to laugh. I replied with something like, "Oh yeah, this is a very rare 1400cc model. Cost me a bomb!"

You could see the penny drop. "Steve" and his wife were on the "lap of Oz" in a shiny new 4x4 and caravan. He told me he sold his bike and had just bought the new wheels we were looking out. Once he realised his mistaken identity with my bike, he told me the bike he'd just sold was a Kawasaki Vulcan 1500. "That's what Liz's brother-in-law rides." So we had some common ground and even his wife chimed in saying that she too missed the "bullet proof" kwaka." Nice people, they offered us cold drinks, tea or coffee with cake. Thanking them for the offer but we were keen to beat the sun before it hit the horizon. We did chat for a bit, I told them of what we had just been up to (they'd never heard of long distance riding) and I helped them with information about Broken Hill. Saying their goodbyes they left us to finish our meal and then drove off.

Steve's rig.

Love the green outback vistas.

In time we did too riding off looking forward to fuelling up at the BP at Wilcannia and those last 2hrs/200 cliks to home base.

The air started to become cold again and on the last five kms stretch, we hit one of those ruts that you can't see but geez you can feel it. Ouch, my back and Liz's hip still hurt.

Your Parkes telescope and raise you two satellite dishes and one Outback Astronomy.

Once past Outback Astronomy, Liz's camera battery was flat so bugger, no more pics.
Safely back at home base, with all the gear put away, showered and relaxing I say to Liz, "You know, you were a part of history being made, all of us there were creating a unique piece of Australian LD riding history. Never again will a Parkes Muster like this one occur!" Her gasp of air as she realised the enormity of what we had just accomplished was the icing on the cake for me. Talk about special rides, this one had so much in it and is right up there with the very best rides under my belt. IBA Australia, long may we ride indeed!

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Well-Known Member
I'm always in awe of (1) the amount of wildlife you have to deal with and (2) the capacity of IBA pillions to deal with the distances!

It was great to see you both there - until next time, eh?


Premier Member
Wonderful ride, and equally wonderful report and pictures. Great to see you both at Parkes and hope to catch up again very soon


Well-Known Member
Great ride report Bazz. It was really great to catch up and have a chat, it's been too long.

Until next time.


Premier Member
@ Skidoo, lol, how can I not think of you and Joy when passing that Cobar "hot spot".

@ Rod, we are human, we become accustomed to stuff, just like LD riding and roos. Next time mate.

@ TJ, cheers mate, ta.

@ Rus, yeah, always mixed emotions riding through there.

@ Thanks Tele, good to have a chat at Parkes mate.

@ Crappy, it can be a challenge especially with paperwork. Liz losing (but found again after a huge loss of time and hair, lol) our ride log on a certain rally is a case in point.

@ Glen, cheers mate. Yep, was good to catch up and I was quietly chuffed to see you still had the same ZX. Next time for sure.


Well-known Member. Moderator
Thanks Bazz - sorry I missed this one first time through!
What a great ride and a great report!
I have never seen you (& Liz) take so many photos.
You have certainly ticked of a lot of very special places on this outing.
And I love it that you two place those wreaths on the Davo Plaque.
Thanks again!


Premier Member
@ Nico. Thanks mate, very special ride so deserved lots of pics.

@ spanner. Onya. Good to have met you at the muster.
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