RBLR1000 - John Morning


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RBLR1000: 11th June 2016

Here I am first out the starting gate at Squires cafe waiting for the start at 0500 weather forecast rain and fog most of the day 'oh deep joy!!' along side is a lad called Dale on a Honda Gold wing whilst waiting for the off we decided to do the ride together mutual support and all that.

As there was delays likely on the north bound A1 due to long running road works Dale took us North via the A19 and the Tyne tunnel then back to the A1 North of Newcastle, by this time the weather had got into it's routine that is rain that nasty persistent drizzle.

The first stop was Berwick-on-tweed fuel quick drink and a snack then on to Dreghorn on the Edinburgh bypass the second stop a top up and get in the traffic for the Forth road bridge while we were waiting we had a grand stand seat for the construction of the second Forth road bridge.

North on the A9 average speed cameras from Perth to Inverness it does get a bit tedious and the rain was no help as the bulk of the A9 North of Berwick is on the coast we had sea fog to contend with as well by the time we got to Inverness it was time for a break hot drink and a hot snack.

I changed my bike in January from a 1999 BMW R1100 GS to a 2007 R1200 GS now it is more refined, faster and lighter and nicer to ride, two irritating niggles with the bike.

The saddle is uncomfortable so my poor arris was getting grief again (see the Three corners write up)
The bike only has a 20 Ltr tank which give a range of 175 miles against the R1100 GS 25 Ltr tank with a 200+ miles range.

I had the seat recovered after the ride as it had ordinary upholstery foam for motorcycle foam which is much firmer a couple of test rides later problem solved. I have acquired a 33 Ltr GSA tank that should give approx 300 miles range that is being fitted soon I was reluctant to fit before the RBLR ride as it is unknown so it will be fitted on the 24th June ( I should have got a GSA in the first place)

That's enough moaning back to the ride.

North of Inverness the A9 is free of cameras as is the A99 to Wick but as both roads follow the coast the rain was taking it turn with the fog at one point rain and fog North of Helmsdale on the A9 there is an uphill right hand hairpin bend which due to the rain and fog I almost missed threw the bike over scraping the foot peg all the way screaming like a girl after a stop to get the water off the inside of the visor and regain my equilibrium we continued North.

The rain stopped as we turned right on to the A99 and we had a good run up to the third stop Tesco's at Wick at this point Dale and I got separated riding through Wick town centre it transpired that he had stopped for fuel at the garage in the town I carried on to Tesco's just outside the town we did not see each other until we got back to squires.

South bound to Inverness thankfully rain free I had a good fast ride to the fourth stop at Fort William Tea and a sandwich a quick scrub with wet wipes change the by now wet neck tube and gloves south on the A82 in company with three other riders we caught up with rain at Glen Coe.

I lost the other three as I had to stop at Teabay services on the M6 for fuel and a tea (I should have got a GSA) continued on to Birch services on the M62 the fifth and last stop before Squires the rain was on and off like a tap.

The final fifty odd miles was through road works on the M62 my first RBLR ride was in 2013 and there was road works on the M62 then do they ever stop??

Got a bacon roll and a tea at Squires most welcome finally fell into bed at 3 am

I completed the ride in twenty one hours thirty minutes and raised £100.00 pounds for the Royal British Legion.

Thanks for looking

John Morning