Silverton 1600

When I was planning my FarRide East#42 I saw that to ride from Home to Silverton would be a 1600Km plus ride. To incorporate this ride into the FarRide proved too difficult so I thought I would take a nice easy FR10 to get to Silverton and then do the big one for the ride home.

After Check-in and lunch I discussed my plan for a 1600 ride home with Reader57 (FR#176) and I asked him if he would sign my “Start verification” document for me which he readily agreed. My original plan was to try to get a start docket from somewhere in Silverton however this proved to be impossible so “Plan B” is to start from the Coles Express in Broken Hill that opens early.

Packed and ready to roll

I rise with the alarm at 05:30 and pack my bike in the dark. It is a magnificent sunrise that I enjoy with my morning cuppa. As I am finishing my cuppa, Derrick (FR#22) rides off from his camp and I give him a cheery wave to send him on his way. While I am putting on my helmet and jacket Reader57 is up and wishes me safe travels.

When I ride out of the camp ground and on to the road back to Broken Hill I find I am riding directly into the sun with no visibility of the road unless I ride one handed and use the other as a sunshield. It is impossible to see more than a few metres in front of the bike and I ride very slowly toward town mindful of any wild life that may be present.

Left at the first roundabout and down about a kilometre is the Coles Express service station my GPS was unable to find on Saturday. Here I fill my tank to its maximum and get my start docket showing 06:51. I am now on the clock and find my way out of town and on to the highway heading east. Fortunately a band of cloud is blocking the glare from the sun and I am soon up to cruising speed enjoying the few sweeping bends before the road straightens for the long run to Wilcannia and Cobar.

As I ride past Little Topar, Enterprise (FR#130), Eddie (FR#535) and Knave (FR#495) pull out from the roadhouse behind me and before too long all of them have rounded me up and cruised off into the distance. Although I am carrying a 5 litre jerry can I am trying to conserve fuel so I can get through to Cobar. If I can keep my revs below 4000 (about 110kph plus GST) I will be ok but this is getting fairly close to the limit with the headwinds and crosswinds that are picking up as the day goes on.

Before too long I am through Wilcannia and I have just passed a road train when I see Knave pulled over on the side of the road with his helmet off and talking on his phone. The road train is too close for me to stop to see if he needs a hand but a little further along I catch Eddie who is riding slowly to see if Knave is coming along. I pass a message to Eddie that I think Knave might be having some issue and leave it with him. In the meantime the road train has passed me again. A little further along I wave to Enterprise as he is doubling back to lend any needed assistance.

As I approach the Emmdale Roadhouse, the last stop for fuel before Cobar, I scroll through the bikes computer and calculate I am going to be ok for fuel. My low fuel light comes on about 40kms past Emmdale and I pull into the Bulla Park rest area to empty the jerry into my tank. When I arrive in Cobar the bikes computer tells me I still have about 60kms range or a bit over 3litres of fuel in the tank.

I pull into the BP in Cobar as the console operator at the Shell up the road told me on Friday night that the BP makes the best hamburgers in Cobar. I get off the bike at the bowser and go inside, order a Bacon & Egg burger and return to the bowser to fill the bike, the empty jerry and clean my visor. I had hoped by the time I had done this the burger would be ready, but it took a further 20min before they delivered a B&E roll and I didn’t have time to argue that a burger has salad.


I stop for the obligatory photo of the Cobar sign and continue my trek east toward Nyngan. The wind has really picked up on my left front quarter and trying to push the bike across the road. It is taking quite a bit of effort to keep the bike in a straight line. As I approach Nyngan I begin to see the signs of the recent flooding with water in some places between Nyngan and Nevertire still lying close to the road along with the terrible stink of recently flooded land. Coming into Warren parts of the golf course is still flooded but the diehard golfers continue to play.

For FarRiders

I refuel at the big Shell roadhouse on the northern side of Gilgandra and note I am running about an hour ahead of my plan. I think this is more likely due to me being confused with the 3 different time zones with my planning than actually being an hour ahead. The run through the ranges before Coonabarabran is quite welcome after many miles of straight road however the road kill through here is very heavy. I would not like to be riding through here after dark.

Once through Coonabarabran and past the planets on the side of the road comes the long boring section through the Pilliga State forest to Narrabri. As I am coming into Narrabri I see a highway patrol car parked on the opposite side of the road. I look down at my speedo to see I am doing just under 60 in the 50 zone. As I get nearer to the police car the window opens and the policewoman waves her hand to tell me to slow down. This is the only police car I have seen since I left home on Friday and I am very relieved to have been given this warning.

My low fuel light comes on as I am coming into Moree and I pull into a truck stopping bay to empty the jerry into my tank. The sun sets when I am about halfway to Goondiwindi. No spectacular colours or fanfare, one minute the sun was on the horizon the next it was gone to be replaced by a huge moon on the opposite side of the road.

I stop at the BP roadhouse in Goondiwindi and refill the bike and the jerry for the final run home. The last 100km or so from Moree has seen the bugs come out in force and it is almost impossible to see through my visor when I stop at the BP. It is starting to get cool once the sun went down. I anticipate it will get quite cold as I approach Toowoomba from the west so I take this opportunity to layer up.

Makes it more of a Challenge

When I leave the BP in Goondiwindi I turn on to the Gore Hwy to take me through Millmerran to Toowoomba. It is a beautiful clear, cool night with a large full moon lighting up the countryside. There is no traffic heading my way but there seems to be a steady number of trucks heading south, making use of high beam almost impossible. I took note when I rode this highway on Friday there was very little roadkill along the way. This eased my mind a little but I was still very alert for any movement along the side of the road.

I am soon through Toowoomba and down the range into the Lockyer Valley. It is getting quite cold and I am glad that I layered up in Goondiwindi. I stop near the junction of the Warrego and Brisbane Valley Hwy’s and empty the jerry can into my tank for the last time. This will get me home without any worries.

When I turn off the Ipswich Mwy on to the Logan Mwy I am stopped by roadworks. There are another 3 stops along the way before the Gateway Bridge and once over the bridge further stops from Nudgee through to the Bruce Hwy. Once on to the Bruce I thought I would be past all the works but this was not to be, with another 15 min stop at North Lakes.

As I approach the Bribie Island exit I do some mental calculations and discover my odometer will only show 1606Km for the ride, cutting it too fine for an IBA ride. I had forgotten that my original plan had me starting from Silverton and not Broken Hill. A ride up the highway to the Coles Express at Wildhorse Mountain for a corner docket and then a double back to Bribie Island gave me enough buffer. I refuelled for my finish docket at the BP on Bribie a little after 01:00 with 1641Km on the odometer and 1661Km on the GPS.

Garmin Stats

Ride Date: 16/10/2016
Bike: BMW R1200ST
Distance: 1661Km (GPS)
Departure Town: Broken Hill.
State: NSW
Ride Name: Silverton 1600




Well-Known Member
The bugs were bad for those heading south later in the day also Harry. Thanks for sharing your SS 1600km, top pics also.


Well-Known Member
I know how you feel Harry. I am still getting one from the 10th August. It has been certified and a certificate produced and sent. It just hasn't arrived here yet. Howard emailed the copy of it to me but the mail version....................................?????

Great that you got yours!


Premier Member
The three step. Do the ride, submit the paperwork, then back to normal life and it's almost a surprise when the paperwork comes back.

Well done!