At the first gate my glasses fogged up immediately. I partly lowered them to see over the top, closed the gate and followed Donnie and Raman into the jungle. The glasses began to unfog as I moved. The track was in shadow and was muddy. I had sun glaring in my eyes and as I reached up to push my glasses back up I got caught in a rut in the mud at about 15km/h and dropped the bike. The others were out of sight and sound ahead. I got my bike up and put my tripod in my backpack as one of its straps had broken off. The side box got a small dent as well. Otherwise I was ready to go again. I took the glasses off. The mud was slippery as butter however with two hands on the bars and proper vision I headed on wondering what the infamous “Big Red” (the biggest hill and most challenge part of the CREB apparently) would be like. “Gee this could be bad. Maybe the track is too wet”.
I came around a bend and up a hill a little further on to watch Raman attempt a hill and drop his bike.
I parked mine and went to walk up the hill to help hill. My feet were slipping! I tried walking sideways…I nearly fell over several times before I got up to him. We managed to pick the bike up and Raman got going again. He mentioned he had already gone done once before that he got on camera. I nearly hurt my back walking down the hill when I slipped. “Friggin hell, this is slippery”
I have to admit I was a little worried about getting up this one. Raman was gone. “Oh well, here goes”. I took a different line and got up fine.
The side boxes are looking awfully banged up these days and the right box actually partly came off on this stack. I late found his phone in the creek too. It was off when it went it in. We’ll see if it works. I’d be very surprised. It was in there for perhaps 15 minutes.
Raman noticed his water pump housing is broken. Oh damn! Poor Donnie, ahhh deary me.
With some quicksteel and a few other odds and ends I have for such eventualities we patched the bike back together.
Raman forgot to add water to the radiator (he did add water to the coolant tank) so it got pretty hot before he realised. Hopefully no damage.
Big Red wasn’t all that bad after all. No rock ledges and not that steep, just lots of clay that was moist. I can image it would have been bad if were any wetter!
Unfortunately Raman dropped his poor ol bike again an the fix broke. So fix number two. This time it wasn’t as elegant and didn’t seal priorly. Several hours and lots of fiddling later we got back on the track heading north with a slow leak that require topping up every little while.
Finally we got out and headed up to Donnie’s mate, Mark, at Rossville. Raman called Yamaha in Cairns with the last five minutes of the day before 5pm. We are in luck, the part is in Australia and will be in Cairns by Monday (its Thursday evening).
A little of the CREB captured on video.