A very early start today as a smattering of rain roused us in our swags around 4.15am. A couple of hardy souls decided to stay up and shoot the breeze at this inglorious time, much to the chagrin of the many still in swags.
Brad honoured Len Beadell, the man who surveyed and cut this track from the red dirt and dust, by changing his rear tyre several times; Len used to spend his nights mending the tyres he spiked as he bashed through the bush in his Landrover. Our campsite and along the track in general has a very healthy covering of flowers which made it very pretty however a cloudy start to the day meant not a lot of great morning photos.
We continued on with the aim of getting to Emu Camp Grounds; this target was about 220 kilometres away.
This was an aim well short of our previous days tallies but it was of course, riding on the Anne Beadell. There are two ways to do the Anne Beadell, hard and harder. General impressions and observations were that once we were in Tallaringa Conservation Park, where the real tough stuff starts, the track was a little better than last year, but that from Tallaringa Well it was tougher. Generally though having had the experience of the previous year the bikes were travelling faster despite the conditions. No one fell off their bikes but most went off the track, finding a way straight through and pulling up or re-joining the track further on.
Those of us who had been on the trek the previous year had many memories flooding back when we went past the site of last year’s trailer disaster. The tyre that we used to prop up old Chuck was still on the side of the road and a few tracks in and out of the spot but otherwise evidence of our days there fixing the trailer were eroded away. We paused and nodded but continued on.
For the D-Max and trailer it was still very hard, and our target was not achieved. We fell short about 20 kilometres from Emu, camping in the lee swale of a nice sandhill, just off the track. We again enjoyed an excellent pre-cooked meal of chilli con carne. A tally of damage for the day was low and heartening; no vehicle, trailer or bike damage and only a leaking bottle of port and jar of pickles in one of the tubs. All in all not a bad result.