Cape York to Wilsons Promontory on the BMW R 1200 GS Rallye X – Part Three

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The overnight stop at Cooktown was a decent affair with some nice digs at the Sovereign Resort Hotel. A nice meal with some good company included two of the blokes that helped Glenn Allerton lift the 2014 Australian Superbike Championship, and this year run Troy Guenther in ASBK. Wayne Hepburn and Nathan Webb of NextGen Motorsports like to live life to its fullest, somewhat like myself, and it was a big night…

Still, an early start to process the overnight MotoGP news and put the finishing touches on the Day Two Report from this trip was in order, before packing things up and hitting the road out of Cooktown at 0730 Saturday morning. 

The last day's route sheet and the Shoei Hornet X2 Adventure helmet ready to roll of Cooktown at 0730 this morning.
The last day’s route sheet and the Shoei Hornet X2 Adventure helmet ready to roll of Cooktown at 0730 this morning.

Today was always going to be a short affair, as the 140 BMW GS Safari Enduro participants wound their way south towards their final destination of Palm Cove via the Daintree, Cedar Bay National Park and the Bloomfield Road.

First time GS Safari participant Dylan Hinchcliffe fords a river crossing on the Bloomfield Track
First time GS Safari participant Dylan Hinchcliffe fords a river crossing on the Bloomfield Track

The track was in good condition and thus the riding was easy, and there was ample opportunites to sample the sights and stop for photos. 

Still not south enough yet for the crocodile warnings to cease
Still not south enough yet for the crocodile warnings to cease

I rolled into Palm Cove around lunchtime after the 230km final stage, and went to the hotel that was to host the final official Safari Dinner and shindig. I sampled the delights of the beach and the pool while waiting for the support crew to roll in.  

Some of the scenic highlights of the trek were the vistas from the top of the Donovan Range looking towards the mouth of Emmagen Creek and across to Mount Sorrow Ridge.

Donovan Ridge
Donovan Ridge

Then it was down to sea level around Cape Tribulation.

Cape Tribulation
Cape Tribulation

Once they arrived and some new more road oriented hoops were sourced for my R 1200 GS Rallye X mount, my now musty and dusty Alpinestars Tech-Touring kit were swapped over for the more road oriented BMW Street Guard gear, I decided to forego the dinner and hit the road again at 1500. 

The hub face on the end of the combined Paralever rear single-sided swingarm and driveshaft set-up laid bare as we changed tyres in Palm Cove
The hub face on the end of the combined Paralever rear single-sided swingarm and driveshaft set-up laid bare as we changed tyres in Palm Cove

I also switched the Dynamic ESA system from Enduro Pro to Road mode in anticipation of the smoother journey ahead. 

The Alpinestars Tech Touring suit allowed me to stay relatively cool in the Cape York conditions but was certainly not this colour three days earlier!
The Alpinestars Tech Touring suit allowed me to stay relatively cool in the Cape York conditions but was certainly not this colour three days earlier!

Keen to get some more kilometres under my wheels I rode south through Innisfail and Ingham before skirting around Townsville, then left the coast and headed inland towards my destination for the night, Charters Towers.

I refuelled in Charters Towers around 2030 after riding well into the night and completing 500km for the evening , and around 750km for the day when including the morning run from Cooktown to Palm Cove via the dirt.

Once I hit the tar proper at Palm Cove the Dynamic ESA system setting was switched from Enduro Pro to Road mode.
Once I hit the tar proper at Palm Cove the Dynamic ESA system setting was switched from Enduro Pro to Road mode.

Evidence of previous marsupial massacres was firmly stained into the tarmac in many places once I turned inland, prompting me to ratchet up the level of concentration to maximum and the speeds to drop. This saw fuel economy improve dramatically.

Over the final 130km of the night the big GS sipped only six litres of fuel, suggesting that if riding for maximum economy a 400km range is realistic from the 20-litre fuel tank. A bit different than the previous day, when I had been running on fumes after half that distance, due to some over exuberant extension of the right wrist. 

I chose a $75 room at the Royal Private Hotel as my digs for the night. The hotelier Patricia greeted me with a smile and a glass of red wine before showing me to my room. Then it was down to work to pen this update while watching MotoGP qualifying.  

Apologies for the images today not being the best, I had to resort to iPhone photography today as the small digital camera I had with me had been accidentally switched on and drained. 

GS Safari Enduro done, and most thoroughly dusted! Now I leave the tour and hit the road on my own heading for Wilsons Promontory
GS Safari Enduro done, and most thoroughly dusted! Now I leave the tour and hit the road on my own heading for Wilsons Promontory

Over the next few days I will wend my way south towards Wilsons Promontory to complete a tip to tip run from Australia’s northernmost point to the southernmost point. Stay tuned for more as the trip unfolds and I hope you are enjoying the ride. 

Continue to Part Four


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Trev fords a floodway on a track near Roma Flats in FNQ

Cape to Cape with the R 1200 GS Rallye X | Part 1

Cape York to Wilsons Promontory on the BMW R 1200 GS Rallye X -...

Cape to Cape with the R 1200 GS Rallye X | Part 2

Cape York to Wilsons Promontory on the BMW R 1200 GS Rallye X -...

Cape to Cape with the R 1200 GS Rallye X | Part 4

Cape York to Wilsons Promontory on the BMW R 1200 GS Rallye X –...

Cape to Cape with the R 1200 GS Rallye X | Part 5

Cape York to Wilsons Promontory on the BMW R 1200 GS Rallye X –...
The R 1200 GS Rallye X pictured on the road back out of Wilsons Promontory

Cape to Cape with the R 1200 GS Rallye X | Part 6

Cape York to Wilsons Promontory on the BMW R 1200 GS Rallye X –...