I was stiff and sore after the St Mary’s Peak walk and decided to high tail it the 80 ks north to Blinman and find a room at the Blinman hotel (http://www.blinmanhotel.com/).
Blinman is the end of the bitumen and the road there, is one of rolling curves with only the wandering cattle, emus and kangaroos a deterrent to winding open the throttle on the bike.
The Blinman pub was a hoot. Friday night and full of locals in 10 gallon hats ready for the weekend and the Blinman gymkhana (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Blinman-Gymkhana/191403137699802) that was to take place the next day .
A day and night at Blinman gave me the opportunity to explore some of the sights in around this part of the Ranges. The TV in the pub was coming from the Alice and there was absolutely no mobile phone, this combined with the end of bitumen and the next stop being Coober Pedy – Blinman gave a real sense of being on the edge of the outback. But the marinated lamb and feta cheese pizzas were a fantastic find and unexpected!
My Moto Guzzi is a road bike but I am a bit of a foolhardy piecemeal adventurer and I do take it off road onto the dirt and gravel. It stretches my comfort zone but it means I get to some beautiful places like Parachilna and Brachina gorges in the northern Flinders Ranges.
The roads in Parachilna Gorge were good quality and not too taxing and the little road side huts provided shade and water as the sun rose and the day heated up.
Brachina Gorge was far more technical and I bogged the bike at a water crossing. The futility of me pulling a 250kg motorbike out of the bog soon became apparent so I sat and waited for a vehicle to come along. Luckily, a four wheel drive truck soon arrived and the guys on board gave me a hand to pull the bike out.
Out of the bog the proven foolhardy piecemeal adventurer was soon on his way again