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Author Topic: Australian Alps...on 110cc! WOT??  (Read 368 times)
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glitch_oz
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« on: April 14, 2017, 06:50:22 AM »

!!! WE DELIVER !!!!   (Australia Post slogan)




....ONLY sometimes...we're indisposed    poser !



A 1300m journey of Australia's High Country/ Snowy Mountains on some tiny, 110cc, semi-auto 4 speed Hondas, ex-Australia Post delivery bikes
bought at auction (local cult bikes and very much sought after for their toughness)

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glitch_oz
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« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2017, 07:00:12 AM »

A pair of touring-rigged "Posties"  (Honda CT110)

It wasn’t intended that way, never thought about it…actually, it was thought just as a big laugh, but clocking about 2000km around the Snowies and Vic Alps has shown it loud and clear: EVERYONE LOVES the Postie !!   clap

Not a photo-stop along the road when EVERY passing vehicle wanted to stop to check us out, oldies and kids, any ilk and colour…commenting, shouting, waving, GRINNING….even the local rice-boys stuck their fists out of the souped-up Datsun 120Y and gave the thumbs up….now…that would have to be the ultimate tick of approval, ay?? Fully sick, moite !!

 lol

There’s the ‘Tanker”, the CT110 RR Adventure  (because of its "race-dual-headlight" mask and the XR250 auxiliary-tank holding a whopping 9.7 litres (2.25gallons)  of extra juice)….and the tiny electronic pushbike-Speedo!
Invaluable piece of equipment that….as it shows the time as well.

And there’s “the other one”, the bog standard CT110 Plain Jane. Leaking oil like a piece of rusted guttering….as it turned out. Not much, but constant.  :shock:
 
Both with a butchered Ventura rack and a piece of exquisitely shaped 8mm Marine Plywood as a “stable-table”….
Michelangelo would’ve been proud of it.  :wink:

Both in good mechanical shape, fresh brake shoes, oiled brake-cables, serviced freshly, a combo of whatever tyre Aussie Post could lay their hands on cheaply enough, all classy East-Asian Dubiellis...

The Longrange-tank is still back-flooding the OEM tank and making it overflow if the tap isn’t turned off in time, drenching the bike from the seat downwards…didn’t get around to more complex engineering on that one yet.
Kills the feckin ants, anyway…

All loaded onto the trailer which sprouts rusted out bottom seams along the sides and a single-hinged tailgate (the other one rusted out and fell off ages ago), but the squeaky springs can’t be heard when caging along above 80kmh with the windows down….at least the wheel bearings are freshly packed with grease and the electrics work…. most of the time.
 lol



With the bushfires lately and all that, we decided for the “Long Way Around”, and trailer it on the Hume past Albury and well into NSW for the turnoff to Tumut, then up the Snowy Mountain Hwy



past Blowering Dam (what a sorry sight) onto the High Plains to Adaminaby….as ‘base-camp” for some two-day loops.



The hailstorm 30km short of Kiandra came out of the black….black skies, that is.
The Alpine Caravan Park proved to be as vacant as we found most of the Snowies for that week…hey, this is prime holiday season, and there isn’t a soul around ?
Strange !!

Next morning… and the skies were as a chequered as on the previous afternoon…
Packed up with some tools and bare-minimum camping gear, we set off across the High Plains, the gravel roads towards Tharwa/ Canberra.
Finally...up and going...
 clap

Adaminaby Backcountry...









The Murrumbidgee River Bridge





Heading North-East into the Namadgi National Park







One less rail, and  ....










Still heading north-east







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glitch_oz
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« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2017, 07:06:15 AM »

What a brilliant run into the bottom end of the Australian Capital Territory (Canberra), a couple of GS's flew by...then it's off to the remains of the old Orroral Tracking Station, a leftover of NASA's involvement during the time of their early space flights.
Houston, we've got a problem.  
 "eff off!!"



Someone else is watching nowadays...plenty of the buggers everywhere.



We skip the road to Honeysuckle, another of the old Tracking sites...the bridge at Tharwa is closed, which is fine with us, we're by-passing Canberra to the West, anyway, Brindabella and Cotter Dam ...





Canberra's "Needle" (TV-tower) in the far back...



A bit of dirt, then some eerie twisties along the spine of a ridge into the barren, desolate landscape around Wee Jasper...the drought is awful around here, the worst we'd see during our week.





Back onto the dirt, the going is quite good, direction Tumut....and something solid's brewing overhead.



How much fun can be had, when "waterproofing" the tent-roof with garbage bags during a gale...New Years Eve at Tumut. clap





While looking a bit dodgy still, it's off towards Tumbarumba....this time not via Batlow, but some cracker-roads through the pine plantations towards Rosewood before the tiny single-laner into town...











New Years Rodeo in Tumbarumba, the place is rockin'.




More to come...
« Last Edit: April 15, 2017, 02:25:10 AM by glitch_oz » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2017, 09:30:41 PM »

Nicely done Glitch! It is so refreshing to see adventures taking place on vintage bikes! Especially 110cc posties! We need reminders like this to keep our feet planted in reality and remembering how elemental motorcycling can be. I've been riding my 1977 BMW, and marvel at how beautiful and capable it is. When I'm on it I never miss the new bikes.
Thank you for your enthusiasm and sharing your report with us.  ricky ricky
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glitch_oz
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« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2017, 02:39:11 AM »

Nicely done Glitch! It is so refreshing to see adventures taking place on vintage bikes! Especially 110cc posties! We need reminders like this to keep our feet planted in reality and remembering how elemental motorcycling can be. I've been riding my 1977 BMW, and marvel at how beautiful and capable it is. When I'm on it I never miss the new bikes.
Thank you for your enthusiasm and sharing your report with us.  ricky ricky


It's an older yarn...and really, it turned out a tester/ pre-ride to some fairly serious traveling about a year later when we took the same bikes for a run up Australia's East Coast from Brisbane via Fraser Island
(7.5hp on the biggest sand-island on the globe...there's a laugh!! lol) and up to Cairns....ultimately, up to the very northern tip of Australia, Cape York.

Old, small, no power, no brakes, no nothing....but Gosh, what a load of fun. Ceased engines, burned electrics, endless flats and busted spokes and 1500 miles of sand and dust and river-crossings.
If one of the guys called right now,...I'd go again! This very afternoon. thumb
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glitch_oz
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« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2017, 02:41:32 AM »

Paddy's River Falls...the road's a broken-up single-laner and steep at the end.



A place we've often gone past with the start of the Elliott Way so close...







Screaming the Elliott downhill









The steep climb up from Tumut2 Powerstation was another scream....trying to keep the 110cc redlining in 2.gear  Cool  Cool ....that's a whopping 40kmh, folks  roll:

Fuel transfer at Cabramurra, back-flooding one tank, while jiggling across into the other. Another spectacle that found the odd "admirer"  Cheesy





Talking with the oldtimer in the shop, he pointed out a little known dirt-road across the top to Mt. Selwyn.
Heavy drizzle hit as we tried to dodge the fist-sized rocks at the start of it....the views were clogged by low clouds and we were glad to "get it over and done with"...perhaps another day...top-gear-redline across the Tantangarra-ridge from Kiandra to base-camp at Adaminaby.

Visitors for the night....the Rotel-Tours "Pigeon-Transporter"

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glitch_oz
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« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2017, 02:46:39 AM »

Chequered skies for the tootle across to Jindabyne....the wind from the back blows us uphill to the Berridale turnoff,



shortly after we duck into the road to Buckenderra, which turn out to only be a holiday resort.
Just short of the place, the Wainui Rd. sounded distinctly Kiwi-style...enough to have a go at it, as the general direction points towards Eucumbene Dam....and what a bewdy of a road !!



And one for Marty  lollollollol:






Jumping the grid...





Did you see THAT??? BOTH hoops off the deck....YEEHAA !!!



WOT??? No pic? shite !!!...ah well, next one then...let's move..

More Wainui Rd.




Out the other end and Lake Eucumbene isn't far off





"Single-laner" to the lookout  :wink:



Jindabyne was a quick refueling-stop for all involved, the National Park Ranger at the toll booth laughed her head off and let us through without fees...the stop at the little lake in Thredbo turned lengthy, due to more postie-enquiries by one of the council workers coming past on a WR250




Then the long climb up to Deadhorse Gap

...and some photo-goofing around up there.








Time to hit the Alpine Way proper....the pics will do the talking










Geehi Camp Area....and ready for the last leg into Khancoban








Scammels Lookout, late afternoon light bathing the hills



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glitch_oz
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« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2017, 02:50:26 AM »

There's just no way around the "Switchyard Special" for brecky at the Khancoban store...it's a tradition not to be broken, big bike or postie, doesn't matter.
But we might as well front up with bikes ready packed....



A short, cruisy stretch along the valley floor....then the little postie groans at the sight of a 30km climb, the first of a batch of 3 towards Cabramurra.

Plenty of time this time around to not just blast through, but explore some many of the smaller tracks seemingly leading nowhere..... a whole leisurly morning of Alpine country MAGIC.



Where IS that extra gear, 4 ain't enough !



Along the road....













One of the many tracks off the main bitumen









Close to Cabramurra



Redline-cornering on a CT110.... lollollol:





Across the top...



!!! WE DELIVER !!! :wink:  Cool



Cabramurra



Jiggle it, baby....refueling in the sticks

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glitch_oz
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« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2017, 03:11:03 AM »

After a short break it's off for another bite on that dirt road across from Cabramurra to Mt. Selwyn and the possible find of the old Cabramurra airstrip, used during the construction of the town.

Cabramurra Dam/ Water supply....







This time...views galore !!! Cheesy



Amazing where stuff can grow...



Found the old airstrip !!!





Up at Mt. Selwyn



After a dry-roads-belting across the Tantangarra range (the little shitter tops at 95kmh, yeeha  lollol: ) we're back at base camp in Adaminaby.




A late stroll through Adaminaby...and an unexpected find of some Postie-kickstarter parts, Christ !!! :shock:  :shock:
Yup, they're ours !!
The servo comes good with a new bolt and washer out of their box of bits, the bolt needs holding in though, to make sure it doesn't go walkabouts again  Cool



The hire-shop seems to run by Northern Hemisphere seasons  lollol:



....how many sheets of corrugated tin in one wall?
Local council works site....



All ready to rock for tomorrow...it's off to Victoria.... Mt. Beauty area for some more exploring....


Taking it easy on the way across and sussing out a couple of tiny byways to add to future rides, we checked in under the trees of the, by now boiling Tawonga Caravan Park, right on the river.

Didn’t really feel like riding after a few hours in the cage and the tent-setup….but scrambled late for a quick bash up to Falls Creek.

Through some eerie burned out areas and extremely sparse traffic, the top greeted us with a couple of low-hanging black-bellies and some sparse spittles of rain… no use hanging around when the downhill leg was beckoning…and what a scream that turned out to be.  rollclap:



Aided by great visibility due to the sparse leaf-work after the long dry and the fires, the little 110s went for a lungful and gave it their all.

Being so light, they zip through corners anyway, but this was ridiculous, ....what a load of fun. Soon we caught the local tradies-ute, ladders on the rack and all, he didn’t make it hard…another ute a few corners later gave it a try…but gave up just when it was getting …hmmm…interesting,  lollol: .... next was a Subaru that gave us a run for the money  :evil:  lol: , but no match in the end…. a nice, sharpish righthander put that one home.  :devil:
Last on the list was a Mazda3 just before town…game, set, righthander, done…wot, game finished? Bumma !!  :shock:  :shock:  Cheesy

What a hoot!!!! Yeahhhhh!
Just short of meltdown  (or starting the next bushfire), the little screampots pulled into the servo…2 bikes, 3 tanks, $18…yup, enough leftover for some pub-grub and a couple of foamies. thumb
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glitch_oz
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« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2017, 03:18:37 AM »

With the weather a bit on the shonky side --big, black clouds crowding the otherwise blue skies--we're going for day-rides, which also means, that we won't have to carry the camping gear.

Many have been up the Tawonga Gap, but not like this, I bet.





Burning tyrees dropping onto the road have molten deep gouges out of the bitumen, now the traffic peels big gobs of grovel out of those scars




Not too badly affected was the Hotham road, pretty good actually, let's have a poke around ....
















Through desrted Hotham Height and out the other end towards Dinner Plains, the bush is alive...






...and just before gitting Omeo, it's down the Cassilis Road towards Swifts Creek, as that part of the Omeo Hwy is as boring as batshit.





Swifts Creek Bakery comes up trumps on the egg 'n bacon rolls, as usual   :thumbs:  before it's back the same way through Omeo and north to the Blue Duck Inn/ Anglers Rest.
Once more, visibility is stunning due top the dry, time for another twisties-party, they're tight enough to make it a challenge even on the little bikes....again, no traffic at all.








Despite the "closed till 4.30" sign at the door of the Blue Duck, the publican quickly checked on us, huddled for shade under the big poplar tree, transferring fuel again...





Another short piece of Omeo Hwy twisties....
...then up the Bogong High Plains Road into the back of Falls Creek, 30-odd k's of dirt....which wasn't the problem, but the corrugation shook the fillings loose, 30mm suspension travel just don't go far  lol
Still, beautiful country up there, even if bone-dry.

Let's enjoy it....impressions along the way.
















Close to Falls Creek, the dam feeds the snow-making guns during winter



Along the last few k's before the bitumen, into Falls Creek.




Somehow there was no hurry this time....no downhill scream chasing cages back to Mt. Beauty.
The supermarket was still open, some tucker and a few ice-cold stubbies found their way back to the tent, feet up....the 2 little bikes closeby like pets... talking into the night....
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glitch_oz
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« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2017, 03:20:54 AM »

"Just a half-day tootle---back early afternoon " ....taking it easy, loading up the bikes and gear for the trip home tomorrow morning.

Ok then...

Many moons ago we'd done a road from MittaMitta to Tawonga/ Mt. Beauty with the trusty Nissan 4WD, let's see if we can find the start of it from the Mt. Beauty side.
The guy at the servo mumbles something about Trappers Gap and lots of dirt/ bushfires/ wildlife and all that, but describes the "entry" from Tawonga....we'll give it a whirl.



...and it turns out to be quite a good track.







Lots of leaf litter though, which makes things pretty skittish sometimes.... sideways in fact  lol:






Yours Truly scuttling that postie  Cheesy

No harm done but most probably prevented worse, coming around a sharp righthander 2 bends down and....







And it's getting HOT...popping out the MittaMitta end of the road...time for a break, the sweat is starting to run.

No doubt what this place is... lol:



As things took longer than planned, it's onto the Mitta Mitta back-road, right along the currently flooded Mitta Mitta River, following upstream to Eskdale, a beauty of a litle wiggler...














Not wanting the long way around through the Lockhard Gap and the dreaded Red Bank Road up the Kiewa, we'd found a tiny, wiggly line on an old Shell map the night before, leading across the range from Eskdale into the Kiewa Valley.

Time for asking around in Eskdale to get some local info.
The pub sounds a logical choice  lol: ....and it's cool !!



"Oi, Geoff...here's a bloke for you, wants to go across the range to Dederang, you know every wombat-hole up there?!!"

Geoff looks trustworthy enough after his umpteenth beer that morning...
"to the end of the bitumen... Smyth Rd....T-intersection turn off right, right?...then a bit left, right?
2 cattlegrids, then turn off across the NEW grid and follow the road, get's you right over the top...."

Piece of cake, right...right? I'm riddled....but what the hell. right?

Off we go... to the end of the bitumen...there's a bit of dirt, a side-road to the right, then more bitumen ahead....where to now??
An rusty, clapped-out Commodore comes along, stops...the guy's a bad stutterer, conversation impossible, we might finish up in Afghanistan.....



A minute later a guy in thongs and T-shirt comes barrelling out of a Sahara dust-storm on a 250 Yammie, stops...."I'm not from here"
Ahhh, Christ !!
Thinking about timing, petrol, distances...we'll just turn into that side-road, a sign proclaims Smyth Rd., which was part of that clear-as-bells jumble in the pub... through some farming country, up a side-valley, across some cattle-grids, but no NEW grid, hmmmm.
The road finishes a few k's later at another grid and some fencing "Private Property, Keep out !!!".....and just to the right is a brandnew, galvanised-sparkling cattle grid....framed a couple of barely legible signs, one displaying "Dederang".
Got it !!



« Last Edit: April 15, 2017, 10:31:57 PM by glitch_oz » Logged

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glitch_oz
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« Reply #11 on: April 15, 2017, 10:34:00 PM »

A barely discernable track leads across a paddock, disappearing in the bush beyond...



a couple of young guys with a 4WD spraying blackberries are a welcome break to re-confirm the track....until they get into a discussion about the "upper" and 'lower" tracks, one with a very steep descent into the Kiewa valley, the other one with a "rough bit" up top.

"anyway...up on the ridge turn right, at the sign to the Winery turn left, downhill.... but there IS that rough bit, you know?"

!! Right!! Let's get out of here, I'm sick of this shit, let's just go and see what happens...
A little creek crossing with big, round rocks is the first challenge....no probs. At the split we stick to the left track, the "lower' one with the "rough bit".
The track deteriorates quickly, it's semi-overgrown, the green strip in the center hides all sorts of rocks and roots. It's getting rougher...and STEEPER!



Time for a break and a jiggler-session....and a good gulp of water.



It's rocky, rough and steep now, we're climbing towards the ridge.
2. gear dies in the arse, even first is struggling sometimes...this must be the "rough bit" the guys were talking about.
Right at the top, right??
It's getting even hotter, the scattered trees allowing quite a bit of sun through...
A short, steep stretch, then this:





 :shock:  :shock:  :shock:  :shock:   Shiiit !!
No way !!! :evil:
I go in for 5 meters, the little thing bucking wildly, then 1. gear just dies, it's just too steep, the motor just quits and stalls.  :roll:  :roll:
Even a proper 250Mxer would have it's moments here...
Yup, THIS IS the "rough bit"....but for how long??
It only looks about 80-100meters....and they didn't mention anything else....Huh?!!
Let's get to it then...bike back into 1., I'm pushing.....the little thing jumping, bucking, slipping and sliding uphill on those loose rocks, sometimes the bike goes quicker than I can follow, then I'm on my knees, back up and follow the handlebars, thanks God for the auto-clutch !!
After clearing the worst, half pushing and half getting dragged by the bike, I can hear myself going desperately for air, it's all black and stars in front of my eyes, rivers of sweat drenching everything....even the pants are soaked down to the knees, the kevlar like coarse sandpaper now.
One up, another to go.
This time Goodie tries to hold the rear of the tanker down to stop it from hopping around and stepping sideways all the time....it only works for a short stretch. Stopping is no option, both pusher and pushee would slide back down the hill, the bike has to be kept on the throttle....forward and upward.

300 easier meters in 1. gear and we're at a junction...and there's the sign to the winery and Kiewa Valley. Beatcha, ya BASTARD !! 
The rest should be a walk in the park.....:chug:  :chug:

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glitch_oz
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« Reply #12 on: April 15, 2017, 10:37:22 PM »


Looking down the track we slowly start to take in how steep it is....
not rocky and really rough, but rutted, roots and rocks everywhere and....steeeep!!


And we haven't got enough water...
Let's go!
The helmet goes over like a drenched sponge...



It proved a rough afternoon, partially manhandling the bikes downhill, the rest with feet-down, slipping and sliding sideways...engines turned off (going too slow for engine braking and that damn auto-clutch  Smiley ), 4.8km in 2.5 hours, right along the top of the spine of the ridge...water rationed to tiny sips.



In hindsight we should've perhaps turned back and take a punt on that "rough bit"....



We nearly got off and kissed the ground when we finally got to the gate at the winery and the bottom of the valley....

What a ride  clap

Needless to say that the first servo, then supermarket and ultimately the pub made a fortune on us  smile

There was just enough daylight left to load the bikes onto the trailer, the "half-day tootle" had blown-out somewhat  :wink:  :wink:

Lateron the black clouds broke and gave the place a decent soak, we couldn't care less...

!!! Delivered !!!
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« Reply #13 on: April 17, 2017, 09:00:19 AM »

Australian alps !!!! ...... poser




..
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glitch_oz
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« Reply #14 on: April 18, 2017, 07:30:40 AM »

Australian alps !!!! ...... poser




..

Ohh, look!
You here!!  smile
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« Reply #15 on: April 18, 2017, 09:10:12 AM »

yer need to come back over & try our new adventrue route between Christchuch & Blenheim.. use to be called ...state highway 1
but with all the shaking going on we are getting new routes yearly... Roll Eyes
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« Reply #16 on: May 02, 2017, 01:01:49 PM »

After a short break it's off for another bite on that dirt road across from Cabramurra to Mt. Selwyn and the possible find of the old Cabramurra airstrip, used during the construction of the town.
That airstrip has been well used long since then.  When I was in 38Sqn (Caribous), throughout the '70s, we used to go out there several times each Winter for ice and snow landing/takeoff praccy.  'Twas fun!
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glitch_oz
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« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2017, 11:16:13 PM »

yer need to come back over & try our new adventrue route between Christchuch & Blenheim.. use to be called ...state highway 1
but with all the shaking going on we are getting new routes yearly... Roll Eyes

 smile  Northland next... all set and prepped for 10 days in Oct/Nov.
Lots of rolling green hills and historic stuff, beaches, great tucker and local plonk. clap


That airstrip has been well used long since then.  When I was in 38Sqn (Caribous), throughout the '70s, we used to go out there several times each Winter for ice and snow landing/takeoff praccy.  'Twas fun!

It's been growing over the last few years.
Have never seen anyone up there, not even the local Ranger. The old runway is still full of wallabies, though...   :-)
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