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Old 14 Feb 2004
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Australia July-Oct 2004


I amazed at this site there is so much here I feel I have stumbled on buried treasure I guess many of the questions I have to ask may already be covered elsewhere so I would welcome signposts to useful discussions as well as fresh advice.

I am planning a trip to Australia over the period July-Oct 2004. I am hoping to travel from Perth and arrive back at the same place having circled the country at a pace that has allowed for stops and seeing a bit more than the road. On this occasion I am looking to stay on tarmac or good tracks as I have no off road background (and I want to leave an exscuse for returning in 2005 with the latest BMW1200GS that I now have my eye on).

Looking at prices I am thinking of buying on arrival hopefully and ST110 Pan European. Any thoughts on the bike, insurance and registration issues? Not sure shipping mine is worth it for this length of trip? Also does the timescale and time of year present any issues? What about route ideas? Finally what about clothing..........not sure about lugging my leathers over there but will if that's the best option.

Thanks in anticipation
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Old 15 Feb 2004
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Location: pambula, nsw, australia
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Your time of year is a good choice, your in front of the heat and "wet" that occurs in the northern parts, from Nov to March, but could still experience some winter, especially anywhere along the southern edge of the country. Still, though it's much milder than the UK's winter. If bitumen is you preferred route, then from Adelaide around to Darwin via Perth, there really isn't much choice. A quick look at any map will explain what I mean. Don't let that dissuade you from going "off" road as it were, because a lot of the dirt roads are hard packed, thus you can maintain a surprising pace, even on a large road bike. I would think that it would be far preferable to buy a bike here, than have the hassle of bringing one in. A buy back arrangement could possible be arranged from a shop in Perth. Registration issues are pretty straight forward. You will need an address here in Oz though. Requirements for registration can vary slightly from state to state. I'm not familar with the west, but broadly speaking the bike needs to be registered ( tax in the UK ) and and as a minimum for insurance, have third party. A roadworthy may also be required over in the west, perhaps someone from there can clear that issue up. A little nasty is that you have to pay stamp duty on the purchase of a bike, even a seconhand one. This can be 2 to 4 % of it's purchase price ( depending on the state your in ). It's a common and accepted practice to understate the purchase price at the registration office, without being ludicrous about it, say 30% or so less than you actually payed. Although many out here wear leathers, I count myself in that catagory for last 20 years or so. I for one are a recent convert to more modern synthetic style jackets etc. A few hours at 38 deg C +, may have thinking the same way! Once on the east coast the selection of roads and destinations opens up. Without going into all the detail and merits of this place or that. Broadly speaking if you stick to the coast road you'll encounter more traffic, but have the pleasure of countless coastal resorts or towns. If thats your thing, fair enough. But running right down the eastern sea board, we have what is known as the great dividing range. This varys from being right on the coast and up to 300 klms inland aprox. We are not talking Alps or Rockys here, but great bike roads can be found pretty much anywhere along the diving range. Noteworthy highlight are The Atherton Tablelands in Far North Queensland. The hinterland behind Sunshine/Gold Coasts ( S/E Qld ). Ditto for just over the border in northern New South Wales. The southern Highlands and Snowy regions of sth NSW, anywhere in N/E Victoria. The Wilson promorty region of Victoria and last but certainly not least the Great Ocean road in Western Vic. Now don't do what a lot of others do and miss good old Tasmania. Any road here is a joy, with few cars and great scenery. Yep 4 months should just about do, come and enjoy, Graeme.
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Old 16 Feb 2004
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Thanks Graeme for all that useful information. It seemed from what you said that if I was prepared to consider going off the bitumen I could give myself a lot more options without having to undertake any particularly challenging off road work. Having looked around the HUBB site I think I might consider a Transalp as a good dual purpose mount. I am exploring by back providers on the web. Thanks again
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