An eventful day. Marco's bike started with the jump leads and we headed off to Mossman. It was agreed that he needed to have his electrical system checked, for although we had hoped that it was just a failed battery, the symptoms were suggesting that it may be more serious.
Great ride down to the coast from Mount Malloy. Fresh morning air and light traffic combined with a great road lifted our mood. We stopped at a lookout on the escarpment where a large group of motorcyclists had gathered. They were a bunch of riders out of Cairns doing a Sunday club run. They were complaining of the cold. We told them to toughen up. Marco's VStrom was now flashing all sorts of warning lights,so we pressed on to Mossman. I suggested swapping the batteries between his VStrom and the Ninja, to see if the problem went with the battery or stayed with the bike. So a quick roadside swap in Mossman and it appeared that the problem was the battery, as the VStrom started perfectly with the Ninja's battery, and all the warning lights went away.
By this time we had been advised that there was a motorcycle repair shop near Port Douglas, so M & U decided that rather than chance a total failure up the road to Daintree, they'd opt for caution, and wait in Port Douglas for the motorcycle shop to open in the hope they could get a new battery.
So – after re-arranging some of the food supplies, I sent off on my own up the Daintree road towards Cape Tribulation. We had booked a camp site at Noah's Beach in the Daintree NP, some 8 km south of Cape Tribulation.
Despite abandoning my comrades, I enjoyed the ride up the coast. Ferry across the Daintree complete with baby crocodile lazing on the riverbank. Road to Cape Tribulation from the ferry is narrow and winding, but sealed. Some road works as a consequence of wash outs and landslides, but fun nevertheless.
Noah's Beach camp ground is between the road and the sea, with the beach a short 20 metre walk from the camp sites. Perfect!
I pitch my tent, unpack my gear and head up the road to Cape Tribulation to get some additional provisions. I'm no sooner back at the camp when I hear the sound of approaching motorcycles. Low and behold, it's M & U!
Marco had found someone with a stash of motorcycle batteries at home and had popped a new one into the VStrom. So the team was re-united again! Unfortunately it's not all good news. The short ride up the Daintree road had demonstrated that the battery was still not being re-charged properly and that there was still some sort of weird electrical fault on Marco's bike! What we can't understand is why there is no warning light showing that the battery is not being charged? Mystery!
Net result is that M & U will return back towards Cairns tomorrow, while I press on to Cooktown up the coast road. Local information tells me that it is dry, the creek crossings are fine and the biggest problem will be the dust raised by all the tourists in their 4WD tanks!
We swim, have a very late lunch and sink a few beers. Despite the hassles with Marco's VStrom, life is good. No mobile connectivity here so uploading this will have to wait.
Tonight we sleep with the sound of waves crashing on the nearby beach!