Monday, 31 December 2007


Yesterdays route is here:


Sms Yesterday we stayed @ Hotel where our bikes have been stored. Dennis was unwell so went 2 bed at 6pm. We had our first group beer + food - nice

Sunday, 30 December 2007


Sms Yesterday\'s route is here: Happy Birthday Daniel!

Saturday, 29 December 2007


Sms Drove over 850km today (14.5 hrs)down to Burgos, Spain. We\'re averaging 22mpg (with trailer) & the L200 is doing 28. Arrived \0 hotel at 12pm. Alll well.


Sms View yesterday\'s route here:

(Thanks to Jordi)

Friday 29th

Travelled down from Paul's house in London to We arrived at the Chateaux at 9.30pm to a fabulous reception from our hosts (Corina and Dave). Dave works with Paul and we really were just expecting a floor for the night - maybe even in the stable, but that's not what we ended up with. Basically it's a faithfully restored 1797 French Renaissance Chateau and we were wined and dined to suit... Fab!
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Monday, 17 December 2007

The Very Approximate Plan...

27/28th December. David Hale will be taking the scoots down to southern Spain in his Sprinter van. This is in advance of the team setting off in the two 4x4s on the 28th down through France to Algeciras, Spain.

30th December. Cross into Morocco

31st December. New Year in Chefchouan.

1st-5th Jan. Transit Morocco via Rabat & Marrakesh

6th-10th. Jan. Transit Mauritania. Some via desert route

11th-16th Jan Transit Senegal. Stop at Zebra Bar for R&R.

17th ish. Arrive in Gambia

18th-24th Jan Deliver scoots & 4x4s. Maintenance of previous scoots, etc.

25th Jan. Fly home.

The Team

Dennis, Oblertone, Speggo, Elaine, Jo, John, Cogs, Rev Chuck

Also Jaq & MrIfan will be flying out to join us in Gambia.

Sunday, 16 December 2007

Injections and things

Last week I had the last of my injections for this trip. The list I've had are:

1. Hep B injections (day 0, 7,21)
2. Hep A
3. Rabies (day 0, 7, 28)
4. Yellow Fever (>10 days before travelling)
5. Mengococcal (1 injection)
6. BCG (for Rabies) (1 injection) + a mantoux test to see if the BCG is required (it was for me)
7. Typhoid (1 injection)
8. Dyptheria, Tetanus, Polio (1 combined injection)

i.e. 13 injections plus daily malaria tablets (Malarone).

This whole process has taken over 6 weeks, but now it's done.
The Malerone has to be taken 2 days before entering the area, for the period you are there plus 7 days afterwards. So for 10 days in Senegal/Gambia thats 2+10+7 or 19 days worth of Malerone.

Sunday, 9 December 2007

Yesterday's ride

See it here.....<iframe frameBorder="0"
width="400px" height="400px"></iframe>
This is a test to check the process for posting the wikiloc onto my blog....

I hope it works Jordi....-;
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Wednesday, 5 December 2007

We're not "Riders for Health"...

That's another group who appear to be doing something similar to us. There have been a few articles in The Times over the past few days and they even mention Gambia and specifically Bansang Hospital.

You can read about their projects here:

"Dream machines"

"Transporting medicines across Africa"

"Get the motor running for a charity that bikes for life"

"Money and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance"

they certainly have caught the imagination of the Moto GP Stars. What's the chances we'll bump into one of them when we're down there...? It's great that The Times have chosen "Riders for Health" as their 2007 Christmas Appeal.

Our trip is very much a lower profile initiative and we are giving our time and expertise as well as money for this trip. We have been brought together through the forums of the totally excellent website.

Just one of the reasons for out trip is to perform any fettling of the bikes taken out the first time this trip was run (2 years ago) to ensure they are running OK. And to have fun getting there of course! You can buy a book about the first trip written by Dennis Robinson here:

Monday, 3 December 2007

2nd team meet

Last weekend there was a prep meeting at Steve & Elaine's place in Essex. The following were there:

Old Grumpy, Oblertone, Cogs, OneTrack (obviously) & Elaine

Others who didn't make it this time were MrIfan, Jo & Rev Chuck.

However all bar one of the bikes were assembled there by top man David Hale.
David has been travelling all over the country in his van to assemble these machines.

He's also taking them down to the bottom of Spain on Xmas day (well maybe +/- 1 day) and then driving back of course.

Cost to us? £0.00. Really. WHAT a bloke....
Dave should do everything he can to actually ride next time.

Oblertone is chuffed to bits with his leopard skin seat.

Wonder if his employers know he's actually colour blind.

Good job he's not that important really...

Speggo, Dave and Old Grumpy checking which bikes have working suspension.

Bert was there too. He's made a valuable contribution also to C90s before his third mission out to Mali.

Friday, 30 November 2007

Neil's toolbox....

Good friend and neighbour Neil C. has come up trumps again...

He's built a bespoke wooden toolbox and has collected all sorts of tools from friends & family for it.

He's put alot of thought into the tools needed and his experience of travelling in the remotest parts of Africa has been invaluable in the preparation of the bike (and me).

Additionally, he's made 6 brackets for the bike:

These fit onto the lower fairing to allow straps to be easily fitted to carry other items.

It's important to get as much of the weight forward of the driver and as low down as possible.

They've been designed for use with a self tapping screw in addition to the 10mm bolt. The self tapper should stop the moment of force trying to undo the bolt (well - that's the theory!)

Sunday, 25 November 2007

Extra fuel tanks sorted

Well maybe....
These are Trangia fuel cannisters for use with a portable stove. They each contain 1 litre.
So that should increase the range of the bike by about 50 miles - or in other words since the standard tank is 4 litres this is now a 50% increase in the range for the bike...!

Now I have to test this using water first.
Also - the seat has gone away for repair. Thanks to DENNIS B. for arranging that.

Friday, 23 November 2007

Panniers - of a sort...

Over the last couple of days I've built a frame for the Carradice Super C Panniers (bicycle).

I need to test them out now over the next week before the bike is collected on Wednesday for shipment to Spain.

Monday, 19 November 2007

SMS blogging

WOW! I can now update the blog via SMS! This is great since there might be times when GPRS is not available, but GSM is. Sure it's limited to 160 characters, but that's plenty just to say whereabouts you are.

Today's ride

At start: 18800 miles.

Rode to Hammonds to buy a waterproof suit. Then onto Bristol for the mantoux test (bcg). Called in on old pal Roger Daynes in Tetbury for a quick chat (

Covered 90 miles today - a lot of which in the pouring rain. The suit is waterproof thankfully. The cold bits are my boots and the helmet (no visor).

The bike is averaging 102 miles per gallon. So with 4 litres is has a range of only 90 miles - there is NO reserve! I need to fix this ASAP.

Sunday, 18 November 2007

Blog update via Email

This message was sent by an email to the blog. That's neat.

First Ride

Mileage 18793
Picked the bike up yesterday from Hammonds . Dave H. has been looking over the bike in his own time which is really appreciated. He found less than 1/2 cup of oil in the engine - that explains why is was SO noisy (camchain needs oil for damping).

Anyway - the bike is OK for now and Dave has asked to have the bike back after I've put a few miles on it. He checked the tappets, replaced the final drive chain, fixed the wheels (which were about to fall off), tightened the spokes and generally gave it a once over.

I rode the bike yesterday to the Traidcraft fund raising event at St Leonard's Church. The bike seems fine.... much less work than cycling! It was a great event and there were lots of cakes and bits n pieces for sale. We could of had more people there, but those that did attend contributed significantly to the pot. Neil showed a few of his slides of his ventures in Africa and Gordon regaled us with his experiences of riding down to the Lebannon just after the second world war.

Today I fitted an inline filter and cleaned out the fuel tap filter. The bike appears OK and a test ride showed that it is comfortable around 45 mph. Mark told me today that the bike would go alot quicker without the screen (he found this out after the screen broke on his C90 in Bahrain). However that may be true, but I'd rather stick with the screen for now...

Next jobs - sort out panniers and fix the torn seat

Thursday, 15 November 2007

Where's home then?

Click to view a larger map

...that will be on the edge of the Cotswolds (UK) then.

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

The beast (of burden)

The C90 with about 18,790 miles on it.

Friday, 12 October 2007

What's it all about then...?

This blog is about the Scoots 4 Africa trip to the Gambia 2008. This is the second trip (first for me) and you can see the details about the first at

Adrian very kindly offered to pick up a C90 for yesterday. The bike was "bought blind" although Ade could have vetoed the purchase if it was a complete dog.

Anyways, he ended up travelling down to Southampton by train only for the train to stop part way down due to cancellations, etc. He then had to us other public transport to get to the bikes location and that took quite alot of time and effort. The bike was OK and so he set off back to Warminster doing everything he could to avoid the motorways and fast roads. Realistically the C90 will only cruise at 45mph and this is way too slow for UK traffic.

When he did eventually arrive home it was in total darkness. The trip had taken him from 3pm until 9pm and his initiation to the C90 club was complete! Normally that same trip by car would take 2.5 hours max.