Week 1 Day 1 – Bike has been cleaned and packed. Next clothes and drink bottles and shoes and helmet and.. .. . so much stuff, so little space. But it did all fit and off to the airport in Palm Nth. William met me at home and we were on our way. Nerves had kicked in early in the morning. What the …. was I doing? I had done the training but I was always riding on roads that I knew or at least what the towns around me looked like and how the roads all linked together. I knew what the traffic is like in NZ.
At the airport – Bags checked through to Perth. Waiting upstairs in the glorious Manawatu sunshine. And a few of the girls, Averil, Christine and Possum showed up to see me off – much appreciated. Or perhaps they were there to make sure I didn’t chicken out. But as I went out the door (yes out the other door ) my nerves were forgotten about. Until I sat down and we waited and waited and waited. Passengers being driven from Masterton to Palmy were the cause of the delay. And I would get to Auckland on time but only just.
So on to the next plane and we were off. Can’t tell you what the movies were. It might turn up in one of the questions for quiz evening but I did watch an interesting doco on Mark Cavendish. I did let out an exclamation when the terrible crash at the end of a stage took him out.
Arrived in Perth at 6.10pm local time – 10.10 pm NZ time to a balmy 17 degrees. On to the shuttle bus and off to our hotel for the night right on the edge of the Swan River and Kings Park. Restaurant closes at 9pm so a quick meal before going to bed at 1am NZ time. Did I get much sleep??? Did Maree get much sleep??? For those who know the story about the girls trip to the Graperide 2008 you will remember my roomie. No names mentioned, but she was an amateur compared to Maree. Lyndsay, brother in law, Maree’s husband is in for a restful 2 and a bit weeks. Maree will return to a revitalised Lyndsay as he will be able to get a good nights sleep at long last.
Morning of Day 2 Thursday 13th – Awake very early for Perth’s standards but remember the time difference. Awake! Did I even sleep.
Breakfast in the restaurant when it opened at 6.30am and off for a walk up Jacobs ladder.242 steps straight up to Kings Park.
And yes there were hills in the distance that needed to be crossed today on my way to York.
Saw quite a few cyclists biking around Kings Park. Obviously that is the place to go to do hill reps whether you are running up Jacobs Ladder or just cycling the block. Back to our hotel and packed our bags ready for the next step of the adventure. Booked a taxi (extra large) to take all of our bags (and bike) to where we were going to pick up the campervan.
By the time we did all the paperwork and got the running details on what everything does we had got rid of another couple of hours. Now 10am and we headed to the nearest shopping centre to stock up. Midland Gate had everything you could imagine. First stop Vodafone and Telstra. Then onto shopping. If only we had time we could have spent a lot longer there. But as it was after a coffee and a trolley load of supplies from Coles it was still 1pm by the time we got back to the campervan and stored everything away in a little cupboard. Oops I had planned to be on the road by now and we still had to find a bike shop. After receiving directions and going round the block several times we finally arrived at Midland Cycles. Thanks Tim for the RocknRoll and Shotz.(I don’t think Tim believed me when I told him where I was going.) A quick trip down a side road and I assembled my bike, took it for a test ride before I went too far away from some guys who could help if something wasn’t right. But there were no problems, so we bundled back in to the campervan and headed out of Perth on the Great Eastern Highway. When we got as far as the Great Southern Highway turn off, Maree threw me out. No only kidding.
She did pull over to the side of the road and stop.
But by this time it was getting close to 3pm.
Time difference was still being felt. It felt like time to have dinner.
And I wasn’t as well organised as I normally am when I go for a ride.
I did have my 2way radio in my back pocket and a banana, 1 drink bottle, but forgot my cellphone and gloves. I had left my camera with Maree. So if anything went really wrong and somebody found me on the side of the road I had no identification with me. I’ll be more prepared tomorrow.
And yes first up a hill…. oh I love hills!!! Not!!! And on this part of the trip every 5kms there would be a sign 500m to passing lane – oh no that means another hill. A bit like Halcombe Stanway Rd. And I had a head wind all the way.
First day thoughts. I don’t like the Aussie rumble strip. Or the sound of crows. (I keep thinking about what Murray (husband) said to me about being crow bait) Road drivers are very courteous and give me lots of room that I wasn’t expecting. I have even had a couple of friendly toots. Do like the road markers that say 50 Y then 45 Y then 25 Y. Nothing in between until 5 Y which had me really excited.
Called up Maree on the 2 way. “Yes can hear you” Followed the signs to the camping ground but it was 4km out of York so was getting a bit worried that I had missed a turn off.
So the end of day 1 on the bike – not far but at least I started.
Next stop planned for Quairading 75 km and quite a few hills so anticipate that it will take 3 hours.
Maree was planning on having a look around York. The grand old Duke of York, He had 10,000 men, He marched them up to the top of the hill. And he marched them down again.
York is an old town and it has a hill 2km out of town. And there was another one after that, then another. Final destination for the day was going to be Bruce Rock.
and just down the road I saw a paddock full of emus so had to stop again and take a photo.
Unfortunately at about this point the wind started to pick up and the direction was straight in my face or 11.00 on a clock dial. So my expected arrival time of 11.00am was going to be a bit out. 5 km out of Quairading it started to rain and I was starting to get a bit worried as Maree hadn’t gone past me yet. She had my dry clothes, food, money. And then just on the outskirts of Quarading she went past and pulled over. 3hrs 20 mins I was wet to the skin so jumped into the van and had a hot drink and something to eat. Put on my rain jacket as it was still raining and headed off again. I wasn’t sure how far it was to Shackleton but thought it would only be about 20kms so said to Maree that that would be my lunch stop. Unfortunately Shackleton was more like 45 km from Quairading so lunch was 2.30pm. By this stage I had hit the wall. For anyone who knows how I cycle, I spend a lot of time in my big chain ring. But today I have spent nearly all day in my little chain ring. At Shackleton I had my lunch and went for a walk down to the Shack Club to see Dicko. Was greeted eventually with a hug and had a bit of a chat about what had been happening in Shack. In the shelter of Dickos house there was no wind but when you saw the flag flying straight out from the flagpole you knew just how windy it was. So back on my bike for the final leg. 32km to Bruce Rock. All during the day I had had people giving me a friendly wave as they went past. So wasn’t surprised as a person heading in the opposite direction flashed his lights at me. Thought he looked slightly familiar. Into Bruce Rock and knew that Janine Cosgrove worked at the IGA and was planning on calling in to say a quick “gidday mate” but couldn’t see an IGA so biked straight past the campervan that Maree had parked on the side of the road. She wasn’t in the drivers seat so thought she must have gone in to one of the shops. Called her up on the 2 way and said that I was carrying on. Out of Bruce Rock heading towards Merridin. Talking to Maree as she went past me I was giving her instructions as to make it much further I needed some assistance in the form of motor pacing. But as I was nearly had it was only able to do between 25 and 27km/hr. That only lasted a km as when I saw a roo jump in front of the van I knew it was time to give up on the bike and jump in the van for the final few kms to Murrays abode. So jumped in and reached Crampthorne Rd and there was Murray waiting on the corner for us to arrive. He informed me that it was him that flashed his lights at me between Shack and Bruce Rock and he was also in the campervan with Maree when I went past at Bruce Rock and he also drove past as Maree was motor pacing me. Anyway you can sort of imagine what I said to both of them.
Saturday 15th Day 3 of biking(hope it is a better day today) Temperature colder than the day before so I resorted to 3/4 pants and my fleecy shirt. Saw this bike at Flick and Stephens and couldn’t resist hopping on. Perhaps with a bit of work on it, it could do the rest of the trip with me. Don’t know who would ride it though. Murray took us on a quick tour of where he has been for the past short while and showed us his big boys toys – just a LITTLE bit bigger than the tractors we have at home. Thanks Anne and Ian for a marvellous meal and your hospitality.
So I was on my bike at 9.00am heading to Southern Cross. First stop Merridin. Murray and Maree (M & M) went back to pack up and say final goodbyes to the Doltons.
This is what the back road to Merridin is like, hill in the distance. Got back to the main road and looking back along the road I see M & M approaching. So the final few kms in to Merridin they were able to motor pace me as there was more wind again today. Stopped in Merridin for a coffee and muffin. Off the bike for exactly 30 mins.
Another long straight climb.
Back on my way to Southern Cross and next stop was scheduled for 1pm for lunch which just happened to be at a road house which had a sign out the front “Half way between Perth and Kalgoorlie”
Final stop for the day was at another roadhouse not far from Southern Cross. Just a wee stop to gobble down an orange and give instructions of what I would like at the end of my day.
Finished riding today at exactly 4.20pm. TOTAL RIDE TIME TODAY 5 hours 53 mins
Sunday 16th June Day 4 of riding –Southern Cross to Coolgardie Approx 187km according to the sign but in reality from the point where I started to the point where I finally got off my bike it was a bit more.
Another cool morning but it looked as if it might get nice. I had my music in my ears as I knew it was going to be a big day.
You do see some strange sights on the side of the road. The first thing I saw was the motorbike then the hay bale and as I went past I saw the gumboots going into the hay bale and the head coming out the other side with the sign that reads Haylp. Further along the road there were more to keep me amused. The grain country was gradually giving way to mining country and thankfully there was no rumble strip again today. As the day progressed more and more trucks were giving me a wave as they went roaring past in the opposite direction.
Certainly liked the feeling of them as they went past going in the same direction.
A couple of big loads even had pilot vehicles.
And although it may look flat you will notice that there is a horizon, just another hill.
On the right hand side of the road is the big pipeline that carries water. This was a really big day and I would have liked someone to have met me on the outskirts of town to take my photo as I arrived but M & M were nowhere to be seen.
A bit further up the road they were parked and had made plans to pick me up and drive into Kalgoorlie to see the super pit before it got too dark. And although that wasn’t my plan I went along for the ride. Jumped in the back of the campervan and lay on my bed trying to do my stretches and put compression pants on as we were driving along. If anyone was following behind they would have been wondering what on earth was going on in the back of that van. Arrived at the Super Pit on Kalgoorlie just on sunset. Had to have the photo in the bucket like everyone does.
Then it was off to find somewhere to stay for the night and in to town for a meal. Murray had been to Kalgoorlie a couple of years ago with William (eldest son) and so knew where to go. Went to the Balcony Bar and after dinner went downstairs and walked through the Wild West Saloon. A pity the establishment doesn’t pay the bar maids a bit more so they can afford some better or more clothes.
Monday 17th June Day 5 of riding Kalgoorlie to Norseman
My original plan was to ride from Coolgardie to Norseman which on “map my ride” measures 170km.
But Murray had changed things and now as we stayed in Kalgoorlie for the night I will end up riding 190km.
M & M were still having breakfast as I hit the track. Their plan was to go and do some shopping in Kalgoorlie and see me at morning tea time in 2 or 3 hours. They finally pulled over just a bit late and the coffee and last of the muffins was very welcome. M&M had purchased a round of golf at the longest course and although they missed out on playing the first hole due to needing to catch up with me, they did head back to play hole 2 which was at Kambalda
In this photo you can see in the distance another lot of hills that I have to go over and this below is at the top nearly of another hill.
I could smell these goats well before I saw them and I thought if Maree saw them she would think she was back in Wairoa. Don’t even get off my bike now or stop pedalling, just whip the camera out and snap as I am riding along. The day has clouded over, the wind is picking up again and it is not a tail wind.
Note the lake off in the distance. And more lumpy hills before reaching Norseman. Who ever said Australia was all flat.
Once again no one to meet me as I entered my destination for the day so I had to take my own photo again. I’ll try and look a bit happier tomorrow.
|From /To||Day||Distance (km)||Ave Speed||Top Speed||Time||Climb|
|Perth /York||Thu 13th||47.6||23.9||52.6||1hr 56||233|
|York/BruceRock||Fri 14th||154||19.6||38.2||7hr 41||648|
|Sat 15th||137||22.8||43.5||5hr 52||497|
|Southern Cross /Coolgardie||Sun 16th||186.2||24.1||42.1||7hr 32||536|
|Mon 17th||190.9||23.1||43.7||8hr 04||442|
Tues 18th June Day 6 Norseman to Balladonia
What a great day – Started off with the sun shining. But that was soon to change.
Over the first hill, 5 kms out of town and the weather closed in. Although not apparent in the photo that is black sky which lasted 20km. It was freezing. M&M who were off playing golf (or should I say retrieving lost balls) were speaking to a local who said that there was a frost on the lawn this morning. I would have taken a photo showing my breath as I breathed out. Unfortunately I had left with no leg warmers on. But the day did get better but it took me a long time to warm up as I was forever biking in the shade of trees. Fraser Range was where the next golf hole was. And as it was around smoko time the campervan pulled in to the side of the road just before 10.30. My coffee and chocolate chip cookies were ready and waiting. Half an hour and then back on the bike. Aussies don’t seem to be able to do hills and corners at the same time. There are either corners in the road or hills, never both. So around a corner and surprise of my life was Dan.
What an awesome guy. All the way from the UK. Had biked all the way from Cairns. He told me tales about a few other cyclists that he had come across on the trip from Adelaide. He is not writing a blog, the reason he said is he wouldn’t know what to write about :-Quote from Dan “ Today was amazing – my left leg went up and at the same time my right leg went down. Then you’ll never guess what happened. My right leg went up and my left went down and then it happened again and again and again …..” He told me about where he stayed last night and how he was posting ahead any items not required. We compared notes on what we had experienced so far. He doesn’t ride with music in his ears – just yells at the wind when it gets to him. He said that if I biked fast I would be able to catch up to a guy on the straightest bit of road which is where I will be tomorrow. He passed him 2 days back. If you are reading this Dan – safe travels. You put a smile on my face all day and will be thinking about you again tomorrow when I have a tail wind. (hopefully)
I started counting trucks and cars today but realised that there are still too many of them so then I started counting dead stuff.
There is a certain criteria to get in to my count stats. It has to be either on the road or just to the side, it has to be still intact not just a skeleton. So todays count is 3 roos and 1 camel.
See what I mean about no corners just hills.
And this is the end of another day and at long last Murray got the message and was waiting for me to take this pic of me on arrival. Tomorrow I might just get him to zoom in a bit so you can actually see the sign.
Wednesday Day 7 WHAT A DAY. Balladonia to Cocklebiddy.
When I was previewing my planned rides with Averil at Palmy airport we both agreed to do the Balladonia to Caiguna option was a better bet than the longer ride. However Murray who thinks he knows me and my capabilities said that I should go all the way. First stop in 3 hours whilst M& M went off to play another hole of golf. Balladonia made world fame back in the 70’s when part of the space lab fell to earth and landed nearby. A large chunk is now on display in the museum.
This part of the ride contains the longest stretch of straight road as well as a landing strip for the Royal Flying Doctor service
They must have had a bit of rain through this area as there appeared to be a lot of grass around. See below. It all seemed very familiar as the side of the road has been mown.
And I have been riding for 2 days and haven’t come across the mower yet but he is still going.
So my day started at 7.30am first stop to be at 10.30am for 1/2 hour. Back on the bike at 11.00am with lunch stop at 1pm. Again a half hour stop, just enough time to have a few stretches and fill the back pockets and change drink bottle. The next stop would be at 3pm and at this point I would let Murray know whether I was going any further. At 2.50pm I was biking past the entrance to Caiguna, where M & M were playing the next hole. Radioed them and told them I was just passing and they would have to catch me up. A bit further down the road another sign indicated I was changing a time zone. So 3pm now became 3.45pm. My afternoon snack consisted of cheese and crackers and were rushed across the road to me on a plate along with a handful of jellybeans. Grabbed the crackers but asked for the jellybeans in a zip lock bag.
As I knew it was going to be a big call to make it to Cocklebiddy I kept biking and the campervan pulled up beside me and a hand reached out with my bag of jellybeans. NO STICKY BOTTLE HERE. They were off.
Around a couple of corners and here was the campervan parked up on the side of the road. Just as I drew close to it they took off again. And the same happened another 10 kms up the road. But they were parked on the wrong side of the road. I biked straight past and kept pedalling. When I saw the sign CY 20 and my shadow was stretching across the road I knew I was going to be in trouble. Called up Murray on the 2 way. No reply. 5 mins later called again- no reply. Waited another 5 mins – no reply. My next comment was “If this is your idea of a joke, I’m not laughing”. The sunset just as I passed the CY 10 sign. I had a back light on but no front light. “I DON’T BIKE AT NIGHT” With tears welling in my eyes, I was panicking. Where were they? I had biked 240km and had another 10km to go. I know that for me to bike 10km from Feilding to my place it can take anything up to 20 mins. And the next 10km wasn’t going to be fast. The sun had set.
With 3 km to go I heard a crackle on the radio.
“Where are you?”
“We are coming up behind you – we can see the lights of Cocklebiddy now”
That is interesting as even I couldn’t see the lights yet.
Around the next corner and there was Cocklebiddy and I pulled over to take the photo of me arriving again.
M & M dashed off to check in.
Thursday Day 8 Cocklebiddy to Madura
Funnily enough I wasn’t really feeling like doing a big ride today. It should really be a rest day. So as M & M were off playing the next hole at Cocklebiddy I headed off on my bike.
First stop at 3 hours. But in the meantime there was this grid to get over. I had to get off and walk across it as it was a man eater.
There was only one stop today ( and it was raining at the time so I was thankful for the campervan in sight) as I was nearly at the end.
Madura is at the bottom of this hill. In fact as it had been raining I didn’t make the turnoff in to the roadhouse and went flying past.
After a shower we all jumped in to the campervan and headed off to the lookout which showed the road that I would head along tomorrow and looking back along the hill I just biked down.
Finally figured out how to use the timer on my camera so I could get in the photo. Notice the rainbow.
Thursday Partly cloudy. Isolated showers in the east. Winds SW 15 to 20 km/h becoming light in the evening.
Friday 21 June Day 9 Madura to Eucla TODAYS STATS – 20 Roos, 3 RFDS Emergency airstrips, 2 grids, 1 Super Super Super Woman
Another early cold start. And not far out of Madura was the first airstrip for the day.
I must reiterate the fabulous truck drivers. I have only had 3 bad experiences out of 1000’s of trucks that have passed me. They give me plenty of room and the friendly waves will be something that I will have to stop doing when I finally get home.
The second airstrip was 60 km out of Mundrabilla.
This wedge tail was having a good feed and was determined that I was going to take his precious meal. So I rang my bell and shouted like I was yelling at magpies before he casually took to the skies.
Then soon after our lunch break around a corner I met Super Woman. Real name Hermine Stampa-rabe from Germany. She had already biked 7500km in Australia and would finish at Perth having completed 9000km. She told me to have a look on google for a U tube clip about her travels. I now also have her email address and I told her that if she ever came to NZ I would go for a ride with her.
And her age ? Google it – you will be amazed. It makes me feel quite insignificant.
And off in the distance the Eucla roadhouse and buildings on top of the hill.
Half way up the hill I stopped – yes I was slightly buggered but also to take this pic of the sand dunes and first views of the ocean – Great Australian Bight.
And waiting up the hill was Murray and he even managed to take a photo as I arrived at todays destination.
After checking in and a quick shower we headed off to visit the Old Eucla Telegraph Station that is slowly being buried in sand.
Saturday June 23rd Day 10 of biking Eucla to Nullabor
A quick stop to take a few photos and off again.
And then not far there was the first glimpses of the Bunda Cliffs of the Great Australian Bight For several kilometres there were glimpses out to the Southern Ocean. A cold wind was blowing straight off it. And then the rain came. So before morning tea I was soaked to the bone. M & M came to my rescue with dry clothes and a hot cup of coffee. And they greeted me with the comment “Did you see that dingo? It crossed the road about 3 metres behind me
The next stop for the day was another photo opportunity of the Bunda Cliffs but as it was a bit off the road Maree drove me down and Murray was left on the side of the road holding my bike.
After a quick click of the camera Maree took me back to where we had left Murray. He wasn’t to be found. About 1 1/2 kms down the road there he was. He made a quick jump off the bike and vowed never to get back on again. Jeans and moccasins and cap do not make good riding attire.
So as another long day of riding was drawing to a close I decided it was time to take a photo of my shadow
Day 11 Sunday Nullabor to Nundroo
This I thought was going to be a relatively easy day. The time zone had changed again back at the border – another 45mins so the sun was well up when I hit the road. As you can see by looking at the 2 signposts – the one going to Nundroo says 143 km and the one going the other way from Nundroo to Nullarbor says 144 as the sign at Nundroo was right at the entrance unlike the one at Nullarbor which was about a km outside. I was planning on taking a slight detour to visit the Whale watch board walk just out of Nullabor.
The slight detour was 12km out & 12 km back. But it was worth it. M & M would catch up to me there. Thankfully they arrived just before I was due to leave and I was 8km back along the road before they caught up to me.
It was so hard to take a photo at the right time.
As it was sooo cold I jumped in the campervan and hitched a ride for 20km. As soon as the end of the Nullarbor Plain was reached the first hill was in sight and the temperature made a remarkable increase.
And Murray was there to take my photo as I arrived at Nundroo.
Tonight we have taken a detour out to Fowlers Bay for our accommodation rather than staying on the Eyre Highway. This pelican was all by himself (I know the feeling)
Fowlers Bay has a massive set of sandhills behind it.
It is also the point where Edward John Eyre departed on his journey to cross the Nullarbor.
Day 12 Monday Nundroo to Ceduna.
Another cold start to the day but as we had stayed out at Fowlers Bay I had to rely on M & M to take me out to the Eyre Highway to start my ride. Fog made the temperature very cold. As I headed towards Penong and Ceduna M & M headed back to Nundroo to play golf.
Again there were some massive road trains on the road. This one pulled in next to us at Penong where we had stopped for morning tea. They passed me at regular intervals heading towards Ceduna and then there was just as many going the other way.
Unfortunately the shop that was offering free coffee to drivers at Penong was closed. Not sure how long it had been closed for.
The final destination for tonight is Ceduna, the oyster capital of Australia.
A long train heading out to the wharf at Ceduna
Murray fishing on the jetty just along from our camping ground.
And another day draws to a close.
And what is there to see today – same as NZ – paddocks, fences, trees, hills, a white line in the middle of the road, sheep. And eventually Streaky Bay comes in to view and another day on the bike is done.
It took a few photos to get the vista as I saw it riding in to Streaky Bay.
The afternoon off the bike so time to do some sightseeing. So in the campervan and off to the whistling rocks and blowholes after a quick stop at Hallys beach.
Don’t fall in Murray – it is a long way down and I won’t be rescuing you. As I had only a half day on the bike I cooked dinner for the night. Murray had shucked the oysters for our entree. Note the wine glasses and candle. Dining in style tonight.
Day 14 Wednesday Streaky Bay to Elliston
Another early start and the need to wrap up warm. Our camping spot for the night was right on the beach front.
M & M took the scenic route whilst I took the more direct route but took a 2 km detour to visit Murphys Haystacks. And although most people were walking around I was on my bike & stayed on it.
Back on to the main road and determined to make it to Port Kenny for morning tea but I had to stop to take this photo of a fox???? He was right next to the road as I biked past but ran back in to the paddock – thank goodness.
After smoko it was back on the bike and off to Elliston where I arrived for lunch and another half day of riding done.
So some more sight seeing in the afternoon. If only Murray knew how to read a map we would have walked directly to the lookout not made this detour.
From the lookout we had views of beaches and bays within Waterloo Bay and Maree even ventured close to the edge.
Then back to the campervan for a longer tourist drive. The day was so nice I even ventured to have a paddle in the sea.
Another day down – only a few to go now
Day 15 Thursday 27th June Elliston to Arno Bay
Looking outside first thing this morning it appeared gloomy but as the sun was not yet up it was difficult to determine what the day was going to be like. Within half an hour it was raining – real rain. And within a very short period of time there were puddles forming around the campervan and the puddles got bigger and bigger. So a decision was made after first looking at the rain radars that showed rain was heading across the top half of the Eyre Peninsula and would continue for the rest of the day. Murray went and unplugged the power and we set off south towards Port Lincoln. After calling in to Lock Well Beach which is the place for salmon fishing supposedly we carried on down and stopped at Mount Hope.
By this stage it had stopped raining and I got ready to jump on my bike. My plan had changed and I was going to bike across the middle of the peninsula through Cummins over to Tumby Bay and then up to Arno Bay.
M & M carried on down to Port Lincoln and planned on being back at Tumby Bay around 1pm where they would meet me for lunch. Unfortunately I had not looked at the map at all so did not realise that there were a few hills on this route. I did however have a good look around this lovely part of the Eyre Peninsula. (Actually thought of Richard Sheehan and Averil Sheehan as I stopped and took a photo of a property and realised that the name on the letter box was “Sheehan” )
Hill with radio aerial just before the drop down to where M & M were waiting for me with lunch. Up one side and then straight down the other.
Nearly the end of another day.
Murray had washed my bike (first time for everything) while I was in the shower PJs on ready for bed
Friday 28th June Arno Bay to Lucky Bay to Port Wakefield Today I am doing a cheat – not really. But when the opportunity is there you may as well take it. So M & M arrived at the Sea SA ferry before me and we boarded for the crossing across the Spencer Gulf. 2 hour sailing time.
Then off the ferry and back on the bike after lunch with the aim of making it all the way to Port Wakefield. After a bit of a detour around Wallaroo as I had no idea how to get out of this place, I was finally headed in the right direction. Heading a long towards Port Wakefield M & M passed me and then stopped on the side of the road to go and have a look in a pet shop. “Sorry guys you can’t take a pet snake home”
I couldn’t understand why I was in my little chain ring and why I was feeling like I was pedalling and not getting anywhere. It wasn’t until I reached a point where the signpost said 5 % gradient for next 2km that I realised I had been climbing. Loved the downhill as always. But the sun had set and M & M had gone flying past. Last time when they were stopped on the side of the road was just before the downhill sign and I told them my current speed and that I would take another hour at current speed.
Things changed on the downhill and they soon passed me again. As cars and trucks were now starting to come towards me with headlights on M & M finally decided that rather than passing me and then waiting a few kilometres up the road for me to go past again that they would tail me which was a far safer option for me at least. Another day down – one final little bit to do.
Saturday 29th Last day Not a coast to coast effort but Water to Water. The Lakes Perth to Two Wells Adelaide.
A foggy start and another early start just as I wanted to get it over and done with. It was so foggy that when I go to the main road I couldn’t see across to the other side. I could hear vehicles coming but had no idea which direction they were coming from so I waited until I heard nothing and then made my mad dash across the A1. It wasn’t long and the 2 opposing sides of the road were separated by a barrier and the road heading to Adelaide became 2 lanes.
After dropping off the campervan we were picked up by Simon and Fiona and taken back to their place for the night before heading home to NZ the next day.
SENSE OF ACHIEVEMENT
DO IT AGAIN?
Didn’t quite make 2500km but close enough for me
And my final words.
Some of the great music that I have listened to has included “In my daughters eyes” – thinking of Monique and “Lucky”
I can’t sing to save myself but if anybody was riding along listening to me over the last few days they would have enjoyed “ Lucky to be in love with my best friend, Lucky to have been where I have been, Lucky to be going home again……”
I have had a bit of time to do some thinking. This ride was JUST A RIDE. Nothing spectacular. Nothing extraordinary. Any one of the people I ride with could have done the same but probably better. Journeys all have good parts and not so good parts, hills and valleys, sunny days and cloudy days. What inspires me is the strength and determination and courage faced by so many people as they face challenges in their lives/journeys. Some people will know that I am now and have been thinking of them on my journey. Your journey inspired and continues to inspire me. You are stronger and have more courage and determination than I will ever have. I send all my prayers and best wishes to you on your journey. To all the people that have helped me and wished me well on my journey – I sincerely thank you.
THAT IS MY STORY – TILL NEXT TIME
|From /To||Day||Distance km||
|Perth /York||Thurs 13th||47.6||23.9||52.6||1hr 56||233|
|York/ Bruce Rock||Fri 14th||154||19.6||38.2||7hr 41||648|
|Bruce Rock/Southern Cross||Sat 15th||137||22.8||43.5||5hr 52||497|
|Southern Cross /Coolgardie||Sun 16th||186.2||24.1||42.1||7hr 32||536|
|Kalgoorlie/Norseman||Mon 17th||190.9||23.1||43.7||8hr 04||442|
|Norseman/Balladonia||Tue 18th||191.7||25.8||51.9||7hr 14||547|
|Balladonia/Cocklebiddy||Wed 19th||246.6||29||40.9||8hr 18|
|Cocklebiddy/Madura||Thurs 20th||91.8||21.2||54.9||4hr 13||110|
|Eucla/Nullabor||Sat 22nd||198.1||25.3||40.3||7hr 40||172|
|Nullabor/Nundroo||Sun 23rd||139.5||20.3||42.7||6hr 42||370|
|Nundroo/Ceduna||Mon 24th||120.5||23.7||42.1||4hr 54||242|
|Ceduna/StreakyBay||Tues 25th||113.3||22.6||46.2||4hr 54||276|
|Streaky Bay/Elliston||Wed 26th||132.1||25.8||53.6||5hr 01||307|
|Elliston/ Arno Bay||Thurs 27th||146.5||24.2||57.9||5hr 52||510|
|Arno Bay/Lucky Bay/Port Wakefield||Fri 28th||124.5||22||57.3||5hr 38||370|
|Port Wakefield/Two Wells||Sat 29th||58.8||23.6||32.6||2hr 25||52|