Day 3 – Robinvale to Mildura. approx 85km
This morning was cold. Frost on the tent, frost on the bike, Hands painful even in gloves and so numb I cant't work the brakes cold. It was so cold that I felt a little queezy – which I guess was my body's way of saying it would rather get rid of the cold watery porridge I had for breakfast rrather than send any heat to my stomach to digest it. It was the coldest I've felt for a very long time.
Why am I having cold porridge for breakfast on such a chilly morning? The plan was to get something in me then ride the five or so kilometres to Robinvale where I buy a more substantial breakfast. By the time I got there all I wanted was an excuse to spent a few minutes in the cafe till I go the use of my hands back. A long black coffee served that need nicely. Perhaps the time to break out the trangia stove is not wasted on truly icy mornings.
At Robinvale we crossed over the Murray which means I can technically add New South Wales to the list of states visited in this trip – but that's a bit of a cheat. Still there's something satisfying about crossing an administrative boundary under your own power so I'm going to take it as a win.
A few kilometres out of Robinvale I noticed my speedo wasn't working. This is a common enough problem – the knocks of a bumpy road can sometimes move the magnet and sensor and its easily fixed with a bit of fine adjustment. Not this time. I rode off frustrated and a little concerned that I'd lost an important psychological motivator and navigation aid. When Maree stopped for a morning tea break around 11am I had a second go at it, This time completely removing and reinstalling the sensor. Still no joy. I removed the sensor from the handlebars and brought it over the sensor (its one of those wireless jobbies) it worked. I put it back on its handlebar mount. It stopped working. It was all a bit weird.
I moved a cable I had draped over the handle bars, It started working. I'd hooked the charge cable that ran between the solar panel and my phone under the speedo to keep it from getting caught in the front wheel. Apparently it wasn't very well shielded, and the electrical noise from this cable was enough to stuff up the wireless speedo. Of course this only happened when the solar panel got full sun, so tracking down the problem was real devil of a job.
The moral of this story is – When it comes to touring kit – Keep it Simple Stupid. This would never of happened if I was using a cheap speedo with wires.
More highway riding today. Unfortunately that means wild life casualties. I saw three not-alive kangaroos today. I had much better luck yesterday. I saw a live swamp wallaby near Tooleybuc and a whole paddocks full of roos on the way to Boundary Bend. Still, Its hard to be grumpy when nature puts on a sunset this good. Night Night all.