Wednesday, 6 January 2016


6 Jan 2016 - Melbourne
The ride has reached its end.  I'm back in Melbourne, back at work and adjusting to daily living after the big ride.  What now?

Well there is the small matter of finishing the tale.  In my last update we were heading into Port Augusta, doing our best to avoid the hot, windy weather of summer and the fires it brings.  We took the main road south, took a short detour on the Yorke Peninsula before heading inland to arrive in Adelaide via Gawler.  From Adelaide we flew to Launceston, and then we rode the west coast of Tasmania before returning to Melbourne via Hobart.

26 November - Port Germain

Big freight trains, and the beautiful Flinders Ranges

At Port Germain the tidal flats are big enough to use as horse training grounds.

Its so hard to get a good photo of a kite, so I was fairly impressed when I got this one.

Sunset just out of Port Pirie

27 November - Wallaroo

Wind - and a few hills, but mostly rude truck drivers.
28 November - Port Wakefield

The road into Port Wakefield crosses saltmarsh country

The 'port' is really a mangrove.

Last light over the sea.
29 November - into the fire zone
These islands of bush surrounded by wheat are important animal habitats,

The people of Pinery were hit hard a grass fire two days before we passed through

Crops, fencing, stock and houses were lost.
2 December - Preparing for flight
To fly with a bike you need to pull it apart.and put in a box

To get it into the box, you'll need to remove the handlebars.

And remove the pedals - the thread is in the opposite direction to the pedaling direction.
This is a job that can get a bit sweary.

Important - deflate your tires before you fly.
Also, carry something to clean your hands when you're done.
3 December - Launceston, Tasmania
If you are touring and looking for a place to stay, check out warm showers, its the Air B&B of the bike touring world. When in Launceston, say hello to Vicky and Malcolm.  They are good people

Tributaries of the Tamar.

4 December 2015

The wetlands of the Tamar Valley are popular with birds.

That fast moving tongue gives the echidna its scientific name - Tachyglossus
6 December - The road to Burnie
If you see a Tasmanian Devil on the side of the road - report it to the Tassie Devil Roadkill Project.
Researchers are monitoring Tasmanian Devil populations to how they are holding up under the combined threats of habitat loss, road kill and a nasty transmissible face cancer.

We reported several devils to the researchers, but we didn't see a live one.

The road between Ulverstone and Burnie has some lovely moments.
7 December - Burnie
Burnie - exports woodchips

and imports tourists.
8 December
It rained (a lot)

Pademelon - not quiet as cute as quokka, but close.

9 December - heading south towards Lake Rosebury
Because Echidnas can crawl up in a ball, they tend to ignore you if you keep your distance.

A healthy (Facial Tumor free) Devil meets its fate crossing the Murchison Highway.

Lake Rosebery is one of two hydro electric dams on the Pieman River. 

The Emu bay railway mainly provides ore transport for nearby mines
10 December - Pieman River Road

11 December - Zeehan to Strahan 
It rained, again - but the cloud on the hills made me think of Scotland.
12 December - Boat ride up the Gordon River
The Gordon river, wild, protected and beautiful

As the boat headed upstream my thoughts went to Joseph Conrad.

And how the Gordon Below Franklin Dam protest could be thought of as the 'origin story' of the Australian Greens Party.

Sarah Island in Macquarie Harbour was once a prison colony.
Convict labourers built ships from Huon pine.  Some of them used the boats to escape. 

13 December - Strahan to Queenstown

The road is hilly, winding and popular with motorcyclists.
15 December - Queenstown and Derwent Bridge
We kinda cheated and caught a coach between Queenstown and Derwent Bridge.  I don't feel guilty.  The hill out of Queenstown is insane.
There's a rack and pinion railway running between Strahan and Queentown.

16 December -Tarraleah

17 December - Towards Strathgordon (Day 1)

18 December - Towards Strathgordon (Day 2)

19 December - Strathgordon

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