Ready, set, 6.30am and off we go heading east. The plan is to discover the Eyre and Yorke Penninsulas in South Australia.
The original plan was an unsupported bike trip with some CTAWA cyclists of the Murray River (flying to Adelaide) which runs through South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales over 2500km. Extensive flooding and mosquito borne viruses put me off, however 5 cyclists have set off on the journey.
Meanwhile, we are in the car, bikes on the back, our 8 person tent and my light weight 2 person hiking tent.
We are going to take our time, John!! He wants to get to Balladonia tonight … some 916km away … slow? I will pull in the reigns when we cross the Nullarbor.
Onward to Norseman … glimpses of the salt lakes from the road. We need a pic, John! No traffic … he slows down and a pic from the window … ugh … I miss travelling on my bike, I would stop and have time. Entering Norseman and missed pic opportunities, signage ‘No water from Norseman to Ceduna, Fill up in Norseman’ and true to it’s word, 2 hours later we get to Balladonia. The caravan/camping park has electricity but no water points. Laps of the park and being watched by caravaners as theycare into there 5pm drinkies, we find a spot and put up my hiking tent. Very snug inside with John’s single inflatable velour mattress against my 300g hiking job. I’m going to have to work on that!!!
A mild day … not a cloud in the sky. Perth to Merredin through the wheatbelt … dry paddocks of harvested grains, it was a bumper crop for the farmers according to ‘A Country Hour’ on the ABC radio today. A quick coffee in Merredin, we leave the farms and out in the bush, gums and low shrubs and the Perth to Kalgoorie water pipe at our side, occasionally switching across the road. Stopping in Coolgardie for lunch in a local park; upon leaving, it is decided that it might be worth a look on our return.
The park had about 20 vans, a few tents … most impressive was the two tents, two touring bikes, makeshift washing line with washing and no car … my heart skipped a beat with excitement … I need to talk to those cyclists.