AUSTRALIA Page 6 - South Australia - December 2006.

Australia, the adopted homeland of both Mal and Lee. The only continent under one government and the country we both love. The picture above is the “skyline” of our city, you can click on the picture to get a larger image. Perth is one of the most isolated regional capital cities in the world. There are so many things to say about our country that I simply do not know where to begin...

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Friday December 15th 2006 Ceduna rest day.
k's Average Speed kph Cycling time 9Hr(s) 12Min. Max speed. 29kph Max temp we recorded °C
. Road Conditions: Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard )

Rest day

Saturday December 16th 2006 Ceduna rest day.
k's Average Speed kph Cycling time 9Hr(s) 12Min. Max speed. 29kph Max temp we recorded °C
. Road Conditions: Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard )

Went shopping today and a look around Ceduna. It is a tidy town with lots of excellent infrastructure. A seemingly large police force, apparently kept very busy with the local Aboriginals. They had a “manned” car parked across from a large group of Aboriginals on the beach front and another car circling. Although we saw many minor altercations (amongst the Aboriginals themselves) we found them friendly and well meaning towards us. They are a “lost” race of human beings, it saddens me greatly to see their decline. Met a 26yr old Japanese Guy Manabu Taira, who has Cycled from Sydney and is just about to cross the Nullarbor.

So far he has stayed each night in C/van parks. He did NOT know (unprepared) food cannot be purchased on the Nullarbor.. Also the roadhouses may deny him water unless he pays an exorbitant price... (We were charged up to $5.40 for a 1.5 litre bottle) We told him how to avoid most of the scams... and the need to be “fair” when asking. If one does not purchase anything they should not expect charity. He knew about the Japanese Cyclist killed by the truck last year... (We were only recently told). We warned him to take extra care, as the amount of freight is constantly increasing – meaning more trucks. He is cycling to the beautiful city of Perth and from there, he will fly home to Japan.

As a guest in our country we wish him a safe interesting journey. Catchya Later

Sunday December 17th 2006 Ceduna to Smoky Bay.
47.29k's Average Speed 9.52kph Cycling time 4Hr(s) 58Min. Max speed. 26kph Max temp we recorded °C
Undulating. Road Conditions: Poor, Headwind, warm to hot weather. Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard )

Left Ceduna about 1pm after talking with “everyone”. Circled the town a little before we left – hence the extra k's than the “map” distance. The first five k's was on the Truckies “Private Road”. We then turned off towards Port Lincoln.

Choosing this route is an extra 50+++ k's, however, there are virtually no trucks the extra ks are WELL worth it. Cars and Caravans are (mostly) OK as are other road users. We are acutely aware that we are very vulnerable on our bikes and take all possible precautions. We pulled into the small settlement of “Smoky Bay” and booked into the C/Van park.

Smoky Bay appears to exist for Oysters.. We bought 2 dozen for $14.00 and Lee is scoffing them now. The C/Van park is clean and well run. With a very nice “Camp Kitchen” where I am typing this now. We will try and make Streaky Bay tomorrow... Met and chatted with lots of nice people today... The "Fish Sauce" bottle decided to empty itself into Lee's trailer. Now everything stinks of rotting fish... Duh!!!.... Oh well Catchya Tomorrow...

Monday December 18th 2006 Smoky Bay to Streaky Bay
76.85k's Average Speed 10.71kph Cycling time 7Hr(s) 17Min. Max speed. 42kph Max temp we recorded °C
Undulating. Road Conditions: Poor, Tailwind until 1:30 then headwind. Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard )

Just before the switch from tailwind to headwind our average speed was 12.65kph.. The change sure wiped off our average... We did not start until after 11am as we tried washing out the fish sauce... As you know this cannot be done.. The ride was uneventful with only about three trucks seen all day. The scenery on the other hand is stunning.... Late start, big ride, absolutely knackered tonight so will Catchya tomorrow...

Tuesday December 19th 2006 Streaky Bay to Bush camp about 10 ks from Port Kenny.
56.61k's Average Speed 11.03kph Cycling time 5Hr(s) 7Min. Max speed. 40kph Max temp we recorded °C
Undulating. Road Conditions: Poor, VERY hot, Tailwind until 4pm then headwind. Overnight Accom: $. Standard )

Just a little on the C/Van park at Streaky Bay... Like many parks a “camper” is a second class citizen, this one takes it to the extreme. The “facilities” are so far away from the “Camping Area” that it is just unreasonable to expect people to use them. In fairness we were told “one” of the camping areas, closer to the facilities, is being prepared (by growing grass) for the high season. They use “crackers” to scare the birds – that roost in their thousands throughout the park and surrounds... and of course they shit on everything.... Yes you guessed it, all our gear was covered in shit. It is NOT a recommended C/Van park for tent people.

We uploaded our web pages with pictures today... There is no real way to make this process any easier whilst on the road. One possible way is to email the pics and text to someone who can tidy it up and upload to our domain. Any volunteers? Only joking!!! Whilst uploading our site, a lady walked in with her mobile phone open and said “are you Mal?” Stunned, I took the phone and found Jo Tetlow on the other end... Jo is our financial advisor. Apparently Anne and Graham (Our Friends) had filled her in on our whereabouts! To say it is a small world is a complete understatement!!! I am still shocked!

An uneventful ride and a hard one... One of those days when it seemed it was all uphill, even had to pedal what was seemingly downhill... We checked the brochures and found that Port Kenny C/Van park was $20.00 for an un-powered site... Not paying those prices any more – so we have a truly great bush camp.... Anyhow not much more news today so will catchya tomorrow.

Wednesday December 20th 2006 Bush camp about 10 ks from Port Kenny to Elliston
75.31k's Average Speed 10.08kph Cycling time 7Hr(s) 27Min. Max speed. 37kph Max temp we recorded °C
Undulating. Road Conditions: Poor, VERY hot, Tailwind until 2pm then STRONG headwind. O/Accom: $. Standard )

Mixed day – started hot and with a sprinkling of rain. We were bush camped in a top “private” spot, very few ants and nice clear sandy ground... Don't know what the o/night temp got to but I doubt it dropped much bellow 30C. Got up at 3am to put our rain covers on our tent/gear. We cycled to the dying town of Port Kenny and stopped for breakfast. The odd drops of rain were evident throughout the day but nothing of any value in this VERY dry land. I got another puncture in the rear wheel which was repaired by replacing both tyre and tube. Called in the Colton Bakery and picked up some fresh bread(s).

Colton once had a population of 200+ people and now only has 4. The first “Greek” migrant to come to Australia is buried here. If I understand correctly he was only 18 yrs old when he died. Every four years – timed with the Olympics – and the “leap” year, Greeks come from all over Australia to visit his grave. Mark (The Baker) told me the place is buzzing with people everywhere – all the bread he can bake is consumed. Thanks Mark, Janeece and children for sharing your history with us. Thanks also for the two litres of cool water. We booked a “cabin” at the first C/Van park in town

We met some young lads from Lock. Lock is a small town we should pass through in the next few days, one of the lads was involved in building a “recumbent” trike as a school project. They used the “Greenspeed” as the basis for their attempt and constructed a functional trike weighing about 20kg. They were taking their small boat “crayfishing” a little further south tomorrow. The weather forecast is for heavy rain tomorrow, so we are prepared to stay another day if needed. We will see how the day pans out after we get up... Catchya Tomorrow

Thursday December 21st 2006 Elliston- Rest Day
k's Average Speed kph Cycling time Hr(s) Min. Max speed. kph Max temp we recorded °C
U. Road Conditions: Poor, . Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard )

Heavy rain once or twice during the night and the weather forecast caused us to play safe. Although we are well equipped for wet weather cycling, there is no pressure on us to be anywhere as long as we get to Adelaide by the 4th January..... So, we will enjoy the rest day. We walked into town and did some shopping for fresh food. Lee is now cooking “brunch”. They paint buildings in many towns in the “outback”, a nice example is here in Elliston....

PM: The rain is absolutely bucketing down, thunderstorms have knocked out the power in the C/van park and we believe, town. The locals are overjoyed, we too are pleased to see the land getting much needed moisture. The wildlife has suffered terribly during the preceding dry weather, we hope it continues for them as well.

UPDATE: The boys from Lock did not catch any crayfish

Friday December 22nd 2006 Elliston To Bush camp approx. 17 k's from Lock.
78.72k's Average Speed 11.31kph Cycling time 6Hr(s) 57Min. Max speed. 43kph Max temp we recorded °C
Undulating. Road Conditions: Poor, cold with intermittent light rain Tailwind until 3pm then side-wind until 4:10pm followed by a moderate headwind. . Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard )

Awoke to constant rain, we are still discussing our options. As previously stated we are equipped for wet weather cycling, whilst unpleasant it will allow progress. Setting up camp (Bush – no choice) is a little more difficult in heavy rain, as is dismantling our camp.

9:15 am, we will decide soon. If we leave, there may be no diary until the weather becomes dry as we will not remove the computer from it's waterproof bag.

09:50 Update: We have decided to pedal.... Will let you know. (see above stats)

Left the C/van park about 11am and had a cold somewhat damp 78k ride. Little of real interest on the ride, other than the antics of the many Animals

Saturday December 23rd 2006 Bush camp approx. 17 k's from Lock to Lock
18.38k's Average Speed 8.32kph Cycling time 2Hr(s) 9Min. Max speed. 22kph Max temp we recorded °C
Uphill. Road Conditions: Poor, cool with a moderate headwind.. Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard)

Sickness, has forced me to stop. NO excuse for my stupidity I should have known better. (SEE WARNINGS PAGE Here)

Severe sunburn resulting from my wearing shorts, in the rain, on a very cold day with 8/8 cloud cover, that must have been thousands of feet thick! At times it was so dark we used our rear flashing lights to be seen. Now my legs are on fire and I have a raging temperature. If anyone tells me they knew that could/would happen, they will have to be killed instantly :-)

Tried peddling but the pain was incredible, I could have psyched myself into bearing it, but we are not in that much of a hurry. We are booked on the new ferry lunch time on the 25th it is booked out on the 26th. I just hope I can recover enough to pedal tomorrow. We have about 94 k's to Lucky bay (84 to Cowell) – about a day and a half. Lock is at the highest point on the peninsular according to our host here at the Boomerang Motel.

Up to 3 ks from town our average speed was 7.83kph. It took us more than two hrs to get here from our camp, mostly as a result of the incline and not my sickness. Apparently there is a predominantly gentle downhill to Cleve... I have heard that before :-). Here I am in my $50.00 pn hotel room feeling sorry for myself. Lee has been great, firstly accepting my stupidity and secondly taking care of me.

Sunday December 24th 2006 Lock to Cleve
79.27k's Average Speed 10.66kph Cycling time 7Hr(s) 43Min. Max speed. 25kph Max temp we recorded °C
Uphill. Road Conditions: Poor, cool, tail/side/head/side/head. Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard)

About 7am before we start: Despite an agonising night I have decided to move on.. Lee has suggested we hire a ute to take us to the ferry. I am NOT a purist, I will, where necessary, on ANY part of our journey, take the sensible option if I/we feel it is the best option. The severe sunburn has caused other complications; fever and cough being two of them. I have obviously weakened my immune system by burning myself.

Paracetamol, was the order of the day. I used it to control the fever. Lee thinks I am worse, I must agree! I have absolutely no power whatsoever. The ride itself was gruelling and should/would have been much easier had I been 100%. A good tailwind and lots of “down” to start with should have bumped up our stats.

We passed through the dying town of Rudall, there are some tidy homes but it does appear derelict in other areas. We could not see a shop of any type and no Pub – which would have been essential.

We have booked into the only accommodation in Cleve (at least that is what one of the locals said) for one night.

The hope is to get up early and cycle the 52 ks to Cowell. Catchya Tomorrow.

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