- Start: Leongatha
- End: Cranbourne
- Day distance: 91.6km
- Total distance: 1149.71km
- Average speed: 17.1km/hr
- Pedalling time: 05:21
- Total time: 06:00
I was once again reluctant to leave the warmth and comfort of Craig and Wendy’s home. The weather looked a little grey and the temptation was to stay for ‘just one more day’. But I couldn’t dilly dally any longer and once I was all kitted up I was ready to get back on the road.
I had two days of complete rest and I was feeling good. Australia in winter is not warm, so I had been to Aldi and bought some (men’s) compression tights which I started out in this morning. Wendy packed me off with some jelly snakes so I now have over a kilo of jelly goodness and the weight is no concern at all. Jelly snake weight doesn’t count.
I thought most of the day was going to be on the highway, but google took me around some back roads to start with which were really quiet and really nice to ride on. And then it started to rain. It was just a bit of drizzle and I was hopeful it would clear and get better as the day went on.
It got worse! It rained practically all day. All you can do is keep peddling. I joined the highway again and when the rain did ease off occasionally, there was so much surface water on the road that I continued to get wetter and wetter. I have no mud guards (something I’m going to have to remedy) so I was getting covered in spray from the wheels of my bike, and I was getting soaked from the spray of passing traffic, and not just the lorries on my side of the road, the ones on the other side too. The faster I went the wetter I got and as I cruised down a large hill I was covered in grit and mud and dirty water from the road. I had gone 60km before I got off the bike for a few moments. I ate my banana which I had attached to my pack a lot more securely this time while I wondered whether I was allowed on an ‘M’ road.
I saw nothing to suggest I wasn’t so I carried on. As with most major rods there is at least a nice wide shoulder. Most of the day had been pretty flat and looking around me it looked flat the rest of the way. I felt like I was in the fens in England, but with more cars. I turned off the motorway and stopped at a petrol station to have a wee. I could either continue on along the motorway or take some back roads. I chose the back roads. There was less traffic but also no shoulder. I’m not sure which the better option was. It rained on and off in heavy showers.
I made a quick stop at Woolworths in Koo Wee Rup, not because I needed anything but because I wanted to have a break from being in the saddle and it was dry and warm in Woolworths! As I approached the urban areas I found cycle paths and was able to get off the road for a bit. Google did good and took me through some quieter back streets to find Yvonne, my warm showers host for the evening. I had been cycling pretty much non stop so it was only 2:30 when I arrived. I could have gone further today but it’s difficult to tell how far you will be able to go. 90ks of rain was enough for the day anyway.
Yvonne was really welcoming and even though she was having problems with her hot water she still made sure I got a shower and drove me round to her daughters house so I could wash and brought me back again. A keen cyclist herself she gave me a spare pair of shoe covers she had so I could try to keep my feet warm and dry. They were absolutely freezing when I arrived and they were bright white, not sure where all the blood had gone.
Yvonne had to go to work at 4pm for a late shift, but she left me with the heater, homemade pumpkin soup and the instructions to help myself to anything to eat. She went to work and left me in her house. People are mad!
I continue to raise money for Just A Drop – they bring sustainable clean water, sanitation and hygiene projects to communities around the world.
663 million people across the globe are living without access to clean, safe water. That’s 1 in 10 people. A child dies every 90 seconds from a water related disease. One third of the worlds population – 2.4 billion people – don’t have access to adequate sanitation.
If you have enjoyed this blog, please consider donating a few…pounds / dollars / euros / yen… and together we can change lives.