Cycle Oz Day 29 – Roads, Rain and Lumps of Rock

  • Start: Princetown
  • End: Warrnambool 
  • Day distance: 85.1km
  • Total distance: 1566.11km
  • Average speed: 15.4km/hr
  • Pedalling time: 05:30
  • Total time: 07:00

Well last night was pretty noisy but I still managed to get a decent amount of sleep in, helped by a very loud SSSSHHHHHH at 11:45pm when a bunch of people decided to get into bed and chat. They quietened down pretty quickly after that. There was a basic breakfast of toast and cereals supplied, which was quite good for a pretty shoddy hostel. 

After 4 slices of toast I was on my way into the drizzle. The forecast for today was not too good, and I hoped it would just be light showers. My first stop was to see the 12 Apostles. It’s incredible how many people are attracted to look at some lumps of rock in the ocean. I’ve heard this area can get super busy, but it was just me and about 8 other hardy people (Japanese tourists) braving the elements to see the rocks. There are a whole bunch of these lookout points along the coast, all of them are a short walk down to the coast. I did as many of them as I could. 

There was a nice rainbow at the 12 Apostles and it cleared up for about 5 minutes. Then it just got worse. It rained steadily for the next 60k. Thankfully it was considerably flatter than it was yesterday and because the weather was so gross it seemed that most people were sensibly staying inside, so the roads were quiet enough. 

The next lookout was Loch Ard gorge (which I read as Lord Arch), where it was raining so much I passed up the opportunity to see another couple of lookouts there because they were too far away. I passed through Port Campbell and for the next 3 hours I cycled in the rain and walked down to the various lookout points, including The Arch, London Bridge and The Grotto, Bay of Martyrs and Bay of Islands. The lookouts were awesome and on an nice sunny day I imagine they would be obviously better, it would have been nice to spend more time at each one and visit more of them. 

Then the road start to move away from the coast again and I don’t remember much about it because I just stuck my head down and tried to concentrate on not being so cold and wet. It got super windy in parts and I was moving pretty slowly despite the road being fairly flat. I followed google when it took me down some back roads which was a great decision, the roads had no cars and it was great to be away from the spray of the cars for a bit. The main road was getting much busier as I got closer to town. 

It was all good until I had to wait for some cows to cross the road, then I had to ride through the cowpatty mud and of course I have no mud guards so that was pretty gross and I ended up with stinky mud splats all over me and Priscilla. I had to cycle pretty much in the middle of the road for most of the day because there was a giant puddle where the wheels of the cars make a dip in the road. 

I cycled through a small town on my way to Warrnambool, past Cheese World and a huge churning factory, and for the last 5k it even stopped raining for a bit! Today was nice and flat, but the wind, rain and cold (and lack of food) made me sluggish and slow so my pace and time weren’t all that impressive. But I was still done by 4pm so that’ll do. I could feel my feet at all by the end of the day. 

Life hack: when it’s raining out your phone in a ziplock bag and you can still use it with wet hands. Works when you’re hiking too.

My warm showers host for the night was Trish and she had two other cycle tourists staying. Simon and Dominik from Germany, who sensibly waited out the rain today. And they are going the same way as me!! They started in Melbourne and are heading up to Alice Springs before either going to Darwin or Brisbane. But they have been on the road for a year already, having cycled through Europe, the Stans, and a lot of Asia. And they built their own bikes!!

We had dinner together, chicken curry and rice and apple strudel for dessert. I had only eaten jelly snakes and biscuits all day, partly because it was too rainy and cold to sop and partly because I wasn’t carrying any other food. I ate so much. I was so hungry. I also did some laundry, first time in 10 days, I was starting to get a little funky, plus all my stuff was wet anyway. 

It was a great evening, talking about cycling and routes and countries and experiences and podcasts and eurovision…

••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••

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.

 

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