Our final Australian stats

Distance cycled across Australia: 2,855km

Average day: 62km

Amount of uphill: 29,000m (or 3⅓ Everest) – that’s more than we did in NZ!

Longest day in Australia: 88km from Cann River to Bombala

Hilliest day in Australia: 1,450m of ascent from Valla Beach to Dorrigo

Number of nights camping: 33

Number of WarmShowers people who’ve generously hosted us: 12

Ferries taken: 10 (Raymond Island x2;  Husky Ferry;  Bundeena to Cronulla; Webbs Creek ferry x2; Wisemans Ferry;  Newcastle to Stockton; Nelson Bay to Tea GardensSettlement Point ferry in Port Macquarie)

ParkRuns completed by Adam: 9  Maribyrnong, Inverloch, Bairnsdale, Paramamta, Lakeview, Port Macquaire, Grafton, Varsity Lakes & South Bank

Rail replacement buses used to avoid dangerous roads: x1 between North Nowra and Kiama

Alive snakes seen: 0

Dead snakes seen: Half a dozen or so on the roads

The route we took is here: click

Melbourne to Brisbane

We’ve made it from Melbourne to Brisbane!

163. Green Beacon BreweryIt’s been a while since we updated the blog.  In that time we’ve cycled from Pottsville to Mermaid Waters on the Gold Coast, done a whole heap of tourist things on the Gold Coast (wildlife parks, Sea World, water slide parks, music festivals, watched Aussie Rules Football and more), then completed our cycling in Australia by riding into Brisbane and done more tourist things in Brisbane.  We’ve now got four more days in Australia before we fly to Vancouver on Friday 3rd June.  Continue reading

Almost into Queensland

122. Summerland WayAfter our rest day in Grafton we set off on Sunday for the final push to Queensland.  However neither of us were in a particularly joyful mood.  On Saturday we found out that my parents had had to put down their dog, so a few tears had been shed saying goodbye to Cam.  He was getting old, yet it was still sad because it was relatively unexpected.  Having to ride another 80km didn’t really appeal.  We followed the Summerland Way pretty much the whole way and there are very few towns along the road, just a lot of straight roads and trees.  In different circumstances it probably would have been great, but we were glad to get to Rappville. Continue reading

Ride of the falling leaves

104. Autumn in North DorrigoOn Wednesday night we stayed in a hotel in Dorrigo because we assumed it’d be too cold to camp as it’s over 700m above sea level, although once we’d arrived in Dorrigo we both thought it probably would have been OK in the tent.  However, the hotel was paid for and as we couldn’t cook our own dinner we also had to eat in the hotel as well.  Oh boo hoo us.  We were clearly hungry after the climb as we over ordered and yet still managed to eat everything.  We didn’t need the garlic bread starter, and the small pizza would probably have been sufficient, but we managed.  Come Thursday morning we maximised the breakfast on offer and left with our pockets full of marmite and ketchup sachets.  We’d both really enjoyed the treat of staying in a hotel. Continue reading

Heading up and inland to Dorrigo

101. Top of Dorrigo MountainAfter a great day off on Monday in South West Rocks (SWR), I reluctantly got back on the bike on Tuesday to cycle up to Valla Beach. I say reluctantly because the campsite we stayed on in SWR was fabulous and also I think I’m really in need of some time off the bike, but I know that is coming soon. The themes for Tuesday were roadworks and highway dodging. The Pacific Highway is in the process of being upgraded and the new bits around this area are due to open around the 16th / 18th May, so only a week away. This means there is lots of construction traffic around, lots of frustrated drivers and lots of roadworks, which made Tuesday a very “bitty” day that didn’t flow all that well. Continue reading

Rock to Rock: Seal to South West

078. Maria River RoadAfter seven consecutive days on the road we are now having a much needed break in South West Rocks (well I need a break, I suspect Adam doesn’t, not really), a cute little town on the coast that we had heard good things about and so decided it would make a good place for a rest day. Over the last few days we’ve covered nearly 300km but the cycling has been not too demanding, with mostly flat terrain, which makes me happy. We’ve also spotted our first signs for Brisbane so we are edging gradually closer and the end now seems very much in sight. Hooray! Continue reading

Will we be able to ride the Old Gibber Trail?

046.  Old Gibber TrailIn the end the rain won and we spent Sunday in Stockton.  This didn’t alter our plans very much because we were originally going to have a day off on Monday, but unfortunately Stockton wasn’t a great place to stop.  Part of this tour is being adaptable to whatever the weather, road etc. throws at us, even if that is a day off in Stockton.  As we’d already spent Saturday afternoon in Newcastle we didn’t feel the need to get the boat back into town.  I made use of the day off to read all of “Elizabeth is Missing”. Continue reading

Fantastic Fernleigh Track

028. Farnleigh cycle trackIt’s Sunday morning and we’re meant to be on the road heading towards Nelson Bay, but the weather has other ideas.  We were woken up at about 6.15am by an impressive amount of bird song, which was then drowned out by the sound of rain hammering onto the tent.  It’s now gone 10am and it’s still raining, but hopefully it’ll clear out and we’ll be able to get on the road.  We’re only planning to ride 50km along the coast so we’re not in a rush this morning.  We know that our skin is waterproof, as are our panniers, and it isn’t that cold, but it’s still very unpleasant thinking about cycling in the rain.  There’s some strange psychology in play when it involves getting wet. Continue reading

More amazing WarmShowers experiences

010. Food at Peter & Vicki'sIt would seem that most cycle tourists leave Sydney via the Northern Beaches and catch a ferry to Manly, whereas on Tuesday we’d ridden to Wisemans Ferry, which is a very different route.  Whether this was the right decision we’ll never know, but we had a great time. From the campsite where we’d stayed on Tuesday night we caught two chain ferries to get onto the road that hugs the Hawkesbury River.  Catching ferries always adds something fun to the day.  The road surface was pretty awful, but it was devoid of cars and a fantastic route.  After Spencer the road heads inland and over Mangrove Mountain, which was a gentle climb from sea level up to around 300m.  We sat in the sun at Mangrove Mountain while eating lunch and thinking about how great it is cycling through NSW during autumn.  Not too hot, not too cold.  If only the sun didn’t vanish at 5.30pm!  After lunch we swooped downhill, dodged the Sydney – Newcastle highway, dropped into Lisarow and found our amazing WarmShowers host. Continue reading

To Sydney and beyond

194. Sydney Harbour BridgeApologies for the radio silence over the last few days but we’ve been spending some time in Sydney doing normal ie non-cycling stuff with some absolutely fabulous people who kindly offered to put us up (put up with us) as we passed through Sydney, despite never having met us before and us only knowing a family relation back in the UK. We’ve been fed, watered and well looked after and the weekend passed way too quickly. But more of that later… Continue reading