Due to a lack of time and places to charge my laptop, I recorded my journal on my phone. I decided for now to post week per week instead of day by day. I will do my best to post one picture a day on Instagram though. You can find me on Instagram with this tag: @agphotofr
07/07/2016 – Relaxation day in the spa
Trip dist: 49.94km
Today was supposed to be a day off but after my great night in the hammock i decided to keep going to Mitchell. There is natural hot springs there. I started to cycle without breakfast at 7am and arrived at Mitchell around 11:30am. I took some photos and videos on the way and the headwind was still present. I had an early lunch then fixed my shifter again to get back the 3 speeds in the front derailleur. Mission accomplished after 20 minutes. I’m starting to be good with this shifter system but I will have to keep an eye on it regularly to make sure the bolt doesn’t get loose. Then I’ve been enjoying the spa for the rest of the afternoon. Such a great feeling to relax in the hot water then jump in cold one for 10 minutes and get back to the hot bath. In addition, it was really inexpensive in comparison to everything else. $8 for all day pass. After a big dinner that I cooked on the stove, I had a great night.
08/07/2016 – First night in the bush
Trip dist: 62.42km
This morning I took it easy. It’s 12pm and I’m still at the place where I spent the night. I still feel my sore legs and I won’t go too hard on it. I wanted to make a plan and write something in my book when, believe it or not, I’ve found my jacket back! So yes it’s possible to lose something in 4 panniers and a backpack and find it again after a few days. Mission of the day 50km. I adjusted the saddle height and it’s much better. The 3rd speed makes all the difference as well. At the sunset, I set up the tent in the middle of nowhere and had an incredible sunset and starry night! I’ve heard all night kangaroos and all different sorts of animals arround the tent. It was great!
09/07/2016 – Riding with a Kangaroo
Trip dist: 111.22km
When I woke up I knew that my goal was to cycle all the way or at least near enough to Charleville. 111.22km later I ended up at a rock pool. Such an amazing place!! My pace was really good 22.3kmh thanks to the wind almost null. It makes such a big difference. On my way, I’ve been surprised while cycling at 35kmh by a kangaroo who didn’t see me and might have been surprised, he started to jump by my side at the same speed 1 meter away from myself. I tried to get the camera but i gave up as too dangerous at this speed and just enjoyed the moment. After 30 secondes riding with this fella by my side he crossed the road in front of me and disappeared in the bush. Such a great experience!
Today I reached the 3000km point since I started from Wanaka! And gone under 2000km to reach Ayers Rock.
I found this rock pool by the road and it’s amazing! I can clean my sweat to spend a good night and a dog joined me while I was in the lake. He wanted to play and tried to find a stick desperately.
Tonight it will be hammock as the sky is amazing and the ground rocky. I had such an awesome night under the milky way.
10/07/2016 – The real adventure starts now
Trip dist: 88.50km
When I opened my eyes it was 6am. The sun wasn’t here yet and I just saw a comet crossing the sky. This day starts well! I packed everything and started to ride to the last city or should I say big town before the real outback. First mission, finding a shower. I got one for free at a petrol station. Luxury! Then cleaning my clothes. I found a laundromat by a bakery. While my clothes were getting washed I’ve been uploading all my photos on my computer and having breakfast. Large chai latte and carrot cake. They even unplugged their fridge so I can plug my computer while doing that. When my clothes were drying I’ve been shopping. I now have a capacity of 9 liters of water and I think I will increase it near Simpson desert with 5 other liters even if I must get away some stuffs. Water is more important. I found a 4 dollars white board so I can write messages to drivers. For now I use it as a link yo my website but the main purpose will be to ask them if they have any water. I left Charleville. And had my first sand cycling experience. I guess there is some skills to learn because in 2km I almost felt down 200 times. Well I didn’t released the pressure of my tyres for 2km… I wonder if it will make a huge difference. The sun is hard and the temperature is now over 23 degrees… I hope it won’t get warmer. Tonight I’m sleeping by the road. It doesn’t matter as now the traffic is almost null. No reception anymore. The real adventure can start now. I’m feeling excited!
11/07/2016 – this has been a hard day…with a great reward at the end.
Trip dist: 146.51km
Total: 3 308km
Today Ive been through a lot of different emotions. Such a long day and the head wind is driving me crazy. I’ve been so angry to the wind that I wanted to punch it in the face. Then I was feeling lonely, then I was wondering what I was doing here. All those emotions, were great as I was trying to understand why I was feeling them and how to go over it. Something happened that helped me. While I was stretching on the side of the road, two guys from India in a tiny car overtake me. They made a u turn 200 meters away and came back to ask me if I needed any help. I could read on their face that they didn’t understand what I was doing here on my bicycle. So kind!! The road, since yesterday is so boring! Nothing else than the road and red earth. Straight line then a little hill then straight line again and again and again… And now as i am by the road taking some photographs, two other cars stopped to ask me if I needed anything. One of them saw me this morning at 9am. At the end of the ride, Quilpie. A small town with a pub where for $15 I had the biggest steak I ever had. Just crazy! Then I found a free shower and I’m now in my tent in the middle of a field not too far from the town. I’ll sleep so well tonight!
12/07/2016 Day off working at the library
Trip dist: N/A km
Total: N/A km
Today my plan was to organise myself before to leave Quilpie and choosing what road to take to Birdsville, the gate to the Simpson desert. I’ve been welcomed so well here because the last cyclist they saw in town has been found dead from not having enough water. Well it looks like he crossed during the middle of the summer and it was 40°C…. Right now it’s raining and the temperature are maximum at 29°C… I should be fine.
In addition I found a great library where I can have free wifi and charge up all my devices so I decided to stay one full day which is a good strategy because the forecast is saying that tomorrow I should have tail wind all day! I even get offered to come from 8am instead of 10am, the official opening hour to finish my work before to keep going on my track!
Week 2 total progress: 452km
Distance before Uluru: 1700km