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Sydney to Adelaide: day by day notes

March 2006

See where I went & what I did. Just click a day, any day, or every day...   whatever!

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4 March
Planned route:   Sydney - Goulburn
Actual route:  Sydney - Goulburn
Distance:   0 km
Average speed:   0 km/hr
Maximum speed:   0 km/hr

I cheated! I took the train.


5 March
Planned route:   Goulburn - Yass
Actual route:   Goulburn - Yass
Distance:   85 km
Average speed:   16 km/hr
Maximum speed:   57 km/hr

A day on the Hume Highway - foggy start - terrible concrete road surface, but nice wide verge. It's been 15 years since I was in Yass - not much has changed


6 March
Planned route:   Yass - Harden
Actual route:   Yass - Harden
Distance:   66 km
Average speed:   12 km/hr
Maximum speed:   56 km/hr

Hot, hilly + headwinds, couldn't even roll downhill, had to pedal down... stopped early afternoon at Harden pub. A few beers later, no more riding today - at least I'd learned a bit more about the route ahead, so, a change in direction coming up


7 March
Planned route:   Harden - Grenfell
Alternate planned route:   Harden - Temora
Actual route:   Harden - Stockingbingal
Distance:   47 km
Average speed:   12 km/hr
Maximum speed:   55 km/hr

From bad to worse. Lost count of the flat tyres (tires) I repaired. Getting nowhere fast!


8 March
Planned route:   Grenfell - Quandialla
Alternate planned route:   Temora - West Wyalong
Actual route:   Stockingbingal - Temora
Distance:   34 km
Average speed:   16 km/hr
Maximum speed:   36 km/hr

Pretty good, if short + slowish ride. Temora is a good sized town with everything needed to get bike + self back into shape. Can't believe how slow I've been riding and how little distance I've been covering each day


9 March
Planned route:   Quandialla - West Wyalong
Actual route:   Temora - West Wyalong
Distance:   82 km
Average speed:   ? km/hr
Maximum speed:   ? km/hr

Road to West Wyalong good, undulating but fairly flatish overall. For the first time I made good time and guess what? The bike computer simply refuses to function!


10 March
Planned route:   West Wyalong - Rankin Springs
Actual route:   West Wyalong - Rankin Springs
Distance:  92 km
Average speed:   ? km/hr
Maximum speed:   ? km/hr

All routes,planned + alternate, met in West Wyalong. Roads still reasonably good with very little heavy truck traffic. At last things are looking good, bike is fine, I'm fine and the clicks just fly by.


11 March
Planned route:   Rankin Springs - Goolgowi
Actual route:   Rankin Springs - Goolgowi
Distance:  58 km
Average speed:   ? km/hr
Maximum speed:   ? km/hr

Short day. Not looking forward to the long flat and incredibly boring Hay Plain that's coming up


12 March
Planned route:   Goolgowi - Hay
Actual route:   Goolgowi - Hay
Distance:  111 km
Average speed:   ? km/hr
Maximum speed:   ? km/hr

Cracked the 'ton' today. First day over 100 kilometres. What is there to say?   Flat, featureless road into a flat town with featureless people... Why am I here?


13 March
Planned route:   Hay - Balranald
Actual route:   Hay - Balranald
Distance:  132 km
Average speed:   ? km/hr
Maximum speed:   ? km/hr

And I thought yesterday was crap! More of the same but this time with heavy truck traffic, not to mention the grey nomads with their 4WD (SUV) and caravans - hey people, you don't have to hug that white line on the left, you could give me some bl**dy room too you know ! It was that sort of day...


14 March
Planned route:   Balranald - Euston
Actual route:   Balranald - Euston
Distance:  69 km
Average speed:   ? km/hr
Maximum speed:   ? km/hr

Another shorter day. Getting closer to the river now. The first vineyards appear, tho it still seems like the middle of nowhere. More traffic again, road surface getting better too even if there's not much space to ride


15 March
Planned route:   Euston - Mildura
Actual route:   Euston - Mildura
Distance:  79 km
Average speed:   ? km/hr
Maximum speed:   ? km/hr

Across the border from New South Wales into Victoria and into the first really big town. Nice place, good bike shops too, replaced the recalitrant bike computer and picked up a couple more spare tubes - just in case...


16 March
Planned route:   Mildura - Cullulleraine
Actual route:   Mildura - Cullulleraine
Distance:  59 km
Average speed:   19 km/hr
Maximum speed:   36 km/hr

Easy start followed by a couple of flat tyres(tires) reached Lake Cullulleraine and decided to stop over. Not bad camp ground but full of thorns as I was to find out...


17 March
Planned route:   Cullulleraine - Renmark
Actual route:  Cullulleraine - Renmark
Distance:  85 km
Average speed:   16 km/hr
Maximum speed:   31 km/hr

Started the day fixing a puncture in the rain and it seemed like I did the same thing all day long. And almost each time it was the rear wheel. Unpack the panneiers, unhitch the drive blah blah blah... still I reached the border late morning and crossed into South Australia where the road instantly changed. Better surface, better signage but absolutely no verge, I had to share the road with the trucks


18 March
Planned route:   Renmark - Waikerie
Actual route:  Renmark - Barmera
Distance:  37 km
Average speed:   15 km/hr
Maximum speed:   30 km/hr

What a day! Had the rear wheel off three times - I'm patching patches now and running very low on repair kit stuff.


19 March
Planned route:   Renmark - Waikerie
Actual route:  Barmera - Waikerie
Distance:  51 km
Average speed:   17 km/hr
Maximum speed:   31 km/hr

Another 'flat' day made better by an encounter with a kangaroo - well probably a wallaby, I can't tell the difference - anyway, as I rode, it hopped along on the other side of the road at the same speed, I slowed, it slowed, I sped up, it sped up - a whole lot quicker than I - I stopped, it stopped. This went on for some time and only ended when I stopped and stood up to reach for the camera and my new-found friend headed of into the mulga


20 March
Planned route:   Waikerie - Blanchetown
Actual route:  Waikerie - Nuriootpa
Distance:   103 km
Average speed:   18 km/hr
Maximum speed:   42 km/hr

Nice day. Fairly easy riding to Blanchetown on goodish road - course chip seal - then up a small escarment and out out of the flat country into the the Adelaide Hills. The vertical gain is only some 400 metres over 10 clicks but after the flat flat land since way back around Hay, the ascent was slow. Good bakeries in Nuri!


21 March
Planned route:   Blanchetown - Nuriootpa
Actual route:  Nuriootpa - Adelaide
Distance:   69 km
Average speed:   20 km/hr
Maximum speed:   56 km/hr

Hills to Gawler then freeway all the way to Adelaide. Usual bike lane stuff - appear then dissappear for no apparent reason. One last climb and one last flat and I arrived!