Creswick to London » Over the hills and far away

Over the hills and far away

Written by Jess Dan. Posted in Australia

We have made it 959 kilometres through to Port Pirie, South Australia with a few bumps and scrapes and smiles on our faces.

We have been on the road for sixteen days now and are just starting to get the hang of this bicycle touring thing. We have been mostly free camping at State Parks or local cricket ovals, but were also shouted a couple nights accommodation from my Dad, Rob, who rode with us through to Murray Bridge, SA. Thanks Dad!

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The road so far has provided a few challenges. We have all had a minor stack! Rob as he hit some loose gravel to get some clearance from a passing truck; Jess as she forgot she was clipped in as she marvelled at the work of a sheep dog; and Dan in too much of a hurry to get to the fish and chip shop in Keith.

The magpies have also taken an interest in us. Jess has been swooped over ten times! There is one particularly crazy magpie at the main intersection of Murray Bridge, dive bombing, the pie hit Jess on the ear! You might notice the cable ties on our helmets in photos, these are to give a bit more clearance from the swooping of the magpies, but aren’t much use when they come in from side on. While in Murray Bridge we picked up some novelty horns from Brooks cycle shop to entertain kids (or just ourselves) along the way, but maybe they’ll be helpful to scare off some magpies too! With a bit of luck we will be out of prime magpie territory in the coming week as we head north.

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Our favourite camping spot so far was Jane Duff Highway Park, just past Mt Arapiles in western Victoria. After three days on the road without a shower (gasp) a swim in the ice cold billabong felt incredible. Topped off with a long drop dunny and barbeque facilities we were laughing. It really felt like the adventure had begun at that point.

We had a great time in the Barossa Valley, hitting a couple of wineries, chatting to locals, but also getting caught riding in storms. One storm was so severe we stopped riding for the day and set up camp under a big shelter at the local cricket club of Greenoch. Some locals came in walking their dogs at dusk after the storm had passed and thankfully said that it was ok to camp at the oval. But to our surprise a boxing class turned up at 7:30 and ran a session right next to our tent! It stormed a few times more that night and we were thankful to have pitched up under a roof.

The next day we stopped just short of Clare at the small town of Seven Hills. Asking at the pub we were granted permission to camp at the cricket oval up the road. We made our way back to the pub later that night to watch the footy and the locals shouted a drink or two to the crazy couple who had turned up on bikes. The next morning we took the end of the awesome Reisling Trail – an old rail trail turned into a bike track that winds through the wineries – into Clare for breakfast.

Despite some poor signage we made it out of Clare and 119km down the road we made it through to Port Pirie for some fish and chips by the water. We are stopped here now at our friend’s Brett and Sarah’s place for a few days. Thanks for putting us up guys!

We will roll out of town tomorrow armed with a couple of ten litre dromedary bags enroute to the red centre.

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Comments (5)

  • Gabrielle Mumford

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    Hey homies. Nice photos. Sounds like a classic stack Jess! xo

    Reply

  • marg

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    just finished reading your blog… some nice pictures. Take care on your next leg of the journey.. keep a lookout for the roadtrains,stay safe much love an hugs mum an dad xxxx

    Reply

  • Tez

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    Are you guys using Strava or some app to track your rides?

    Reply

  • beth

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    Hi guys, on the way back from adelaide on saturday we drove the bordertown to frances to horsham road – memory lane for dad, and he pointed out all the memorable spots – where he stacked his bike, where jess stacked her bike, and where he couldn’t ride any further and you guys looked after him, thanks. But I got to see all the good places too – beautiful countryside – I think I fell in love with river red gums – maybe you missed the scenery with all the rain you had on the last leg, the jane duff highway camp – where we had lunch, and the great looking motel at the side of the frances pub – I think you missed that one – but the frances rec grounds looked okay too! Eagerly awaiting your next post. Stay safe, Mum

    Reply

  • Tami Ellis

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    Hi Jess and Dan. Love the blog. Post lots of pics when you can. Living vicariously through you. Safe travels! Tami

    Reply

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