Day 74 – Bunbury to Pemberton

Riding out of Bunbury along the coast at sunrise wasn’t a bad way to start the day. It was a shame this only lasted for about 10 minutes, as after that I headed inland a bit.

Today’s ride has been pretty good. The weather has been perfect; cloudless skies and temperatures in the mid-twenties have been amazing and other than the direction of the breeze, there is nothing I would have changed about it.

The road today wasn’t that great unfortunately though. For a car, it would have felt perfectly smooth, but for me it was definitely not and I rode along vibrating for much of the day. I realise that sounds weird but I can’t think of a better way to describe it. It looked smooth… .but it just wasn’t. However it wasn’t bad enough to say it was bumpy.

The cars have also been mixed. Some give a lot of space, others try to determine how close they can get without clipping my panniers. It’s better just to assume they’re all idiots rather than risk anything.

The real excitement of the day has come this evening as it’s the first time I’ve used my tent. There actually were places to stay in town but it seemed a good idea to get a feel for camping before heading across the Nullarbor. Nevertheless, I wanted a gentle introduction so I’m staying in a campsite rather than on the side of the road. The main advantage of this being that I don’t have to dig my own toilet.

The location is actually fairly scenic and I arrived to the sight of other campers feeding bright green parakeets.

Setting up my tent wasn’t difficult but I still managed to make a meal of it by placing the entrance of the outer sheet on the opposite side to the entrance of the inner sheet… Lesson learned though.

I’ve also learned that when the sun is up, a tent is far too hot, and when the sun is down it’s pitch black. (Depending on the height of the surrounding trees.)  In a country where the sun sets extremely quickly – this makes sitting in a tent enjoyable for about half an hour – at best.

Dinner presented a bit of difficulty but luckily I managed to find somewhere open and I ended up having a decent meal. I’m not looking forward to packing my tent up in the morning and am toying with the idea of waiting until sunrise before I begin to do so. Nor am I looking forward to putting on damp cycling shorts which won’t have dried – it’s actually surprisingly cold out here.

Anyway, a good day overall…

Distance: 102.74miles / 165.3km
Riding Time: 7:19:23
Av. Speed: 14.0mph / 22.6kph

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6 comments

  1. Tom, we are with you all the way, watching that same sun here in the NE of England and blue skies, funny to think of you battling with your camping skills while we are cooking some chicken fillets on our BBQ. Get a good nights rest.

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  2. Amazing your in Australia. Very exciting. Good for you Thomas. We read all your entries and are so impressed with your progress. Australia!? Enjoy!

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  3. Tom, pack your next day cycling kit in a waterproof bag to keep it dry. Then strap the wet stuff to your panniers to dry it (without it flapping and causing drag of course). A head torch is a wise investment too if it’s not too late.

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  4. Glad to hear you have made Australia and are enjoying its weather and hospitality.
    When you get out on the ‘Nullarbor Plains’, I think you should watch out for ‘Lorry-trains’; if you see any coming, probably best to jump in the nearest billabong or quickly put your tent up and get in – or you will be covered in dust!!

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