It was a full afternoon’s ride from Ellendale to Lachlan, so I finally rolled into the village as dusk was beginning to descend. I removed my sunglasses to gain some time — always worth a half hour or so. =)
I couldn’t shake that nervous feeling one gets when you’re about to attempt something difficult, something other people might consider impossible. That swimming-against-the-current uncertainty. A bit scary, but undeniably exhilarating. I wondered if people passing me might think I was lost – or crazy – heading for a tiny village with no real through road at dusk.
A visit to the one and only shop in the village did not dispel this feeling. (more…)
So began a series of what I’ll call “afternoon surprise mountains.”
Sounds kind of fun, doesn’t it? Like a children’s after-school cartoon, or a wacky dessert on offer at the ice cream parlor.
But no. These were just the road, my road, that same road to adventure I’ve always been on. Only, for about five days in a row, it happened to go up at the end. Like the sound of a question mark? (more…)
A car tourist from Melbourne asked me, “So where are you going?”
Meaning, today. Not “What are you going to achieve in your life”. Fwew!
Her sister and her dreadlocked friend seemed interested too, but they just nodded when I answered,
“Today I’ll shoot for Queenstown, and try to camp somewhere on the other side.”
I guess on their map it doesn’t look too far away. But she was quick to point out, “Oo there’s a big hill over that side of Queenstown. Good luck!”
And that was the first time of many that I was warned of the Queenstown “hill.” (more…)
West from Penguin, I traveled open.
My plan was to make a plan along the way.
I like looking at maps, and this map of Tasmania was showing a gravel track over 100 kms long called the “Western Explorer.” Say no more!
Along the North coast, it becomes impossible to miss a huge peninsular mountain called “the Nut.” How could I resist when the detour was only 20 kms?
The tour was about to begin. For real begin, the next morning, rubber side down. I was unaccountably nervous. I couldn’t think straight. Just kept re-checking my gear. I couldn’t give attention to eating. Thankfully some other couch surfers put coffee and salad in front of me. But what’s the big deal? I’m a veteran, aren’t I? (more…)