Distance today 101km at 18km/hr average
TOTALS: Distance 4974km. Donations $7290.09. Days remaining 68. Deserts: Sturt Stony, Strzelecki, Tirari, Gibson, Great Victorian. Tracks: Birdsville Development Road, Birdsville Track, Oodnadatta Track, Red Centre Way, Great Central Road, Goldfields Highway, Wiluna North Road.
Note to new readers: I am travelling with my bike who’s name is Banjo. I often refer to ‘we’ meaning Banjo and I. ‘We’ have an amazing support team of family, friends, sponsors and folk we meet each day. But it’s still up to ‘us’ to face the challenge and tackle each day one peddle at a time.
It’s 8pm on Sunday the 11 July 2021
Unfortunately the internet is a bit limited here at Kumarina Roadhouse so I’m not sure whether I’ll be able to upload he last posts with media until we’re in Newman on Tuesday.
I’m very happy to be here as hoped in 3 days/ nights. I was thinking I may have been a bit ambitious given the headwindy conditions but we chipped through so big yay!!
The people here have been very generous letting us camp for free and have dinner on the house. I’m hoovering a veggie burger and large chips and my goodness it tastes a bit delish. My appetite has been ravenous with the activity and chilly conditions so food has become a fixation with the next level of appreciation. Burp!!!! My eyes are bigger than the tummy tonight so a doggy bag may be in order 🤣
We got underway this morning at 8am and was thinking it was going to be about 20km to the main road. Last night I’m sure I could hear distant road traffic. As it turned out, the Great Northern Highway was only 12km away. The conditions were clear and the wind was kind so we made it through to the sealed road well under an hour.
The road carried a lot of traffic from Perth up north. We were back in the groove waving to road trains. Turning right meant we found the headwind again so I couldn’t dodge that bullet unfortunately. All good. We had the day to do the remaining 90kms. The highlight of the day was the people I met. It was such a welcomed surprise.
Early in the day a car pulled over to say hi and we met Vaughn from Wyndham. He gave us some mandarins and was keen to share his Chinese heritage and ancestors who migrated to Australia during the gold rush era. Super interesting fella and generous with his kindness and encouragement.
We stopped for morning tea at the Gascoyne River Rest Area (North). What a stunning spot. The river was flowing and the banks were lined with gum trees and rocky nooks. The bird life was busy with Goshawks nesting overhead.
A couple, May and Jo from Margaret River, were also stopped for a break. We shared a cuppa and chats about the Gibb River Road. They’re very excited about doing the full road this trip. Safe travels and stay in touch. They’re keen to follow our challenge and support the cause.
Later we met a quirky couple, Kamali and Silay from Denmark. WA. They’re free spirited folk who were keen to know about what we were doing and very supportive of beyondblue. Silay spoke about reaching out to the service during a difficult time recently. It made such a difference to reach out and talk to someone neutral instead of struggling in silence or offloading onto family. They’re heading up north and are going to keep an eye out on our blog where we are in case we can meet up again. Thanks for your contagious positively and hope we cross paths again.
About 20kms from Kumarina a truck of road workers pulled over to check in we were okay. They filled my water bottle and gave me a Boost chocolate. They guys were so complementing and are also staying here at the roadhouse. They said the staff here would ‘look after me’ and they were right. I bumped into them on the way to dinner and they said they put in a good word for us. Thank you kind gentlemen. The boost chocolate was exactly what I needed to pull out the last kms for the day.
I met Sarah and Kevin from Geraldine at the campgrounds. They’ve been having car problems are spent the day trying to repair a fuel leak. Unfortunately it’s still causing them some grief. Dispute their predicament they were so positive and excited for our challenge. Sarah is a strong advocate for beyondblue and encourages anyone to reach out when in struggle. She spoke particularly about people in remote locations who don’t always have access to services. She hopes that more men these days are accepting that it’s okay to open up and talk to someone when in need.
It’s been wonderful to have a shower and call the family to share our days. I was able to finalise the Marble Bar postal pack with mum and dad. School starts this week and Dylan spent today making a cactus while mum worked on her next snake enclosure. Oh bless sharing desert country with them both!! I must say I’m probably the most tired I’ve been all trip so it’s time to crawl into bed for some comfy zzzs. Night and talk soon.