Its been a tough week. One thing I have confirmed about Australia: it is big, it is hot.
I continued to ride east, following the Murray River. There were some quiet roads and camping near the river and at first it was great: nice weather, flat roads. Here is one campsite near the river. In the morning I was woken up by thumping. There was a kangaroo hopping around outside my tent. How cool is that?
Another campsite near the river at a campground.
Then the terrain became mostly pasture with fences everywhere and cattle or sheep. I could not find a place to free camp one night so I just camped on the side of a two track road. The next morning a farmer came by and cussed me out for camping on his private property. Too bad old man, I don’t care anymore.
Then a heat wave came though–over 100 deg for 10 days. Very difficult cycling, even with my cooler of ice. Not too many pics–I was just trying not to pass out. I also had a tough headwind for several days. One night I camped in a state park where hundreds of kangaroos were drinking at a watering hole. As I ate dinner at dusk many came near and were frightened away by me. But some stayed, calmly grazing while keeping a close eye on me. It was really cool. Here is the camp site.
This stick bug climbed around on my tent int the morning.
The moon rising one night in the bush.
I finally got to Wagga Wagga after a super hot day where I ran out of water and was on the verge of heat exhaustion. But I survived and met my warmshowers hosts, Stan and Roz. They were so helpful in planning my route to Sydney, as well as taking me to a bike shop to get some things, and then to a pub for dinner. They have cycled extensively in the USA so we shared a lot of stories.
Vegemite! It does exist.
Some of the great place names in Australia: Wagga Wagga, Tumbarumba, and Wee Jasper.
A typical view of the road.
My Christmas was tough: I was trying to camp somewhere but could not find a spot, fences and pasture everywhere, so I pedaled on to a town and got a hotel at sunset, an 11 hour day. Totally wiped out.
As I write this I am headed into the mountains west of Canberra. I will stay there a few days before the final push into Sydney. Happy Holidays everyone!