Anzac Day – Uralla Style (Day 6 – Saturday 25 April)

I woke to a big, blue, clear sky. The sun shone strongly and hot; the breeze, especially in the shade, chilly with the plateau’s autumn. They’ve planted many exotic deciduous trees in New England and their red and golden dying leaves frame each roadway. At 9:45 am the great majority, it seemed, of Uralla residents lined the main street waiting for the balance of their neighbours and most of the district’s school children to parade past to mark Anzac Day: returned servicemen and women came first followed by children marching for parents, then those in local services – the Red …

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These Hills Seem Downright Reasonable or My First Riding Day Without Tears: Bendemeer to Uralla (Day 5 – Friday 24 April)

I first woke around 6 am, rolled over and woke again at 8. I dawdled through the morning – fearing more hills I huddled under the covers and got some writing done. But there was distance to cover and nothing to do but load up and cover it. As I was packing up the Kiwi cleaner nodded at my bicycle and said “You could get an engine for that.” To which I replied “I’ve all the engine I need right here (patting my thigh) and here (pointing at my heart).” That I could feel that way the day after Moonbi …

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An Unexpected Day of Rest and an Unexpected Day of Climbing

(Days 4 & 5 – Wednesday 22 April & Thursday 23 April: Nundle to Tamworth) I woke in Nundle to the sound of car tyres on wet pavement. I was grateful for the excuse to accept Scott’s offer of a lift to Tamworth. It was only light mist but it felt like we were in a cloud and it could start raining in earnest at any moment. I couldn’t ride another day in the rain just now. Scotty suggested a midday departure so I filled the morning with nothing much including a quick look around all that is Nundle. Scott …

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Holy Feck – That was hard (Day 3 – Tuesday 21 April)

The number of kilometres I’m meant to be covering keeps going up and yet I’m not completing them. That said I feel like the kilometres I’ve been doing are so much harder than one might expect that they are equal to double or triple the number of easy kilometres. It rained heavily in the night and I woke several times to re-inflate my mattress. It was raining heavily when I first woke around 6:30 am – I rolled over and hoped for the best. When I rose an hour later it had lessened but it was still falling. All around …

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Riding in the rain 100 metres at a time – Day 2 (Monday 20 April)

Last night I feared I maybe really couldn’t do this. Well, couldn’t do the wild camping – that particularly worried me. But here I am. Not wild camping as in set up in some shrubbery on the side of the road but behind the Timor Community Centre with no one knowing I am here. And I feel fine, safe. There is a little mouse scurrying around out there and the usual moths beating their wings against the wall of my tent as it is the only light source for some distance around. The crickets are loud; the air outside the …

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Alone – On the Road to Gundy (Day 1 – Sunday 19 April)

Here I am – sitting cross-legged in my tent, the darkness filled with the glow of the computer screen. I am camped in an open-sided shed at the Gundy Showground – a small bug crawls across my writing, outside something is moving on the tent. I’m sharing the shed with a couple who are riding the Bicentential National Trail. They’ve been taking a break here in Gundy this week and spent the afternoon re-shoeing two of their five horses. They began at the northern end of the trail up in Far North Queensland a year ago and hope to finish …

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