We had a week up our sleeves to have an adventure and were keen to check out some local scenery, so we jumped on a bus and headed to Canberra to ride home. We found a gpx file here:
http://cycletraveller.com.au/australia/bike-routes/canberra-to-melbourne-bicycle-touring-route and bought a map aswell. After boxing our bikes and being told by one of the vline bus drivers it would be fine to take our bikes in boxes we waited patiently for the bus in Orbost. Our grand plans were almost halted when the crankiest bus driver in the world told us we were not allowed on with the bikes! After some persuasion we boarded and were forced up the back so spent most of the trip feeling rather bus sick! Good to get off and be greeted at Canberra station by the lovely Seb!
Day One- Headed off at about 11 and rode through the Canberra city bike paths then onto the road out of there towards Captains Flat. Up and out of Captains Flat we found some grass nearby to setup camp for the night. Felt good to be outside under the stars, cooking up some camp food and reading a book in the tent.
Day Two- Cooked up some porridge then on the road to be greeted by some hills! Towards the end of the day we had some stella views descending down into Newmerella. We decided to set-up camp here for the night, lit a fire, drank tea and chatted to a local farmer and his blue heeler. Waking up in the morning it was freezing, it had gotten to -4 and there was ice on our bikes but it took us ages to pack up as our fingers were frozen and we couldn’t get the fire started.
Day Three- We rolled into Cooma in freezing conditions in a white out and my hair had ice in it!! Sat in Cooma Maccas trying to defrost, drinking hot chocolate and eating hotcakes. Sent some stuff home to try to lighten our heavy bikes and tried to estimate how much food we would need for the next 2 days as we would not be seeing any shops. Awesome riding, awesome views and scenery and fantastic weather!! We got to Dalgety where the Snowy River runs through at about 3 and locals told us it would be -7 in town at night, rather than heading further up the mountain to colder weather we decided to book a cabin, eat a meal at the pub and dry out all our gear and charge the gopro. Great decision!! Our bikes were well frozen even when we set off at 9am!
Day Four- Headed towards Jindabyne and figured we figured we had cut it fine with on the food front so called into a snow village to grab some food, unfortunately it didn’t open for a few hours so we continued on and came up with a ration plan for the next 2 days. Next part of the ride was boring and hard, but then we got onto the Barry Way and climbed and climbed up to Wallaca lookout and saw some amazing views, then descended down through Kosciusko National Park following the Snowy, saw some wild brumbies and loads of wildlife! Pulled into Pinch River Campsite, much warmer than Newmeralla or Dalgety and shared a pasta meal by the fire.
Day Five- Woke up hungry, had a couple of weetbix and still felt hungry but we had a food plan to stick to!! At the 25k mark we would cook up a packet of 2 mins noodles each, which we did at the top of the climb, but the gas ran out so it was lukewarm kinda soggy noodles with vegemite on top. Rode alongside the Snowy with more epic views all day. Got to Suggan Buggan and had a beast of a club that went for what felt like ever!! At the 50k mark we sat on the side of the road eating raw 2 mins noodles! Got to Gelantipy and lucky for us our friend has a house and when I called to tell him we were there and had no food he kindly offered for us to take what we liked out of the pantry/fridge of his folks place. Unfortunately his sister came home when we were ravaging through the food supply and had no idea who we were!!! Lucky for us she is lovely and once we had hurriedly explained ourselves she gave us heaps of food!! So we sat in front of the fire eating delicious food watching Le Tour!! A fabulous way to finish our holiday!!
Day Six- Rolled down into Buchan and had an awesome second breakky then back home, usually we find it a very hilly ride from Buchan but compared to the hills we had ridden over the last 5 days they felt rather flat!!!
It was a fantastic journey, one that we didnt want to end. Life is much simpler when all you do it ride your bike. No internet, phone, emails to distract you, just being out their experiencing and seeing new things. It was great to not be in a rush, to take time setting and packing up and having loads of gear to sit around comfortably in. We made some friends along the way, of human and non human kind, and took time to enjoy the scenery and stay and chat. Can’t wait for the next adventure!!