Thursday, 17 April 2014

April 16, 2014. Day 10. The 90 mile straight.

Balladonia to Caiguna. 

The day stared nice & early, crow calls at 5.30am, "the bushman's alarm". The view outside the tent was of a light foggy mist, quite eerie.. sort of, with the accompanying sound of a refrigerated road train that had had its cooler running ALL night.  The damn generator of the roadhouse was quieter!!


The fog had cleared by 6.30, & fed and watered I was ready to tackle the longest straight road in Australia. All 146km. (90 miles) of it. Hoping to get to Caiguna by dusk. 



"Thelma & Louise", the support crew, were waiting for me at the start of The Straight, to take the mandatory photos. 


Then it was off we go!!

Huey, the weather God was smiling, a gentle WSW wind over my right shoulder had me powering along at faster than 30km/h for well over the first 75km from Balladonia. 

We decided that at 120km we'd pull up at the nearest rest area to "strap on the nose bag" for a lunch stop. 


Nice & shady, the WSWester still blowing gently, a pleasant stop indeed. R. 

With a further 70km to Caiguna, I had to get back into the RV & get pedalling...average speed to this point was close to 31km /h. Excellent !!

The wind had other ideas, deciding to become more of a southerly, & thus a somewhat stiffer breeze in the bargain. 
This made the "wind wash" of the approaching road trains "EXCITING"" to say the least. A large wash of wind would give the RV a push to the left, then as that dissipated, it would move back to the right. Nothing that was too scary, just enough to keep me VERY aware of it. 

The last 40km were starting to take their toll on my legs & concentration. From the pilot's seat, every vista of the road seemed to be uphill. I was still managing to motor along at a constant 24 - 28 km/h. 
The final 10km seemed to go directly uphill. 

At last the Caiguna 2km ahead sign greeted me, & after a pic of the sign at the end of The Straight, I was pretty much spent. 

My odometer for the day recorded 194 km, the longest distance I'd ever cycled. Happy, sore, 'n tired,  & after a well earned shower, a huge mixed grill from the Caiguna Roadhouse Restaurant, was just what the body needed.