2017 Disjointed – Caught Up

Monday, 2 October, 52 miles (84 km)

You know one of those really long days on the bike, where you just keep riding and riding? One of those days where you aren’t sure where it will end, so you just keep pedaling and pedaling? You tick over mile after mile, growing more tired but knowing you can pedal for as long as required. But then, when you FINALLY stop, the fatigue hits you. You sit down, and that is it. You can’t pedal another revolution. You are completely exhausted.

Well, that’s been the past six months. I have just kept metaphorically physically and emotionally pedaling and pedaling. Then, finally, last weekend, it was finally finished. The US repatriation attempt was a fail. This led directly into a very busy period getting re-established in Oz. Last weekend was the first weekend where I was finally settled… for the first time since March.

So I could have ridden. I could have done a three-day ride. But I just didn’t have the oomph. I stopped for the first time in six months and that was it. I slept. I did jigsaw puzzles. I watched online music videos. I started to re-read Desert Solitaire. I slept some more. I finally exhaled. I rested.

This weekend could have been a three-day ride, too. But it’s a long weekend for both NSW and VIC, plus school holidays for both states. Living on a state border means it’s double the people out and about. So I didn’t really want to mess with all of the people…. which meant I just did a couple short rides on Sat and Sun.

Today, I rodedown into Victoria (their long weekend was Fri-Sun) to ride some minor, gravel roads I’ve not ridden before. It was my first decent ride since early August. The weather was perfect – sun, very little wind and temps in the 70sF. It was a perfect day.

Time to start getting rid of all the fat and rebuilding muscle and fitness. Magpies here we come (the flies aren’t horrid quite yet)!

Bridge outside of Corowa over the Murray River. This bridge did not get built until 2005. Before that, all the trucks had to go right through town and over the old one-lane bridge built in the 1800s. There is a good shoulder all the way along this until the turn-off to Rutherglen. From there on, you don’t want to be on the Federation Way.
You can use the road we were just on to meet up with the Murray to Mountains Rail Trail – but I’m doing a little detour to ride the nice riverside Bridge to Bridge track into Wahgunyah.
Big cereal factory owned by Nestle. It’s a huge employer for the area. Without it and Rivalea (largest piggery in Southern Hemisphere), this town would be in dire straits. It’s not that economically flash even with the manufacturing. The rail trail goes right by the factory on the edge of Wahgunyah.
Murray to Mountains Rail Trail just outside of Wahgunyah. It runs for around 8 kms (?) or so between Rutherglen and Wahgunyah. That’s canola on the left and wheat, I think, on the right.
Tree-lined section of rail trail.
I’ve been behind these sheep before being moved down the rail trail from paddock to paddock. Not fun.
Spring in Oz. This guy is there every year, but he seemed a bit more subdued this year. Only 5 swoops and none hit my helmet.
Looking west down the main street of Rutherglen from High Street. The pub there does good Chinese meals, apparently. The other old pub down the street down that way is a bakery now with sourdoughs. The truck is one of the town’s bugbears. They’ve been trying to get a bypass for years. I have mixed feelings – because the most obvious route is the old rail line route… and that could mean we’d lose the rail trail. Rutherglen got its start with mining and wine. It still does wine (most known for its fortified wines) in a big way.
Slaughterhouse Road. New one for me. Lots of rollers, nice views, pretty good surface. I like this one.
It’s the canola time of year. Warby Range in the background – we camped on top of that one on the first night of our Residual Refrain tour before we left Oz.
Baker Seeds – back side. I had a friend whose son worked here sorting seeds in his gap year to save money to go travel Europe. Hot, dusty and doesn’t pay much better than the supermarket.
Research Station Lane. I love these tiny roads 🙂
Chiltern mine no. 3, I think. Leftover heap of dirt from the gold mining.
I was going to miss these tiny Dry Weather Only roads so much.
Escort Bridge Road – I was going to miss the tree-lined roads of southeast Oz so much.
The Murray River – we are winding our way along through the red gum floodplain between Lake Moodemere and the river.
Immature river red gum forest. The timbergetters would have flogged the mature trees here for a very long time.
Vineyards – not quite out of hibernation yet. This area has been a major wine area since the first vineyards got their start in the 1860s.
The old one-lane bridge from the 1800s. There is a traffic light on each end. Until that other bridge was built in 2005, all the trucks had to come over this one, too.

Leave a Reply