Forest gumption – Introduction

I had this vague memory of a man sitting on a park bench. He was good at ping-pong and running. There was another vague image in my mind of him running through Monument Valley or somewhere similar. I also remembered that he turned out to be influential in history somehow, and he ended up buying a shrimp boat.

But in 2010, those were really my only memories of the movie Forrest Gump . The movie came out in 1994. I think I saw it in 1995. Once. In the intervening 15 years, many things had happened in my life and the finer details of that movie had been lost. Read more

Forest gumption – Day 3

Jack Chaney and Dicky Cooper: Tarcutta to Henry Angel Trackhead (Tumbarumba)

Saturday February 27, 2016, 50 miles (81 km) – Total so far: 307 miles (495 km)

Well, the bike got fixed over Christmas, and then I got bored. So I took off and did a few portions of the proposed route in the Southwest Slopes over four days in late December. Now, fast forward to March and we are ready to resume this ride… or maybe just start a new one from a different starting point… but with the forests idea still in mind. So here we go…………………………………….. Read more

Forest gumption – Day 4

Where’s the car with the thumping ‘doof-doof’ bass?: Henry Angel Trackhead to Stacey’s Bridge Campground, Nariel

Sunday February 28, 2016, 64 miles (103 km) – Total so far: 371 miles (598 km)

I’m slowly spinning my way up out of Burra Creek in the grey stillness that is predawn. Far in the distance, kookaburras chortle back and forth across the valley then break into fits of laughter. Right here though, it is quiet. Still and quiet. I’m not riding fast enough for my tires to even hum.

Then I hear a car approaching from the east, its transmission thunking back a gear somewhere over the hill. That’s good news for me, because the first four miles of the day are mostly uphill. I grin. A downhill is coming. Read more

Forest gumption – Day 5

Road and personal high point: Stacey’s Bridge to 33 kms from Benambra (bush campsite)

Monday February 29, 2016, 31 miles (49 km) – Total so far: 402 miles (647 km)

I am awake early – in the quiet. Surprisingly, there are no sulphur-crested cockatoos, corellas or kookaburras piercing the calm with their raucous calls and shrieks. It is quiet enough you can almost hear the sun scraping its way up the sky toward the top of the ridge. I feel good. I’m not sore, my legs don’t seem too bad. So off we go. Read more

Forest gumption – Day 7

Curve-lineating: Omeo to 1 km south of the Big River Bridge (bush campsite)

Wednesday March 2, 2016, 27 miles (44 km) – Total so far: 466 miles (750 km)

There is something about zooming down a hill in the dark that excites the senses. You feel so much faster without reference points for speed. And so it is that I fly down the hill out of Omeo – after crawling up the other side from town – just as first light is making decisions about whether to flick the switch and illuminate another day. Read more

Forest gumption – Day 8

Trucks and bicycles use low gear: 1 km south of Big River Bridge to Eskdale

Thursday March 3, 2016, 52 miles (83 km) – Total so far: 518 miles (833 km)

The Big River valley bathes in silence and shadow. There are no noisy native birds or human early birds breaking that silence – well, one human early bird clacking some tent poles as they go in the bag, but it is still generally peaceful in the cool, dew-laced morning. Read more