17,000 km Photo

Cycling through the Barossa Valley wine region, we noticed a small creek called Jacob’s Creek. Looking around we saw the famous winery just around the bend. It was too early for the flashy visitor’s centre to open, so we took the opportunity to do a few star jumps instead. ||…

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Rolling Vineyards

Port Augusta – Adelaide After a rest day in Port Augusta we were soon on our way again, eager to reach Adelaide and see our friends Paul and Jenny as well as Guy’s sister Justine who was planning to fly over from Melbourne for a quick visit. An easier-than-expected 500m climb saw us enter the southern Flinders Ranges, South Australia’s largest mountain range. After spending so much time in the flat centre of Australia, it felt strange to be surrounded by rolling green pastures.|| In the afternoon we dropped down into a valley a…

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Opal Mines and Rocket Ranges

Coober Pedy – Port Augusta According to our guide book when you arrive in Coober Pedy “you might think you’ve arrived in a post-apocalyptic shithole.” A little harsh perhaps but there is no doubt it is a unique setting packed full of interesting people with only one thing on their mind: Opal.|| With 80% of its residents living in underground dugout homes to escape the heat, and mining equipment littering its dusty streets, Coober Pedy certainly felt a little surreal. Opal fever has seen fortune seekers come from 44 different countries for the past 100 years so it…

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16,000 km Photo

Somewhere about a day’s ride before Coober Pedy we watched our 16,000th kilometre tick by on our bike computers. Coober Pedy is known to be Australia’s hottest place where temperatures reach over 50°C in summer and locals live in underground houses to beat the heat. When we arrived, the temperature was 8°C and the storm clouds were just waiting to burst. ||…

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The Wet and Wintery “Arid Region”

Uluru – Coober Pedy Leaving Yulara behind we set off one rainy morning to cycle towards Coober Pedy, some 740km away. To our delight, the winds had switched direction since we arrived and we had a tailwind again, this time pushing us eastwards and away from the still visible landmark of Uluru. For weeks we had been hearing from other campers that the epicentre of the current mouse plague was around Erldunda, the area we were heading towards. Mice had already gnawed several holes into our panniers and we were tired of the additional hassle to make our camp…

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Round The Rock by Bicycle

Kings Canyon – Uluru After 5 days of cycling with no food resupply we were running on empty so we were hoping for a general store at the Kings Canyon Resort. Unfortunately what greeted us was just a depleted fuel station shop. It was still another 5 days until our next proper supermarket so we made do with an odd assortment of tinned food. Setting up camp in the late afternoon admiring the escarpment of the George Gill range our peace was soon disturbed as we were swopped on by some of the local birdlife intent on taking the bread…

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15,000 km Photo

Having just emerged from the Mereenie Loop and 140km of bone jolting corrugated dirt roads, we were feeling good to be back on the smooth tarmac and averaging speeds in the double figures. We came to a conclusion that fully loaded touring and rough dirt roads are a bad combination. ||…

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Cycling the Mereenie Loop

Alice Springs – Kings Canyon There are two options to travel from Alice Springs to Uluru, or “The Rock”: the most popular option is to stay on a tarmac road, then backtrack to the highway with an optional detour to Kings Canyon. The other option is to take the Mereenie Loop road. This is a more scenic 700km route to Uluru taking in Kings Canyon and minimising the amount of backtracking. The catch is that the Mereenie Loop encompasses a 140km unsealed section known for its rough corrugations and sandy creek crossings, really just suitable for 4WD vehicles. This…

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Exploring Alice’s Gorges in a 4WD

Alice Springs and the East MacDonnell Ranges Immediately on our arrival in Alice Springs, or “The Alice”, we met some lovely people: first there were Greg and Cyrielle, a French couple working at our campsite, then Steve, a cycle tourer from Canberra, and Andrew and Therese, a New Zealand couple on a 4WD trip occupying the tent spot next to us. We had also really hoped to see Roger and Catherine, the French Canadian couple we met in Turkey, as they were cycling through Australia and planning to be in Alice Springs at the same time…

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An Entertaining Night

Barrow Creek – Alice Springs We were planning to fill up with water at Barrow Creek road house and push on to free camp, but the chatty owner convinced us otherwise by promising to show us his German football memorabilia in the bar. The campsite was cheap but very basic, so we decided to stay for the night. || A telegraph station had been opened at Barrow Creek in 1872. It has a gruesome history as a station master and a linesman were speared by hostile Aboriginals in 1874. In retribution, the government ordered for 50…

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