Dave Byrnes' Adventures

Round Oz Bike Record Attempt - 2007
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Day: 010

Sunday, 29 July 2007


Motel in Mount Garnet


Riding from Ingham to Mount Garnet

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Cool and foggy early, warm later and mostly sunny.  NE wind.


Big brekky for breakfast.  Foot long tuna sub for lunch.  Burger and chips for dinner.


Narrowly missed four cows while descending a hill at speed in the dark tonight.  I suddenly realised there was something on the road just before I reached them and managed to steer between before they realised I was coming and bolted.


Although I was exhausted, the last couple of hours cycling through the bush after sunset with the full moon rising behind me and Venus bright in the sky in front of me was magic.  There wasnít a breath of wind, just the night sounds of the bush.


The climb over the Great Divide and across the Atherton Tableland was even harder than I anticipated.

Daily Pictures: Here
Daily Podcasts: Here

I got away at the usual time and encountered quite a lot of fog along the road, but not enough to make it dangerous.  There was a slight headwind that made travel slower, but little traffic.  I saw a number of cane harvesters working by lights.
It was a very pretty dawn and I reached Cardwell, which is right on the coast, at just the right time.  There were several people sitting on the beach just watching the sunrise.  I continued onto Tully, encountering a few hills and had breakfast at a roadhouse.  The ladies behind the counter took a shine to me and gave me a few extra sausages they had left over.
The day was warming up and I put some sunscreen on, as has become my habit in the last few days, having managed to get burnt earlier on.  There were long straight road stretches through the cane fields and quite a lot of traffic.  Looming on the left were the mountains I knew I was destined to climb in the afternoon.
I reached Innisfail, the next checkpoint of my trip at noon and visited the town centre as required by Eugenís rules.  After some lunch I headed west, away from the coast, to start my trek across the top of Australia.  The road began climbing steadily as the vegetation changed to dense and lush rainforest.  As the road became steeper I paid less attention to the scenery and was soon bathed in sweat.  It seemed that every crest  revealed another climb.  One sign warned of 5km of 12% grade for one section.  Even when I emerged from the rainforest onto the verdant grassed Atherton Tableland, the road continued to climb steeply.  My granny gear got a real work-out, but I didnít stop until I reached Milaa Milaa around 4pm (54km from the coast) where I had planned to refuel.  Unfortunately, everything was closed until 5pm, so I continued on with only water for nourishment.  To get back on schedule I needed to get to Mount Garnet for the night and had called ahead at lunchtime to book a room.  However, my progress up the mountains had been so slow that Ravenshoe (highest town in Queensland), 45km short of my target was starting to look attractive.
However, I decided that if I didnít get to Mount Garnet, I would never get back on schedule, so decided to continue regardless of the hour.  The heavy climbing and lack of anything to eat or drink apart from water since lunch began to take its toll and I really started to struggle on the hills.  As I passed through Innot Hot Springs, a very small settlement, with about 20km to go, I noticed the small store was just closing and raced in to get a Mars Bar and Coke to revive.  If I could have had it intravenously, it would have been better.
I reached Mount Garnet at 7:50pm where they had kept the roadhouse kitchen open for me and got a burger before going to my room.  I have 360km scheduled for tomorrow.  I had been planning to get a really early start, but donít think I can afford to miss the sleep, given todayís effort, which was physically the hardest so far of the trip.  The bike didnít seem to get any worse today, so Iím a little more optimistic.



Round Ireland

Hume & Hovell Walking Track

Via Alpina

Australian Alps Walking Track

Land's End to John O'Groats

Round Oz Bike Record Attempt

Round Oz Bike Record Attempt

Round Oz Bike Record Attempt

Australia Tip to Top MTB

Adelaide to Darwin MTB

Sydney to Melbourne MTB

Three Peaks Race

Appalachian Trail

Alpine Track

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