Dave Byrnes' Adventures

Round Oz Bike Record Attempt - 2007
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Day: 017

Sunday, 5 August 2007


Motel in Elliott


Riding from Three Ways to Elliott

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Cold early, warm and sunny later.  Gusty SE wind.


Big Brekky for breakfast, pie and sausage roll for lunch, fish and chips and an ice-cream for dinner.


Missed hitting a startled kangaroo by about a metre when it bounded across the road in front of me in the pre-dawn darkness.


Nice strong tailwind most of the day.


None really.

Daily Pictures: Here
Daily Podcasts:  

Given the relatively modest target distance for the day, I decided that a 4:20am start (3:30am get up) would be sufficient.  There was a brisk and cold wind blowing from behind as I set out north along the Stuart Highway, and it wasnít long before I stopped to put on my Goretex gloves.
There was little traffic, the road was mostly flat and the wind made it easy riding.  However, a narrow miss with a startled kangaroo, improved my concentration.  As the sun rose I had some great views across the Barkly Tablelands.  They are impressive more for the vast vistas of plains and scrub that for spectacular topography.  The country is now more rocky, with occasional low craggy bluffs, and the soil is a deeper and darker red.
The hills arenít steep, but they are there.  Much of the time you are riding up or down these long gradual grades.  Sometimes you are not even aware that you are climbing, just that your speed has dropped a little.  You can see a crest in the far distance and gradullay climb to pass over it.  Then you are into a long gradual descent followed by a flat stretch across a floodplain, then another climb.  The road has very long straight stretches so you can see many kilometres ahead.
I stopped in for breakfast at the Renner Springs Roadhouse and chatted with the driver of a semi-trailer carrying explosives, who had passed me earlier.  He apparently does a round Australia trip once a month from his home at Toowoomba (near Brisbane) stopping off at various mining operations to deliver their explosives order.
After breakfast I continued on making good time although the wind occasionally blew from the side, making it hard to ride in a straight line.  I reached Elliott (242km) my target for the day at around 2:00pm.  I probably could have continued on another 109km to Dunmarra Roadhouse, but had talked myself into having an overdue easy day and a rest.
The motel rooms behind the Elliott Hotel werenít particularly inviting, but I took one and enjoyed watching the football on TV as I had a relaxing afternoon.  The early morning departure could be exciting as there is a large Rottweiler roaming the grounds who I discovered on arrival doesnít like bikes.
Barring the unforeseen (and attacks by Rottweilers), I should be able to get back onto my 53-Day schedule by Wednesday night.  But Iím still only one-third of the way around Australia, so thereís plenty of work to do yet.



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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