All about touring, whether you are a local or visiting from overseas.
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Hi folks - I have finally gotten around to posting my ride blog that i kept for a wonderful ride through east gippsland way back in December...
I was marking my 50th birthday with a ripper ride from Bairnsdale to Lakes Entrance - Buchan - Gelantipy - Snowy River NP - Delegate - Errinundra NP - Bemm River back to Orbost. This ride combined two of my passions - cycling and plant hunting - theres a whole heap of plant stuff in this blog so skip over the Plants Plants Plants entry if its not your thing...
Riding in East Gippsland was a rare treat - I would love to to a whole heap more touring than i actually manage to do...so i crammed a fair bit into this week. Great places to ride, wonderful landscapes and spectacular scenery, ancient forests and an incredible diversity of plants and plant communities. This was not a wilderness ride by any means but remote enough to not see more that a handful of cars in a day - Ahhh i am wishing i was on the road again now...
Hoping to do a semi arid lands ride to Hattah and the Mallee country in late winter...
If you're interested in the ride blog i am hoping the following link works! The first page is just the stats and day details - descriptions of each ride section and a few pics are captured in a daily ride blog if you scroll down a bit.
Touring through East Gippsland, riding a Vivente World Randonneur, 50 years old, mad keen on botany and natural history.
You could be writing my biography.
I grew up in a small town not far from Gelantipy and have spent the best part of my life in East Gippsland.
I live down on the coast these days, milder climate and the allure of the Gippsland Lakes has kept me from the mountains on all but the occasional return visit.
I finished a Diploma in Conservation and Land Management last year and another Diploma in Natural Resource Management about 14 years ago. Studying science part-time at Monash currently. Both diploma courses were focused on the local bioregion and associated issues. Worked for Parks Vic and the DSE in various capacities over the years. I understand and relate to your interest in the natural world. Its great to see people up here with similar interests rather than the typical 4WD, dirt bike, rip it up, shoot it up type attitudes.
Sounds like an excellent tour and I enjoyed reading the journal. Thanks.
One question. What tyres were you riding on?
My wife and I have done Bairnsdale - Lakes Entrance - Orbost, Johhno, and loved it - especially Mississipi Creek or whatever it was called. Nice country even if most of Victoria's mosquitoes were having a family reunion there at the time.
Would love to do riding/bush walking beyond Orbost, though.
On the Mississippi Creek (Gippsland Lakes Discovery Trail) I rode, sorry, pushed my bike up some short but very steep sections on my way up to the Rail Trail and then on to Nowa Nowa. The steep bits were just North of the old quarry site. It took every bit of energy I had to push my bike and gear up them.
I came home via a different route but did you guys ride down those hills? I wouldn't have been game enough to ride down hills, fully loaded, as steep as that.
Very brave effort if you did ride them.
We pretty much rode it all on MTBs with panniers, Tim. Thought the climb out of Lakes Entrance was probably the most testing.
Tim which town did you grow up in? Great part of the world to be a kid i would imagine...
I just had the stock Marathon 700x 35c tyres...which i found OK on the gravelly roads. On the little sandy stretches through cape conran i should have (learned this recently) dropped some pressure out of the tyres and that would have helped a bit i'm sure...
I did ride down those sections of the Mississippi Creek Trail...really slowly, full brakes and whitish knuckles - figured i was to weighted to go flying over the handlebars - didn't feel too reckless at the time. Its a beautiful trail that one...pretty snakey the day i rode through too.
Thanks for the reply Tim - It is nice to know there are (probably quite a few no doubt) cycling/botanising/natural history folk out there in the wilds doing their own thing!
Good effort riding down those hills VeloGiro, even better effort riding up them Clackers.
You are both tougher than me, I walked, pushed, puffed and panted, and fell over.
I agree, on both points.
I rode it in mid-February. Came very close to running over a smallish tiger snake and not long after that spotted just about the largest Black snake I've ever seen. Easily six foot long and thicker than my elbow (I'm not a big bloke). Tons of big six foot long Lace monitors (Goannas) too. All sunning themselves out in the early morning sun on the trail to Orbost. The day hadn't warmed up much at that stage so they were all slow to move off the track, snakes included.
Glad you found the patch of Spotted gums out from Buchan. As far as I know, nobody is quite certain how they came to be in such an isolated pocket. One theory is that aborigines carried the seed down from NSW.
Tim you would be really familiar with some of those other East Gippsland outriders (flora not cycling...or perhaps its both in your case!) common east coast species that just range into Victoria...Pretty much from the Mitchell River on you start to see pockets of warm temperate rainforest "jungles" and in these east coast species are introduced into the Vic flora...often these are the most southern/eastern extremities of their natural distribution I loved seeing the Spotted Gums - In fact i get a real buzz out of seeing common garden plants in the wild state - The cabbage trees out of cape conran are another outrider - I was thinking that it could have been aboriginal people who moved this one around too. My understanding is that the pithy heart of the growing tip was a starchy vegetable???
The ride from Bemm River to the cabbage trees was a real blast - pretty good surface on the old coast road - those heathlands were in full flight with flowering and the cabbage trees are such an unusual form in the landscape - love east gippy!
Sounds really nice...I would love to do a tour to Cape Conran or Mallacoota with my surfboard on the trailer...
"It never gets easier, you just go faster..." - Greg Lemond
"Because technology alone is a poor substitute for experience." - Richard Sachs
One of the few regrets I hold is that I took so long to take up cycle touring.
Its one of the best activities I've ever been involved in.
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