Friday, June 28, 2013

Day 4 Pardoo to South Hedland 150 kms

I promised I would ride this leg, maybe not every day but most days. Well the time arrived this morning. I headed out around 7 am on my own and didn't see anyone for the first half hour. Joan was a half hour ahead of me and I don't expect to catch her at any stage. Then along came Theo and Chris. Some brief conversation about the wind and the awful road surface before they took off and left me behind.
Another half hour before Ben surprised me from behind (as I didn't hear him). Another brief chat before he decided to track down the first two. I was having a little trouble with stomach cramps which are usually caused by tension and won't go away until I relax. I was trying to relax but I was nervous because I hadn't been on the bike for sooooo long.
I decided to try and walk it off when Annie and Peter turned up, so I jumped back on the bike to ride with Annie for awhile, Peter took off as I was just too slow. Annie lasted for about 10 kms when Georg turned up and she jumped on the back of his wheel. I still had the cramps so I did hop off and walked for a km or so before giving up and getting back on the bike. There were only Woody and Mark behind me now and I knew Collis would be along pretty soon.
I rode 28 kms with mainly a gusty wind and mostly across me or into my face. The road surface was shit, really rough and we seemed to be climbing most of the morning. Collis got on the bike (with his thongs and long johns on) and rode the next 22 kms to morning tea.
We did pretty well for two old farts who have spent most of the last 3 months in the car each day.
The wind changed slightly before lunch but still not the best day we've had with the wind.
The terrain was flat and boring until just after morning tea when we started to see some rocky outcrops and flat top mountains/hills. Lots of mining traffic, cattle road trains and all the grey nomads that have been waiting for the roads to re open.
Lots of water sitting around and the rivers are flowing beautifully, especially the De Grey River. Port Hedland are expecting more rain over the weekend. Last week they had a years quota of rain in 2 days.
Collis and I have gone to the South Hedland Bowls club for dinner and just had a really unusual meal that tasted great. It was presented in an upside down bowl on a plate and made up of rice, prawns, chicken and vegetables. Then we had Chips with bacon, onion and melted cheese with gravy. Pretty nice. Everyone else seemed to be cooking in tonight.
Bush camp tomorrow night so I'm cooking then.

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