Expedition Dust day 2
Updated: May 26, 2019
I woke up as the sun was rising, it feels good to be back in my sun rhythm. Loren was still asleep when I started packing my gear up and getting ready for a daunting day. Loren got up as I was making up a mixed berry breakfast to eat an hour after we started biking. I knew the first bit of the track was going to be alright, so once I was ready I set off knowing Loren would catch me. 100m further down the track was a short but steep sand hill, I actually managed to ride almost all the way to the top. I looked down at the track and couldn’t see Loren or her bike! After about 5 minutes I walked back down the track to see if she was ok, I came around the corner and the bike was upside down, her knuckles were bleeding and she had broken her helmet. She had crashed 20m from where we started.I helped her back on the bike, dusted her off and walked back up the hill to eat my breakfast. About 10 minutes later Loren’s face popped over the hill, she was attempting to push the bike and to make it easier and she had left the trailer at the bottom. I was eating breakfast so I watched her struggle for a few minutes hoping she would ask for my help but she never said a thing (she made lots of grunting sounds though). I went and got her trailer so she could eat her food and take a deep breath or two, It hadn’t been a good start to the day for Loren.
The ground started off quite firm because of the rain the night before but it very quickly became soft making it almost impossible to ride our +160kg bikes at all. The sand hills were relentless, but after a very long morning, we managed to find some ways as a team to get the bikes up the hills without completely exhausting ourselves. We would leave the trailers at the bottom and sometimes even take the paneers off. It was easiest if we both pushed the bikes up the hills together. We were still going super slow, much much slower than we need to be. At this speed we will be out here for our whole lives.
I was certainly starting to get the hang of things, I can ride on most of the flat sections and all of the downs but still have to push my bike up the steep hills of course. Every time we got to the top of a steep down hill, Loren would hesitantly try to ride down and almost every single time she would hit deep sand and tumble. She fell off so many times! (after maybe the fifth time the laughter wore off and there were tears). I have honestly lost count of how many times she’s hit the ground. Her bike is already showing signs of damage, the racks had bent, her brake leavers are mangled and it’s like every screw on her bike had rattled lose. I had to fix the racks and tighten all the screws, this took up a big portion of the afternoon. I can tell Loren has lost her confidence and is scared to even bike because not only does she not want to fall off and hurt herself, but she doesn’t want to set us back anymore by ruining the bikes.
All things aside it is pretty concerning for me that the condition of her bike is already pretty bad from taking so many falls. I am genuinely worried the bike will fall apart by the time we make it onto the main road if she keeps falling.
At about 1300 hours we came over the top of a hill and could see the camp site right on the ocean that we were aiming to be at by the end of the day. With our mind set on reaching that point we pushed onwards though the deep sand. As we made it closer Loren started to bike a lot of the flat with me. ( I was very happy about that).
It felt pretty good to make it to the shark bay camp spot. We look like total crazy’s out in the middle of nowhere so as we rolled past we were approached by a bunch of Aussie lads. They seemed pretty amazed with what we were doing, they thought our ‘motorbikes’ had run out of petrol until they realized that we were peddling! We had a beer with them and the gave us some fresh black Snapper and squid that they caught earlier in the day.
With our fresh seafood dinner to look forward to our moods had definitely lifted! The sun was about to set so with smiles on our faces we said fairwell to our new friends and rode another 10 minutes to find a place on the sea side to camp! Once the tent was up I added water to our carrot and coriander meals and whipped up the Squids and Snapper on the gas cooker, it was a delicious way to end a bloody tough day