I emerged from the inside of my sleeping bag into the world of the light, outside was freezing cold and it was windy. The sun was already high in the sky but was providing no comfort from the southerly winds. I didn’t want to get out of bed today and I can feel I am slowly becoming worn out. I wish I wasn’t so slow at writing and could get to bed earlier, it takes me at least two hours to write each night.
Dylan made the first move and got out of the tent, he raced around saying “it’s so cold so so cold!” It definitely didn’t make me want to get out anymore than I did before. We packed up and headed down to the bottom of the hill to have my breakfast but first we walked over to the monument at the top of the hill and got a few photos. On our way back to the bikes we investigated the hill we had pushed our bikes up last night. It was mental, I took one look at it and just said there is no way I’m riding back down that. Dylan just about fell over laughing but agreed that it was way too steep. Dylan wanted to fill his bottles at the top of the hill so we decided I would meet him at the bottom, I headed off to find another way down. The route I chose was less than ideal I was dodging trees, it was rocky and went right through long grass. Once at the bottom I set up for breakfast,I had a chicken coconut and lime Radix meal on the gas cooker. When Dylan made it down I asked him “how was coming down”. I expected him to say it was horrid, but he said the other track was great. I defiantly didn’t find any other track.
We saddled up and began riding off into the wind, the track to begin with was pretty rough, but was solid and downhill so I wasn’t complaining. 10 minutes after we left I had to stop because I forgot to inflate my tyres. Every morning I have to put air in my tyres because they have so many tiny holes from the last 40 days of riding and during the night they deflate. I have to keep my eye on them during the day as usually at lunchtime the back tyre needs more air in it. Once I was sorted and put my ear buds in and got stuck into another few chapters of my book. I haven’t worked out if I like listening to something while ride. I feel I become disconnected from the world around me, it makes the cycling so easy. If I listen to music my legs spin but i’m having a dance party in my head, if it’s a book I become so lost in the story I forget i’m on an expedition crossing Australia altogether, my imagination just takes me away.
A few hours later I was riding ahead of Dylan and spotted a camel crossing the track just ahead of of me. I raced forward to get a look but as I reached the spot I saw there were 9 and they were all crossing the track! I dropped my bike and started running! I wasn’t running away from them, I was running alongside them. It was such an intense experience, I knew they weren’t going as fast as they could as I could keep up but the large bull suddenly peeled away from the herd and came to a stop. He put his giant tougnge out, flicked his tail, dropped his head and neck and let out a loud gurgling sound! The big boy stood there and watched as I poked my little tongue out, shook my bum and then lurched foward into a sprint. He turned around and started cantering away following his herd. They were moving much faster than before, I had no chance of keeping up. When I first started running I was next to 3 babies, I could see the emotion in their eyes as they searched for mum in the dusty stampede. It’s such a pity they are considered a feral animal and are killed, I think they are magnificent creatures.
After all the running I was pretty tired, we rode together along the track. A large off-road truck came over the hill ahead of us it looked so comfortable almost looked like it was floating over the corgations. When they pulled along side us, we talked for a bit before we both continuing on our way! I looked at Dylan and said I should have just got one of those to cross Australia. 3km later we stopped for lunch at Len Beadells Rock pile, from there we spotted our first big red sand dunes! They looked amazing but I knew in an hours time when we were in them I was definitely going to use different words to decribe how I felt about them. The track to the beginning of them was straight as a gun barrel. Just before we began climbing the first sand hills we reached a water pump, the water was dirty brown but I filled up 10L just Incase and then we were off into the dunes.
It looked as though a fire had ripped through here in the last year as all the vegetation was gone or black. The sun had begun to set as we started to descend down the other side of the first dune. I ran over a sharp sick and it snapped off in my rear tyre, the air all came gushing out. I told Dylan we should make camp because this isn’t going to be an easy fix, as Dylan got a fire started I plugged the hole. I have rubber plugs that seal large holes like this one so it wasn’t the end of the world but I will only know if it worked if my tyre holds together tomorrow. We set up the tent together and ate Radix with fried bread over the fire.