South Australia :
5 of 11 days - from Adelaide to Melbourne
Day 1 : from Adelaide to Middleton - 96 km
Just at the 21.12 it started to rain at 20° C a pleasant bike riding temperature instead above 40° C of the previous days.
From Adelaide there is a bike trail, about 60km to Willunga. We ride from Glenelg first on the bike path along the coast to meet later the bike path, along the highway. (The highway is currently under construction, which means 3x signaled diversions for bikes) later, the bike path will change to an old railway line (Coast to Vines Rail Trail) through beautiful vineyards where we find our first first class bakery in McLaren Vale.
After Willunga you go over The Mount Compass, about 300 meters altitude sensed, later we ride on side roads that lead in a straight line over every hill!
Here we'll see our first 5 big giant kangaroos (of 52) fascinating animals, but outdoors badly to photograph because they are to rapidly away.
First we see the ears in tall grass and then there are always very many who then jump very quickly away ! If we were cars, we could have seen the kangaroos longer, but with our bikes with all the luggage, we must look like an indefinable animal.
Our first day's ride is 96 km from Adelaide to Middleton where we can stay by our warmshower hosts Greg and Jenny (see photo) First we swim in the nearby sea, later Greg cooked us a fine BBQ. In winter it has large whales, our host told he has swum 50 m away from the whales in the sea.
And Jenny says: Last week they had a Brown Snake (very toxic) in the garden, the snake catcher came, he grabbed her at the tail an put her in a bag, the snake is relocated.
Day 2 : from Middleton to Wellington to Malinong - 116 km
(1. stage towards the Coorong)
We have become accustomed to start biking in daylight about 6 clock in the morning. (see Tips), we have to leave from this nice comfortable place, but first we get served an egg toast. We hope to see that family, like all other welcome in Switzerland and all the loving Hospitalities to reciprocate.
It is a nice friendly day with tailwind, accordingly, we are fast. We ride through agricultural land, vineyards (kangaroos love grape leaves for breakfast) and wetlands to the ferry in Wellington (over the Murray River), where we eat lunch and next to pelicans swim in the river.
After the ferry over the river we come to the Princess Highway, the six-week summer holidays of Australians have just started the whole time of our trip is the peak season accordingly with traffic on the streets, this afternoon we change the direction -> strong headwind. We go where it goes on dirt roads next to the road and then on a junction to a larger gravel road ( nine mile Rd.)towards Malinong. Again we ride through agricultural land, again the beautiful kangaroos and then Malinong a junction with the Malinong District Hall, where a toilet with water is open, that is pure luxury for us by camping (see pictures). In the morning, at 6 clock the only farmer that we see for hours tells us where the best way forward for us will be. We do not have a particularly detailed map, nor any electronic device (which would not be useful anyway because no reception) except we have a simple mobile-phone.
Day 3 : Malinong to Meningie, further to Policeman Point - Coorong - 88km
Headwind day! We drive to Meningie on gravel roads ( we drive first along the Malinong Rd., later we turn right in the Yumali Rd., then we pass Walowa and later we reach the Princess Hyw.), we past thousands of different colored cows that chase us regularly until the end of pastures, or stand in amazement stay with the just plucked tufts of grass in the big cow mouth. Then after hours, we have the view of Lake Albert and on a flock of pelicans. Soon we are in Meningie and our breakfast waits in the bakery. It's the 23.12.13, a day before Christmas, we notice Farmers with her ute (Pick-Up) to buy Christmas gifts in the stores. (The ute was invented as an Australian farmer's wife inquired of Ford : they need a car with which they can go to church on Sunday and on Monday transport pigs).
From Meningie we continue towards the beautiful Coorong with all the birds and again large kangaroos. In the evening we reach the legendary Policeman Point and decide to stay there (see camping). We have very good food. The exceptionally friendly hosts couple tells us the gruesome legend of the Policeman Point!
Day 4 : Policeman Point to Kingston to Robe - 144 km
At six o clock at Policeman point we are rewarded with a beautiful early morning sunrise and we first explored the hotel's immediate surroundings at sunrise over the Coorong.
It's always nice to start riding early in the morning - the roads are empty and the few trucks and cars peacefully travelling, everyone friendly greeted each other. The Kangaroos are eating grass beside the road.
Today, before the next town (Kingston) 95 km. Ahead of us, only Bush and nature, we arrive with a headwind before 2 pm. (At 10.30 runs the public bus to Mt Gambier past us, the supposedly not supposed to go on that day - we are happy not to sit in it)
After a long break in Kingston, with swimming at the beach, we watch with amazement the huge RVs with trailers (for boats, cars + bikes), we get thanks to tail wind and varied landscape, unexpectedly quickly into Robe.
We stay at the Robe Hotel Pub, it's a happy mood, the Australians meet for the 24.12., on TV, the Christmas show is broadcast from Sydney -. Lucky we get a cheese toast, other culinary delights we can't get because the kitchen is closed.
Day 5 : to Beachport and Mount Gambier - 133 km
On the 25.12. again in the bright morning we continue to Beachport and there we swim at the beach.
Toward Millicent it gets uncomfortably hot, the rest area in Rendelsham with a large hanging willow comes in very handy for a lunch break. When we are ready to continue our journey, 2 heavy packed bikes approached - a Swiss couple..
Our paths diverge unfortunately again soon, because we have different plans. In time, as they comfortably cook their dinner, we drive to Mount Gambier, because we want to reach Melbourne in 11 days
In the late afternoon it is not anymore so hot and we get tail wind, so we get to Mt Gambier.
An ambulance vehicle stops on the opposite side of the road, watching us as we take a little break - we wondered what they're looking for? The mystery was solved in Mt Gambier - it was our warmshower host of Mt Gambier Sandy- he was the medic in the ambulance, he wanted to speak to us, but they were immediately called to duty.
We saw him in the evening for 30 minutes, previously he told us on the phone, how to come to his house - it's incredible this hospitality! We cook spaghetti - we should cook and serve us at the pantry. The family dog is happy while her family are absent working and on holiday not to be alone and we are happy to be able to sleep after the 2 day's riding peacefully in a soft bed.
Day 6 : Mount Gambier Nelson (Vic) to Portland - 113 km
in the morning, leaving Mount Gambier we reached 33km later the border into Victoria.
the report goes on further in Section: Victoria