Today is a cold one and is overcast. I’m riding slowly because of the undulations and my pace doesn’t increase much throughout the morning.
Raincoat on or off, hard to decide with the threatening weather.
By noon I realise that I didn’t eat enough carbs for breakfast this morning, and am probably low on energy. So I stop for lunch to cook some pasta. I usually want to have a quick lunch but feel like it’s the right thing to do.
After lunch I decide it has worked as I’m riding slightly faster, but I can’t tell whether it just feels that way because I’m not riding uphill, who knows.
At 2.30pm I reach one campsite. I really want to keep going to the next one and make up some time but I see a horse at the campsite and a couple of trekkers. Here I meet Sue and her husband Bill. Sue is riding the Bicentennial National Trail on her horse, and Bill is her support team. He drives around and waits for her at the next campsite.
We start chatting and Sue gives me very valuable information about the trail. She is coming from from North and I’m going there.
As we are discussing the trail, Sue mentions that there are a number of upcoming river crossings with big stones at the bottom of the river bed. She explains that the crossings will be impractical to cross on a bike. The river can be up to 4m deep after heavy rain, and the cold weather creates a risk of hypothermia. We look at the map together, and I decide to get back to the highway and skip a huge chunk of the BNT. It’s a shame I spent all this time getting back on the BNT by riding East, just to back West the next day. But I’m feeling relieved. Since I’ve left Sydney I’ve wanted to be in Queensland where it’s warmer. With very short days, lot of hills and cold weather, this has become less enjoyable. There is just not enough daylight and warm weather to be travelling at a good pace. Tomorrow, I’ll be on the highway in 10km and heading towards Armidale. Someone is expecting me and I should have a shelter, warm food and shower waiting for me. I’m very much looking forward to that.