Thursday 6th March
Mundrabilla – Madura
We got up nice and early, and everything managed to run smoothly. My stomach was feeling a bit better, so I had some cereal, and some toast from the roadhouse for breakfast. We filled up some water and hit the road. We were up early, but still got off to a bit of a late start.
Just to make a good start turn wrong, about 10kms up the road one of my spokes snapped. I pulled off the ride and changed it over while the sun rose. A beautiful sight, but it meant the heat was coming, and so were the flies.
The bike was back together and we kept riding. The day was getting late and the sun was getting intense. There was a strong cross wind, and my body got really weak. I think after the lack of sleep, de-hydration, diarrhoea, vomiting, heat exhaustion, it had just decided to slow down a bit. I struggled to push 8-9kms on the bike, and in some cases could hardly stay up on the bike when the cross wind blew hard. We kept going and then pulled up for some lunch.
I didn’t have an appetite but threw down a sandwich, and some cooler water I had stashed in my pannier. Harv laid down for a rest, so I lay down and tried to sleep. It was no good. I was so frustrated with the flies and the heat that I couldn’t sleep, and just needed to get to the next town.
So I got back on the bike, and switched my 2way radio on so Harv could contact me, and kept riding. It didn’t take long for Harv to catch up, and we battled on in the heat.
Every day seemed to feel like it was the hardest challenge in the tour so far. I was losing strength in my arms and was riding slouched over the handlebars. I was slow but I was getting there. I managed to drink some hot water, but after a while felt really bloated, and couldn’t drink anymore.
Finally it was 5kms from Madura. We could see the road rose uphill ahead, but up to top of the cliffs, and I was expecting to have to climb the hill before hitting the roadhouse. It was such a relief to turn off to Madura about 500 meters up the hill.
We sat inside for a bit and had some cold drinks. My 1.25ltr water cost me $5.05 but it was so worth it. We found out that the temperature during the day had risen to 47 degrees, so the sun we were riding in mast have been an extra few degrees above that. Insane! Harv was stoked that we rode through such a hot temperature. I thought it was hell, but its quite an achievement to know you can get through those situations.
The caravan park had a pool so we had the best swim, and decided it would be a good idea to rinse the bike clothes. We ate a good meal and headed back to camp. Harv whipped out the guitar and played me some songs while I changed another 2 spokes.
Another intense day, but we got through it, and we were rewarded with a bit of time to do some things before bed. 10:30pm I laid down, and couldn’t wait to get some sleep.