Saturday 8th March
Cocklebiddy – Caiguna – Rest Stop
65km + 70km
I woke up to the stars staring through my tent. It was easy to press the snooze button, and lay half asleep for the next 40 minutes. Harv was as sleepy as I was, but eventually we kicked into gear and got out of bed. I was tired, but it was nice to feel healthy again.
We ate a Powerbar for breakfast, and only had to ride 65kms to Caiguna. We were both feeling good and we averaged around 23km/ph. I listened to music the whole way, which is a really beautiful thing when the stars are out in the morning, and then to feel the sun rising at your back to thaw out the day.
We got to Caiguna in no time at all and got stuck into an egg and bacon breakfast. IT was a really spin out to run into a bloke I know from Geelong at the roadhouse there. His name is ‘spud’ and him and his girlfriend had packed everything up and we’re moving to WA for a while. They were totally flipped out when they saw it was Harv and I on the bikes. After brekkie, we booked a little cabin and decided to get some rest. We slept really well but woke up at around 2 or 3 pm and it was hard to get back to sleep. The cabin was great though. It had an air conditioner, a little fridge, and a little bathroom. Harv was still sleepy so I went and hung out some washing that we had put on early. Nowhere ever has pegs for the clothesline, and it was a really windy day. I hung the washing out anyway, but at this stage we were used to picking all of our clothes up of the ground later on anyway.
After some more food from the cranky old crew running the roadhouse, we packed up our things and hit the road around 8pm. The heat had died down, but unfortunately the wind was still present. We battled against it and we’re only managing to ride around 15km/ph. Frustration soon became involved. Unfortunately body clocks can’t be changed at the snap of a finger, and we were both getting really tired. I found it half amusing to watch Harv almost falling asleep while riding his bike. He kept dropping back, or veering off into the gravel until I asked him what he was doing. Harv has been a machine on trip. I’ve had a whole bunch of issues, but Harv has been mostly solid until now. If there’s one thing Harv can’t handle, its sleep deprivation. He just couldn’t keep his eyes open the poor fella.
Harv was getting a sore forehead from trying to keep his eyes open, and we were both getting hungry so we pulled over at a rest stop. To my excitement I found that there was an awesome fire place and decided that it would be a great idea to get a fire going. During the planning of this trip, I imagined us travelling over the Nullarbor with heaps of time or camping out, jamming around a fire, but none of that had existed, so this was my chance. Harv said I looked like a caveman when I came back to the rest area with a huge dead tree slung over my shoulder for the fire. I picked it up and smashed it on the ground to break it up. To my delight, the fire was lit first go and before we knew it we were nice and toasty by a camp fire, cooking dehydrated peas and beans, and then way to much rice. Harv seemed to be really cold and just couldn’t get warm. He pretty much had every layer of clothing he had brought on and still couldn’t get warm. I was quite content hanging by the fire in my bike shorts and short sleeve shirt for some reason. After eating too much rice, Harv crawled into his sleeping bag and went to sleep. I said we should sleep for 30 mins and then hit the road again. I set my alarm and lay next to the hot coals of the fire. A feeling of contentment came over me laying next to the coals, starring up at the stars through an over hanging gun tree. This was just how I had imagined the trip, and it was something that I would like to experience more during our travels. I was almost tempted to try and stay awake for the 30 minutes and enjoy that moment, but there was no escape from sleep.