Tuesday 11th March
Norseman – Salmon Gums
Rain. I opened my eyes and for some reason felt at ease to here rain drops pitta patter on the tent outside. We both felt relaxed and laid in the tents until the rain passed. After packing everything up we went to a Supermarket in town and bought some supplies for the road. IT was good to see some supermarket prices again. We ate some brekkie and hit the road.
The day seemed to be taking a long time. The sun was really hot again, but nothing in comparison to some of the heat over the desert. But we both agreed that riding felt like it was taking ages. About 15kms from the town of Salmon Gums I felt somewhat possessed to ride a bit faster and fired up. I had broken a few spokes, but all I could do was bend them around existing spokes to try and give the wheel a bit of extra strength. We had run out of spare spokes, so the only option was to laugh and say “Ahh, she’ll be right.”
We picked up a good pace and then bang! My bike was shaking from side to side. I looked down and the wheel was wobbling, and whacking into the frame of the bike with every rotation. This wasn’t good. I dropped the bike down and we both laughed so hard. I pulled out my spoke tool and made some adjustments to the wheel to stop it from hitting the bike frame, and made the decision to keep going to Salmon Gums. It was only 10kms away. Within 4kms, Snap! Another spoke had gone. A total of eight missing spokes. We both laughed really hard for a while, and then decided that it was now time to take spokes off the front wheel, and put them on the back.
We pulled off the road and into the shade for an hour and a half to repair the rear wheel. It took some swearing, cursing, and sweating in the hot sun, but we managed to achieve an ok result.
Back on the road and into the town of Salmon Gums. The local pub looked inviting so we dropped in for some refreshments. We had seen to beautiful looking wild Horses during the day and a local bloke told us that they are wild Brumbies that still exist in packs of around 20 or so in the area. We had a god yarn, a couple of counter meals, a few cold ones, and then back to the saddle.
After another 15kms of so I got really tired and we set up camp for the night. We wanted to ride as far as we possibly could to make it easier the next day, but we decided it would actually be easier if we just sleep, and don’t push our bodies. We found a pretty rough roadside camp spot, but managed to set up the tents and get some rest.