....to the Pacific and home. travel blog

....to the Pacific and home.

David travel blog
When we left the Threeways the realisation hit us that our long ride was coming to an end even though we still had around 3000km to go. No matter the distance, it still seemed like home was just down the road and around the next bend. A strange feeling.
By the time we made a rest stop at the Barkly Homestead we had actually completed a loop around the Territory and WA, a major part of our adventure. We were quite pleased with ourselves.
Word at Barkly centered around fires to the east and nobody had info on their severity. The smoke looked ominous but we decided to hasten slowly. It wasn't all that bad but the winds were worrying so we were extremely cautious. No worries, just a tad warm.
Those winds tormented us most of the way to Mount Isa so we were happy to call it a day.
One of our favourite stretches of road and scenery between Isa and Cloncurry was marred slightly by the rising sun but it was still a pleasure to wind through the hills and valleys. A real treat.
The only scary roads to the east coast were from Julia Creek to Hughenden although these were outdone by the infamous Bruce Highway from Airlie Beach to the Sunshine Coast.
That excitement was exceeded by a 'roo soon after leaving Isa, it was so-o-o-o close that it left fur on Black Betty's fender tip....and we required another change of undies.
We needed coffee quickly so stopped at Cloncurry and ordered up. As the money hit the table the power went out. Not just at the cafe, the whole town was out. Was it us ?
We survived until Hughenden and ordered up again. Things were ok this time but when the cups arrived someone had already gone shopping next door. A new pair of shoes and the coffee was still hot....unbelievable but true!
Wallets were safe from shops in Richmond and Charters Towers but there were a few close calls. Charters Towers really impressed us as a big country town with lots of old world class.
The scenery started to change quite dramatically as we neared the coastal ranges and soon became very lush and tropical. We were having a ball although we copped a few showers as we arrived at Airlie Beach. Still a pretty place and reasonably unchanged since our honeymoon visit.
It was then that we went sailing and tried to shipwreck ourselves among the Whitsunday islands... but that's another story. We decided not to try that again and just headed off after one night.
Rockhampton was our next overnight target which was our last before home.
That place has grown immensely....traffic, noise and people welcomed us back to our real world.
An early start had us back on the dreaded Bruce 'goat track' but we felt a moderate degree of excitement as home was only a matter of hours away.
Apart from looking absolutely filthy a few times the bikes came through the trip relatively unscathed and certainly looked after us. Apart from Psycho that is. He did have his moment in Perth and would you believe it, he got back to his wicked ways again. He had already worn out his rubbers once and at the end, he had done it again....what an animal! We might have to lock him up for awhile to keep Gilly safe.
We feel a great sense of achievement after having ridden around the country, something like the equivalent of riding around Europe or the US....hmmm...what interesting thoughts !!!
In essence we had covered just under 20,000kms without accidents, traffic tickets or mechanical problems and knew this was the result of good luck rather than good management.
Although tired and bow legged when we arrived home we thoroughly enjoyed the experience and have a greater appreciation of our fabulous country and the people in it. Considering the many days in the saddles we may have to get medical advice on separating our bum cheeks...ouch!
We're now pondering our next adventure.

Order: oldest at top ( reverse )

The Threeways....the...
Mount Isa...return visit.
Hughenden ....dinosaur...
Airlie Beach...back on...
Buderim....honey, we're...
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