Our plan this tour is to ride short distances between camps, thus giving ourselves time to savour the ride, take pictures and not get too stuffed by the actual riding. But, before we get to that …. something completely different!
Yesterday Longford hosted a Tasmanian event, tenuously connected with cycling. The event was the start of a series of celebrations marking 150 years of rail in Tasmania – with the running of an engine (a double header actually) over the Longford railway bridge.
Colin and I attended because we understood there would be reference to the extension of the shared path to Longford, the one that currently ends at Pateena Road. At the moment we have to cycle an extremely narrow part of the 100kph limit Illawarra Road over the South Esk bridges in order to get to the start of the shared path into Perth. We will be travelling the gauntlet tomorrow to start our Northern Tassie Tour.
During the speeches, Councillor Dick Adams did indeed talk about the possibility of using the rail corridor to support a shared path to provide people with walking and cycling access between Longford and Perth. The Minister nodded wisely. Will this be the last we hear of it? Will a shared path be on the cards when the Illawarra Road is upgraded? Anything is possible. I do hope it goes ahead.
The engine hooted and cleared the single track line for a goods train due shortly; Colin and I headed off for a coffee.
During the rest of the day I continued to prep the trike for the tour. I have squeezed the canopy plus 4 panniers onto it – and packed the canopy bag in case it self-destructs in the winds. After getting the main bits and pieces together (tent, sleeping bag etc) I kept remembering other items to take along, so it was an all afternoon exercise.
I chose the Magnum because it has multiple stars against “Touring” in the glossy literature. So far they have proved their worth, riding comfortably with a great load, albeit slowly.
I will post our progress on a day by day basis but, this time, I will start on our return. That way I will be able to include the best pictures and movies together with maps of where we actually went – not where we plan to go.
Next blog post – circa 20/21 February. See you then!