A few Days in Devonport – Day 2

Riding the Devonport Shared Paths

I had a good sleep although it took a bit of time to drop off – yes the Hoons were out last night. Before sunrise (about 5.30am) the incoming Spirit of Tasmania let rip with its fog horn to warn of its entry into the river. So it was an early up too but feeling rested.

The day dawned clear and wind free. Looking good. 

Morning gear sortout and ride prep

I got the trike out of the trailer and organised the panniers. Only one was needed for riding – the other was filled with all my warmer riding gear and would stay in the tent. The winter stuff definitely not needed today.

After breakfast we cycled into Devonport. I was looking for a charge cable for my phone. A most important piece of equipment.   It was a pleasant surprise to find a Mac Shop in Devonport as Android cables don’t fit my phone.   Yes, they had one and we were on our way in no time at all and I had a cable.

Devonport has a good number of shared paths. Unfortunately there are major works happening near the CBD which have resulted in the shared trails being fenced off. We tried to avoid riding on the road while mixing it with local traffic. Did I mention before – Devonport is the hoon capital of Tasmania? ! 

We negotiated the streets under renovation – it looks like a raised walkway is being built to take pedestrians from the CBD to the riverside paths. Once complete I am sure it will all be good.  Part of the walkway looks like it might be going to house a lift – possibly trike sized?

Once out of town we cycled up the shared path and found a Coffee Bar – a Danish coffee bar. It was convenient to the pathway, so we stopped and sampled the wares – coffee and cake. Both highly recommended.

Once morning coffee was over we headed back up to The Bluff and then continued on past, cycling to the new bridge over Don River. Using the bridge, we crossed and turned right – exploring the road and paths to Don Head. 

On the new Don River bridge

After an interesting off road diversion we returned to the trailhead and took the left turn uphill towards Don. On the way we passed a large veggie / fruit growing business with masses of irrigated beds, hydroponics and greenhouses. It was fascinating. Dropping down back to the river (nice, fast descent), we crossed over at the next bridge upstream. On the other side the track to Don was taped shut. So, back across the bridge we went and followed another trail up to the Don Railway station and shunting yards. 

Past the yards, we got on the trail to take us back to the Bluff, a trail which passes through Don College. Just past the College there was yet more yellow tape. It was obvious a fire had gone through recently.  We turned back – Colin leading. He came across a fire brigade person who told us they had been burning off, lit up last Friday. “It’s all ok now though – just sneak under”. So we did. They had been burning off the undergrowth right up to peoples fences as an exercise to protect houses. 

To get out we had to duck under 2 further sets of yellow tape. Then we were back on track. A little further ahead there was something on the track. I thought “another trike “. Colin thought “large dog”. It turned out to be two students from the college sitting on the track eating their lunch.   We squeezed past two other groups after that. The last lump in the path was a couple. She lying with her head in his lap!  Ah, romance with vividly dyed hair and facial piercings – I do feel old !

Back to the Bluff campsite and lunch. 

Our campsite view to the west

Colin was interested in finding the Information Office and getting a map of the shared paths. Down into Devonport we went, once more getting tangled in the street renovations.  We found the Office and Colin got his map. Then, after another coffee, it was time to find a food shop. 

We also found a community bike repair centre – and it still had all its tools.

All major supermarkets and smaller grocery stores seem to be on one street – thus a very busy street. We found a Hill Street shop and got supplies.  We were very happy to pull away and get back to the trails. Lots of traffic = lots of exhaust crap in the face. 

That evening I took an after dark walk around the park and found Pademelons all over. I was also able to identify the small hoppy marsupial – a grey, barred bandicoot.  These are getting scarce so it was good to see one looking really healthy.

Here is a short video extracted from today’s ride :

Monday 4th April 2022 – Devonport / Don

Author: antc1946

Born in 1946 I learnt to cycle about 10 years later. On a bike with rods connecting brake levers to the brakes - anyone remember those? I emigrated to Australia (from the UK) in 1974 and moved to Tasmania in 1984. Bicycles were in my life for most of that time although sometimes they were replaced by motorised two wheels for a bit more excitement. On reaching 70 I decided to stick to pedal power but in 2019 an electric recumbent made an appearance. it's now 2023 and I have 3 bikes. 2 e-recumbents and the Brompton.

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