October cycle tour map

October cycle tour map


Sunday, April 7, 2013

Manangatan to Swan Hill

 Manangatan to Swan Hill = 82km
Cummulative total = 815km / 19,721km
Morning temperature = 17 degrees / daytime high = 30 degrees
Riverside Big 4 Caravan park = $41 powered (OMG!)

I forgot to take a photo of the rest area we were at last night ...
 the buildings in the background are the toilets/shower, water tank and table/shelter.  Nice spot but a little noisy for my liking ... all last night I could hear what sounded like a jack hammer going intermittently ... maybe a pump somewhere on a farm and the stillness of the night carried the noise.
Anyway we knew it was going to be a long day, also a hot day and also the Geelong vs. Kangaroo game is on and it was an early start - 1pm so we decided to get up early ... lets say 5am!  Lucky the shelter had lights so we ate brekky in there and packed up our stuff in there.  No one else here last night so noise wasn't an issue.  We were on the road at 6.30am with 80km to ride.  We were ready earlier but it was too dark to ride.  6.30am is light enough that should a car be on the road it will see us!
Tell you what though it was a sensational sunrise this morning riding along the road to Chinkapook ...
 Great name isn't it - Chinkapook.  I saw this on the map when we last came up here and wanted to go through it but Neil didn't really want to ... but this trip it is on the way ...
 as you can see by the sign it is a legit place and its' aboriginal meaning is 'place of red earth' and the ground is definitely red.  Not much in this town ... a public hall that I doubt gets used at all ...
 a few ramshackle houses ... but I love the name and wouldn't mind living here if it had a supermarket and post office!
From here we take the even quieter road to Chillingoolah which is a further 14km away and the road becomes a single lane and a little undulating. 
The legs are a little tired this morning as it is our 4th day riding and our 2nd 80km day in 3 days.  From Chillingoolah we head east to Pira which is 30km further.  The northerly wind has started up at this time and by now only 2 cars have passed us ... we encounter a few more along this Pira road.  On this road it feels like you are always climbing and I suppose you are a bit and since the legs are really heavy by now the hills feel bigger than what they really are ... We take a break every 15km ...
 the weather is warming up now and we are going along nicely and guesstimate we will miss the 1st quarter of footy as we have to stop to get some food.
About 5km past Pira we turn south east and only 17km from Swan Hill and thankfully what wind there is assists us.
We get to Woolies at 1pm and at the campground 30mins later pay the ridiculous price of $41 powered (peak time) and find our spot is just great - at the end of the park and we are the only ones here of the 4 sites that are suited for powered tent sites so we doubt if we will have anyone near us.  The park is a Big 4 and it takes dogs - we wanted to be close to town and the river rather than stay at the last place we stayed which is 3km south and that is just too far so we decided to bite the bullet and will pay the $41 and they aren't anal about the dogs here so we will go and add an extra 2 nights here and have a good rest.
The park is on the river and were our site is we are on the little murray river which is where the Murray diverts and goes around an island called Pental which is opposite us.  Every now and then a little paddle steamer goes by ... the Pyap ...
 our spot
 our spot looking onto the river (the unpowered is in front of us and I am hoping that tent next to the ute goes soon!)
 and here is Kouta enjoying the view - we are on a slight down hill on this site - so we hope we don't roll out the tent.

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