Flinders Ride (3)

Day Five (Oraparinna to Quorn KML File)
The early camp worked in my favour. It meant I rode south through some stunning country I would have missed in the dark if I had pushed on to Wilpena or Quorn.

How could you not love this country? I tried a few photo panoramas, but a camera simply cannot capture the depth and vastness of the landscape.

I have driven the road several times in years past, but being on the bike immersed me in the country in a new way. I felt very small, and yet very much at home.

Photos: The old Kanyaka Homestead was the base for 70 families at its peak, and ran 50000 sheep. 20,000 sheep were lost in the drought of the mid 1860s and the station never recovered, eventually being split up into smaller holdings.  In Hawker the bird on the table walked up to my helmet and dipped in through the slots looking for sugar. Finding none, it went to the next table and had a good feed through the opening for the sugar spoon.

For cyclists this is big country. But the road surface is good. I wouldn't bother with fat tires unless I was following the Mawson Trail where it goes off the main tracks; you don't need the weight. Decent touring tyres, plenty of water and a camera make the whole experience a delight.

Day 6 (Quorn to Clare KML File)
I stopped again at Quorn, and then headed for Clare on the second last day. This is almost 200km, the wind was finally from the south− Murphy again− but at least it was not too warm. I discovered the new bypass through the Clare Hills which cuts out the Bungaree climbs, and spent the night with good friends in Clare.


Day Seven
As always, I took the Riesling Trail. It was then a gentle ride to Elizabeth from Auburn, although Main North Road turns into a bit of a dog track at Giles Corner where the Barrier Highway joins up with it. The afternoon traffic is almost like riding in the city. I'm tempted to take the Auburn - Balaklava road to Adelaide next time.

    • Laura: 203km, 10:14 on the bike, 19.85kmh
    • Quorn: 110km, 6:29 on the bike, 17.07kmh
    • Mern Morna: 123km, 6:47 on the bike, 18.1kmh
    • Oraparinna: 70km, 6:11 on the bike, 11.4kmh
    • Quorn: 143km, 8:42 on the bike, 16.5kmh
    • Clare: 199km, 12:05 on the bike, 16.44kmh
    • Elizabeth: 116km 7:06 on the bike 16.34kmh
      • TRIP 966km

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