After a decent mash of the riverloop we had a planning meeting at Archive in West End about a big ride that I have somehow proposed in one of those moments of extreme enthusiasm I am hyper-prone to.
And it is a ride to Sydney — just under 1000kms away.
Usually I would not announce this sort of adventure just because it was so crazy and was likely to be abandoned at the last minute when everyone came to their senses, but this little excursion seems to be gaining momentum and the people who will be committing to it with me seem, well, a bit “committed”.
HOW I GOT HERE
And throughout my entire life – that route between Brisbane and Sydney has been my most travelled major journey. (If you count a major journey above, say, 200ks.)
This is because my mother moved to Sydney when I was 6 and when I was about 8 I went there for the very first time. That first time my dad came with me on the epic day-long train journey, but a year later I was taking that same train journey all by myself — something that would not be allowed these days I expect. And then me and dad moved to Sydney and so I found myself going up to Brisbane a few times a year.
Anyway, this journey, and it didn’t matter which way I was going — it was meaningful.
And so in those times of youthful angst or wilful desperation I can remember when I was particularly upset at a particular parent this thought of escape would spring to mind. So I would fantasise about packing up a backpack and walking up the highway to Brisbane (or Sydney) — escaping all my troubles and being one with the ROAD — Jack Kerouac style.
But then I remembered how big a deal that would be and I would soon enough calm down and chill.
So this journey has been in my heart for a very long time and now, for the first time in my life, I think it is achievable by my own volition. And so here we are.
And this route we are kinda wedded to, all the way to Sydney, is quite a bit “the scenic route” — by no means the easiest or most direct. It will be entirely self-supported. A credit card, a phone charger and one single set of normal clothes is pretty much all we will be taking (other than what we would normally take on a big bike ride).
DAY 1 — GOLD COAST to GRAFTON (244kms)
And because of that it feels ok to cheat a little by taking the train to Varsity Lakes (cause we have rode those bullshit roads to the Gold Coast so many times).
DAY 2 — GRAFTON to NAMBUCCA HEADS (131kms)
DAY 3 — NAMBUCCA HEADS to TAREE (202kms) [via Port Macquarie, Ocean Road and Bonney Hills]
DAY 4 — TAREE to NEWCASTLE (173km) [Via Airport]
DAY 5 — NEWCASTLE to SYDNEY (168kms)
Oh boy. I am not sure if I can do it, but I really, really want to give it a fucking go. And sometimes you just have to dive in and worry about the consequences later.
I took this shitty panorama photo on Bondi Beach in 2002