Day 5: The silent ‘h’ in Nhill

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Today was a very hard day. It started off nice enough — awoke to kookaburras and cockatoos once again, and as I packed up my hammock I saw a little possum mother climbing the tree my hammock was on, with its baby on its back — unfortunately, the possums had also taken the liberty to piss and shit all over my tarps during the night. Taking the good with the bad, I guess…

I set out from Dimboola and before long reached Loch Iel, more commonly known as the Pink Lake. This salt pan is home to a type of algae that reacts to the sun by showing a pink hue, making the entire lake varying shades of pink depending on time of year, sun position, etc. It was very beautiful…

Despite my early start, the wind was directly in my face at 40 kph, gusting to 50-55 kph, and any time I saved in the morning was quickly consumed by my struggle into the strong headwind. I figured out why Nhill has a silent ‘h’ — the hills are ‘hidden’, in that it seems nice and flat by car but on the bike, especially with a headwind, those hills are enough to wear you down.

By the time I reached Kaniva, near the Victorian/South Australian border, I was utterly exhausted. Desperate to reach the border today, I was very disappointed to have to call it a day at Kaniva, and I booked into a local motel for the day. My body had just had enough, and it’s unsafe to be riding along a highway when you’re mentally and physically exhausted.

Kaniva is a weird little town. Today is a public holiday in Melbourne (for the AFL Grand Final Parade) but I’m not sure if it was being observed in Kaniva. There were some pretty dodgy looking characters getting around, plenty of meth heads walking the streets with no shoes and no hopes. Again, it could’ve just been a bad impression left by a public holiday but I was given the distinct impression of Kaniva as a bit of a dead town. The surrounding countryside is pretty enough though. I popped by the little pub for a meal then hit the sack.

How I’d rate today’s journey:

The stats

This ride was split over more than one day, due to inclement weather.

1
Distance ridden
0h 0m 0s
Riding time
1
Elevation (climbed)
1
Average speed
1
Average heartrate
1
Calories burned
1
Max speed
3ºC
Temperature
1
Pedal strokes
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