Page 2 of Clare and Vernon Travel Blog Posts

Oceania » Australia April 15th 2011

Hobart (06/03/11-13/03/11) So we finally got to Hobart, found accommodation with safe tandem storage and headed out for dinner. We wandered down to the wharf where the Bob Barker and the Steve Irwin (Sea Shepherd boats) were docked, we couldn't walk up to them as they were sectioned off by the federal police because Japan had requested they be searched. The crews were partying in Salamanca, celebrating a successful anti-whaling season and also getting back to dry land. The next day was spent on dull stuff; we booked the tandem in for a service to try to sort the front rim problem out, booked flights to Melbourne and accommodation at the YHA there for our first night, had a clear out and washed the road grime off all our cycling gear. We did find time to ... read more
MONA entrance
Not a pizza
Preparing for takeoff

Oceania » Australia » Tasmania March 18th 2011

On the road again. We pointed the tandem north up the A7 towards Beauty Point and set off, the road was busy but had a wide shoulder which we could use when there weren't cars parked in it and whenever we had to get into the traffic stream we got plenty of space. We stopped for a breather at Tamar Island Wetland Reserve, planning to stop for 10 minutes but spending about 2 hours there wandering about watching the birds and looking for frogs. We finally reached Exeter at 17:00 after a rather bad tempered ride and decided to call it a day after the grand total of 20km. The following morning we headed up to Beauty Point on a day trip from Exeter, the road was rolling but nothing we couldn't ride up and again ... read more
Platypus eating a worm
Eddie the Echidna
Please check your bags for animals before leaving the building

Oceania » Australia » Tasmania March 14th 2011

Caution, cycling content! The reason we came to Tasmania was to support Team Mad Women On Big Bikes at Evandale, so it was sickening to wake up to the sound of high winds and torrential rain on Saturday morning (because of the tyre technology it is unsafe to race Pennies in the wet) we texted Charlotte to find out what was happening and received a response that the day's racing was cancelled for safety reasons. The fair itself had also been called off and we arrived (in a taxi) to a very wet and rather miserable village, we found Charlotte and Kat sheltering in the Bakery Cafe along with their co-conspirators Gray and Alison. The decision was taken to make the best of a bad situation and we headed back to the B&B to get Penelope ... read more
Vernon just about to fall off
Juggling Kiwis
Pink Penny

Four hours on a Greyhound bus had better be for a good reason, especially a bus which the toilet door won't open on. Well actually the door did open when the oldest, smallest and frailest looking passenger gave it a damn good pull and made the rest of us feel very stooooopid! Are we in Milton Keynes? Canberra is an odd place, it is a service centre for the federal government and as such doesn't really have a population centre like other cities do. It's a little bit like central Milton Keynes without all the surrounding residential estates. It is also very concrete. The most amazing thing about Canberra is that it has an English pub, a real one with real ale in real casks delivered by a real beer engine to pint glasses, they haven't ... read more
Sculpture at Canberra Art Gallery
Parliament Hill, Canberra
Birds on a boat, Launceston

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney March 9th 2011

The re-boot seemed to work and we made good time to Sydney, arriving about 1hr late, we were hurried through immigration, customs and the bug dump department at alarming speed and were very quickly shoved into a taxi and on our way. We got back to Glebe in time for a quick midi in the Toxteth Hotel (cue jokes about the world's stickiest bogie!). The next day was very hot and humid, we arranged an appointment with a "genius" at the Apple Store to look at my iPod charging problem and spent most of the rest of the day mooching around the Queen Victoria Building because it has air-con. Feb 3rd was Genius Day and we turned up expecting the worst, the iPod started playing up after it was out of warranty so Apple didn't have ... read more
Apple genius bar
Queen Victoria Building from above
How to fit a tandem in a bike shed

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island February 7th 2011

(07/03/11 we are finally back in the land of internet access and able to upload stuff, should be a few blogs arriving over the next couple of days to get us back up to date.) A short break in proceedings (21-31/01/2011) Second time lucky! We landed at Auckland airport four hours later than expected and, with no chance of picking up our hire car until the following morning, checked into a local motel for the night. Once again we seemed to have brought our lovely British weather with us, mist and heavy drizzle accompanied us to the shuttle bus and was still present the next morning when we set off towards the Bay of Islands. By the time we reached Wellsford the rain was torrential and the wind was buffeting us, the decision to leave the ... read more
Jack's Bay
Russell foreshore
Black Jack Lodge

Oceania » Australia » New South Wales January 25th 2011

...aaaand you're back in the east We reached Sydney by mid morning on the 5th Jan, gathered all our scattered possessions from the various luggage vans, loaded up the bike and tried to find a way out that didn't include steps. After several false starts involving steps, an escalator, tram tracks and numerous pedestrians who couldn't see a bright orange five barred gate when it was right in front of them, we found our way to a Gloria Jean's (coffee shop) for a very late breakfast. Vernon was immediately accosted by a bloke who wanted to know all about the bike and our journey, when we told him that we'd cheated badly and taken the train across the Nullabor he said "Don't blame you, don't blame you at all, there's drivers had to leave their cars ... read more
Boat in Sydney Harbour
Darling Harbour and Sydney Tower
Manly Ferry

Oceania January 11th 2011

Waiting and hoping We left the YHA amid general mirth and yells of "See you tomorrow then", cycled to the station and checked in to the smallest cabin ever, (there's got to be a photo of it on here somewhere) it was pure comedy gold watching Vernon get onto the top bunk. Still it was 22:00 on New Year's Eve so we made ourselves at home in the lounge area with a bottle of pink fizz, two paper cups and the interwebs before attempting to get a night's sleep in bunks measuring 2ft by 6ft (0.6mx1.8m). We were woken at 07:15 by the train manager announcing that the breakfast bar was open and that we would be leaving at 10:00 sharp. We put a quick call through to the YHA, not to gloat (we'll leave that ... read more
Indian Pacific at Kalgoorlie Station
Derailed train carriage
Nullabor Plain

Oceania » Australia » Western Australia January 6th 2011

I apologise for the delay in getting this entry written (and therefore the ongoing delay to later entries), I've been completely stumped over what to write and it shows in the final product, hopefully the photos will make up for that. Christmas in Espie We got back to Espie without incident and checked into a very quiet YHA where we met Roland, a Dutch guy who had just cycled from Adelaide to Espie on a rather nice looking Santos tourer, his view on the Nullabor? The road trains were okay, but the heat very nearly had him beat. We were already thinking that we should take a train or bus across the GAFA, listening to Roland's story of his ride helped us decide, there's no way we could do the distances he was doing daily and ... read more
Kite surfing in Lucky Bay
Sea Jelly sting
White breasted sea eagle

Oceania » Australia » Western Australia December 25th 2010

LOOK OUT!! Splat, ouch! After exhausting the delights of Albany we set off towards Esperance, planning for a week of riding with a stop at the Stirling Ranges to walk Bluff Knoll. Our route began on a cycle path which soon disappeared as we approached the city's industrial outskirts and we were quickly back on the road with all the harvest traffic, including for the first time road trains which are huge and terrifying, we went from being the biggest bruiser on the cycle lane to the most vulnerable on the road and had made plans to scuttle onto the shoulder if a road train approached us from behind. Unfortunately after about 20km this plan fell apart when a road train came around a bend behind us, the driver didn't have time to change his ... read more
Bluff Knoll
Stirling Ranges from Bluff Knoll
Dry Lakes from Bluff Knoll

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