03 Jan

Day 13 : Christmas Road Trip : Bairnsdale to Murrumbateman

After some heavy rain overnight we awoke to a light drizzling rain this morning.  Thankfully the rain had cooled things right down and eased the humidity considerably. The Bairnsdale Main Motel was great value and the bed comfortable.  We could see the light at the end of the tunnel and decided to get away nice and early to make the most of the other end of the day.

The rain was only light so we donned our over pants and jacket, but left the waterproof booties in the panniers for now.  Both Steve and I are a pair of scaredy cats when it comes to riding in the rain.  We’ve both had a few slips but no actual falls in the rain and we now both quite gun shy – it was going to be a steady ride out today.

I was looking forward to the change in scenery today from the bush of inland Victoria to the beauty of the coast – all be it coated in mist.  There were gentle undulating hills and winding roads.  Flip flopping between seaside villages to forested hinterlands.

We stopped for breakfast at Lakes Entrance.  Your stereotypical fishing village with lots of young families towing boats, camper trailers, caravans, jet skis etc. Wow, it was so busy for early on a Saturday morning after a public holiday.  As the rain did not look like abating we donned our waterproof booties and continued on our way, continuing on the A1 towards Orbost. 

The rain put a bit of a dampener (pun intended!) on my motivation to stop for more letters, there were some good ones today, including Cabbage Tree Creek.  Additionally the roads were really busy.  Admittedly most traffic was heading in the opposite direction but we still managed to get our own special tailgater making quick, unexpected stops too risky.  We stopped in at Cann River for a leg stretch and a coffee.  The rain was remaining steady as was the line of traffic heading towards Lakes Entrance.

We had just under 200km to go until Bega and also happened to notice it was under 300km to Canberra.  With  the weather the way it was we could hear home starting to call our name.  The pleasure of Batemans Bay and the ride up the range tomorrow would certainly be negated by the wet roads, taking all the fun out of fish and chips on the beach and a twisty up hill ride back to Canberra.  

We pondered it a bit then made the decision to head directly home instead of spending the night in Bega.  I cancelled our booking and set the GPS for home… HUZZAH! All of a sudden I couldn’t wait to see our creatures again and sleep in my own bed.  So we turned on to the B23, soon to transition to the Monaro Highway and made a bee-line for home stopping for the obligatory NSW/VIC border photo for our ABC of Touring entry for 2016.  The traffic was still steady but very quite compared to the A1 – in the rain I considered this a good thing.

We stopped for lunch in Bombala with the intention of continuing to Bredbo before stopping for another leg stretch.  Mother Nature got the better of us and we stopped in at a roadside rest stop just shy of there for a loo break and leg stretch.  The rain had cleared up and the roads dried up pretty quickly making the journey much more enjoyable.  Off we go again, next stop Tuggeranong for some quick grocery essentials then HOME!  Almost there, less than 2 hours to go 🙂

Just out of Cooma the clouds started to get awfully dark and ominous.  We pulled over and put our rain gear back on – glad we did because it rained pretty heavy for the next 40 minutes or so, even through all the layers the rain drops were like needles – glad Steve insisted on getting our wet weather gear back on even though I had grumbled about it!

By the time we reached Tuggeranong we were glad for the break – the last leg was a long one and it was nice to get off the bikes for a half hour or so, even if it was just for Aldi shopping! After playing musical bags to fit our groceries in I started to hear home calling and couldn’t wait to finish the last 45 minutes and get my wet gear off and have a nice relaxing bath.  It was an easy right straight up the Parkway, on to the GDE and then finished up with the Barton Highway through to Murrumbateman.

For the last part of the journey I started to think about the reaction of the creatures when we came around the corner of the street.  Millicent and Stanley will usually be sitting at the corner waiting for visual confirmation that it’s us and not some other random bike rider coming up the street, then Stanley will go grab his ball so he’s ready to play the absolute second you open the gate.

Today was funny, it was like Millicent couldn’t believe it was really us – she literally did a double-take as we came around the corner then made the mad dash for the gate to ensure she was the first to get pats whilst Stanley grabbed his ball.  As I came up the drive Gordon appeared from behind the curtains giving me that look… you know the one that says…

Where the hell have you been? I can’t believe you left me here for nearly two weeks!!!Gordon

The only one not peering out at us was Dippy … she would be waiting inside on the tower of power screaming the house down in the loving way she does.  By the time the night was over she will have gone outside and come back in at least four times.  She doesn’t like being kept inside, but in her own special aloof way she was happy to see us.

Aaaah it was good to be home!  Even better was that we didn’t really have that much packing to sort out.  One load of washing, and a small amount of unpacking and we would be done … tomorrow! Thanks for joining me on our journey, I’ll post some stats in a day or two that should be good for some fun.

Until next time 🙂

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Day 13 : Bairnsdale to Murrumbateman

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Cann River, VIC: -37.565215, 149.151371
NSW / VIC Border: -37.230875, 149.275188
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Cann River, VIC

Cann River, VIC

Cann River, Victoria, Australia
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NSW / VIC Border

NSW/VIC Border : ABC of Touring

South East Forest National Park
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