Is COVID19 affecting your cycle touring plans? (page 5) - CycleBlaze

Bicycle Travel Forum

Is COVID19 affecting your cycle touring plans? (page 5)

Catherine HastingsTo Graham Smith

And another thing, speaking of cruise ships... Chris Poutney finally recently finished his multi-year bike tour (with partner Dea) in South America. As is their preference, instead of flying back to Europe, they boarded the Costa Pacifica cruise ship. Oops. It was finally allowed to dock in Rome. Not sure what will happen given their different nationalities and citizenship-based repatriation to home countries. What an insane end to such an epic trip. They are on Twitter at Chris_and_Dea if you used to follow them in other places.

Reply    Link    Flag
3 months ago
Graham SmithTo Catherine Hastings

Catherine that’s exactly right. Within a week, just about everything has changed. It’s a time to reach out to family and friends. Cycle touring is wonderful but not so good to abandon family in this pandemic situation.

Reply    Link    Flag
3 months ago
Graham SmithTo Catherine Hastings

Thanks Catherine I’ll have a look at Chris’s feed.
Two couples I know were also on different cruise ships and were stranded for weeks. One couple had been on an Antarctic cruise then found they wouldn’t be let off in South American ports. The ship was then preparing to head to Europe. Fortunately just in time, the Australian embassy in Brazil was able to arrange a charter from Rio. They are home now in Brisbane and also in self isolation. 
The other couple were less fortunate. They’ve been offloaded in London after several weeks of unsuccessful attempts to get ashore in various countries and onto flights. Our consulate is telling them they won’t be able to arrange flights so they will probably have to bunker down in London somewhere. I assume quarantine hotels are available there. 

Reply    Link    Flag
3 months ago
Jet AgeTo Graham Smith

Hi Graham,

This was 4 weeks ago! How fast time flies. I am actually still working. Did your friends get their flights back? I know The Netherlands hasn't closed their borders, but Australia is a lot stricter on it and you have to self-quarantine for 2 weeks.

Did you make it home from NZ? I hope you got home safe and sound. I know it's one thing to travel and get sick but this is a whole other beast.

I was supposed to work a harvest in NZ now, but couldn't get my visa sorted in time. In a way I was lucky to get a job in The Netherlands. It's been a strange 3,5 months since I started. At least I still have a job, though it is in the travel industry. We are not completely in lock-down, I still get to go to work 1-2 days a week (can't do everything from home) and go for a walk/jog/bike ride. I will be picking up a new ride for the commute on the weekend/early next week. The bike shop seems to be busier than ever!

The plans for the end of May are still tricky. Most campgrounds here are closed or only open for those that are self-contained, a strange concept in a way as so many people have tents. How is Australia affected by now? Your ride from Canberra to Perth postponed in any way? Which route are you planning when you go?

Stay safe and keep riding to stay healthy ;)

Reply    Link    Flag
2 months ago
Graham SmithTo Jet Age

Hi again Jet Age,

Yes my friends eventually made it home, and so did I. I completed two weeks of home based self isolation quarantine, so am now free to shop for essential stuff, go for walks and most importantly go cycling with a few commonsense contraints.

And yes so much has changed so quickly in just a few weeks with family, community and the whole country. We’ve had to quickly make new living arrangements to reduce the risks to elderly parents and stay connected with family without increasing risk of spread.

I’ve postponed the  Canberra to Perth ride until the  COVID19 travel restrictions are lifted. I paused the Against the Wind journal here on CycleBlaze, and began another one using an idea from Susan Carpenter.  Like Susan, I’m treating my own region as a cycle touring destination by doing and journalling day rides from a touring perspective. It’s been a way of actively self isolating, and trying to stay fit enough for the longer tour in a few months and sharing my local area with CycleBlaze readers.

And perhaps slightly eccentrically, I’ve set up a sort of camp cooking area on our back deck with a fire pit, Trangias etc, and I cook all evening meals outdoors. Vicariously cycle touring in comfort. Nor have I switched on TV since I arrived home from NZ. I’ve not gone so far as sleeping in a tent at home. 

When I do the Canberra to Perth ride, I’ll be taking as direct line as possible. Sort of the Audax Associations TransOz route. So Canberra, Wagga, Hay, Mildura, Port Augusta, Nullarbor, The Goldfields and into Perth. 

You too stay safe and healthy in these interesting times. Thanks for the update.

 

Reply    Link    Flag
2 months ago
Robyn RichardsTo Graham Smith

I've read this thread with interest today.

In recent months, we've been enjoying our down-under summer, including a family wedding. It's about now, mid-April that my thoughts usually turn to the European summer - and our cycling plans. Which led me to this forum.

This year, the plan was to bike and train from Zurich through Germany to Denmark, then to cycle around Jutland and over to Copenhagen. Then to head south through the Netherlands and to London.

Our flights are booked from July but realistically we will have to postpone till 2021. New Zealand has a very good chance of stamping out the virus (only 15 new cases yesterday), but to maintain this state, our borders will have to remain closed until a vaccine is available.

However, we're fortunate to have a beautiful 'back yard', so once travel is permitted, I'm thinking we'll load our mountainbikes onto the motorhome and go explore some more of the South Island!

Reply    Link    Flag
2 months ago
Graham SmithTo Robyn Richards

Robyn you sure so have a beautiful backyard. Only four weeks ago I was enjoying 1/2 day rides around Nelson. I was staying with family but took the opportunity to explore the area by bike. 

As an eternal optimist, I left my bike behind in NZ at my in-laws place a few weeks ago when I had to depart in a hurry (with the sound of borders closing behind me) for home in Canberra Australia. “I will return soon” is what I was thinking. 

My hope is our two national governments will devise a commonsense travel arrangement soon to allow at least family movements across the ditch. Now the cruise ship problem appears to have been dealt with in Australia, our infection rates (in Australia) also appear to be waning.

My concern now is not so much about border closures, but future airline viability and what it will cost to fly regionally in the future. The cost of flying may well rise to the equivalent of what it was 40 years ago. Personally I don’t mind foregoing flights for tourism, however being able to visit family across the vast distances of Australia and to NZ may again become a big expense as airlines try to recoup huge losses. 

Reply    Link    Flag
2 months ago
Robyn RichardsTo Graham Smith

Yes, there is a case for a trans-Tasman travel agreement in the medium term. We're keen to visit Tasmania, with mountainbikes. I do hope you can get back to your family, and your bikes, when this madness has passed. We love the Nelson trails!

Reply    Link    Flag
2 months ago