Day 119: Bush camp to Balladonia - A happy ride around Australia (third attempt) - CycleBlaze

September 23, 2022

Day 119: Bush camp to Balladonia

Start: 7:55am
Distance: 76km
Ride time:  4:14hours
Average:  18km/hr 
Max: 31km/hr
Finish: 1pm

I had a peaceful night's sleep in the bush. There were a few trucks that went past so I put in ear plugs. I was only 50 metres from the road. A bit silly of me but I was very tired when I made camp last night. Next time I will go a lot further away from the road.

I am heading east and the wind was coming from the north east so it was a little taxing.

The weather was a perfect warm, sunny day.

On the side of a cutting I saw a lizard made from rocks.
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It guess it would have taken a couple of hours to make and it was in the middle of nowhere. 

It's hard to tell from the pic that the lizard had different coloured rocks for it's claws and glass bottles for it's eyes.

The rocks weren't local so I'm guessing it was made by a road worker when they were doing some drain erosion maintenance. I was very impressed. 

I saw a few pink pig faces.
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Bill ShaneyfeltMy guess is trailing ice plant. Reasons I think it is not pig face is because it does not have larger triangular cross section leaves. Also, the blossoms in this picture have too small of a flower and the flower has too few petals to be pig face.

When I was a kid in Mojave, CA, we had both in our flower garden.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delosperma_cooperi

https://www.bushlandperth.org.au/weeds/pigface/
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2 months ago
Vince McCarthyThank you for your time with this one Bill. I checked out your links and was still unsure of the correct identification.

Over the next few days, I exchanged a couple of emails with the Parks and Wildlife Service. They identified it as Disphyma crassifolium.
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2 months ago

This pig face hadn't fully opened to face the day's sun yet. A very vibrant colour.

This plant took some time to identify. Bill gave a detailed response and I further contacted the Parks and Wildlife Service. They identified it as Disphyma crassifolium.

While I was taking the photo, Craig rolled up.
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Craig is from New Zealand and is riding from Perth to Ceduna. He has a Surly long haul trucker. This is a classic touring bike and I don't know why they stopped making them. 

I was happy to see Craig was sporting an Aussie flag on the back of his bike.

Craig and I had both camped in the bush last night, only 2kms apart from each other without knowing it until we met today.

I liked Craig straight away. There is a strong connection between Aussies and Kiwis.

We didn't ride together and we leap frogged each other during the day.

The terrain was similar to yesterday with lots of gentle inclines and declines.

This was taken from the top of a hill.
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Today's tree pic.
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Tonight, Scott and Craig are staying in rooms and I'm camping.

Balladonia is a roadhouse/pub/caravan park. The pub is closed for a function. 

There are no water taps in the caravan park and there is a sign at the servo saying they wont give out water, so I filled up with water from the wash basin in the toilets.

There is a small museum. Their claim to fame is that a piece of Skylab crashed here in 1979.
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Skylab was America's first space station. The local shire gave America a fine for littering. You can read an article about it here.

In the late afternoon I met Thomas.
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He is from the Czech Republic and is riding from Perth to Adelaide. He is doing it very lightweight and is doing about 200kms/day!

You can see some of his photos here.

It makes me happy to meet other cyclists on the road.

$30.
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Today's ride: 76 km (47 miles)
Total: 6,813 km (4,231 miles)

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