Well in October 2007, I completed my first bike tour. Does a two day mountain bike ride with panniers count as a tour? Well anyway five of us from the Perth Bushwalkers Club completed the Waterous Trail which is a loop trail running off the Munda Biddi Trail.
We camped overnight at the bush camp at Lake Navarino Forest Resort (they clearly have a different concept of resort to me) on the Friday night (cost $8.00 per person) before heading off in an anti-clock wise direction along the Waterous Trail to the Bidjar Ngoulin campsite on the Munda Biddi Trail.
The first day’s ride was approximately 39 km of a mix of single-track and forestry roads with one significant climb out of Samson Brook (had to do some walking on this one). All up a pleasant day’s riding except for missing the turn-off to the campsite. It is currently not marked [now fixed – April 2008]! We averaged 6 km/h overall today.
After a great night at Bidjar Ngoulin (this would be one of the best campsites I have come across in WA) where we celebrated Doug’s birthday, we headed off on Sunday morning to complete the Trail. We didn’t get far before Doug broke a rear dÃ©railleur cable. Thankfully he was carrying a spare, so with a bit of bush mechanics we got him going again. We made Nanga for a spot of morning tea, only to have Perry get a puncture. Another track side repair and we where off again to tackle the climb out of Nanga. Nearly made the top, but the pea-gravel and a long climb beat me with about 300 metres to go. Just had to dismount and walk or fall off!
After the hill it was easy going through to Haul Road where we stopped for lunch and of course things have to happen in threes and yep it was my turn. Blew out the valve on my old tube. So lunch was extended whilst I did a quick tube change.
From there on, once we left the bitumen it was pleasant riding to finish off the trail.
Our second day of riding was about 35 km and we averaged about 6 km/h over the day on a mix of forestry tracks, single-track and bitumen roads.
All up a nice introduction to mountain bike touring with panniers.
A few photos from the tour can be found in my Picasa album.