Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Bird Bonanza

Day 112
Melbourne to Ararat by train; Ararat to Halls Gap by bicycle
Time: 3:31:00
Distance: 55 km
Avg Speed: 15.6 kph
Terrain: Flat
Location: 37˚ 7’ 48.4” S, 142˚ 31’ 26.9” E

We took part in the morning commute as we rode across Melbourne to catch a train out of the city. We’ve come to know our way around in the few days that we have stayed in the city. No one paid any particular attention to us – it was great.
Our tickets were booked to Ballarat but we found out that the train went all the way to Ararat from Melbourne. We did an add-on to our ticket and relaxed for another hour. Our goal is to spend some time around Grampians National Park so we don’t mind skipping a few kilometers on the busy highways. Upon arrival at our destination, we hit the information center and a nice lady gave us the lowdown on cycling through the Grampians. A cyclist herself, she was very helpful and kind enough to share her favorite routes around the area.
Soon after we rolled out of Ararat Chris declared “we are officially in Australia”. Apparently, the last six days didn’t count. I think he was referring to our first day touring in Oz. It was a really nice feeling to be on the bikes again. The landscape is totally different than New Zealand and I rode in awe most of the afternoon.
In addition to new scenery, there are new birds to look at. Giant white ones, medium sized pink ones and small green ones. The big white birds are some sort of parrot and like to hang out in the trees along the road. Several times during our ride, large groups of the birds would suddenly take flight in front of us, squawking loudly. It was quite exciting and you can bet we will be on the lookout for some info about the birdlife here.
We’re back in the tent tonight. It’s been about two weeks and I can’t say that we were really excited to get back to it. However, we won’t have that much longer to camp and we joked that we’ll be wishing for the tent after months of guesthouses in SE Asia. Only time will tell.
See ya,

1 comment:

Class Act said...

Try this web site for birds of Australia...I think your white parrot is "Little Corella"
Sounds like you are off on Set 2 of high adventure...keep hav'n fun