Bike Odyssey
Around Australia 2003

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Journal for 10-Nov-2003 : Mannum

Woke and left reasonably early for us, but we were barely out of the tent by the time Bill and Julie were out the gate.

Kangaroos hopped away from the road as we made the first of the dozen or so up-and-over climbs. Nice riding through patchwork purple fields and micro towns as we approached the Barossa Valley. The Barossa used to be a quiet backwater where German migrants made some hideous red alcoholic grape juice or something. Things in Australia have changed, and now every man and his (yappy nippy) dog wants to live in these once peaceful hills.

The traffic riding out of the Adelaide hills was unbelievably manic. This is the worst and most dangerous driving we've seen since Hervey Bay. The roads are narrow with little or no visibility, but the locals hoon fly around them like they driving slot cars. We had numerous near misses today. To give you some idea at one point a car overtook us just in front of two oncoming oversized dirt trucks. The guy behind naturally thought he could just follow the leader around. He cleared us easily, but was within 2m of being crunched by 50 tonne truck. The complete indifference these people have to their own, let alone our safety, which makes it easy to see why there are so many crosses and black poles marking all the fatalities.

Happy to be by the Murray River at Mannum.

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