From: Somewhere in the bush
To: Somewhere on a beach
Total Distance Travelled: 1452km
Distance to Go: 1037km
Not really much to report about today’s paddle. It was long and slow. I honestly don’t remember much of it because I was in the zone of listening to an audiobook.
The river is definitely wider and the bends have got longer.
I got to my planned campsite at around 3pm. It is a huge beach and there was a nice pile of firewood already stacked up and ready to burn. Perfect.
The next 4 days down to Mildura are all between 31km and 37km. This means I will be able to take my time and start enjoying the paddle a bit more. Not that I am not enjoying it, but the last 2 days have felt a bit like a commute rather than an enjoyable paddle.
From: Somewhere on a beach
To: Somewhere on a beach
Total Distance Travelled: 1484km
Distance to Go: 994km
This morning I had had a bit of an oops occur. It looked like I was going to be treated to a nice sunrise, so I got the drone out and sent it up to get some video and photos. As I was flying it back to the beach, I came a bit low over the trees and next thing I knew it had hit a tree and it was stuck in it. Based on the image on the screen and the GPS location of the drone, I was able to locate it but it was (is) stuck on a branch at the top of a big river red gum. There was no way I was going to be able to retrieve it today, so when I get to Mildura I am going to get some fishing line and some rope and drive back (because the car is in Mildura) and see if I can get it down. I don’t like my chances, but I can give it a go. With any luck it may fall down with the wind before then, which will damage it pretty badly but it may be fixable. It is insured, so I am covered, and also I have my back up drone (yes I have 2 for this very reason) in the car in Mildura.
By the time I had flaffed around finding the drone, I did not get onto the water until 9.45am. This was the latest start I have had all trip. I only had 32km to paddle so I was not too worried leaving late.
In fact, all the flaffing around and leaving late made me realise something today. For the last few weeks (actually most of the trip) I have always been keen to get on the water early and paddle as far as I can, then get to camp, have dinner and go to bed. It became a routine based around getting down the river. Today I cruised down the river, got to camp early in the afternoon and enjoyed drinking tea and reading my book by the river. Today was the first day where I really enjoyed just being on the river and not trying to get somewhere.
The campsite I found was another nice beach. There is a couple of families in caravans at the far end of the beach. They are far enough away that they are not bothering me. Although they are currently watching a very loud movie (sounds like Jurassic Park) but the kids seem pretty young, so I assume they will go to bed soon.
Tomorrow is going to be another shortish day (about 32km). I do paddle near Nangiloc, which has a general store, so to break up the paddle I might go for a walk (about 1km each way) to the store and get some lunch.
These photos are amazing? Are you using a combination of your mobile phone and drone?
Also had a general question about your communications – I assume you are mostly relying on the cellular network? do you ever get WIFI in the caravan parks?- may be a silly question. Also given your remoteness between towns do you have a backup plan as to communications if you were to get injured?
Keep the adventure coming – living vicariously through you 🙂
90% of the time I have been able to rely on the phone and 4G. My Garmin inReach GPS allows family to see my location every 10 minutes and it also provides a basic messaging service (via satallite) so I can let Kath know I am ok if I have no service. It is a bit like txting using a 1990s Nokia phone (i.e. a lot of scrolling through letters). It also has an SOS button, so if I am in trouble, I can hit the button and the emergency services will be contacted. Some caravan parks have WiFi but it is normally useless, so I just use my phone as a hotspot.
I’m just catching up. I’ve been preparing for a 6 night trip up to the north coast and highlands of Scotland, affectionally known as the NC500 or North Coast 500. We’re soft and staying in hotels and not wild camping. Next time! https://www.northcoast500.com/
Day 42 – might have been a blah day on the river, but you snapped off some lovely frames. Stunning as usual.
Day 43 – congrats on hitting the <1000 clicks to travel milestone. The silver lining of the drone mishap, was that you got to enjoy a different perspective on the river. Nice insight. Take that.