Day 24: Plateau to Sea Level

Today’s Distance: 87km Total Distance: 734km


Today was our longest day of cycling dropping from the plateau down to sea level.  We woke to a cold foggy morning in Bombala.  We learned later that nearby Cooma got down to -7C overnight.  It wasn’t frosty in Bombala probably because of the fog but that made it very cold with no sunlight.  We have all the gear for cold weather cycling which made it OK.  Will looked like a Ground Effect fanboy wearing his Daddy Longlegs, Juggernauts shorts and Storm Trooper jacket.

We left Bombala at 8am and made our way through the mist to the old town of Cathcart.  Not long after Cathcart the sun game out and the fog dissolved.  The scenery was spectacular and reminiscent of the Lewis Pass in NZ.  We made good time getting from Bombala to the top of the pass which separates the plateau from the descent.  This also marked the shire boundary as we entered the Bega Valley Shire.

From the top which was 920m above sea level, we dropped rapidly down the Mount Darragh Road.  It wasn’t as cold as we expected and after 20km of coasting we got to the pretty little town of Wyndham at 300m.  It was hot and we felt overdressed so stripped off down to shorts and a t-shirt.  We had lunch in the domain and chatted to a very friendly council roadside mower who was also having lunch.  He was a mine of information and was also interested in our trip.  We asked all the questions that had built up, things like “what is the bird that makes that sound” etc.  He told us about the route ahead.

After lunch we dropped down to Pambula at sea level.  As we approached the coast we could smell the sea and the air felt thicker and warm.  Just before Pambula we met a friendly cyclist who is a retired Physio.  He is planning a cycle touring trip and we chatted for 20 minutes on the roadside about cycle touring gear and local area.

From Pambula we cycled the remaining 6km on a flat cycle path.  4km short of our destination it started to rain.  It poured down.  We arrived at the friendly Merimbula Big4 Holiday Park at 3pm and checked into a cabin for 2 nights as the weather tomorrow is meant to be bad.  We can hear the surf pounding above the sound of the heavy rain on the roof of our cabin.

If we’d biked faster today, or not chatted so much, we would have arrived dry.  But we wouldn’t change the day for the world.  The scenery changed from high country tussock and grasslands to coastal beach.  It was a great day of cycling and meeting people.

Highlight of the day:  The interesting friendly people we met.

The clearing mist on the plateau

The clearing mist on the plateau

Approaching the top

Approaching the top

This entry was posted in Cycling.