Started the day by attempting to wash yesterday's mud/dust off the bike and trailer. What a mess, dirt, dust, mud or what ever in every nook and cranny. Has definitely taken the new shine off and will take a lot of cleaning to remove all the muck when I get home . Bloody cold as well and I am going to pay for this in a couple of days. After the clean-up it was off to the wharf for a paddle steamer ride on the Murray. What great smells and sounds those things make, not to mention the steam whistles bringing back memories of the old steam trains. After the ride, an exploration of the historic wharf and precinct took us until lunch time. Lunch was at the Beechworth Bakery in Echuca. Interesting story behind this place which is now one of 6 the guy owns. I’ve seen this guy in training videos and fair dinkum, he’s more excitable than Steve Erwin was. Great food and good coffee with fantastic services and a rear deck overlooking the Campaspe River. No wonder the business keeps expanding.
After lunch it was on to Bendigo. Quick stop at a servo to top up with fuel and Therese spotted a Bunnings store. Why you might ask? Well, one of the things I had thought about bringing with us was a small fan heater to warm the tent on cold nights. That idea was another victim of running out of time. A quick trip to Bunnings soon fixed that. Cold nights should be no more. Then it was on to Castlemaine, Daylesford and Ballarat where we intended to stay but for a number of reasons we decided to keep on going. We will be back to Ballarat at the end of the week to look over Sovereign Hill. I just thought this would be a different way to get to Geelong rather than sticking to the main highway. Coming into Geelong there was a section of road where the property has a convict built stone fence that runs for kilometres. Very impressive. The ride down through this area was great, just spoilt by the fact that it was raining and the air temperature was showing 10 – 12 degrees.
We took a quick stop at the Creswick Woollen Mill where Therese found a nice Cashmere jacket and they threw in a pair of Alpaca wool socks. The most disappointing part of the trip was that we were pushing time, it was raining and we had to keep driving past wineries where they would have been a good chance of some nice port. Still, there’s a long way to go yet.
Our intended destination was Torquay but the time in Echuca caught us out again so Geelong became the stop. Too late to find a caravan park and set up the tent, so it’s a motel again tonight. Tomorrow we head for the start of the Great Ocean Road.