Sunday, April 12, 2009

Aroona Valley to Angorichina to Blinman circuit

It was pretty straight-forward. Ride along a fire track, a dirt road, the Mawson Trail, then back to camp along another fire track. What could possible go wrong?

Aroona Valley to Angorichina (Heysen Trail) to Blinman (road) and return (on Mawson and Heysen Trail)

Well of course, you aren't meant to ride bicycles on the Heysen Trail. As if I don't know that having walked the entire trail. But from what I recalled on this, the final walk on the Heysen Trail, it was all fire track. As it turned out, it wasn't. It was mostly, but the rest was single track walking track, steep hills or creek beds. So our ride was truly some mountain biking, which was slow, but which we both enjoyed.

From the end of the Heysen Trail, as Parachilna Gorge, we rode along the dirt road, first to Angorichina then onto Blinman. Perhaps here, I underestimated how this would be 18km of uphill, and very, very dusty as drivers drove past us. Only a couple slowed sufficiently to not leave us breathing heavily in a cloud of dust.

In Blinman, we caught up with someone who had left a comment on my Mawson Trail blog, whom Judith knew quite well, and whilst talking to them in the main street, I heard my name being called out from the darkness under the Blinman Hotel. An old workmate. This ride was taking longer than we thought, and with these people we had seen, it was 3pm before we left town. Blinman, btw, was only just over half way through the day's ride. Don't get me wrong though, I wouldn't have not stopped and chatted away to our friends, so delightful is it to meet up with people in random places.

Along the Mawson Trail, mainly along a dirt road, we made quick progress, which was good since we could see the time when we could well be riding in the dark (or more likely, walking our bikes in the dark). From where the Mawson Trail crossed the Heysen Trail, we returned back to camp along the Heysen. Opps though. It was a single track route, once again I had selectively remembered it as fire track. There behind me, Jude's words summed it up, "due to information not previously known to me, I know determine the ETA to be ... ". Classic.

Amazing views though. Wonderful sunset. And we made it back to camp after the sun had just set, maybe within 5 minutes we would have been forced to ride our bikes. Back just in time to have our turn at preparing dinner for the rest of our crew. They had spent hours wondering where we had got to, but let's not forget they set that precedent for us the day before.

Download kml file to view in Google Earth or adapt to use as a navigational aid in a GPS unit


Flinders Ranges
Aroona Valley to Angorichina to Blinman circuit
Distance 80.0km
Start Time 8.50am
End Time 6.20pm
Moving Duration 6h32m
Stationary Duration 2h54m
Moving Average 10.7km/h
Overall Average 7.4km/h

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