2023 Indi-Pac Day 13 Report

Thursday March 29, 2023: Out onto the main drag of Laura just before 7am. The Coco Laura Cafe had literally just opened its doors so I popped in for coffee, Coke and pastries. It would have been rude not to. Unfortunately the pies were still in the oven. I chatted with the owners for a while, a husband and wife who had moved to Laura from Adelaide a few years ago in search of a quieter life. They certainly had found quiet but apparently they barely had enough time to enjoy it given the hours involved in running a cafe…………(a little naive I thought). Anyway, they were looking forward to a big couple of days of business this coming weekend over the two day Laura Fair.

Laura Fair hey………ah ha, that would explain why they Pub was fully booked and I had to slum it at the caravan park.

(a turn of speech – the cabins at the Caravan Park were top notch).

Back into it on the Horrocks Highway.

1st item on the agenda – take a few photos of yet another sublime sunrise.

2nd item on the agenda – tape up another broken spoke from the rear wheel………..Bugger!!

3rd item on the agenda – hunt down some wine country…….

Thursday March 29, 2023: Ahhhhhh pretty!

Thursday March 29, 2023: Even prettier with a windmill.

…….but first a good 80k’s of sheep and grain cropping country.

4th item on the agenda – find a bathroom in Yacka (Pop. 147) tout freakin’ suite………..…ah ha, a bowling club. There’s always a dunny ’round the back of a bowlo.

T’was a couple of deposits made around the back of the Yacka Bowling club, one of which being the unceremonious dumping in the trash of the 20000 mAh BioLite Charge 80 PD Power Bank that was no longer holding any charge. Not a cheap piece of kit either but I assumed the widely variable current coming from the Dyno Hub + Sinewave Beacon light system combo had fried it somehow.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Heading South on the Horrocks Highway between Laura and Yacka.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Heading South on the Horrocks Highway between Laura and Yacka. Take 2.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Heading South on the Horrocks Highway between Laura and Yacka. Take 3.

Thursday March 29, 2023: the main street of Yacka.

Thursday March 29, 2023: …..around the back of the Yacka Bowling Club.

Wine Country

Minus the superfluous ballast I made pretty easy work of the rolling farmland to Clare (Pop. 3,379). The highlight was a substantial patch of phone coverage which facilitated a nice phone call with my Mum where the air was cleared and I apologised for some language unbefitting of a first born son within earshot of his mother. My excuse is a decent one in that the tirade occurred in the context of the frenetic section of road into Port Augusta………although is there really ever an excuse to swear in front of your Mum? (a mum mind you that has very sensitive ears ūüėČ)

Actually there was another highlight – the first glimpse of vineyards, just past the Clare Valley sign.

Giddyup!

Thursday March 29, 2023: As it says on the sign….

Thursday March 29, 2023: Giddyup!

Thursday March 29, 2023: Giddyup! Take 2.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Rolling into the town of Clare.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Wine Country.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Wine Country. Take 2.

Bakery Country

The Best bakeries in Australia are in this part of South Australia, ie the Clare and Barossa Valley’s.

Said!!

I can say that now given my recent journey across Western Australia and in addition to decades worth of research conducted in all Australian States and Territories, with the the exception of Tasmania………sorry Tassie.

I am not talking about individual items here, I am talking about the over all quality and variety of items on offer in this regions’ bakeries. Both the sweet and savoury tooth is well and truly taken care of:

Sweet – apple turn over with cream, lemon tart, lamington, strudel, custard tart, cheesecake, chocolate eclair, apricot danish etc, etc, etc,

Savoury – all sorts of pie combinations, sausage rolls and the absolute pi√®ce de r√©sistance…….drum roll please………the humble Pastie………mmmmmmm! The combination of Cornish and German cultures endemic to this neck of the woods has somehow produced the perfect food item.

Well may I have called myself “The Prodigal Pie-Muncher” but only for ease of explanation purposes, although I absolutely adore a pie or 7………”The Prodigal Pastie-Muncher” is a little too niche…..

…..which I explained to dot watcher’s par excellence Jeff Mutsaers and his wife in down town Clare post sampling some delicacies at the award winning Main Street Bakehouse.

Thursday March 29, 2023: You can’t go wrong at the Main Street Bake-house, Clare.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Mmmmmmm

Thursday March 29, 2023: Mmmmmm

Thursday March 29, 2023: Yep, I actually did utilise the cutlery…..I’m not an animal.

Thursday March 29, 2023: I trusted Jeff with ‘my truth’ only to have him spin it out the backline to Facebook.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Sorry to make you wait guys. There was Pastie Munchin’ to be had.

It was tough to extricate myself from the class, gastronomy and hospitality of Clare but I had places to be, Kodak moments to capture….

Thursday March 29, 2023: Wine Country. Take 3.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Cruising….

Thursday March 29, 2023: Next time Riesling Trail, next time.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Tractor Racin’.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Tractor Racin’ Take 2.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Tractor Racin’ Take 3.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Wine Country. Take 4.

Gum Tree Lined Roads Country

Yep, I’m getting carried away…..

Thursday March 29, 2023: Gum Tree Lined Roads Country.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Gum Tree Lined Roads Country. Take 2.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Gum Tree Lined Roads Country. Take 3. Approaching the town of Riverton (Pop. 800)

Lovely Heritage Stone Buildings Country

Now I’m not usually a big architecture appreciator but there is something about the old stone buildings in this part of the world that really, really appeals….

Thursday March 29, 2023: Rolling down the main street of Riverton.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Rolling down the main street of Riverton. Take 2.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Plugging away between Riverton and Tarlee. Trialing a new camera angle.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Rolling into the outskirts of Tarlee (Pop. 316).

Thursday March 29, 2023: Rolling into the old mining town of Kapunda. (Pop. 2,719)

Thursday March 29, 2023: Lovely old building in Kapunda.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Lovely old Pub in Kapunda.

The Barossa Valley

Finally just after 3:30pm I entered the Barossa Valley for the first time in 41 years. The “Promised Land” of my youth, which just so happens to be the premier wine growing region of Australia. I had over 160k’s in the legs and was feeling a tad tired but it was amazing to be here at last. I had thought about this moment many times over the last 4 decades and could never have imagined, up until relatively recently of course, that I would return as part of a cross country bike ride.

Thursday March 29, 2023: The sign could do with some updating but it is bloody good to be here.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Wine Country. Take 5.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Wine Country. Take 6.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Lovely old building in Greenock. Check out that lattice work.

A Pedal Down Memory Lane

T’was over a 2 hour divert off route to check out some old haunts. It took a little longer than planned as I was relying on Google Maps to get about and of course there was no phone coverage. Thank goodness for some friendly locals. Anyway, the pedal-by locations as per:

  • Our old house in Nuriootpa where I lived from age 3 to 5 and more importantly where I learned to ride a bike. Unbelievably there were 2 young girls riding their bikes up and down the driveway……the tradition continues. Indi-Pac 2043 perhaps?
  • My old school, Nuriootpa Primary.
  • The sports oval out the back of Nuriootpa Primary where I first learned to Kick n’ Giggle in the winter and play a text book cover drive in the summer.
  • Our old house near Angaston where I lived from age 5 to 9 and where some seriously hardcore gravel skills were perfected on my ruby red Malvern Star Dragster.

Nowhere near long enough…………..I’ll be back!

Thursday March 29, 2023: “Nuri” as the locals call it.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Childhood home from age 3 to 5.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Not much has changed in 44 years…

Thursday March 29, 2023: My old school, Nuriootpa Primary.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Nuriootpa Primary sporting grounds.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Angaston Road between Nuriootpa and Angaston.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Childhood home from age 5 to 9.

Thursday March 29, 2023: Getting at it on the Malvern Star Dragster.

Back into it by around 7pm, pub dinner, a couple of Coppers and a room at the Lyndoch Hotel an hour later.

Another cracker of a day!

Thursday March 29, 2023: Halfway Baby!!

Thursday March 29, 2023: Wine Country Take 7.

Thursday March 29, 2023: My digs for the night.

The Day According to Strava:

 

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1 Comment
  • Bill Dawson
    Posted at 19:30h, 06 March Reply

    Thanks very much for posting these reports. I followed the race and have been hoping for the story sometime. Those long narrow roads with the massive trucks in Western Austrailia look nasty. Congratulations on a great ride.

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