Goon bags and glamping

Another day setting off from Walpole towards a cyclist only hut 55km further east along the Munda Biddi
trail. We had slept the night by the inlet in the shelter of a gas BBQ picnic spot, happily dry packing up as the rain set in. The Munda Biddi is a mountain bike track crisscrossing through beautiful karri forests of giants, and scrubby sandy plains and mysterious grass trees …..on a fully loaded touring bike this is slow hard work. The rain became heavier in sync with the heaviness in our legs. When not slipping the track sucks at our tyres depleting us of energy. Downhill the rear tyres fish tailed and slid….on steep inclines the tyres slipped in pea gravel and sand. Maybe pea gravel is a mountain bikers delight… makes me quiver. There was a lot of determination, pushing….and yet incredible reward for every movement forward. South Western Australia is a cycle tourists’ dream….beautiful beyond imaginings.
After 10 km we decided to change course and head for the highway. We have to make Albany in time for Nick who has joined us for a stint, to catch a bus back to Perth and his return flight to the UK. So we will take the highway and head for a much recommended camp site on the rugged coast. We are drenched but increase our speed dramatically. It’s warm enough and our spirits are high as we leave a trail of spray lost into oblivion by overtaking vehicles.
Nick suggests we ask a campground if we can use their kitchen for shelter. Li and I are not that keen as it’s early and we want to make a few more kilometres towards our next home for the night. We reluctantly agree to our friend’s request….and quickly become soft. A wee bit of luxury quickly consumes. We meet Gareth the caretaker and share our meals. He whips out some wine and we are easily persuaded to join him. But we decline his wine in preference to depleting our own supply and to shed some weight….maybe 6 litres of wine is what slowed us down on the Munda Biddi? Yes we still carry the equivalent in water. Our route avoids towns for many days at a time and we like the luxury of a tipple at the end of a day. Aussie prices have proved expensive so we have found a taste for cheap sweet red in a “goon bag”….my sister says I have morphed into a bogan…..4 plus litres of cheap wine in a box and plastic bladder….we are fond of our goon bags. Less glass, more liquid. Anyway I am blissfully happy to go slow and merry amidst mother nature’s finest.
So we drink wine, share bread and are offered Gareth’s luxurious carpeted tent…..what the heck….let’s stay…..the rain will hide our pristine coast until another day and time is less precious having gained 2 days via the highway.
Merino sheep stare, we stare…. Sip wine, use a washing machine, shower and put on blissful clean clothes warmed in the dryer.
No need to pitch the tent we enjoy glamping with electric lights under thick watertight canvas and with carpet under our warmed feet.

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