Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Forbes, Eugowra, Cudal, Orange, Lithgow, Sydney

It would have been better to have skipped Bogan Gate, but least Forbes was downhill. It was drizzling still, so I kept going. Eugowra, then back onto dirt to get to Cudal. Found another road that the GPS offers as a route, but isn't there. It was a pleasant 15km hill climbing detour to sort that out.

Stayed in Orange the one night, then set off to Bathurst early the next morning. Arrived in Bathurst early - sat around reading, eating, sleeping. It had gotten very windy so I wasn't keen on moving, but then at 3pm, the wind dropped a bit, and changed direction. Now it was a tail wind. Hah. Can't sit still for that.

Finished the day with 120km on my legs.  Wasn't an enjoyable road. Lots of traffic, minimal or no shoulder in places. The drivers that pass without much clearance.

I could have gone into Lithgow, but stopped at Lake Wallace, Wallerawang to check it out.

Big mistake.

I arrived late - just on dark, so rushed to set-up camp. There was a bit of a crowd - back packers, campervans, etc. Not a place I like to stay, but it was late. Wanted to check it out for friends that had asked about staying there. Only one night.

Terrible. Terrible. Not sure which group it was, but they drank, yelled, argued till the early hours of the morning. Young sounding, I suspected the backpackers, but it could have been locals partying. The grounds are close to Lithgow and housing areas.

Lithgow Tourist Information had told me in the past that camping is allowed there. What they didn't say is that the toilets are locked overnight.  I've dealt with this in the past - bottles and bags, carry it out. Not a problem.  Others dealt with it by using the ground.  In the morning there was used toilet paper blowing about, and fresh faeces scattered about. Icky! Icky! Seeing the gardens in the light - this was not a once off affair. The gardeners there must be saving on fertilizer costs. Feeling dirty angry, and disgusted, I packed and left.

I stopped to complain at the Tourist Information Centre. They said that it had nothing to do with them, wasn't their problem, and nothing they could do.  They still direct people to stay there.

Sunday. Trains.  Track work :(

I could change trains five times, and take almost six hours to get to my destination.  Wasn't going to do it. Change at stations without ramps or lifts - lots of carrying bike up and down stairs. Sunday, there would be no staff about. Finding the right platform and train to catch would be an added challenge. I decided to wait till Monday - two trains, three and a half hours.

Caught the 4:16 train out of Lithgow. Not many people on it at that time. But it filled to standing room only as it progressed down the mountain.

So now back in Sydney for a visit before heading north. Will be a here on and off for a few weeks. Friends with holidays wanting to go cycling and camping. So I'll be out of town a bit.