Test rides in Ivanhoe
It was hot indeed the next day. But we were in holiday mood and decided to test ride the road down towards Balranald which would form part of the trip to the NP. We wanted to do this ride in as similar conditions as possible for the two days ride to the Mungo NP. So the bikes were packed with all our gear and with 11 bottles of water (=16.5 litres) for each one of us. We stayed in town for most of the day and used the cooler afternoon for what we thought would be going one hour into the outback and then back to the pub to report to the helpful people there and adjust our plans to their advise.
Just out of town. There are still trees but no shade.
The cold evening offered better cycling conditions. All trees disappeared by now.
The road is unpaved but due to the lack of rain in good condition.
The first flat tire on Dean's bike.
We soon learned our first surprise lesson. The dry conditions in the outback make it the home for a nasty bush, producing seeds with three long spikes. These seeds were just carried everywhere by the wind and once caught with the tire would easily puncture it.
Dean's 2nd flat tire in one hour.
We arrived back in the Ivanhoe pub that night 3 hours later than expected and found a worried crowd (Mick and the usual 3 patrons) in the pub waiting for us. We did a 25km ride out plus the same 25km back, had two flat tires on Dean's bike due to the nasty outback bush and each of us finished off 5 litres of water in the extremely dry and hot air. Surprised by this we decided not to start the next day but stay and find out about alternative options / routes to have a higher 'survival' chance. After all, our test ride projected onto the 200km to the Mungo NP would require us to have 8 punctures to fix and 20 litres of water to carry for each of us not regarding any extra supply for emergencies...