Nearly a year since I left it behind, returning for a job with Edelweiss Bike Travel, I’m back in Australia. I’ll be guiding the “Australian Adventure Tour” that goes from Sydney to Melbourne and on to Tasmania; part of which I’ve done twice during my time in Australia.
I’d been to Tasmania before, nut not during my recent time in Australia. As that last visit was about 20 years ago, I was offered to go on a little scouting tour of Tasmania before I actually go there with customers.
These scouting trips are a little different from the tours themselves. You’re on your own and there’s no bookings or plan; you just try to cover as much of the coming tour in a few days. I also wasn’t on a motorcycle, but rented a car at the airport for my 3 and a half days on the island.
As we spend 5 days on the island on the actual tour, I combined multiple days together, driving as much as 550km in a day, on small roads. While a driving car is not as fun as riding a motorcycle, the hours of rain around the towns of Strahan and Queenstown (the wettest area of Tasmania) made me happy to be sheltered from the rain.
Since I choose my own accomodation, I stay in hostels and cheaper places. Obviously my favorite was the hostel in the old hospital and mental asylum in New Norfolk, that featured a collection of rusty cars outside!
Sometimes I stop to check out potential attractions, so I had a quick look at these Tasmanian Devils being fed somewhere along our route, and ended up at a dusty airfield asking about the scenic flights around Wineglass bay.
In general it was actually a bit of work with a lot of driving; half of the trip I was still dealing with some jetlag, so I never really felt like I was relaxed or had time to look at all the sights.
But that wasn’t the point of this trip anyway. I covered almost all of the routes we’ll be doing, identified difficult areas, check out parking situation and attraction opening times, which means everything should be much easier during the tour that starts in 2 days. I’m looking forward to it!
Welcome back to Australia.
Surely you will be doing Brown Mountain on your Sydney-Melbourne leg? It is a legendary motorcycle “must do”.