Sunday, October 30, 2016

Brompton goes to Gippsland

Yesterday Brompton and I went out for a 70 km ride on the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail from Stratford to Traralgon. The trail was passing through farm lands all the way. The speed was limited to some extent due to unpaved road condition but the tail wind helped me and Brompton to complete the long ride on a mild day in spring. 

Route: Stratford Station to Traralgon Station
Distance: 68.8km
Average % of slope: total 0.1% ascent 1.8% descent 1.8%
Acquired elevation: ascent 160m descent 85m

Arriving at Stratford Station by V-line train, Brompton and I immediately started for the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail.

The rail trail started.

Because I was a bit concerned with time to reach Traralgon Station, I tried not to stop for the first 1 and half hours for 31.5 km. 

The trail continued straight ahead. I took a first break to relieve my thirst when I reached old Dawson Station.

There were some traces of the old rail tracks left on the way.

The rail trail was suddenly interrupted between after Dawson and before Cowwarr, diverted to the vehicle road for 5.5 km. It is only a section not to follow old rail tracks due to no rail trail bridge over the Thomson River.

The trail restarted from here.

Arriving at old Cowwar Station where was 40 km from Stratford Station.

Yellow flowers (probably rapeseed) bloomed all over the place.

Reaching old Glengarry Station. There was IGA in the town and I purchased bottles of water. 

Please note that there were no facilities of drinkable water and no vendors/restaurants on the trail after Heyfield and before Glengarry. This trail is, in terms of facilities, not well organized at all like the Lilydale Warburton Rail Trail. A rider cannot get food or drink without a certain diversion from the way. I recommend to bring enough water (and some food) for the ride during summer season. I brought 2 bottles of water but not enough for this hot day.

Passing the Eaglehawk Creek.

Finally we arrived at Traralgon Station where the VLocity train was waiting.

It was a wonderful long ride to train myself and to know Gippsland.

Other rail trail stories:

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Trail to Port Fairy

Last weekend I went for a Brompton ride on the Port Fairy Rail Trail, starting from Warrnambool toward Port Fairy, a truly fairy town in the West Victoria, Australia.

[Ride Data]
Distance: 36.6km
Max. difference of elevation: 71m
Average % of slope: total 0% ascent 2.1% descent 1.9%
Acquired elevation: ascent 134m descent 113m

Sunday at 9 am Brompton and I were in Southern Cross Station, Melbourne, to become a part of the V-line passengers traveling to Warrnambool.

After 3 hours I arrived in Warrnambool. The station was a lovely, brick-built building.

I planned today's 40 km trail ride to Port Fairy one way only. I supposed to return to Warrnambool Station by V-line coach, leveraging the advantage of Brompton's portability. 

I started and went across the town. The building in the back is old Warrnambool Court House.

The trail continues about 37 km from Warrnambool to Port Fairy. Most part of the trail is unpaved and passes through extensive farm land.

Brompton and I ran for an hour and quarter, arriving at old Koroit Station. It was about the middle of the rail trail.

After a short break, I restarted a ride. Still long way ahead to go.

A head wind blew from the south. It was getting more and more windy. The ride could not help but being slowed down.  As I was thirsty and tired then, I took second break on the wooden bridge near old Moyne Station. I had an orange here to be recharged.

After an half hour ride from Moyne Station, I reached the high way crossing. Only 1.6 km was left to Port Fairy.

Finally I arrived in the fancy town. Port Fairy was quiet, historic town by the sea. The old buildings on the center street were well preserved.

The port looked like a pretty harbour for marine leisure.

Sea wind comfortably blew to cool me down. I took the rest by the sea until the V-line coach departed to Warrnambool.

Other Rail Trail Rides:
Spring has come to Australia
Brompton goes to the Great Victorian Rail Trail (the Goulburn Valley rail trail)
Brompton goes to Lilydale Warburton Rail Trail