water - where do you get it

This is one of the biggest questions that might discourage a potential long distance cyclist. With the distances between supply points it is something worth considering.

Towns are easy.

There’s taps in parks, often, or near public toilets. There’ll be one somewhere. You just fill up. And in Australia the official town supply water is treated: ie, healthy.

Roadhouses: cars need cleanish water. A word of advice. Don’t ask. There’s always the possibility of someone saying no.

In some places, the Northern Territory is great here, there are large water tanks at some rest areas.

Bores out in the middle of nowhere? Sometimes a little salt is added. The bores can be shown on some maps but then again, sometimes they are not operational. There are sometimes signs, or at least clues there’s water nearby. The question is, how far down that side track? In cattle country there are sporadic cattle watering troughs at yards just off the road with nearby bores and a tap somewhere nearby.

Rivers? Flowing water is good.

Waterholes? Sometimes there’s no choice. If the little native fish are still swimming the water can’t be that bad.

Puddles? Only for the desperate.

If you are dying from dehydration there’s always flagging down a caravan.

Frankly I’d rather expire first.

Basically, it’s rare to find it’s more than 3 days ride between water points. When you know that you stock up accordingly and don’t waste a drop.

If you can’t carry 25 litres out there, choose another route.