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Heading West | the first bike touring ebook

Heading West is the product of a 464 day east to west crossing of the Australian continent on a bicycle, avoiding highways where possible.

Download Heading West | an almost epic bike journey across Australia from the Amazon Kindle Store. Or click on the image.

Length: 60,000 words — equivalent to a 240 page paperback

File size: 1455 KB

File format: .mobi — read in the Kindle app

Cost: $5.99

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Here’s a short extract:

Day 464 | finally rolling into Perth 464 days later: you mean Perth, Western Australia?

No brekkie this morning because I gobbled the dregs of the muesli for my dinner last night to avoid cooking. I am camping too close to house lights, slamming car doors, shouting mothers and barking dogs. The city beckons.

The cold 300m drop down to the Perth suburbs along the Heritage Rail Trail gave a good airing to my fingerless-gloved fingers. The Rail Trail abruptly ended in an industrial wasteland. Now where?

Well, where now indeed?

I rummaged through my load of excess baggage and found Antonio’s crumpled map of Greater Perth with sufficient detail to at least head in the general direction of the centre. Ever the planner I stopped and booked a bed for tonight, well, actually a week, to let the body and the mind adjust. I effected a slow migration, what’s the hurry now, it ain’t so far on this last day. Just a downhill pedal with a slight tailwind on a perfect cloudless late autumn day.

Man, someone hit this town with a big dose of the ugly brush. Smashed up concrete, chain link fences with ripped out holes, random piles of broken glass in a variety of colours, occasional stacks of redundant crumbling asbestos fencing. It hasn’t quite sunk in that I’m not going to be heading over the roller coaster, through rivers of pea gravel, through big tree forests, sleeping in a damp and cold sleeping bag, whacking up the damp tent, at least for a while.

My accommodation is a little grotty but cheap enough, breakfast of a sort thrown in, a place to stash the bike securely, plenty of power points, yahoo, enough space even to stack my gear and I can shuffle into Hay Street in about 20 minutes, on foot.

After a lengthy hot shower, where I find much my suntan has evaporated, I head into the Big City just to let my brain register what my eyes are taking in.

I become just one more anonymous dot among the swirling sea of faces marching briskly towards the train station and suburbs, already Monday over, only four days to the weekend and few with the time to take in that apocalyptic sunset over west.