The Riders

It’s really awesome meeting other adventurous souls, so I thought I’d write a post about a few people I’ve come across lately and also not so lately. All these people seek adventure on a narrow saddle atop two wheels, one of them using a bike to transport her family to and from town.

I met “B” a while ago…maybe six years. He rode past my house one morning and the cool guy I’m married to said, “look, there’s a bike dude with packs and stuff.”. I jumped up and ran over to B, who was now standing in his bike frame checking out the river. “Hi!” I exclaimed. “Come to my house for breakfast. I live just there. I’d love to hear about what you’re doing and where you’re going.” I could tell I’d kind of freaked him out. “it’s ok,” I added, “my husband is at home too and I just made a loaf of bread,” I said, hoping I hadn’t scared him into pedalling off as fast as he could, while also making a physical effort to stop myself from jumping up and down on the spot.

Since then, B and I have stayed in touch and we catch up whenever he’s in the area on a bike tour. He never stops having adventures by way of his bike. He’s a private and very quiet guy and I feel privileged that he let his guard down long enough to allow an over-the-top extrovert into his life. I think the fresh bread won him over.

This is B”s touring bike the last time we met up for coffee in Woodgate in 2021:

When I saw this cool mum, I just had to take a photo of her and she agreed to let me post it to my website. She had her entire gaggle of kids with her and used her bike to transport everyone from place to place. She said she had the bike custom made in Europe. It was quite expensive, but much cheaper than a car and the kids really loved it. Imagine the cool stories the kids will have to tell in the futre about how they got around when they were growing up.

This is in the Bundaberg CBD:

I don’t have a photo of “K”, so I’ll leave it up to your imagination. I met him a few weeks back in Coles in Bundaberg. I noticed him because there was no way not to: he had his touring bike inside the supermarket, using it as a trolley for his groceries as though it was what the rest of us should be doing. Of course I had to ask him what he was up to.

While the rest of the shoppers gave us an extra wide berth, I asked him all about his trip and where he was headed. He gave me a few details and we swapped phone numbers to stay in touch. He’s been texting me with updates and has made his way to Agnes Water, which is where I had planned to ride in February this year, but didn’t get my bikepacking system sorted out in time. “I’ll send you some photos of my spear fishing adventures while I’m in Agnes,” he said in his last text. I wonder if he’s still using his bike as a shopping trolley?

I came across Geoff and Gerard on their touring bikes not too far from my house. I snapped a heap of photos of them on my phone, which has since died and I lost everything stored on it. Luckily we swapped contact details and Geoff has emailed me a few times with updates and photos of he and Gerard doing awesome stuff all over the place.This is a photo they took in a place called Hampden Smelter. Geoff said it looked like Mordor. They were on a trip in the Mt Isa area and flew with their bikes to get to their starting point, which I thought was pretty cool:

Then of course, there’s me and Fatty. I love riding through the sand. It’s hard, but not quite so bad after it’s been raining. I got a new job a while back, so I haven’t had much time for doing too many outdoor adventures, I’ve had to pack my usual 200km (on bike and foot) per week into my one or two days off, which is why I picked the soft sand ride when I could’ve just gone on a more compacted and formed track. Hopefully next weekend I can take off on a longer adventure. This is Fatty on the sand track. This track is around 4.5km long and here Fattyis about a third of the way along. I love the looks I get from people in 4WDs along this track! They look at me like they can’t believe I’m riding where they are struggling to drive:

This is also a great place to ride, which is part of the loop I do when I tackle the soft sand track. This is the cool guy I’m married o on his fat bike, which is nowhere near as awesome as my Fatty:

If you are in Woodgate and want to try riding a fat bike, let me know and I can hook you up.

On my fat bike I am unstoppablE

(Image attribution unavailable, but sourced from Pinterest)