|Outbound flights||19,353km||March 18|
|Perth to Laverton||952km||March 30|
Laverton to Yulara|
|Yulara to Alice Springs||630km||April 19|
|Return flights||15,976km||May 9|
|Cycling total (approx)||4300km|
Many people wonder what it is like to fly to Australia. It is, in my experience, much easier than to fly from North America to Europe since the flights are long enough for you to catch your quota of daily sleep.
Here is my schedule:
Flight Details - Screen 1 of 4 Date: Mar 16 1999 Tuesday Flight: CANADIAN AIRLINES 911 Leave: MONTREAL, CANADA 0920 Arrive: VANCOUVER, BC, CANAD 1145 Miles: 2279 Aircraft: AIRBUS INDUSTRIE JET (A320) Elapsed Time: 5 hours 25 minutes Meals: Brunch,Snack I spend the afternoon cycling in Vancouver, return to airport at Sunset... Flight Details - Screen 2 of 4 Date: Mar 16 1999 Tuesday Flight: CANADIAN AIRLINES 1035 Leave: VANCOUVER, BC, CANAD 1915 Arrive: HONOLULU, HI 2310 Miles: 2706 Aircraft: MCDONNELL DOUGL DC10 Elapsed Time: 5 hours 55 minutes Meals: Dinner No customs to go through while changing planes at HNL Flight Details - Screen 3 of 4 Date: Mar 17 1999 Wednesday Flight: CANADIAN AIRLINES 1035 Leave: HONOLULU, HI 0100 Arrive: SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA 0755 ** **This flight arrives on MAR 18 (actually a Qantas flight) Miles: 5087 Aircraft: BOEING 747 (744) Elapsed Time: 9 hours 55 minutes Meals: Snack, Breakfast Flight Details - Screen 4 of 4 Date: Mar 18 1999 Thursday Flight: QANTAS AIRWAYS 23 Leave: SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA 1000 Arrive: PERTH, AUSTRALIA 1135 Miles: 2024 Aircraft: BOEING 747 STRETCH (743) Elapsed Time: 4 hours 35 minutes This flight continues... (but I don't !) Leave: PERTH, AUSTRALIA 1250 Arrive: HARARE, ZIMBABWE 1715 Miles: 5280 Elapsed Time: 10 hours 25 minutes Leave: HARARE, ZIMBABWE 1845 Arrive: JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH 2025 Miles: 596 Aircraft: BOEING 747 STRETCH Elapsed Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
I need a few days to acclimatize (going from -5 to +35 can be rough), and
especially get some additional supplies such as foods, fuel for stove as well
as map and tourism information.
I will also go to Rottnest Island for a night or two. This is a small island park where cars are prohibited and is is cyclist's paradise.
Upon my return to Perth begins the real journey...
This is the warmup period. Remember that the cycling season is getting a cold
start since I have not bene able to train during the canadian winter. This is
why I have allocated more days to cover this distance. It also allows me to
debug and fine tune the bicycle and detect any flaws.
Road not fully decided as there are many alternate/smaller roads.
This is the true challenge of this trip. 1200 km of unsealed roads, much of
which I expect to be sandy. This is a true test to one's balance, reflexes and
concentration as one must constantly read the road to prepare for soft spots,
holes, bumps, deep sand etc.
On this section, I can only plan on making 80km per day. If the road conditions are better than expected, then I will increase the distance. On bad roads, I can expect to average about 8km/h.
Because of limited supplies, I will need to carry much water and food and this will stress my bicycle greatly.
Permits are required to use this road. When I get to Yulara, a resort/oasis near Ayers' Rock (ULURU), I will deserve a good shower and a good meal. I will most probably kiss the road once I reach the sealed section some 40km before Yulara.
Although I have been to Yulara before, I have not yet cycled the distance
between it and Alice, nor had I seen Kings Canyon, so this time around I will
do both. Once I rejoin the Stuart Highway 130km south of Alice, I will be again
on familiar ground as I have done that road before.
This section on the Stuart highway brings me from from a desert area into a
monsoonal forest area near Darwin. While the vegetation does change gradually,
the weather and most especially the humidity hits about 100km south of Darwin.
While the humidity rises, the temperatures will moderate to the low/mid 30s at
Have not decided if I will go through Kakadu park or take the more direct route. It will depend on time and how much of the forest is in fire, as this will be the season where they purposefully burn the dense undergrowth while it is still somewhat moist to prevent wild fires once the stuff is completely dried out.
If I go through kakadu, the crocs will have another chance to prove that they are affraid of me by running away as soon as they see me (which was the case last year).
This is the holiday section of the trip where I might go scuba diving, jump out
of a perfectly good aeroplane or just ride an airplane to Sydney where I spend
a few days prior to flying home.
Return flights back home. It is a daytime flight from Sydney to Honolulu
(arrive late evening), and then overnight flight to Toronto (9 hours) where the
plane is kept dark to allow passengers to sleep right until the plane lands at
about 15:20. Arrive Montreal on the next available flight (about an hour