78.54km / 3:35:51 / 251m / 11.0°C
Since the organised ride finished in 2018, this is my third annual pilgrimage out to west Gippsland for my own ride around the course of “The Slog”. Early train to Pakenham, follow the prompts of the Garmin, a coffee at Lang Lang, snacks at Poowong, lunch at the Ellinbank church and the demoralising slog back towards Pakenham along the Bunyip river road. That’s the theory anyway…. weather this year was not looking good but I headed out anyway
Light rain at Pakenham as I got off the train, it had stopped by the time I got sorted out and was mostly dry from there through Nar Nar Goon and down south to Cora Lynn, I could even see shadows on the road as the sun came out. Sadly, it was not to last and the showers started up, lightly all the way down to Bayles where I stopped for a pastry and to sit undercover. Leaving Bayles it had stopped again and was mostly dry, then at Yannathan much heavier rain started and I was soon completely drenched. It rained solidly from there down to Lang Lang (50km) where I decided to turn and head back, otherwise its a long stretch up through Poowong to Warragul (120km), and probably colder higher up on the ridge.
Had a coffeeneuring coffee and toasted sandwich in a cafe in Lang Lang as water ran off me and out of my clothes and shoes before turning back to the north west for Koo Wee Rup and what I’d initially thought would be 30km or so to Cranbourne - had misread something on the map and realised it was around 40km to Cranbourne, but only 30km to Pakenham so adjusted the plans accordingly. Lang Lang to Koo Wee Rup was horrible, the rain had stopped and it was back to just overcast and damp, but the ride is on the shoulder of a main highway and there was two lanes of constant high speed traffic blasting past far too close for comfort - I was starting to regret abandoning the plan, but everything I was wearing was still soaked.
Koo Wee Rup to Pakenham put a smile back on my face, again the rain held off until the last 2-3km and I was riding on a gravel road with almost no traffic. Very flat country alongside near-overflowing irrigation canals and endless croaking of frogs
Finished off with an unenjoyable cold wet train ride home, then a very long and hot shower to clean off and warm up
Better luck next year!
Light rain, 11°C, Feels like 10°C, Humidity 71%, Wind 1m/s from SSW - by Klimat.app
Riding 689th day in a row, including my ;