Tag Archives: fun

Victoria’s Secrets

As we are currently riding through the State of Victoria in Australia it wasn’t for long that we were searching to uncover the secrets of Victoria, also known as Victoria’s Secrets.

This morning we were surprised to find 3 remarkable ‘Top Models’ in our camp. Obviously TdA managed to get us some of Victoria’s secret models (not to be mistaken with Victoria’s Secret Models).

The secret models are usually those, who are no longer eligible for the Catwalk, and hidden from public in a dark room, only released for very special services.

Source: Wikileaks 2014

dish-duty-beautiesDish Duty Beauties

The 3 immediately proved their real qualities and are now on dish duty for the remaining days of the trip.

DSC_0742_01    DSC_0741_01    DSC_0739_01

Dry Weather Road Only!

DSC_0622_01You often find this kind of road sign in South Australia.

Why do you think a road in some parts of Australia is only passable during the dry season and not recommended to be used, once it has rained? 

Sure, the road might be flooded, but most 4×4 can run though it, if not too deep. Usually there are depth marker in flood areas, which indicated the water level. So there must be some other reason.

Well, it was all dry when I cycled passed it, thus I could not check it myself.

DSC_0551_01_01However the following road sign, which I saw soon after, may explain why it is dangerous to enter the road in the rainy season!

Can you see from what the motorists are being warned?hammerheadSo better don’t leave the car, when you get stuck in water on a flooded road  Winking smile

“Er hat einen Vogel”

DSC_0451_02Yesterday I stopped at a nature resort between Apollo Bay and Torquay. It was supposed to be a Coke Stop at the ‘Koala Café’. As the name suggested, there must be some of my friends. Thus I never got a Coke, but turned instead to the other side of the road and into the caravan park. There were many parrots of different kind and colors, cockatoos and some of my koala friends around. So I picked my camera to take photos, when all of a sudden I felt something lDSC_0388_01touched down on my helmet. I turned the camera around to take a selfie and I found this ‘Kings Parrot’ wrestling with my tarantula, which lost an eye in the unequal battle, but continued to stay attached and the bird left into the trees to meet its companions and talk about the ‘bad food’ I carry.

Koala and Parrots

Tailwind? Negative!

Did you ever ask yourself why you always have to ride into the blowing headwind on Trans-Oceania and there is never a day without wind?

2-windfarm2

Take a closer look at the road signs and you will find the answer:

1-windfarm1

TdA runs his own Wind Farm. However, instead of ‘harvesting’ wind to generate electricity, their great Chief Wind Engineer (CWE)  Cristiano W.  reverse-engineered the turbines and turned them into big blowers. The proof of concept phase is now finished and the system can go into full deployment around the globe to ‘enrich’ any TdA tour.

3-DSC_0528

iWind

The new iSomething application. With a little extra technical effort the CWE can now turn the blades (from any place in the world) into the perfect direction to ensure you will always face the wind, no matter in which direction you turn your bicycle.1-G0677146

Cristiano demonstrating the tool to Andreas, the tour director in Australia. They both seem to really enjoy this new torturing tool!

Sleeping like a Rock

It is breakfast time in the camp. All but 1 tent are already stored back into the duffle bags and riders enjoying a hot coffee and a delicious breakfast, ready to go back on the road. But who is the rider, enjoying an extended night of sleep in the cool Riverton camp?

01-DSC_0604

Still busy with the final cleanup in the background, the guy (let’s name him Eric) is almost ready to join the breakfast party.

02-DSC_0607

Note:
There is still more drill needed to get Bucket-of-waterEric ready for his Cairo to Cape Town tour next January. Otherwise we might find him still sleeping in his tent in the Nubian Desert in Sudan, when the tour is already on its last leg to Cape Town.
Tip: Subscribe to the TdA water bucket alarm, if you don’t hear the sound of your own alarm clock!

Watch for Cyclists

What a surprise. Now that the chances to see a kangaroo, emu or other wildlife are much lower than in the outback, the motorists are informed to look out for cyclists! Obviously a rare and dangerous species, too.

DSC_0458

DSC_0374I understand the meaning of the road sign above, as well as the reminder on the right, that there are kangaroos and other wildlife to expect to be on the road. However, what is a DIP?DSC_0446

Can it fly or swim? How big is it and what color does it have? Has it fur or hair? Is it endemic to Australia or can it be found in other countries, too? Has anyone seen a DIP on the ride today?

Kangaroos at Sunset

I always wanted to get a nice sunset photo with a kangaroo just skipping passed the setting sun. I patiently waited every evening at the campsite with my camera ready to catch this special moment. I got nice shots of sunsets, almost every day, but not the one I was hoping for.
kangaroo-sunset-0

Days and days went went by. The sun rise, the sun set again, but no kangaroos around, until … CLICK!

kangaroo-sunset-1

well, the above needed a bit of a ‘rework’, some call it ‘photo-shopping’Winking smile

However, I never give up my dreams.
Minutes later, I got another shot with an object passing the setting sun. This time it wasn’t the original version of an Australian KANGAROO, but a Japanese remodeled type, named a …

kangaroo-sunset-2 SUBARU!

Turn Head- into Tailwind

Did you ever enjoy an all day ride into a blowing wind? Well, cycling through the Australian Outback from north to south doesn’t offer real choices. The wind mostly blows from south, south-east or east.

What options do you have, if you do not have a headwind riding clone, the avatar who rides for you into the wind, once it gets stronger and facing you?

20141110_101911Like my clone, whom you can see leaving from lunch just at the time when I arrive at the lunch stop!

How to turn a headwind into a tailwind!

No matter how much the wind in your face will serve to cool you down in the glowing outback heat, the energy needed to ride against the wind heats you up more than the breeze can cool you. Since we can’t change the direction of the wind and there is no alternate route going south, we must find a different way to overcome the everyday headwind problem. Luckily TdA always guarantees to have some smart engineers amongst the riders, which ought to help resolve problems that are beyond standard cycling tour issues. One night at a desert camp a brainstorming session was started to come up with possible solutions to Turn a Headwind into a Tailwind

A clever rider came up with the following solution, which helps him to always ride with joy, regardless of the obstacles the gusty wind does inject. The idea behind his solution is as simple as this. The human brain can always be cheated or programmed to recognize things that are actually different in nature or even not existing at all. So it just needs a way to make the brain think a headwind is in fact a lovely tailwind …

Look at the two photos below and see if you can find out his solution:
G0787406G0807431

The left photo clearly shows, that he is not really pleased with the wind situation, certainly a strong headwind. Whereas the right photo, taken just after a slight modification to one if his cycling gears, make him ride with pure joy.

Did you get his idea?

Yes, you are right. Simply turn the back of the helmet into the wind and the airflow through the backside of the helmet to the front does the job to fool your brain. Give it a try! Let’s see, if we can see many more riders on the road, applying this great solution …

Navigation Challenges

Navigation Challenges in the Outback

The Northern Territory Outback introduces some difficult navigation  and unforeseen challenges for the riders to get from one camp to the next. Although we are excellently briefed every evening before dinner with the next stage details, it may happen that one gets lost or feels she/he has gotten lost in the vast and hostile outback. One day I was already cruising along for hours, not seeing a human soul. I wasn’t sure whether I still was on the right path and almost considered to u-turn and retrace from the last known correct  location, when I eventually spotted a bright shining something on the horizon ahead of me. I accelerated to close up to the still little moving neon spots in the far distance. It took me a while on these long straight roads, which make it hard to estimate a distance. Approaching closer I was so relieved to see that it were 2 cyclists. Shirley and DanGOPR6400-001, who were cycling into the same direction as I am, and could confirm, that we were still riding on the correct track and we continued our little  ‘odyssey’ through the dessert and eventually reached the lunch stop from where it was easy to get to the next campsite and reunited with the rest of the group.

Find below the short instant interview I had with Shirley and Dan about the navigational challenges and what difference a ‘Navigational Expert’ can make …

 

and the briefing information on the white board for the day, which caused us some difficulties to remember and follow  Winking smile:
20141030_060027