Monday 19 November 2012

Tasmania Bike & Hike

In less than two weeks I will be over in Tasmania for my next adventure. This will be a cycling tour of the main and surrounding Islands with a number of short hikes thrown in. 

My last overseas cycling tour was to the south island of New Zealand back in 2006 so I’m particularly looking forward to getting out on the bike again. As I have said in about me this blog will not just be about hiking, though that is my main passion, but will involve travel on 2 wheels as well as by water. The cycling route has been all but decided but I’m not so clear on how much hiking I will actually do. I have many routes marked on the map but certainly won’t be able to do them all. The problem with a bike & hike trip is just what do you do with your bike, and other equipment, while you are away hiking? For some of the more accessible hikes I can just leave everything at the campsite without too much bother. A lot of the other hikes start and finish in the outback and would require me to hide the bike or leave it locked to a tree/fence etc. I’m never totally happy doing this and if you then spend the next 8 hrs worrying about your trusty steed then the hiking obviously suffers. I will just have to see how it goes!

One thing I have is plenty of time, which was a deliberate choice. On previous cycling tours I was obviously limited by how much time I could be away from work. With limited time it’s natural to try and cram in as much as possible, but that means you have little time for exploring or the unexpected. Not so this time, I expect to be actually cycling only during the morning leaving the afternoons free. Even then that still leaves me with around 10 free days. I did consider also taking the packraft but soon dropped that idea after adding up all the equipment weight. With a 23kg baggage allowance that is soon used up with a bike, camping & hiking equipment before adding a packraft, paddle and buoyancy aid. While over in Tassie I will of course not only have Christmas and New Year to celebrate but also a 40 birthday!

Breakdown of the route.

Cycling 2100km (on and off-road)
Hiking 727km (not all routes will be hiked)