3-wheels Around Oz

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February & March 2002

Sunday February 24th.

The great day draws near.   Conrad has his tickets to Australia on Japan Airlines and leaves England on March 3rd and arrives in Sydney on March 5th.  Anthea and Albert Clay are meeting him at the airport and he is staying with them for a few days before setting off on his great adventure. He is shipping a trailer from England directly to the Clays so he will not have to worry about finding one when he arrives. He is planning to start his epic cycle ride from the steps of the Sydney Opera House on Monday March 11th, 2002.

Tuesday, February 26th.

Read an article about Conrad’s trip in TNT Travel Magazine. Click here.
I spoke with Margaret today and confirmed that Conrad is leaving England on Sunday evening, travels via Japan and arrives in Sydney at 8:30am on Tuesday morning March 5th.

Thursday, February 28th.

Apparently Conrad is a little concerned about the tow-bar on his trailer. He thinks that it may be a little too short and interfere with his trike. He may try and get it extended before he sets off from Sydney. I think that he will have a solar powered cell phone with him, but it is only a rumour so far.(Let me know please if anyone has any definite information on this. Thanks. Click here)  An enthusiastic Wesley Scrutton, in Sydney,  has volunteered to help Conrad. Wes is the son of old family friends in England but has been working in Australia for about  six months.

Saturday, March 2nd.

Conrad called today and confirmed that he was definitely leaving tomorrow night from Heathrow. He will be stopping in Tokyo for four hours. He is planning to get a phone in Australia that switches between a cell phone and a satellite phone depending on the coverage (through British Aerospace, I think). His start date has become a little flexible. It will probably be at the end of the week.

Sunday, March 3rd

I received a detailed route and schedule from Conrad this morning and I have posted it on the “Route & Schedule” page of this website. It goes into great detail about his exact route and where he will stay each night. I noticed that he is not taking the coast road from Sydney to Brisbane but is going inland via Bathurst, Dubbo, Tamworth, Armidale and then returning to the coast road at Grafton.  Conrad is more organized than I thought!  (I am off to Boston, MA, for the week, but I will keep updating the website while I am away, using my laptop computer.)

Monday, March 4th

Conrad left Heathrow without a hitch and Catrin took pictures :  Click her

Tuesday, March 5th

Conrad has arrived in Australia. He called his parents to tell them that he and his bike had arrived safely I assume that he was met by Anthea & Albert Clay with a pick-up truck for the trike.

Thursday, March 7th

Con is settling into Sydney. He is sending e-mails and apparently eating well. He has contacted a friend he made in the USA when he was in Oregon. Geoff will lead Conrad out of Sydney when he sets off on Sunday the 17th. OnWednesday he went into Sydney visiting the Opera House and the bridge.

Monday March 11th.

It has been a quiet time. No news from Australia for a while, but that changed today. I received a phone call from Con.( it was just after midnight Sydney time) He was spending the afternoon with Wesley Scrutton and they had ended the day with a few beers…..so they decided to call Florida! He and Wes seem to be getting on very well together. Wesley is getting very involved and said his secretary Leona will coordinate communications (and, apparently, she is far more efficient than Wes could ever hope to be!) Con also mentioned that Anthea is worrying a little about Conrad’s welfare. He actually said that “Anthea makes Carol (my wife) look like an amateur when it comes to worrying”!!

I also received the following delightful e-mail from Albert Clay. ( I will not normally publish private e-mails but I thought this one deserved to be shared with everyone.)

Hi John and all who log on.

It’s my first attempt to log on all by myself . I must improve a great deal if I am to follow Conrad on his trip.Ha HaHa. Well we managed to collect Con and trike at the airport ok and have got him settled in Lugarno. He is eating well, Anthea says she has to build him up for this great effort. We both think it is a tremendous job to tackle but now having met him and listened to his logical approach to everything we are sure he will make it ok. Our greatest wish is that he gets the support and publicity he needs. The average ozzie is a great supporter of charitable work and I am sure they will be behind him when they are aware of what he is about to attempt and it will grow as he moves from town to town.

We took him down to our weekender house on Sat & Sun,about 150km South of Sydney in the Beautifull Kangaroo Valley ( sorry no kangaroo to be seen) . The weather was not the best, we have had good rain, brilliant sunshine, more cloud, 29degs C on our tramp round Sydney. Its not bad today and Con has taken off on the train by himself and is staying the night with Wes.

We are expecting his trailer to get here on Wed, then he can begin to plan the departure proper.

He showed me his Trangia cooking set,something I had always wanted in my active Scouting days, shock.horror it was black!!!! So I couldnt wait and “got stuck in” with the brillo pads and the Brasso—– at least now it looks as though you can put food in it, Anthea came back from the shops and caught me – sink full of black greasy water – and elbow deep having a ball,I suppose I can polish it up again when he packs for home at Xmas time.

Well I will wish you all goodnight in the USof A and all who log on in the UK. Forgive my one fingerprodding. Thinking about it, by the time Conrad is heading home, I will be more efficient on this gadget and my finger will be glowing like E.T.’s in the movie. ————–

Best regards from
at Aussie Base Camp No1.

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Kangaroo Valley, 150km South of Sydney

Wednesday, March 13th

Con sent an e-mail with captions for 24 pictures that will hopefully be appearing here soon.

Wednesday, March 13th

Con sent an e-mail with captions for 24 pictures that will hopefully be appearing here soon. Lyona sent the pictures for Con and I have started to post them in the Album on this website.  Albums

Thursday, March14th

Conrad is featured on the website www.yourable .com with a nice story about his trip.
Jane Moon has sent six great photos of Con at Australia House in London when he met the Australian High Commissioner and was interviewed for Australian Breakfast TV. Conrad e-mailed to say that he has fixed the broken link to the sponsorship page on his website. Did the trailer arrive as planned , yesterday?

Friday, March 15th

Conrad has obtained a cell phone ( 0405 383 554 ) and I assume that his trailer has arrived as he has announced that  he is heading out of Sydney on Sunday. He will be escorted by his friend Geoff who he met while cycling in Oregon, USA.

Saturday, March 16th

I spoke to Conrad today at 7:15am, Sunday, Sydney time. These time zones are very confusing.  He has changed his route out of Sydney and will be heading towards Windsor. His trailer did arrive safely so it is all system go.
We had a flurry of excitement about 20 minutes after Con was scheduled to start his trip. We were sitting around at home in Florida and suddenly wondered if there was a webcam overlooking Sydney harbor showing the famous bridge and Opera House. A web search quickly located a camera and miraculously it was one that you can operate for two minutes. This allowed me to steer the camera to the steps of the Opera House, zoom in, and see a cluster of tiny little people and what could have been the flag on Con’s trike. We snapped a picture and looked again a few minutes later. This time we clearly saw a trike and trailer moving away from the steps past all the vendor stands. We snapped another picture but only an optimist could identify the tiny blur as a trike!!  Afterwards we thought that we should have called Con on his cell phone and asked him to stop and wave, but it was all over before we thought of doing that.  We also saw a second bike following Con so we assume that was Geoff..  Conrad actually left at about 9:40am. and we were watching!
Technology is amazing!!

Monday, March 17th

Albert says the house is empty without Conrad. On Sunday morning they were up early with a good bacon and egg breakfast; loaded the trailer and were off to the sunny city of Sydney. It was sunny and hot, up to 30degC by the time he pedaled out of the Opera House forecourt and out of sight up Macquarie Street to circle round to head over the Sydney Harbor Bridge and into history.
He was lucky having met a fellow bike enthusiast at the N.S W Cycle Association who offered to ride with him out of the city. A & A were somewhat apprehensive at the task ahead of Conrad, but were impressed with his common sense and determination.
Well the day plodded on with hot sun ,blue skies no breeze and everyone thought it was a good day for a bike ride.   At six o’ clock he’s on the phone from his first stop: Windsor (a bit different to the UK version).  All was well. He was in a motel and Albert thought he was feeling good that he was at last on his way.
Geoff said the trailer had no doubt added to the heat and Windsor was a good first stop. It would have been a good 3000 foot climb up the Blue mountains via Katoomba but he is sure to enjoy the countryside, which is typical Australian sheep country.

Tuesday, March 18th

Jane Moon passed a message from Keith & Marg that they had spoken to Conrad. Conrad was advised by a truck driver, who was presumably staying in the same motel in Windsor, that the next 30 miles were “very bad.”  He offered Conrad a ride which he sensibly accepted.
Wesley says that the group on Sunday’s send-off were: Wesley and his friends Lyndsey, Simon and Vahan –  Anthea and Albert and another couple with a young child but Wes couldn’t remember their names but said that they were nice people!!
He emphasised the great heat, so it must be tough going for Conrad.

Wednesday, March 19th. – Newcastle 160km/100m

Hi Everyone
I am currently in Newcastle going up the Pacific Highway. I have had a change of plan to my proposed route and gone straight up the coast. I am planning to be in Coffs Harbour for Easter and not go anywhere over that weekend. Then probably Brisbane the following week, I will confirm the date for Brisbane in the next week. The weather is hot. Very hot in the mid 30’sC since I started. I am hoping that it is going to cool down soon but I do not think so. I am beginning to get into the grove of cycling, but still sorting my pack out. I am going up the coast as recommended by a truck driver who said that it would be safer for me to go up the coast rather than trough the Blue Mountains.
I have had several donations from passers by towards my fundraising efforts, one truck gave me $20 as he passed me. Regards
Conrad Evans

Friday, March 22nd – Hawks Nest, 218Km/136m

E-mail from Con: “I am in Hawks Nest at the moment. I came from Newcastle yesterday and I am planning to go to Budullah or just past. Had a realitivly good day yesterday until I turned left toward Carrington. There was no route marked on my map and I did a 10k detour. I was not happy about that. Hawks Nest is 12km down a road on the rightso  I will have done a 25 km detour on top of the 10 km mistake. The weather is cooler, sunny but pleasant. I have just seen a Kangaroo sign. No live Kangaroos. I have a beach to visit today and so will go now and will let you know my progress soon.”

Saturday, March 23nd – Taree

Sunday, march 24rd – Dunbagan

Monday, Mach 25th,  Port Macquarie, 389km/243m

Don Clark spoke to him on Tuesday morning. “He’s sounding pretty chirpy, I caught him at the camping ground in Port Macquarie and I could hear the birds singing down the phone line! We had a good chat about cycling, trikes & trailers vs 2 wheels and lots about panniers. He had a chat with his Mum and Dad last night. He has got a leg of about 50km in mind today, which will get him to Kempsey. He’s expecting to make Coffs Harbour (about another 100km) on Thursday, staying there for Easter, setting off again on Tuesday.  I think he’ll like Coffs. This morning he’ll be checking his email at the Port Macquarie local Library.”

Tuesday, March 26th – Kempsey 427km/267m

Received an e-mail from Con: “Yesterday from Port Macquarie I was stopped by an ABC NSW Mid North Coast Radio reporter Steve MacDonald who interviewed me about the trike and my travels. I also did an interview for a Kempsey Newspaper The Maclay Argus, Jed took my picture and interviewed me.

I stayed at the Tall Trees Caravan Park last night where we had a storm with alot of thunder and lightning. I have seen one Koala and several lizards, one of which bounded toward me and then hastily retreated as I looked at it.

I have only met one other touring cyclist and that was in Port a Frenchman called P.O. He was cycling from Melbourne to Cairnes and needed to be in Brisbane by Easter.

Today seems to be a cooler day than any and it is overcast at present but they have predicted to get to about 29 degrees C. I am beginning to aclimatize to the weather now and things are going well.”