Lesson One

Saturday was the day for the planned bike ride to Albany.  Housework took a little longer than I anticipated so I did not get away until 1 pm.  It is only 170Km to Albany, so I figured it would take me maybe two and a half hours.  I should easily have been there before three o’clock, but of course I tend to drive slowly and stop to look around frequently so it was well after four when I arrived.  I realised that if I did not turn straight around and head back, I would be riding in the dark.  That is a problem for two reasons. Firstly, evening is when the kangaroos come out.  I have heard horror stories of collisions with unpredictable roos. I was not too worried about that, because I could slow down in the risk area, but the second and more important reason was that I had come out without my clear visor, and driving with a tinted visor at night is dangerous.   Driving without a visor at all invites eye injury from stones and insects.  So, after a very quick trip to Kmart to get a couple of things not available in Katanning,  and a short mental debate on whether it would be better to stay in a motel and head back in the morning,  I jumped back on the bike and headed home.  I thought that if I rode hard at the limit, I would make it home in around two hours and a bit. I guessed the sunset would be around 6.30, and it would remain light for a while after that, but I was wrong. 

Despite a manly effort at a high speed run, I did not make it all the way in daylight.  The sun set just after 6 and darkness fell surprisingly soon after, when I was still 40Km from Katanning. Luckily I fell in behind a car and had a good run into town, without problems.  But it was a little scary even following a car in the dark, with poor visibility.  Adrenaline kept me alert, but it won’t happen again.  I learned my lesson.  Plan Ahead.

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About Alan

Alone in a sea of spinifex.
This entry was posted in Life, don't talk to me about life!. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Lesson One

  1. Alan says:

    Kangaroos are notorious for their tendency to turn back in front of you when you think they are running away. I am told that it is because if they think they are in danger they want to go back to the last place they felt safe, rather than running on ahead into the unknown. This means that if a motor vehicle startles them they may just turn round and run back in front of it. I am not sure how we got this piece of received wisdom. Ride safe too!

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  2. We have the same problem with deer here in Texas. I try not to ride after sundown and if I do I ride slower and watch for their eyes in the headlights or numbers on the side of the road. The real danger is when you come upon a number of deer and all but one runs across the road… That straggler will dart across at the very last moment… Ride safe…

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