What an epic journey to be cycling around Tasmania for three weeks in February! It’s hard to believe that I pedalled a total of 1315km covering a 15,220m elevation gain (15.2km!)!! I’m incredibly thankful to be able to explore Tasmania on a bike and especially grateful to be able to do so in this Covid world that we live in now. It was truly an unforgettable experience! I absolutely loved the challenges. It was definitely not for the faint hearted.
It really was a magnificent journey. Some days are really tough especially after being on the road for 2.5 weeks, the whole body was just beyond sore. We rode through so many towns, cities, mountains, lakes, and forests. I also fell off my bike and had some injuries to the elbow and ribs but I kept pedaling on! 💪🏼🚴♀️🙏🏼
There are so many highlights! The most picturesque for me would be day 14 – riding from Lake St Clair to Queenstown was breathtakingly beautiful (both literally and figuratively 😆). And riding to Freycinet was also very stunning! The most peaceful and calm day would be day 20 – riding from Devonport to Deloraine through the countryside as there were not many cars/trucks passing through! And don’t forget the great food and drinks throughout the tour – All Trails have been feeding us really well!
I really want to give a huge thanks to the All Trails crew (Richard, Lou and JB) for their amazing support, encouragement, patience and dedication to make this tour highly enjoyable despite its challenges. The tour wouldn’t be possible and as cohesive as it was without their tireless work! Thanks very much All Trails! This tour is highly recommended!
Another factor that made this tour so enjoyable was the group! The group has been so wonderful! It’s the most caring, friendly, fun and encouraging bunch of people that I’ve been with. We soon became familiar with one another and all of us seem to get along very well right from the start. The rest of the group are much older than me but it’s really hard to tell from their looks and fitness. They’re incredibly fit, healthy and very strong! It’s very encouraging and inspiring to see them staying active and loving their life. I aspire to be like them 😊🙏🏼
I’ve mixed emotions when the tour came to an end – I’m really glad and relieved that everyone made through the ride without major hiccups but I also feel sad to leave the group that I’ve become friends with. I’m looking forward to the next cycling tour wherever and whenever that Covid allows.
STAGE 1 – LAUNCESTON TO HOBART
Day 0 – Arrival Day
A relaxing quick stroll around the city centre of Launceston before tour briefing. Hoping the wind would be kinder tomorrow and not 40kph of headwind!!!
Day 1 – Launceston to Barnbougle
Had a great ride today! Enjoyed it very much. So thankful for the beautiful weather today! No wind! Except for the last 6km riding into the Barnbougle Golf Resort, that strong headwind!
Amazing support from the All Trails’ crew, making today’s ride much more manageable! Plus an extremely wonderful, fun, caring and lovely group to ride with. Grateful to be part of the group and hoping to get to know them more in the next few weeks!
Lunch at Pipers Brook Winery and 3-course dinner at Barnbougle Golf Resort were both so gooood! Yummm! Accommodation tonight at Barnbougle Golf Resort is luxurious. I would definitely sleep well tonight!
Day 2 – Scottsdale to St Helens
It was a very rainy day! Rain for the first 70ish km of our ride then lunch. Rain clouds finally cleared and sun came out for the last 20ish km but wind picked up.
This would be the most challenging day for the North East part of the tour! Legs have definitely had a good workout. They were sore in the last 20kms. Actually my bum hurt the most, it was hard to sit for the last 20kms.
Loved the challenge today! Enjoyed the ride too despite the rain 🙏🏼🚴♀️😁
Lunch at Pyengana Dairy Company’s Holy Cow Café was interesting – I’ve never had that much cheese! Tonight’s dinner was on our own so I had spaghetti carbonara at our hotel’s bistro. Look at the size of the carbonara! And I couldn’t believe I almost finished it 😱 I think I might gain weight in this tour!
Day 3 – St Helens to Bicheno
The day started very nicely with sun shining and light wind, then clouds started rolling in during morning tea (~40km mark). It became windier. Drizzling while we were climbing to St. Marys. Then very strong headwind and rain for a few minutes in the last 30km.
And…I fell off my bike 😔 felt so silly! It’s nothing major but cuts and big bruises on right hand and both left and right knees. Also I think my upper back, chest, neck and shoulders have absorbed the pressure from the fall, they’re extremely sore! Thanks very much, Richard, for cleaning and tending to my wounds.
Day 4 – Bicheno to Freycinet
Today’s weather is the best! So grateful! Incredibly beautiful sunny day, light breeze with occasional gusts of wind but it’s mild compared to the last few days! 😁🙏🏼
Today’s an easy ride too to Freycinet National Park, which suits my condition. I’m starting to feel the soreness and stiffness in my upper body from the fall yesterday. The right elbow, chest and neck area were affected the most from the fall. Felt a pull around the chest muscles when I breathe or laugh (like one has just done sit ups for the first time and feeling it the next day). I hope it would heal in the next few days!
The views riding into Coles Bay are the best so far! It’s very beautiful (like Canadian Rockies feel, albeit a very tiny version).
I’m really glad I did the ride this afternoon! My body was complaining and wasn’t feeling it but my brain said ‘RIDE!’. Thankfully my bike was okay and I had no major issues (just soreness) so the ride has to go on!
Freycinet Lodge, where we will be staying for the next two nights are luxurious and lovely! Dinner at the Freycinet Lodge restaurant is very good too 😋
Day 5 – Rest Day – The Wineglass Bay & Hazards Beach Circuit Walk
Very thankful for the beautiful sunny morning perfect for our morning walk around Freycinet. I’m glad we did the walk early in the morning before the wind picked up and cool change came nearing the end of our walk ￼🙏🏼
This is my second visit to Freycinet and it is as stunning as ever! The very beautiful views of crystal clear water along Wineglass Bay and the extremely well maintained paths/trails made this morning walk so enjoyable.
My cuts and bruises are still sore and stiff…deep breathe is quite a chore on the upper body. Hoping that these would heal soon! Glutes and RTband are so tight after the walk. Hopefully they aren’t too sore for riding tomorrow!
Day 6 – Freycinet to Eastcoaster, Spring Bay
Today’s ride could only be described in two words: BLOODY WIND!!! The wind was relentless and brutal! It came from all sides especially from the right, making it extremely hard to control the bike. There were many near-missed where I felt I was going to be knocked off course by the wind and fall off my bike. I’m so glad I made it in one piece with no accident! 🙏🏼
I was thoroughly exhausted! The last 15km felt never ending. Then was caught up by the news of Melbourne being back in hard lockdown. I will treasure the remaining time I have in Tassie 🙏🏼😁🚴♀️
Breathing is still labourious. Getting on and off bed is so much worse than cycling itself.
Day 7 – Spring Bay to Richmond
A relatively easier ride today to Richmond, around 60km. Very thankful for the beautiful weather today, not too hot nor too cold, perfect temperature especially after the brutal wind on yesterday’s ride. It was still a bit windy (mild compared to yesterday) but at least it’s a headwind and not attacking from all sides!
We are staying at Hatcher’s Manor tonight, a rather folksy style accommodation.
Day 8 – Richmond to Port Arthur
Another gorgeous day! Beautiful sun! Some parts were windy but light compared to day 6. And it’s headwind so it’s much much better than side winds!
Riding into Dunalley was so picturesque! The morning tea break along Denison was very pretty too!
We are staying at the Port Arthur Motor Inn for the next 2 nights – reasonably comfy room here.
Day 9 – Rest Day – Port Arthur
Off bike and on two feet today strolling around Port Arthur Historical Sites. Very cloudy day, hopefully would clear by tomorrow for our ride to Hobart.
My taste of what makes a good photo doesn’t seem to change after 6 years. I think I was taking similar photos today as to those I took when I visited the Historical Site for the first time. There were some dejavu feelings as I snapped the photos 😆
The injury from the bike accident on day 3 was giving me problems last night. Sharp pains whenever I turn my body and had distrupted sleep. Getting on and off bed and sneezing are the worst! Deep breathe is still labourious. Hoping it’s nothing serious!
Day 10 – Port Arthur to Hobart
Another stunning lovely day! 🙏🏼😁 Light to moderate winds, head and sidewinds on some parts but very manageable. Very thankful for the beautiful weather! The highlight would be the first 25km to the Tasman Bay Lookout. The roads were still quiet, the climb was gentle. The whole area on the way up to the Lookout was so quiet and peaceful – it enables me to enjoy the ride and probably one of the best climbs I’ve experienced thus far in this tour.
We finished and survived stage 1 of the Cycle Tasmania tour! Yayyyy! Apart from the silly accident on day 3 (fell off my bike), I thoroughly enjoyed the tour thus far. Made new friends and very much enjoyed their company throughout the tour. Amazing views and sceneries and experiencing them with like minded people are moments to be cherished. I also like the challenges on every rides, some days are very tough but they made me a stronger rider! 💪🏼💪🏼
We will be staying at the Grand Chancellor Hotel for two nights. It’s a very lovely spot overlooking the Constitution Dock in the heart of Hobart! 😍
Day 11 – Hobart Changeover Day
A beautiful sunny day for a stroll around the city centre of Hobart. Had a relaxing day to rest and recuperate for a bit before stage 2 of the tour, which starts tomorrow! Stage 2 would be even more challenging with more climbssss!
Three cyclists bid us goodbye today and two more are joining us for stage 2 of the tour, Hobart back to Launceston via the West Coast.
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