Biking Around Australia

Between February 2002 and March 2003 I circumnavigated 12,504 miles around the Australian continent on my bicycle, or push bike as they say there. After that I went to New Zealand for three months and met up with a friend and ended up pushing the total mileage to 14,115.7 miles (22717.02 km). I spent 269 days on my bike, 272 days not on my bike, and getting 67 flat tires over those 17 months.

This is the route I took around Australia. Every few days I would update this YHA map with a marker and the route I more or less made up as I went along.

I started and ended my 13 month lap around Australia at Luna Park in St. Kilda/Melbourne.. The distance around Australia (including Tasmania) ended up being about 20,281km (12,600 miles).

February 12th, 2002 - 3:50pm
March 12th, 2003 - 3:12pm
I carried a 15 pound IBM Thinkpad 600E with five batteries over the course of the entire trip in order to keep this website updated on a weekly basis so people back home could follow me on my travels. I had a system setup where I'd back the photos up to CDs and mail them home every few weeks. To update the site, I primarily did it with 3.5 inch floppy disks. There are 542 daily journal entries on here. I redid the website in 2020 so it would show up on phones and such ok. I took 36,304 photos over the 17 months and 12321 of them ended up here on this website. As for the words, there are 119527 of them for you to read. I didn't start active journaling until a couple months into the journey. I've noted where I've added journal entries way after the fact based on recollections or notes I had from the time. Some people have actually read the the entire site and have seen every picture. Some entries were written the same day, others were not. Some entires are a thought-provoking and a wholly entertaining read, others are downright boring.
Lunky.com website 2001-2020

The MS Paint image I updated every few days
Also during the journey I carried a cardboard "clock" for this website I had started a year earlier called The Human Clock. Here it is on the Queensland/Northern Territory border
The Human Clock website was pretty popular then and it plus my bike trip got a quick blurb in the Sunday Times of London in September of 2002

One fun thing I did during my trip was to visit six "confluences", which is where a whole-numbered latitude/longitude mark intersects for The Degree Confluence Project.

This was also back when the GPS looked nice
Standing at 18°S 142°E
Thanks for reading!
November 4th, 2002
Western Australia30k e of Roebourne to Karratha
77 km today
12980.13 km total
47.7 mi today
8047.4 mi total

Had a nice ride this morning...wasn't in too much of a hurry since I only had about 3/4 of a day to do. It was a pretty fast ride into Roebourne since there was a strong tailwind. Spent awhile there. As I was leaving town I passed a church where there was this old guy sitting on a stool watering the flowers. I stopped and talked to him. His name was Frank and he was about 90 years old. He invited me in and gave me the run of the mill in the kitchen. I had a cup of coffee and talked to him awhile, then took off a half hour later.

Got to Karratha in the mid afternoon. Found and checked into the hostel. Didn't really think much about the hostel until I saw a sign reading "Grass, Cash or Arse...nobody rides for free". Funny in that Grant Hart has a song of similar title where the lyrics go "pick one of the three...nobody rides for free". I took this as a sign that this place would be alright.

This town annoys me already. Picture the parking lot of your local McShoppingCenter. That is pretty much what it feels like. There are a few roads, but the big bulk of the town center is set up around these giant parking lots. I dove right in and got a large pizza from the local pizza franchise joint. This particular franchise was awarded the "#1 upseller of the year" award or something. I can see why, the guy must have asked me if I wanted about 4 billion things either in, on, or with my pizza before he took my money.

Ran into Simon on the way back to the hostel. We couldn't actually get to each other due to the maze of traffic islands and parking lots. I dislike this town already and I'm going to be stuck here till Thursday. As Simon and I were riding down to the hostel, we passed a house and heard a guy yell "HEY! Do you want a beer!". Simon and I beelined it over to the house. Turned out to be a few guys in their mid 20's. We ended up staying there a couple hours drinking beer with them. One of them, Chris, told me my new favorite joke:

q: why are women like clouds?

a: cause when they fuck off you can have a nice day.

November 4th, 2002