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 of them ended up here on this website. As for the words, there are 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!
June 15th, 2003
New ZealandPunakaiki to Westport
55 km today
21784.52 km total
34.2 mi today
13510.2 mi total

Woke up and it was a bit light out, no big heavy clouds. Made a CD for Ryan (Shins and Husker Du), got clock pics of them on the beach. I left around 11:30am...just as a bunch of black clouds were everywhere. After about 6km the rain really started to come down. I was pretty much packed for dryness so things were ok. Just me riding in the heavy rain listening to the Pixies. The rain would stop, then start again, then stop. Time for new brake pads, these weren't working the best. There would be flashes of lightning off in the distance and extremely loud thunder following a few seconds later. At one point I had to grab the brake cable running across the top tube and give it a hard pull to slow down. The ride was nice though, the waves crashing up against the rocks right near the road.

When I passed though the little settlement of Charleston it was raining full throttle. I didn't want to stop since I'd start to get cold, so I just kept riding. Reached Westport about 4pm. It looks like a nice town, a lot of old buildings and everything was pretty much on the main street. (Quite unlike Karratha, Western Australia...where the whole town felt like a giant shopping mall.) Found a hostel, turns out it is in one of the oldest houses in the city. Got everything loaded inside and then the rain started to REALLY come down. Went to the store, then went and saw the movie Frida tonight. It was a large theater but there were only 7 people I think in there. Outside I saw an older guy staring at my bike. He asked me how far I'd gone and if I went ot Australia. He said that he'd gone all over Australia also, but stayed inland a lot. "I noticed the water bottle and figured you had been going for awhile", he said.

Probably going to take tomorrow off...this hostel is kinda nice. Gotta get this travel site up to date. Found an old time magazine here. The letters section has responses to the Ali cover story. Funny to read this now, because I read the Ali issue of Time when I was in Esperance, Australia in January...and now I'm reading the letters six months later.

I fly home a month from today...

June 15th, 2003