Day 28……………….Run leg to the City.
Caloola Farm what a spot. Set in a picturesque valley complete with a clear flowing river. Australian wildlife in every direction, and just a great sense of being out in the Australian bush!
The morning was a quit one like most mornings on the BNT, the pure pleasure of being out in the middle of nowhere, no neighbours, no traffic not even the flickering of a street lamp. We open the mother ship curtains and have the dramatic back drop of the mountains with the low lying fog that sits around them outlined by the yellow glow of the sunrise. Even Skippy the resident kangaroo thought it was a great spot as he hadn’t moved from his spot where he was the night before. As I jumped out the Maui to put the gas on to make coffee, the silence was broken only by the flock of cockatoos flying overhead. I wish every morning could start this way, that’s right it had pretty much since we left in March! Does it have to end?!
I pull on my trail shoes and look forward to the run ahead. Again unlike most days Vickie would be able to take the mother ship all the way with me meaning that I didn’t have to carry my pack and she could share some of the day on the actual BNT route that she nearly always misses.
We left the farm heading for the gate which had a herd of cows surrounding it. They didn’t even move for the Maui so it was unlikely they would move for me. Now as you are all now aware, thanks to Vickies video post about me and cattle. I was a little nervous as I had to open the gate for the Maui. There was only one bull amongst the herd and they are what make me scared after my last interaction with them coming out of Omeo!, even more so as Arcteryx has sent me bright orange t-shirts, great for roads where there is oncoming traffic, or to be spotted when out in the mountains buy deer hunters or if I needed to be rescued, but not for the big fat angry bulls where by bright colours just piss them right off!
Safely through the gate the next 10km were to be straight down the farm track where by I would leave Vickie for a further 10km before re-joining the main road heading in to Thawa.
Then I would be heading towards the suburbs of Canberra, before finishing up at Pine Island, where I had started with the horses just a couple of day before that.
The terrain was going to be flat for the whole day and mainly on sealed roads for the 40km I had to cover. Why is it that the easy days have to also be the hardest?
I think it’s due to commitment. Long days of say 65km through some tough country and no support of refuge means that you just have to get out there and get on with it, because if you don’t, that long day becomes longer and you don’t make it back when it’s light and if at some point if only one small hiccup arises mid run then it really delays the outcome which is finishing. Those days begin with the finishing point concreted in your mind. Fixed solely on that, your focused on getting there regardless.
The short flat easy days like today, where you get support from start to finish and the protection of getting picked up if anything happens, even minor, make for a hard day. The focus just being to get to the next meeting point a mere 3 -5km away where Vickie was with drinks. 3km feel like 10km and you cannot seem to get the leg turn over you have been craving since being in the mountains. A run like this on any other day would be a fun one, but the lack of mental commitment makes your legs hurt and the distance grow and with every opportunity I got to meet with Vickie, I’d just complain about how hard it is today.
An easy fix would be to just run the bloody distance and finish up quickly as to have a short day. Funny how your body and mind responded to different situations!
I eventually got to Pine Island, and thought about what all the fuss was about?! Tiered, I refuelled on the usual Musashi post run drink and Vickie had knocked up some cheeses toasties!
Yet another marathon down and cheese toasties in hand, things do get a little better than the morning at the farm!