Day 260, Monday, 14 December, 2009

Distance travelled – 120.2 km
Avg speed – 18.2 kph
Max speed – 45.8 kph

Lock to Cowell

When we arrived in Lock yesterday we were told by the owner of the take-away store that very hot weather with temperatures in the mid 40’s is expected on Wednesday. Up until we received this information our plan was to ride to Cleve, 74 km east of Lock, and then move onto Cowell on the edge of Spencer Gulf on Tuesday before heading for Whyalla on Wednesday, for a two night stop over. Not keen to be on the road between Cowell and Whyalla in 40o plus or held up in Cowell we decided last night to ride all the way to Cowell today. This would put us a day ahead and hopefully allow us to get to Whyalla before the forecast strong winds and high temperatures.

On the our way to Cleve we crossed the Goyder Line which was drawn in 1865 by South Australian Surveyor General Goyder to indicate the limits of land suitable for agricultural development. Land north of the line was considered drought-affected country, land south of the line was thought to be viable or marginal cropping country. Although only a nominal line on a map it was interesting to see that the paddock south of the marker beside the road had just been harvested whilst the paddock north of the line looked like it had a failed crop or had not been planted for some years.

We stopped in Cleve for a couple of hours before riding the final 45 km to Cowell. In contrast to our ride this morning the road was very twisty with four big climbs before the final 14km decent to the coast. On the way we passed a number of abandoned and ruined stone farm buildings including a monument marking the site of May Gibbs’ (the creator of the Gumnut Babies) first Australian home in 1881. Other than the monument there was no evidence of any buildings. We wondered if the ruins we were seeing were an illustration of the significance of Goyder’s Line.

We arrived at Cowell just after 6.30pm and went to the pub for dinner.

Zoom into the map and use the 'Satellite' layer to see our new location.





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