I live about a kilometre from the Murray River – Australia’s most iconic river. Combined with the Darling River, they drain 1/3 of Australia. The Murray-Darling Basin is Australia’s main food bowl and the centre of considerable controversy over its management.
Growing along that iconic river are the river red gums. These trees can grow 30-45 metres high, 1-3 metres wide and can live between 500-1000 years (according to some). They are also highly-prized timber for furniture, flooring and firewood… so not many of the old ones are left. They have the most widespread natural distribution of any eucalypt in Australia. They are also known for dropping large limbs without warning, particularly in hot, still conditions. Don’t camp under them!
There is something spooky but invigorating about riding around in red gum forests. They are usually pretty noisy places, as the old trees often have hollows and many loud birds (i.e. parrots) nesting in them.
For more information, look here. Sorry about the picture quality – I was using my $50 phone and just sliding it in and out of my shorts’ pocket.
Our ride was just a short 20 kms. It was cool but not windy, and I was a bit desperate for a pedal. I’m still not very well, but the guys and I really needed our fix! We explored some tracks along the river we hadn’t ridden before and had lots of fun just pointing the mountain bike at stuff and letting those big tires and front shocks absorb all the impact. I just ride straight over stuff I’d have to pick my way through on the touring bike. So much fun! Here are the pics.
I am coming into a very busy period (find a new place to live, move, apply for a new job, hopefully change jobs, get stuck into coursework for a double diploma I just decided I need to do, keep persisting with doctors/dentists/specialists so I can someday feel decent again, and more). So I’m not sure how much I’ll be riding or writing over the next six weeks. I have so little energy, I have to be really, really careful with pacing and how much I do in a day. A full day at work is enough to do me in at the moment – so there isn’t much left for anything fun. Cross your fingers I find a good place to live and get the job I’m hoping for though!