Day 28 Sunday 4145km
I crawled out of bed and walked down to the river with Steve’s dog Tyrone. There was a slight frost on the grass and fog on the river. Back up at his house we had coffee and said our goodbyes. He gave me a bag of his neighbour’s hazelnuts and a big hug, and after three attempts I pulled out of his steep driveway. I drove south along the coastal road and soon hit Victoria! It was pretty much gum trees all the way down to Orbost, where I stopped for a pie and a coffee. I saw a skate park as well and was glad that I brought my skateboard. I pulled in and had a short 20 minute session on the half-pipes. I drove on north towards Omeo on the Alpine highway and enjoyed the beautiful sunny day. Past Omeo, I stopped in Swifts Creek and had a burger with the lot and talked to some people who had a son in New Jersey, they said there was some residual snow in the mountains but the roads are clear. I eventually made it to the summit of Mt. Hotham and saw all of the ski lodges and lifts, still closed up. Down the other side of the mountain, as I got closer to Bright, the trees started having leaves on them again, and in every colour imaginable. I pulled into Bright at around 4pm and new I’d have to find a campsite soon. I passed a skate park and it looked better than the one at Orbost so I pulled in and hit the half-pipe. The kids at this one weren’t as shy and asked where I was from. I said Sydney and they said ‘oh, is it pretty good up there?’ I said that I hadn’t skated ramps in Sydney but was psyched that there were so many on my travels. Then one of the kids said ‘yah, you skate heaps old-school’ and I said ‘mate, I AM old-school.’ I threw my board back in jumpin’ joan and drove into the town where I saw the Bright Mountain brewery, and pulled in for a quick schooner of their Belgian Dubbel. There was a bloke and his partner playing their tunes on guitar and keyboard and I enjoyed a few songs as I sipped my beer. Walking back to drive off, I saw an information stand and asked about camping sites. The lady was super helpful and I got some info on orchards in the area too. I thanked her and left and drove 6km south to a great little spot on the river. The air temperature was dropping fast so I gathered plenty of firewood and started cooking some ham and beans. No possums here, but I played some guitar and enjoyed the sound of the small waterfall near my site. The milky way is really bright and it’s great to see so many stars.