Bunbury to Greenbushes 1998

Bunbury to Greenbushes, day 1, Monday 12 October 1998. I left The Bunbury Motel ($55, Unit 11, nicer than last year, could open a window) at 8.16 on a cool morning with moderate NE-NW winds. The odometer read 6214.

Greenbushes Post Office

Greenbushes Post Office

I rested and took a drink at 6234, at Boyanup, then again at Donnybrook, 6249, reached at 10:08. I felt that I was making good speed and the riding seemed easy, due to the tailwind. The 5 km pegs showed that the odometer was reading about right. Calibrating the odometer is an important first-day job. I got up the anticipated hills all right and reached Kirup, 6267, only 23 km from my destination. I felt confident of making it at this stage.

I had a drink and rest stop and did the next 13 km to Balingup, 6281, another rest and drink, very quickly, seeming to be rushing downhill most of the time. After Balingup is a big 3 km hill to climb, past the familiar chimney, and some climbing after that, but Balingup is only 10 km from Greenbushes.

I reached Greenbushes at 1:14, 6292. The trip had taken about the same time as in 1983, though I didn’t time that exactly. This time I had a cooler day and better winds and was under no time pressure, and anticipated the terrain, and of course have long since had a better range of gears.

I had booked to stay at the Exchange Hotel, which hadn’t changed since 1983 and 1985 in terms of good accommodation and food at a reasonable price. The $55 tariff for the nice fully-equipped unit, No. 1, included dinner and breakfast.

I took a walk around the town after my sleep and shower. The town is more run down than when I last stayed there in 1985. There are no shops left in town and I was glad that my memory had served me well and that I had booked the Exchange Hotel rather than the Shamrock, because that one looked very run down and there was no sign of any modern units.

I took a couple of photos of historic buildings and examined the park with its old mining equipment for kids to play on. I walked up to where the main street of town comes to a dead end at the mine site. I was too late to go up to the observation point and look at the mining operation.

The main street of Greenbushes used to be the main South Western Highway , but in the ’70s they wanted to extend the mine, so they did that right across the road after a South Western Highway bypass had been built. So the main traffic no longer goes through Greenbushes. This is of course quieter for them but it has contributed to the decline of the town. It is only a km. off the main highway but no-one is going to go there unless they have business in the town.

Dinner was chicken lasagna with very nice vegies. The evening was frosty. The country quiet and dark, not experienced for a year, made their impact on me.

Reading at Greenbushes: 6292 km. Day’s ride: 78 km. Speed to Greenbushes: 15.7 kph.

Charles A. Pierce

Other Days on this Tour:

  1. Cottesloe to Windy Harbour Tour 1998
  2. Cottesloe to Bunbury 1998
  3. Bunbury to Greenbushes 1998
  4. Greenbushes to Manjimup 1998
  5. Manjimup to Northcliffe 1998
  6. Northcliffe to Windy Harbour 1998
  7. Northcliffe to Pemberton 1998
  8. Pemberton to Bridgetown 1998
  9. Bridgetown to Donnybrook 1998
  10. Donnybrook to Harvey 1998
  11. Harvey to Mandurah 1998
  12. Mandurah to Cottesloe 1998

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