We sat around, having the luxury of a cooked breakfast, whilst waiting for our gear to dry (dew and the impacts of the previous night/early morning rain) — starting off again at 11am. At the other side of Clifford we had our water bottles filled with water and ice at a local store (thankyou!). In the car park we had a conversation with a life-long local who knew someone who had moved from Clifford to Australia (via Japan) — he mentioned this on the off chance I might know them!
We headed North on Road 10 and deviated onto an unmarked (on our maps) side road which another local pointed out would takes us into downtown Chesley. It was a great road for riding — no centre line and minimal vehicle use. On the other side of Chesly(?), we stopped for a photo with a not-so-big (by Australian standards) cow!
We rejoined Road 10 and followed this all the way to its junction on the outskirts of Allenford, stopping for a quick bottle refill and phone call around 4pm. With the roads being relatively flat and undulating — albeit predominately climbs — we checked the maps and were buoyed by where we were at given the time of day: this was sort lived.
After heading east and turning north to head up the Peninsula, we encountered our first Tobermory sign — still 99km away! A little disjointed, we decided to ride on to Wiarton, get some supplies for diner and consider on options once there!
Riding down into Wiarton, the first thing we could see was the steep climb — daunting and not what we were looking for (I clocked 60km in traffic and under brakes on the return leg — an indication of its size)! The second thing we saw was the water! The run from Allenford had been very comfortable, mainly downhill and we were making very good time.
We decided to push on and find a camp-site. After the climb out of Wiarton (and another smaller climb) the run was again predominately downhill making for a good ride. We had thought Miller Lake might be a suitable location to sleep, yet this was not the case as we passed by. The 'store' on Highway 6 was closed and we had less than half a bottle of water between us. We rode on and made Crane River picnic site around 9pm!
The heat of the afternoon had its impacts — we were both suffering a little from exposure and I had significant sunburn on my legs (especially the back left of my left calf). This, and that we has no desire to further play with mosquito's, I set up my tent: we had a more peaceful night sleep. We arose early for the final 20km leg into Tobermory to reach the morning ferry, pushing on before 7:30am.
For both of us, this was our single longest day ride — and we did it fully loaded.