Good Times Bikepacking the Munda Biddi
Words & photos by Joshua Booth
A heavy front end, a mish mash of dry bags on top of hummus buckets, butt cream and fears of sores: Munda Biddi 2021 was a go!
Oli and I set off in early April for a planned two week expedition along the 1050km trail to Albany. Were we prepared? No. Had we done adequate training in the lead up? Definitely not. But our bikes looked pretty hot, and we were rockin’ the sandals.
Sometimes the Best Trails Are Right Under Our Noses
I’d bought my Bombtrack mid last year, and Oli took no convincing to buy a steelie for some adventure touring together. But after 8 months with our new bikes we had only done two speedy overnighters, and only one ride over 80km (ever).
Complete novices, we had been dreaming of Alpine trails or travels to NZ, but covid sucks and we were ignoring the most incredible trail right under our noses. The Munda Biddi. We knew it would be difficult, but when friends asked us “Are you really prepared? You’ve barely trained! How will you manage 80km a day for two weeks?!” We responded with, “Well, all we will be doing is cycling! We’ll have the whole day to cycle to camp!”
And it turns out we really did need the whole day, often riding into camp with a spider-web covered headtorch.
Good Days, Bad Days, And Butt Cream
Looking back on our Munda Biddi ride, the days I enjoyed the most were those when we rocked up at camp (spiderweb free) in time for the sunset. Rolling in and seeing the landscape turn a beautiful orange, knowing we could munch down on baked beans, or make some trail spag-bol in the dying light.
The hardest days were the wet days: soaking knicks, chaffing and wet/cold bare feet! Or the few times we skipped lunch for a pint at the pub, and then got hammered by some steep climbs!
Having done little long distance riding we were pretty stressed about a few things, mainly snakes and mechanicals. The biggest fear though, was of saddle sores, I’d just bought a new saddle and my poor sit-bones were having a rough time. But, we made it through only seeing one snake, five minor crashes (Oli took a few tumbles early on, I fell off a small bridge) and zero butt sores!
Finishing in Style
Through the last third we were pretty low on food, our bodies were aching and we were getting on each other’s nerves more than usual.
I guess it didn’t help that I started fantasizing out-loud about how good a lasagna would be? Sorry Oli. But, like a sweet dessert to finish off the absolute roasting we’d copped, we had some mega laughs with friends from Perth joining us on the last four days of the Munda Biddi into Albany. We ate like kings!
Tom and Guy brought such a range of food, we managed to make pizza, four-mushroom miso noodles and a much needed miso soup on a rainy day. The pace slowed with the new crew, but wow, the vibe was real and we sang, danced and laughed our way along the tail end of the trip.
Lessons From The Munda Biddi
So, a few tips we’ll remember for next time now that we’ve done a little adventure touring? Get out there and ride with your gear, make new and cool biking friends (yay more people on bikes!) and froth over your steeds together! Cook yummy foods because that’ll make the kilometres wash away, bring extra tubes of butt cream, buy a good sleeping mattress and bring a second pair of knicks!
We’ll be writing up some specifics and timelined photos on our adventure instagram @grav_n_stacey. Thanks to Mattie for always providing the stoke and inspo, we love following your adventures through this rad Journal. During our ride we passed through the Wadjak, Pindjarup, Kaniyang, Wardandi, Bibelmen and Minang First Nation regions. We’d like to pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging, and appreciate that this is stolen land. It’s a privilege to roll our tyres over such a beautiful corner of the world.