January 20, 2008

TOP with Swiss Ambassador Muehlethaler + Storms

On the 17th of January we climbed a second time the Top of Australia, Mount Kosiuszko, together with the Swiss Ambassador Christian Muehlethaler, his wife Ruth, his son Karl-Ludwig and with our friends and TOPtoTOP members Tessa, Bregitte and Peter Storm.

Thanks also to the mountain village Thredbo and its YHA hostel, which made this event a success.

The Australian flag was sponsored by Gay and David Epstein. They have had a wonderful idea to support TOPtoTOP: You can order now a wool set to nit your own TOPtoTOP-7summits-reg of finest Australian wool. Order it over the internet and support with your purchase the TOPtoTOP Global Climate Expedition!

On the way back from the mountain we have had our first flat tire in Australia so far. The cause was a tooth of a Kangaroo.

On the way we met Bernard, who is recycling trash to build his house; camped in the garden of the farmer’s family Coggin where we have been waked up by the moo of their bulls. The day after we helped sheering the sheep at Jacqui William's farm from early morning till late at night.

Back in Canberra we had two radio interviews at CMS radio and were able to stay again at Werner and Gabi's place. Thanks to Sylvia from CMS radio we were able to have dinner with a coordinator of the wilderness society.

On the weekend we had a wonderful time in the park with Werner and Gabi, Sylvia, her daughter Fabienne, Tim and Louise from the Rideshop and their parents. The Rideshop helped us again fixing our bikes and sponsored Dario new shoes, because the old ones were gone after the crash! There was music, face painting, and a lot of games for the kids and a "wild" Possum:

On the Swiss Embassy we met the former Director of the Swiss Maritime Navigation Office Mr. Jean Albert Hulliger. Thanks to the hospitality of the Swiss Ambassador’s family Muehlethatler we were able to do our annual mailing and were successful with the extension of our visa. We can stay in Australia till the 14th of October 2008.

At the moment we are together with Tessa, Bregitte and Peter at Louise and Tim's place. Sabine has a blood poisoning and was in hospital. She is on antibiotics, but fells already much better. The service of the REGA was once more excellent! We hope that we can continue cycling towards Sydney tomorrow.
Posted by dario at 4:29 AM

January 27, 2008

Australia Day

Still school holidays and we enjoy the cycling back with family Storm to the boat in Sydney. Sabine is o.K. again! Thanks to Norm and Tony we were able to stay two days on the campground in Coledale.

Thanks to the Swiss Ambassador Christian Muehlethaler we got in contact with Australia - and the South Pacific Correspondent for German language media in Europe, Urs Waelterlin. After the camp on Windellema's school playground, where we met principal Rosmary Chapman again, we cycled to his farm "Wombat Creek", where we had a warm welcome and pasta. He was able to organize us an article in the Goulborn Post newspaper. We were also able to plan with his wife Christine and college teacher Bill school- and public presentations in the months who come. Urs Waelterlin made also a contact to Esther Blank from "Deutsche Welle". She has very good connections to the media in Australia and is of big help for our planed media event end of January when we arrive in Sydney.

From Wombat Creek we went further to Bundanoon, where we spent two days with our friends Andrew and Alison from the YHA. Thanks again to YHA NSW for your support!

From Bundanoon we went to the Fitzroy Falls, where we met Keith Williams. He was the first Australian who skied to the South Pool. He will visit us on Pachamama to give us more advises for the first attempt to reach Mount Vinson without a motor.
In the Kangaroo Valley we found a new technic to make a salade without any tools, plates and bowls: a normal plastic bag was enough.

At night a Wombat made its business infront our tent.

On Australia day we cycled up from Kangaroo Valley to Berry where we broke two spokes. Arnie cycled with our broken wheel on his back to Narow to fix it. We were invited to stay at his place and met also his lovely wife Christine. Finally we had a nice party with his friends to celebrate Australia Day!

Arnie is not only a great sportsman, he is also a gifted musician. Go to his website and download his latest arts.

In the Royal National Park the infromation offficiers Glen and Michele donated us fresh fruits after a very hot day. We had also a visit of Mercedes, Chantal and Seline and of famous rockstar Tom. After the park we run into Tony on SY "little Swan" we met in Samoa, Fiji, Vanuatu and New Caledonia.

Now we just arrived in Sydney at Cathrine and Lionel's house. Tomorrow we will cycle the last leg to Pachamama. At this moment we have complished exact 1500 km from the time we left our expedition boat.

Thank you very much for your comment!
Posted by dario at 6:39 AM