Day 2 | Into a southerly gale to Torquay: and the start of the Great Ocean Road

69 km | Heading west total: 177 km

The horrific devastation from Saturday’s fires is only really apparent today.

It’s not surprising the fires were uncontrollable in those hot windy conditions. It’s clear that there are real problems with people wanting to live surrounded by forest. The councils are not allowing people to remove trees near houses to reduce fire risk instead encouraging them to plant natives right up to the house.

It’s politically green up there in those hills despite the 8 year drought.

There’s discussion about controlled burns in winter not being done.

But the basic issue is that there has been 0.8mm of rain in Melbourne for January and only 1.2mm for February. There should have been over 100mm over that time.

The ground itself has really dried out. The whole parched country is ready to burn. There is no rain on the horizon for the foreseeable future which is the only thing that will slow or stop the burning. Melbourne’s water catchments are under threat.

Meanwhile I’m down at the coast with my woolly clothes and beanie on.

I hope I haven’t had my summer.