Day 172: 18 November – Cycling the Riesling Trail

Author: Mrs A

Location: Clare Valley

Distance cycled: 28km

Finally the sun decided to show itself in the Clare Valley with the day promising to give us no wind, and temperatures in the early 20s – hurrah! We had decided to explore some of the Riesling Trail today. The total trail is 35km long, and follows part of an old railway which was closed in the late 1980s.

We jumped on the trail from our campground and headed south. It passes through some very picturesque scenery – rolling hills of grazing land for cattle and sheep as well as vineyards.

Our first stop, Sevenhill Cellars, was in fact the first vineyard in the area in 1851, set up by the Catholic Church to provide wine for holy communion. Other vines followed but it wasn’t until the 1950s that Riesling was finally planted here – the grape the area has built its reputation on.

Sevenhill encouraged visitors to explore its grounds, which had multiple historical buildings from the 1800s and under the tasting room, steps down to the old wine cellar.

We continued on, the trail gradually going uphill most of the way (but nowhere as steep as yesterday!), before reaching a peak and heading downhill towards Watervale. There we turned off the path and headed to Crabtree Wines for a tasting. What a fabulous selection of wine and a great tasting experience in amazing scenery.

We had lunch in Watervale before turning back to camp, enjoying the downhills when they came.

It was then the car’s turn for an explore as we returned to the Sussex Squire from yesterday and Crabtree Wine to pick up a few bottles. We are now fully loaded in the caravan and have had to extend our wine cellar to under the bed. Luckily we are heading into Adelaide next week where we will have several opportunities to share a drop or two with our surrogate family members…you know who you are!

Tonight we are celebrating the warm wind free evening with a BBQ – cooking up some sardines we purchased on our travels through WA with some roasted pumpkin and salad…which wine to pair with this fine dining…? Ah decisions…decisions…

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