Going beyond the horizon for depression awareness

Alex Mollison is looking forward to the second half of his journey as he rides his bicycle from one end of Australia to the other to raise money and awareness about depression for beyondblue.

Mr Mollison made his way through Ceduna this week, stopping over on Wednesday night and leaving on Thursday morning for the latest leg of his journey, ‘A Ride beyond the Horizon’.

It began from Sydney’s Manly Beach on February 17 and he expects the trek to be completed, in Perth, in the first week of April.

“It’s a pretty amazing feeling to be on this journey,” Mr Mollison said.

“There has been good weather generally but there have been tough times going into the wind and I caught a big headwind between Port Augusta and Kimba.

“That’s the main challenge, the headwinds can really pull you back but you persevere because it’s a good cause and I think of who is supporting me.

“Once I hit Eyre Highway I got people honking and waving and that gives you a lift.

“Isolation is another issue.

“It’s just me, I carry my spare parts, in fact I changed my tyres when I got into Ceduna as I had new tyres sent here.”

Mr Mollison said a personal experience was pushing him forward to complete the journey.

“My dad suffered from depression for quite a few years and when he had it there was much more stigma around it,” he said.

“He had days where he was fine and others were he was quite down and you couldn’t talk to him.

“It’s not just for him, but for anybody who is suffering from depression and for people who have lost somebody.”

Mr Mollison said $3300 had so far been raised through various means, including a school in Mildura raising $700 from a barbecue.

Born in the United Kingdom, Mr Mollison then lived in Sydney for 20 years and Mildura for four.

He said he did most of his training in the Victorian town.

“I did my training there because it’s a great training ground, there are a lot of roads in the area like I would face along the way.

“It was also the area where the dream started, so I visited while on the journey.”

He was taken aback by the beauty of Eyre Peninsula and said he was “looking forward to hitting the Nullarbor”.

“Eyre Peninsula is pretty amazing,” he said.

“It was good to get a photo with the big galah at Kimba at the halfway point and to pass through the little towns like Minnipa, Wirrulla and Poochera, towns which are really important for the farmers.”

Mr Mollison said he had been averaging about 95 kilometres a day but would increase to 100km a day as he reached Western Australia, including some days riding close to 200km.

To donate to Mr Mollison’s cause visit www.aridebeyondthehorizon.org or A Ride beyond the Horizon on Facebook.