Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Boxing Evening

Got out last night too. parked-up on Centaurus, headed round to and up Rapaki about 7.40pm. made pretty good time up there cleaning the top just after 8. was definately feeling the several days of eating lots of food and chocolate tho, nearly wanting to barf at the top. then up to right round summit trail, onwards round to Vic park. not a single other cyclist on the road or trail. headed down towards the Gums in Vic, but peeled left on that doubleblackdiamond just before the trees. got down the top of it no worries, but the nana route down the gulley was totally overgrown and i slipped out the front wheel a bit in there too, but got out to skidder site then down Dazza's, new half, then turned right at the 40 footer and then down the valley tracks. out what i'll call Hanging Valley from now on, and round the Sidle track to k2 and baulked on the washout drop twice, then just rode the k2, then hoofed it down the valley. was out to Bowenvale Ave about 8.30. as i was riding back round to the car i saw my old work mate David, stopped and chatted a whiles...

Monday, December 25, 2006

xmas eve...

o went to bed early, and our car was at Joy's, so drove her jeep across back to her place and jumped on the bike and headed up Cannon Hill Cres, then on up Major HornBrook to top and then up through a Keep Out paddock that's being developed, then up through John Britten Reserve to top, then over Richmond Hill and down Capt Thomas. fantastic relatively quick climb and a lonnnnng downhill. awesome. took it pretty easy cos the dirt was just a bit moist which made the rocks a trifle interesting. all the way down. cleaned everything, pretty much. sweet way to set myself up for a xmas day feast...

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

solosinglespin

didnt think i'd get out, even ate dinner, nice simple rice, steamed veges and kofta i'd made. but, jumped on the single and headed round bottle lake. very fast, smooth spin. included for a change burwood park shortcut, and on the way back went through horseshoe lake reserve and back across burwood park. at Shirley Rd, or is it New brighton Rd, i popped over a chain, but didnt clip out in time and fell to the ground, and my cleat ripped out of the thing its screwed into! broke the metal clean off, the cleat is still fine, and i saved one bolt, but the other bolt will still have some of the metal from the shoe left on it... find one today at a bikeshop hopefully.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Tuesingleday and Sun (with a NEW (to me) trail)...

bit of a non event on wednesday. nelson picked me up with the van and in the back was his shiney newly built singlespeed. a Gary Fisher frame he picked up off tirademe for a fiddy, decked out in all the gear (minus the gears) of his old Muni Mula. nice rig. little bit lighter than the switchy, but hey, it aint steel. so, we drove out to Slumner, and headed off up Capt Thomas.. Nelson had neglected to use a chain tensioner of any sort, so pretty quick the chain started dropping off. ended up he tried taking out a full link and putting in a half link (15mins), then it was too short and we managed just to force the wheel in but it wouldnt turn, so he put the link back in (another 15mins), and rode a little bit but ended up running all the way up. it was getting pretty late so we just turned round and headed back down. a woman (in this large group of women (with a guy) who were all practising the tricky bits) said to me, "Nice Bike", and she was on 16 inch version. same cool grey colour. stopped and chatted to her about it on the way back, she loves its ride too (who wouldnt!?)

Sunday, al grabbed me and we went round to petes. matt there too. out to sumner,met upwith andrew and hubby, and then steve, tony, and steve's mate Wayne turned up. big posse!!! plan was to ride up capt thom, out to Breeze col for some track work, but at the top of the captain, ranger nick singletrack had canned the work and was doing small spot fixes with his dedicated crew. oh well. more riding less tiredness for us, yay. cleaned everything on godley, at breeze col pete matt me and al went round the walking track on the harbour side of the hill. FANTASTIC piece of track. it SO should be a bike legal track. perfect. but probably only so in the dry. soem lovely wee step ups. also, would make an awesome back-to-breeze-col trail too. next time. then round back to the others on the col, and down Anaconda. Pete was chasing me and had a nice off. i had a good run down, no scary moments. then chuffed back over the hill, coffee at cot dom and home. nice.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Two Solos, wednesday and sunday.

hot norwest day on wednesday. headed out on my own, only to be txted by Nelson half way up rapaki. but didnt matter cos i'd wanted to split early and get as much ride as possible. hell of a wind. it was howling, probably up round a hundred kph on tops. so, up rapaki, left along single, then hopped fence onto lyttelton side and rode the walking track, was somewhat out of the wind, then up road to castle, helluva wind, then castle rock to bridle path was sweet, mostly sorta sheltered, cept for one or two bits. its riding really nicely at the mo. they've put gutters in for all the worst spots from winter, so will be good to see how it holds up next year. then along summit under gondola. nearly blown over. couldnt believe the gondolas were still in use, woulda thought the wind was too much. round john britten reserve the wind making the singletrack interesting, having to dab now and then, just to stay upright. then over Greenwood, tail wind, blissful, flying. creamed it, cleaned every ounce of it, wind wasnt an issue, cos it was in the lee of the hill. bombed it down to Evans, just taking it easy tho, cruising. noticed some event coming towards evans along godley track, and down Capt Thomas. Damn. runners. a race. anyway, top bike section of captthom was free, they were coming in where it used to end, and i managed to pick a big gap between groups, and was tailing these two people for a while, then several times just held back let them go til i saw the next few coming, then i'd take off, normal pace. cleaned all the usually tricky odds and sods. not so much fun having to curb my styles tho on the lower section... then on to sumner, and home along the road, into the wind, exhausted. utterly utterly burned out.

Sunday, had yard stuff to do in morning, so did that, and then got out about 12. headed across up rapaki, rode the valley for the top section, that was interesting, dabby, tussocks, ruts... steep too. then up singletrack, round vernon, then down the Old School Bowenvale. Sweet. cleaned everything as usual, blitzed it. lovely flow. then home.

Monday, November 27, 2006

weather permitting...

woke up sunday morning to fine, only for it to start raining just as i was about to head for steve's. rang him and we decided against it. so, instead, i jumped on the singlespeed and headed out to bottle lake. had a good spin round there, wasnt too wet at all. the hills would have been greasy with it, and rocks and roots might have gotten a bit nasty, but really, it wasnt all that bad. steve's excuse for piking was that he'd had a nasty headache all saturday... anyway, bottle lake, was fun. the singly is just perfect for round there. going as fast as you can the whole way. did a loop out left to nearly-spencer park, then when i got back to the carpark it was only an hour since i'd left home, so i headed back in, left, and out to beach track then south and back towards carpark, over the new trails and landfill, opposite direction to most recent jaunts out there... still got home by 10.30. was wet, drizzly rain, the whole spin. not that cold tho.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

as usual, a sunday and a tuesday...

Sunday, tootled round to Pete's. Matt, him and me drove over to tony's, and we headed up Worsley's, round and down Kennedy's. all clay and dirt surfaces were greasy, making it a pretty tough climb up worsles, and making a few of the croc corners a bit sketchy... pete also had heaps of issues with flat tires, about 3, one at home, one half way up road, one at top of seal. i patched on on the go, and that was the eventual tube he ran home...

tuesday, i biked over to nelson's then to tony's then up worsles again, this time cleaning the whole thing, was good. checked out the whole of the illegal jumpy track, rode and walked up it. then cleaned the top, up marley's, down flying nun to kiwi, tony peeled off down dyers, and n and me carried on up to top of vic park, around the summit trail to bowenvale track and down that. the super steep sketchy rocky stuff was all sweeeeet, fun down, and out. massive group of cyclista at bottom of bowenvale and not a one said hello. buncha snobby wankers, may as well be roadies...

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

tuesday worsleysoutherly

Hot norwest day, til it turned southerly, which was just as i left home for Nelson's, then onwards to the hills. no Al, no rain, and no hooking up with the Angrywad crew. stronnnnnng head wind all the way across town to Worsleys, and then it blustered us about as we rode up there. discovered, but didnt ride, a piece of 'illegal' trail, with a fence jump and a wall ride (which looked shonky) off to one side a quarter of the way up the offroad. cleaned everything all the way to the top, where i blew it, spun out on a rock a couple of metres from the end. rode the rest tho, didnt walk at all. next, up to top of Marleys, stopped for a bit of a feed and a view, the low dark stormy looking clouds all ominous looking, glued to the top of Herbert and Bradley, just above the packhorse hut. then on down the flying nun, yippeeeee, tailwind then headwind then tailwind as we maneuvered the switchbacks. then bombed it down below dyers, tailwind pushing, making for silent smooth flowy riding. then up through vic, along the singletrack before the skidder site, i hadnt been up that for ages, then down Dazza's, down into the gulley, rode lines in there i hadnt ridden for a while too, then round the side, into the trees again, where i nearly bailed rutted in three evil parallel treeroots that were hidden just over a short vert drop, then took the tough line on the Washout (bottom of k2), then flew out the rest. awesome tailwind down bowenvale ave and home... fun!!!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

singly thursday, and a post-too-much-chardonnay sunday...

Al and me met Alister at C1 on thursday, me and Alister on the singlespeeds. and lo and behold, James (tv1 cameraguy), roly, jeff and another dude were hangin' out waiting to ride too. the three of us headed off before them cos they were muckin about a bit. expected to see them somewhere on rapaki. Alister flew up rapaki. he must be on a 32 16 i think, which was noticeably spinnier, making for much easier climbing. so, anyway, i cleared nearly all of rapaki, just walking a small section of the top of the straight. then Jeff and James showed up while we were sitting at the top. but roly was miles back so james took off back down for him. and the three of us carried on round the single track. saw another black dmr swtchbck further round the single. good spin round the singletrack, i even cleaned the first two switchbacks above rapaki. then down through vic, the gums, tootled along to top of cool runnings again, which was rather sticky, freshly dug dirt and a few days of rain will do that. then out the bottom, flying the whole way. nice ride.

then today, sunday, round to petes, drove out to scumner, checked out Pete's new bike for first time, very nice lightweight yeti 575, beautiful chris king hubs and headset. X9 sram and xtr kit all over it, and juicy carbons. sweeeeeet. lighter than the switchback... up capt thom, me hung over as too much Hurunui River Chardonnay last night, ugh... then out godley, cleaned heeeaaps of the first section. nice run all the way, steve had an off trying to be cheeky by cutting a corner to get in front of me. good flight down the Anaconda, tho i was losing it a bit on some of the corners. hoofed it back over from taylors to a coffee, a ginger beer, and a choccy chip cookie at DotCom...

Monday, November 06, 2006

sunny sunday sanguine sideswipe smash

Expecting to see just Steve and Pete, arrived at Steves, 9.30 sunday, to find Matt and Tony and Steve and milan. no pete, kidney infection, no good...

Hot norwest beautiful sunny day. headed up Rapaki, swapped with Steve briefly to try the Nomad on the hill... sure is cushy, but felt to me like it had a flat tire, just the cush. man, you'd get lazy sittin in an armchair like that all the time. he didnt like the rough ride of the hardtail so we swapped back promptly. on we tootled up rapaki, Tony doing very well. cruise cruise, to the top. waited for Steve, then off to the left. along singletrack, feeling pretty good. then along road, then bombed down Castle Rock singletrack to bridle, keeping a healthy distance between steve and me. he's certainly faster on the technical downs on the Nomad than he ever was on the Scott. then along summit road to John Brittan's reserve, round the singletrack in there. seems to be a bit neglected by bikers, not a lot of evidence of a lot of use.

then onto the Richmond Hill singletrack... yummy. climbed up nicely from the road to high point. down to the trees for a quick feed and drink and rest. then, into the descent. flying. steve hung on a bit but i made some space between us, i was creaming the whole trail, just flying, round the hill over the slats, past the tree to the little climby bit, and stopped just before the downhill to rest and wait for the others. steve cruising up first. then not too far, ie, a lot less than he would have been in the past, behind him was Tony. then matt and then milan. i heard later that both matt and milan had been over their bars, low speed...

then on down. me workin' to keep steve and black-betty off my tail, i was pleasantly surprised by a white helium baloon wafting by, about 5 m off the ground, just quietly floating by... anyway, on wards down, switchbacks left, right left right over through the fence, into the wee valley, around and towards the bit that used to have a nasty off camber drop to the left which was fixed not that long ago, i come flying into it, see its all rutted, then lose it. barely keeping control i'm all askew falling falling, smaaacckkk scraape into the bank, clay and rocks. points of contact, shin, knee, elbow and two random bruise scrapes in my inner thighs that must be from the bike. YOW! but i leapt straight back on the bike and kept it rolling. a bit sore, slowly at first, then a bit better, steve catching me a bit now. then on down, out to the road where i stopped and had a good look at my wounds. nice bit of dust and blood. the others all eventually arrive and we chatted a bit, but then i realised i was seizing up so off we went again, down the Capt Thomas. this time i was a little more careful, but my balance was a wee bit off, making for one VERY close call in the second of the rock sections. cleaned every bit of it, including all the bits i used to baulk on, thankfully, and steve did too, for the first time ever. awesome run down, even rode the fence/stile gap which is nice and wide now. and on down to Dot Com. coffee and laughs comparing wounds to two other bikers in there that day sporting similar scrapes and bruises to me. cruise home, arriving just after 1.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Singlespeed Heck

Singlespeed Heck, cos it really wasnt quite as bad as hell...

Twas a good ride last night. I've swapped the Mary bars off the geared switchback onto the singlespeed switchback (involving a new rear cable and outer, reusing the old rear cable and outer on the front). this was my first ride with them on the singlespeed, which i was on cos i thought we were meeting fellow singlespeeder Alister. But he had crossed wires and thought we were riding thursday, so didnt show, so, ended up being me, Al and Nelson, and then these other two guys who happened to be meeting at C1 as well, who Nelson has ridden with on the HQ shop rides, Roland and Jeff (and actually were in the group the other week when my pedal broke). anyway, we all tootled across to rapaki, met another guy on the way (tv1 cameraman who was also on the illfated broken pedal ride), and piled up the hill. i was good to go for a while, cleaning the road happily with Al, then hitting the trail fine, cruising to first gate, where i over took some people and one of them said, astoundedly, "*gasp* singlespeed!" I was good for a while, but then i blew my energy a about half way between Roger's Track and the Manuka, so i walked a little bit, much to the joy of the others, who said things like, "Oooh! Look at all my gears, i think i'll change down! ah thats better" Then i got back on and gasped and struggled til the flat bit where i picked up the pace and got my breath back. with a good run up on the straight i made it 3/4s of the way up it and had to get off and walk again, feeling a severe lack of energy... still made it to the top in pretty good time to the others waiting.

they went off round to the left and back, and i made a start on the singletrack to the right, walking up the switchbacks, then riding, then walking again from top of farmtrack, off piste to the top of those next two switchbacks. then i waited. and waited and waited. finally, nelson hove into view, shortly followed by the rest, and from then on i was in my element, pushing them all hard, all the way round to the sugarloaf saddle... the singlespeed absolutely sings around the singletrack. from there, nelson and i lost the others completely, we were hummin'!

then down through the gums, and did cool runnings. personally, i liked it in the old days when it was all gnarley and rooty and technical... but yep, i'll concede, it is fun. we all stopped while this guy (who was riding in a different group we kept seeing) on a Felt (7 inches in rear, 6 up front) did that wooden structure drop...twice. roland filmed it. should be on their website, which is www.angrywad.com . then out the gulch, round the sidle, down 'the washout' and out the valleybottom. speeeedy. love the way the singlespeed just floats over everything, i'm very impressed by its handling.

then rode home with Al, with a DODGEY incident with this young C*NT in a car who came flying up behind us on Eastern Tce, and practically forced us off the road at the intersection with Tennyson St. little shit, wanted to smack his car up. i told him what for, and we gave him evils the rest of the way along Eastern, and he pulled over and stopped half way along. Al gave him a silly wave as we departed...

Monday, October 30, 2006

Hanmerations

found myself in hanmer over the weekend, arrived late friday night. the bike (geared) was accompanying me too, sooo...

Saturday morning, bout 10 headed out, mp3 soundtrack consisting of Milanese, the new DJShadow, Coco Solid, a couple of Pavement tracks, and Deaf in the Family, on random.

road around to and up Chatterton's Valley. grunted up the Link Track, grannied up past the pylon, keeping the nose down, ass right forward on the seat, huffin and chuffin, cleaned it and proceeded to enjoy the downhill through the pines around followed by the short climb to Jack's Pass Rd. Next section, the downhill on the Tank Track. beautiful, a little rutted at top, but otherwise in supreme condition. then back to Pawsons, roll down to the Yankee Zephyr. another granny geared climb to top, then the swoopy fun downhill, with Pavement's lyrics "i'm weavin'" very aptly backing my sweeper followed by sweeper followed by sweeper down, cross Pawsons, onto Swamptrack, right down it and around back to road, then small climb up, down to Timberlands, grunt up that, middle ring i think, to Jolliffes Skidder site. up Jolliffes saddle track, cleaning all the switchbacks on the way down to the first Dog stream bridge, then flew all the way down to second bridge, one close call where i locked up in some gravel towards some trees. somehow managed to survive. crossed the lower bridge and found the entrance to the detox, up that, and down, my first time on this trail, one nice rock drop midway down. then back up MacIntyre's rd to Dog Stream, down that, up Jolliffes Rd, then out up and down the Red Rocks trail, fantabulous, then back had a nose in at the flat forest tracks, decided against them, and headed back to house. 2 hours. total alt, 740m, longest up only 190m.

Sunday morning. same soundtrack. up Jacks Pass Rd, down tank track, up Yankee Zephyr, and down, yay, then before lower Swamp track, peeled up the Majuba trail, which descends quite nicely and spits you out at bottom of Timberlands. up that. then out Red rocks again. then down DogStream all the way down to the campground, back through town, to tidy house.

all good.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Monday and then Little Akalala

Rode with Nelson on Monday after i'd gotten my pedals back. we rode across to and up Worsley's. the body bag got the better of me, mind you, we'd been pushing the envelope by riding the most technical lines we could actually ride all the way up, so that was fun. then up marleys, down to kiwi, blitzed that, awesome. then up road to top of Vic, round summit trail, all the climbs taxing me heavily, but i was fine on the downs and flats. then down Bowenvale, cleaned all the trickiest. funny, i always clean them when i'm with Nelson, but often bail when i'm not... anyway, bottom of valley, and home across town. good spin, couple hours.

Weekend, lonnnng weekend at little ak. went over thursday night, with the singlespeed. got a ride in on saturday, beautiful hot norwest day, stunning, rode up the road to Chorlton, then up View Hill Rd. Walked from "the crow's nest" for a while, then rode and walked a couple more times. all the way to the top gate. fantastic views of the Kaikouras and Brighton beach and chch coastline in general, not to mention the hillsides surrounding l.ak. then turned and the descent began. speedy, lots of off piste following cattle or sheep trails which parallel the track. the tuck it in and fly down the road into the bay. nice. dunno how long i was up.

then sunday Andrew W. came over with his wife and two kayaks and bike. so we took off and rode exactly the same ride. he'd done the Wharfdale the day before, in appalling conditions, so was a little sore from that, and crashing, but made it all the bits i made on the singly. same ride, all the way up to the gate, and back. the boneyards of totara stumps and logs up there are stunning. was overcast and cooler easterly when we did it...

off to hanmer this weekend.

Monday, October 16, 2006

pedal disaster... ish

tuesday last, i headed to HQ to join Nelson and Craig and some others at 6pm on a 'shop' ride. we decided to head up Worsley's, so we all headed down Colombo and round the Heathcote. along the river, towards hackthorne road my right pedal started to feel really weird, like wonky, i thought, this isnt right... and kept riding. then opposite Princess Margaret's hospital the bloody thing broke off, leaving this short stub behind. the actual axel had fatigued and broken... so, i turned and limped home, and as it was only 6.35 when i got home i decided to take the singlespeed out to bottle lake, so i headed out there, on the way seeing the result of a ute pulling out in front of a motorbike, just up the road on North Parade, (i'd heard the sirens 5 minutes before i left home), they were loading the biker onto a stretcher, he was a good 5 metres from the ute, his bike had left a big bike shaped dent over the front wheel...
anyway, after that had a great ride, spinning spinning spinning, pushing the limits of my tires on the corners, out along the beach a bit, then back in, then out towards Spencer, when my right hand pedal started to feel a bit wonky. i thought, naah, surely not.. but sure enough, i was cruising along a section of singletrack and wooop, the pedal fell off, same side, broken in exactly the same place. WHAT ARE THE ODDS!? twice in one day??? so, i started limping back, by now my shoe is starting to get a bit rough and both legs are sore from their respective innefficiencies, the left from pushing too much, the right from having to constantly reposition on the turning stub. i rang tracey who was ont he way home from dinner at a friend's and she came picked me up, mind you, i'd still managed to ride all the way down Burwood Rd, almost to the river...
so, 2 crankbros pedals broken, both same side, so i was bikeless. took them into Craig at HQ the following day, paid for the courier to the distributor, and yesterday, sunday, got them back... life time warranty. nice one.

Friday, October 06, 2006

RailTrail, and UP bowenvale (oldschool)

Last sunday, had a go on the Motukarara-Little River Rail Trail... Met my folks out at Motukarara, us with Otis, and were supposed to meet T's mum too. her jeep was there but no her, so we assumed we'd catch her up, and as there was no cellphone reception round there we couldnt get hold of her. cellphone reception was very intermittent all the way along there.
so, off we went, nice slow pace, as my olds arent overly bike fit. about 4kms in dad realised he'd left his bag behind, so off i spun, me on my singley, back to his car. calculated that if they're travelling half my speed onwards, they'd be 4kms on when i got back to where i left them, and another 2kms on when i got to the point they were then i got back to my starting point, and theoretically i should have caught them at the 8km mark, as for every km i made, they were travelling half a km. as it was, i probably made them at about the 7km mark, and we stopped at 8 km mark, Kaituna Quarry, for lunch. No sign of Joy, so they turned back and i went on to look for her. i spun and spun and spun, left Lake Ellesmere behind, rounded Birdlings Flat and headed towards Lake Forsyth. called Joy's cel and she's sitting in Little River having a feed. i said, i'll join you, and txt'd T telling her to leave without me i'd ride back to vehicle with Joy and get a ride. pedalled on for another couple kms towards Joy, and was almost at Catons Bay, which is the end of the trail and from where you have to ride the road up to Little R. Then suddenly it dawned on me, i had dad's car key in my pocket from when i went back for his bag... ugh. so, i txtd tracey, hoping she'd get the msg, and rang Joy to say i was turning back, sorry, and i turned back and hauled... now, i'm around 19kms from the cars, have already pedalled that 19, plus the 8 return earlier, on my singlespeed running a 2 to 1 ratio. mental thoughts, one was 'for every rotation i'm travelling approximately 2m, so, how many rotations in 10 seconds, how many in a minute, x60, how many kph, how long am i gonna be doing this for... and also, was wishing the wind was stronger and i had a sail... wind assist on railtrails is somethign that should be considered seriously... anyway, made it back to the others, about 15 or 20 minutes after them, is how slow they were going. we never did see joy either.

cruddy weather during week, so last night, thurs, drove across, parked at end of Bowenvale Ave, and headed up the Bowenvale track... boy, she's sure steep. with gears, granny, pedalled, walked, pedalled, walked, pedalled, walked, pedalled, walked, pedalled, pedalled, walked, pedalled, walked, pedalled, sunset was at 7.31 (daylight savings now! yay!!!) so i gave myself til 7.25 to get to summit trail, or i'd turn back downhill. made it, so i bombed round the summit into the southerly and then down through vic park, through the gums, down Dazza's, down through the valley track from there, out round the sidle, down and out to car. total round trip, 1 hour. nice. home in time to finish putting O to bed and for T to go to movie with Joy.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

branching legs... mongomery, singles, rapaki

well, i had a nice wee ride last night. up rapaki, overtook a few riders, then up onto Montgomery Spur, up and round its farmtrack. AWESOME views from up there, feels like you're on top of the world, probably cos its a view we're not used to. then up onto the very top of it, to the trig. quite a few hawks up there. and the wind was howling... and there were sheep with lambs, but at first i couldnt see any lambs, but as i got closer, i saw them sheltering amongst tussocks. With the sun getting low and orange, and the easterly haze, and the wind and the big view, it was pretty spectacular. two lambs saw me, maaaa-ed at me, and then started to chase me, so i took off, flew down off piste over rocks and onto the track again. thought about heading along the ridge, above rapaki, under the pilons, but realised that section IS private land. so headed down onto main track and up the normal way to top.

turned left onto singletrack, just the first section out to end and back to top of rapaki, then continued on along singletrack up to top of Farmtrack, then turned around and rode back down singletrack to top of rapaki again. Then, down rapaki flat tack, full tilt. (one stupid woman runner at the bottom of the straight (me doing probably 60 or 70k?) wouldnt move off the packed part of the track, forcing me to cut pretty close to her to avoid getting into the loose stuff, ugh). At middle gate i saw a guy heading down ahead, just disappearing over far corner, so i chased, caught him just after the lone Manuka, overtook him amongst a bunch of people coming up.

my line was smoooooth all the way down, had the groove on, the flow, i was FLYING... quite a bit of traffic too, bikers and runners and walkers, i must have looked a sight, flying down hill like that, spittin' gravel out under my tires as i drifted round the corners, pedalling on the straights...

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

sunday CaptThom/WorkerBee/Anaconda. Tuesday Mcleans

sunday Andrew picked me up early, and we met steve at sumner. steve with his Nomad... up Capt Thomas, steve a wee bit slow, due to heavy bike and still getting used to it. me on the geared switchback.

At the top due to meet Ranger Nick for maintenance session on the trails. he turned up and a couple other people too, so we rode the Godley singletrack out to where we were working. cleaned more than i expected to, but still didnt make it up the roughest section of rockiness... great spin out to worksite.

work site included a fall-line rut that was just being exacerbated by water flow and people rutting it, so we did a big S curve that ran across it. basically grubbed a line into the dirt, little bit of banking on a two bends. put in an hour and a bit of work and hit the trail again, on out to breeze col and down Anaconda. rocked that. riiiight up on the berms, flying the jumps. awesome. then good ride out of Taylors, down to coffee at DotCom, lift home.

Tuesday night, Steve picked me up, we drove out to McLeans Island to the new Mtnbike park. it officially opens on Sunday to the public. but the trails are all finished, so we figured we're just doing everybody a favour by marking out the lines... besides, plenty of people have been riding the new track. its pretty sweet. nicely made, very easy tho, not exactly challenging. i took the singlespeed. met Andrew, Hubby, and Mark out there. had a good spin, 12 kms loop. some ups and downs, on the stopbanks. most corners have a nice berm on them. nothing technical tho. good beginners track. i prefer bottle lake, except for the sand. have to take T and O round it, also mum and dad sometime...

gonna head out tonight too. cos only did one lap last night and it wasnt really enough...

Friday, September 22, 2006

post work pre daylight savings...singlist...

Dan and me left work at 4.30. Me on the singlespeed. spun across to Halswell Quarry Park, 10kms, and hit the Crocodile. i made it round the first couple of switchies, but walked the next couple. then beautiful section thru the trees and down into valley, then up the switchback section, walked most of them, rode a couple. rode most of the track up, there were one or two bits, especially the switchies, that got me tho. Dan did really well. then walked the first straight of Kennedy's up to tanks, rode next bit to top of singletrack, swooped down to gate, then rode 90% of that big long straight from the gate, levelled off so pedalled again, pretty much all the way up to next gate, then the hell bit began. Dan cleaned it all, which is great for a novice. said it helped that i'd given him the tip of butt forward on seat, and chin near your bars, gettin' down low for the steepest climbing... i walked the whole steep bit, no way is 38:18 gonna clean that...

then pedalled round Summit Rd, up Worsley's, walked up first gravelly section of Marley's, then creamed it down the flying nun, and on down to the kiwi, smooth, flowy. i love the lightness and quietness and springiness of the singley. its a dream, it just floats over rough stuff, no harsh bottoming out. got to Kiwi about 6.10, so, with 11 minutes to sunset, flew down Old Dyers track, and got to the road crossing about sunset, headed up into Vic, cleaned all that track again, then up to skidder, down Dazza's, the new section nearly pitch black, fun!, and then bypassed the section below the 40footer into the valley, round and down K2. and out. flashies home. spin spin spin. nice. excellent ride, was 2 hours 15 from work to bottom of bowenvale. sweet. dan enjoyed it, bailed a couple of times. i stayed on.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

sunday just gone, evening

drove over to Nelson's, we hit the road, across to rapaki, good pace up, but i was feeling stuffed, then around first section of singletrack to top of farmtrack, but light was definately gonna run out on us, so hit the road round to where singletrack crosses. then we headed down Bowenvale (i seem to have been frequenting that a lot lately). i noticed as we were descending that the city's streetlights were on, but we could still see fine. i cleaned all the bits i sometimes dont, and had a swoopy great descent. then we rode back to N's with our flashy lights flashing...
Hoping to get a singlespeed ride in tomorrow (thurs) night...

Steve's gotten his Nomad. Havent had the pleasure of seeing it yet, but will do on Sunday... working bee planned, probably godley head.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

explorations...

home off work cos of a sick Otis, in the afternoon my folks came by and so i took advantage of them and took off for a quick ride, because T is off to Wellers for a few nights, and it was the last chance i'd have for a ride before sunday afternoon, and the weather turned to rain after dark so its just as well i wasnt out night riding, which had been the plan... so. anyway, took the geared switchbacker across and up FarmTrack, and as i passed Roger's Track (to Dry Bush Track) i thought, 'why not'... so, tight tight singletrack, walking track really, up the valley between Vernon spur and Huntsbury, some rideable, some walking, til the last bit to a funny shelter they've built on the hillside, walking carrying bike up to it. trail continued, but i'd had enough and so carried the bike on my shoulders and wheeled, back up to the Farmtrack. still below the pylons and middle gate!!! continued up there, onto summittrack, right, along, over the road, along and then Down down down the Bowenvale. lovely riding.

funny to be on the geared bike, as i was leaving home, lifting it out the front door i couldnt believe how heavy it was. which, compared to the singlespeed it is. also, riding up in low low gears didnt feel right after all those standing in the pedals cranking rides...

anyway, down bowenvale, met a guy on a 29er Salsa softtail (nice) riding UP it! nice. i'd thought i might ride up it last night, but piked and took farmtrack instead... anyway, headwind home across from bottom of Bowenvale valley, round trip around 1 and half hours...

Monday, September 11, 2006

Sunday morning, Hill, single...

annnnnd, another ride on the singlespeed. i'm getting hooked methinks. mainly from the challenge of it. i know i can easily cruise up the hill on the geared Switchie, but can i make it on the single? well, now. yes. i did it. all but 20 or 30 m around the top corner on the Rapaki. and it wasnt nearly as much of a grunt as the last time.

so... here's how the ride rolled. spun over to steve's sunday morning, just Andrew, Steve and me, headed up rapaki, turned right onto summit trail, i walked the hairpins and the little steeper bit then rode to top of farmtrack, then walked up to top of next hairpins, and rode the rest of the way. we cruised the summit trail, the 38:18 is perfect up there, before heading below the road, met a dude on an Azonic Steelhead, also singlespeed, who said, "good to see another real bike"... his had massive tripleclamp Fox forks on it, was one sweet ride. he was gonna head down the Nat's track. chased him for a bit and i caught up to him but then backed off to wait for the others. smooth riding all the way round, we got to top of Vic park and decided to head for Kiwi, up summit a bit and do lower Marley's and old Dyer's... again, 38:18, excellent. major slip (that'd been graded) just near the end of that, dyers pass road down to one lane with a traffic light... mucky smelly track. then up through vic park- really thought i'd blow the hairpin on the way up there, but cleaned it, veeeerrrry slooowwwly, then up to the skidder site, over and down to "My Favourite" which, as mentioned last week has berms and yumps in it now. then out gulley sidle track to K2 and out bottom. nice bit of work done down there since last week, repairing up the damage done by the slips and floods of last month... across town home. loads of cop action, on the way to, and on the way home from, the ride.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

sulphuryellowbottlelakespeedsingle.

spinny spinny out to the forest after work, bout 5pm. hit the carpark, headed in and turned right, cos i'd not explored how the new area on the old dumpsite had connected...

well, after crossing the sealed road you spin through the now quite tall (and dark within) forest towards the dump mound. and lo and behold, it connects directly across the cross road you used to head toward Bower Ave on. so, a bit of a pump up the hill and along the top and weeeeeeeee down into the edge of a good sized stand, then into the duney burned bit i'd explored to previously from the other end. then through, over the whoopee jump, and down the standard road towards the beach, then along the coast trail, then into the maintrails again past the dump fence. then when you have the option of turning right to go to Spencer Park or left to go back to the Waitikiri end, i took the right option cos it was closed last time i was out there, new trail, which eventually connects/becomes the old trail. where i caught up to KT (an ex) and her beau, had a wee chat, then took off again back round toward the main entrance, spin spin spin. excellent gear for the forest. just knuckle in and pedal pedal pedal.

Everything is yellow out there, from the pollen. amazing. saw clouds of it blowing off the trees as we flew in from Vegas last week.

back out and on the road home. flashies needed, bout half six. then home, quick wipe down and change, and onto townie to get to dinner at C's at bottom end of Wilson's Rd. 10 minutes later, bottle of beer in my hand, and then wine and a delicious chinese poached wild pork on steamed veges and noodles. YUM.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

singlespeeeed

spun across to bottom of rapaki this morning on the Switchback (18inch) singlespeed. met andrew, and off up we headed. fuark thats hard work. i cleaned all the way to end of trees, then up past first corner, then just blew and walked for a bit, then rode a bit, then walked a bit, then on the flattened out bit i rode then made it half way up the straight of the last slope, walked to just round the bend then rode the rest of the way. haaaaarrrd. very very hard. anyway, got on the singletrack, walked the first switchback section and then hopped on again, round to top of Farmtrack, walked up, off piste, next section to just after the upper switchbacks, then rode rest of way. from there on, it was a blast on the singletrack. slightly faster than the usual pace round the singletrack, and you hold speed more and it is just fantastically quiet. no chainrattle or clunk chunk of the gears... exquisite. blew a spoke at top of lavaflow, didnt realise it til a bit further round... wobbly back wheel. then down through gums, down to 'my favourite' which has all changed, new berms and jumps and new lines all the way through, then out valley to k2 and out. messy down bottom of valley, there'd been slippages and trees down in that last month of storms. then said my good bye to Andrew and headed down Colombo for a couple of spokes. fixed them up this afternoon... work tomorrow. will clean more of rapaki next time. an excellent work out, upper and lower body. gonna buff me up real good.

Friday, September 01, 2006

ROTORUA, 2006 UCI... and riding...

Where to start????

Vegas. The Worlds. Boxed up the Switchback and flew up Thursday last week. Watched some trials, downhill practice, and then the big event of the day, 4X on Friday. Saturday was the DH day, in the am when we got there we skylined up to top and walked rest of way to the start gate, then perched at various positions all the way down the course, watching the first drop from the start for a while, then the Kia Kaha jump, then down into the Larches, which was an INSANE section, then further and further down as the day progressed, to end up next to the Wall ride for the last few riders, seeing them hurtling past, inches away at probably 70 kph was amazing. then sunday was the XC, women in the morning, where we were positioned for their last little bit before the finish, and then afternoon the mens, We started up near the top of the course, in the wide open section then made our way down the trails again. all very good...

then, monday, round to Waipa Mill entrance to the Mtnbike park in Whakarewarewa. Tracks we hit first session: the Repco, the Creek, the vetta, Challenger, Diamondback, sidewinder, the Grinder, and i'm bummed i missed the Rosebank... took time out for lunch, then after chatting with Jeff Anderson(Jeffson), of kiwibikes he suggested we ride up the tarawera road and up hill road and down Hot X buns etc... so, took his advice, and did it. hot x buns, hot, then B rude not 2, and pig track, which strangely spat us out on Nursery road so we just followed that up and out the Exit.

tuesday, drove beautiful roads out to Murupara, then on to Minginui, and Whirinaki, brand new track, purpose built, very very very fun downhill sections, but mostly it needs work, packing down firming up... awesome country tho. north island Kahikatea and Tawa forest.

wednesday, back into Whakarewarewa, up to top of Gunna Gotta, down A trail, up Tickler, along Link(?) road to Hill road, up up up Moerangi road, top to Billy T, down Chesnut links to rollercoaster, then chopsuey, springroll and the other one. then down B rude not 2 and nelson and me went up Lions Trail, looped about in the sidewinder again then out the Exit/Rat/NDo trails... sweeeeeet. all up, only did B rude not 2 twice, all the rest once, and probably had 9 hours total of riding in there. thats pretty impressive. you'd have to cover the porthills and bottle lake to get something similar here. and still there was stuff in whakarewarewa we could have done. and i'd so love to do some of those trails again and again and again...

will fill in these details at a later date, by updating...

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

wet week, singlespeed, nice weather, sunday ride, snow, VEGAS...

aannnnnd another week off. more rain, devastating destruction of the hills, slips etc... firstly, took posession of my singlespeed. DMR Switchback, 18 inch, with my old marzocchi forks, titec bars, some cheap tektro brakes, second hand wheels, and a bunch of goodstuff that Kris put on for me. have spun it a little around river, tweaked positioning of seat etc for comfort, still one or two tweaks to do. might run Freud with it this evening after work.

so, sunday, nice mild norwest day. spun to Pete's, drove to sumner, rode up Evans Pass Rd on account of there being Track Closed signs on Capt Thomas (which wasnt stopping runners...). then hit the singletrack out to Godley. Cleaned more of the first section that i expected to, but still blew it on the worst rocks. cleaned pretty much the whole rest of it. not bad nick the first few kms. was round on the flatter grassier bits, looking down into taylors that the trail's a mess. mud mud mud mud, near those boardwalk bits. black sticky grassy mud amongst tussocks. then the downhill from that flatter area to the first col was SO rutted as to be impossible to keep
upright on without having the feet out on either side. then i was on a good roll til i got a snakebite pinchflat. bang! fiss fiss fiss fisssss fisssssssssss... jumped off and ran the rest of the way down to the col. slipped in my new tube, and we all rode on. (i patched the snakebitten tube yesterday, it had two biiig splits in it). the next section was really good til the last bit down to the Breeze Col. then up and over the last hill, cleaned most of that too, down to the loo's and trees. very mucky down the last section of that too. then back round the single below the road to Breeze, then down Anaconda. i ROCKEd it. it was so flowy and smooth. bombed it. riiiight up the sides of the berms. then over Taylors, down through Nicholson, to Dot Com for coffees... excellent ride.

now its snowed again last night (monday) and the porthills are covered. they look beautiful, but now the tracks will be saturated again for another week or more... not to worry, we leave thursday for Rotorua, WORLD CHAMPS!!! and will watch Friday Saturday Sunday, and ride monday tuesday wednesday, Whakarewarewa, Whirinaki, Craters of the Moon, next week before flying back again on thursday... Switchie is pretty much packed in a box, ready to fly.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Saturday, super fine.

a week off, partly due to crapola weather, with 130mm of rain on tuesday alone, followed by a few days of fine... got out finally saturday afternoon, cos i werent gonna make sunday morning with the boys. A beautiful beautiful day, sunny, mild... hauled it across town to rapaki, up that, with its juicy scoured out ruts, hit the singletrack, walked the worst mud affected area, just above the shallow pond above the lower switchies, then rode the rest. holding together well, not much splatter at all. round the next section below the road, still the trail was good then off pisted it down through the tussocks following sheep trails to top of the oldschool bowenvale. had my headphones on, mp3player on random, mixing up Burial, new Fourtet's DJKicks, and Tunng's newest. weird mix of dark ethereal atmosphere, folk, and fourtetmixed beats/electronica/soul/80's synth... anyway, a good soundtrack to ride by. as i was descending the 4by switchbacks, a southerly whipped up real good. spittiness from the ominous cloudcover, rolling over the tops and blasting me down the 4by track, practically shunting me to a standstill when the switchbacks turned into it. thought it was gonna get worse so i didnt hang about. hit the singletrack sidle flying, there were areas like snowdrifts of clay, from where all that rain had pulled it out of the ground and washed it down hill. amazing. one set of tracks had passed before me, i wonder who, i wonder when. anywho, out to the bottom, with some treachery down the tunnel-eroded clay section at the bottom then onto the valley track, which was a mess. big slumpy slurries of mud all over that lower section, it was them that covered me in muck, not any of the rest of my ride... then tail wind all the way home, me thinking it was gonna chase me across town, but by Wilson's Rd it was still just hanging on the hills...

Rained a bit saturday night, then we had torrential rain all sunday night and monday. with snow on monday up there, so the trails are gonna be closed down for at least another week of it...

Yay, word from Kris is bike is ready. AND i scored some Mallets for $40. so i'm good to go, singlespeeeeeeeeeed. s'gonna be fun fun fun, which is what its all about !

Sunny and fine wednesday, should be drying out them tracks...

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

drizzly crashville mud and blood.

Sunday morning, rode over to Steves, tired as after a bit of a night before and only about 5 hours sleep... Steve, Pete, Andrew, Tony and me, up rapaki, and turned right, all good, got foggier and wetter as we went higher, and was starting to get muckier as we travelled around the tops. single track was all good, with the technicality of the slick rocks and mud covered tires getting the better of us occasionally, resulting in the odd dab... down to the kiwi, then up the road to top of Worsley's and down. started down the Body Bag (top of Worsley's) and my tire instantly started picking up dirt, til it was an inch thick, offering NO traction, i got rutted, front wheel washed out, i held it for a second then went down hard on my front, landing on my chest. nice. got up, tried to get going again and down i went again... classic. the worst bit over, i managed to hold on the rest of the way down. was a fantastic trip down, so greasy, and sketchy. just picking lines in the bottoms of ruts and interesting angles, trying not to wash out. blood mixing with mud running down my leg from two points on my right knee. we made a pact to go all the way down the tarmac part of worsley's road OFF road, found some sweet wee bits of riding too, and once at the bottom grabbed some muffins from Coffee Culture and headed round to Tony's for coffee-style-drink (ie, instant)... then Pete and me booked it across town, me exhausted, and mucky, home.

Tuesday now, and we've had torrential rain overnight, with blustery conditions. soaked to the skin into work today, and head wind all the way. This is gonna screw the tracks again...

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

couple rides. one with a trailside fix, and folks for tea.

monday night, having not ridden since that last ride, i took joy's jeep across to bowenvale ave and then biked round Centaurus to rapaki, and up rapaki.

all going good, until i got onto the flat section riding across that and my gears shifted weirdly, then wouldnt shift properly, cable all slack as i tried to change up to get up the hill straight. stopped, and noticed frayed and snapped cable at rear derailleur. pulled the outers out, unscrewed the barrel adjuster, and found i couldnt budge the cable out of adjuster... damn. fiddled and fiddled, tweaked and pushed and pulled, to no avail. finally realised i could use the derailleur cable clamp to hold it, then slid the adjuster. then, disconnected the middle section of outer from the top tube cable mount, which gave me a bit of slack, then hooked it all up and i was away. the shifting wasnt particularly good, and i found it was a bit jumpy in the gears i wanted for climbing, but it was fine for downhill and back round the roads to the car... haha, not a problem i would have had had i been on a singlespeeeeeed...

tuesday, big day, two presentations which always freak me, so, hit the road at about 5.20, to steves for exchange of The Collective for Roam, then up rapak, round summit, down thru vic to ma'n'pas... where T and O were for dinner. all up a very sweet ride. only mud i encountered was in back of the top cashmere houses, just below the big microwave tower. other than that, the whole lot was dry and sweeeeet. singletrack rolling. blitzed the rockgarden and gums. nice.

next ride? not sure. singlespeed? hopefully this week.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

sunday sunday

Caught up with Kris on saturday, have set the ball in motion on my singlespeed. he's getting what i need together, and i guess will do most of the build. will catch up next week, pay week etc, and be rolling the following weekend... looking forward to spinning like crazy on the flat and not worrying about chainsuck on the hills... sounds like i'll have a 38 tooth front ring, meaning i'll run a 17 or 18 on the back, but i might get a smaller one i can get onto for bottle lake, either than or another chain and bigger ring.

sunday, cold frosty start, rode across town to Tony's, steve pete and andrew turned up and we headed out cashmere road to the quarry. across the field was icey, crunchitty crunchitty crunch, then up the croc, cleaned all the switchbacks, rode the greasy mud section, then on up the rest... a few dabs, here and there, cos it was so damn slippery. then up kennedys, hard work that. Steve experiencing bad chainsuck in granny, had to run middle ring all the way up, good for him i said, pete and me both ran middle ring most of the way too, in sympathy, tho, i'd been running it anyway. then i started getting a bit too, later on, bastard bastard chain suckkk...

then along summit road, bit of snow up there on the sides and clearly up top of marleys, which we avoided, speedily rolling down road to ride the lower marleys section along to kiwi, sweeeeeet run on that lovely track, then up road to top of vic. along first section of summit trail below Sugarloaf, then up onto road due to the trail just being too messy, and us messing up the trail... round to Mt Vernon, we got up onto the single, which was a quagmire... greasy and mucky, rode it down to rapaki, its holding together surprisingly well, then we BOMBED it down rapaki... lots of other users, walking, biking, dogging,,, slow to manageable speed on approach then kick it down and bomb it again just as you're passing... lotsa fun. a couple of times i was catching beautiful air right next to punters, musta looked grand. then the final bomb down the road, and the slog across town home. later than i should have been. pretty munted for rest of day too.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Fog bound, for a bit...

amazing up on the hill last night. up the wee valley below Rapaki. that involves quite a bit of scooting, getting off, walking, pushing, and granny gear pedalling. it was about the same fogginess/low cloud as the rest of town, not too bad. when i got up to where my track met the Rapak i got onto the main track, cos my valley track was actually a bit muddy, the fog got thicker and thicker and thicker as i ascended. the headlight just glowed up the whole field of view, no visibility, barely even see the trail, anyway, got to the top, completely engulfed in fog, it was other-worldly, spectacular, light off and there was no glow from anywhere, just dim fog all around, it was 7 when i was at the top. another cycle headlight started to appear in the fog on rapaki, so i headed off up the single track... up the first two switchbacks and along a bit and suddenly i could see the lights of the city, and there behind me was a wall of fog, a tongue of it rolling over the saddle that is the top of rapaki, the suburbs at the foot of the hill were clear of fog by this stage, and the ridges and hill i was on were clear too. but out to the western side of the city, and north of about the square was completely under fog, with the city lights below making the fog glow, it looked beautiful...so, when i got to the road, i turned back along the summit trail, then down Farm Track. about half way down i deliberately left the track, and just rode sheep tracks most of the rest of the way down. that was fun. then home across town. good ride.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Turd'sday night...

relatively short but strangely long ride. rode to pete's, drove to pick up steve, then a roundabout way to Halswell Quarry. rode up the Crocodile, drier still, and wonderfully cleaned all of the muddy section down to the bridge, and every single switchback. up Kennedy's track to top of single, then back down.

muddiest sections were on the flat riding across to the bottom of the track., and one small section just before the frogpond and square log down off kennedys.

all in all, nice night to be out, bike needs a hose and a lube. thinking it might be time to change out my fork oil. and perhaps pull down my wheels and re-lube the hub bearings and probably pull apart the pedals and clean everything and of course force some grease into the headset...

no riding over weekend as i was sole charge of Otis.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Basking.


well, i went for a quick ride last night. it was beautiful on the hill. the moon was nearly full, tho partially shrouded by cloud, practically rode all the way up rapaki without my light on. it was warm and the air was fresh. whereas town was disgusting, smoggy and freezing cold. the moment i got up Rapaki Rd a little ways it was easily 10 degrees warmer. nuts.

had my mp3 player, GOOD sounds (Prefuse73 Security Screenings, Department of Eagles, Tunng, Burial, Open Souls) on random all the way.

trails are in good nick, no muddy bits anywhere, and a lot of repairs done on them where they were damaged earlier.

so, alls i did was ride up rapaki, here's Switchy at the top, looking down the Avoca Valley, Montgomery Spur the dark lump above the seat..., (gotta love that low res phone pixt schwag) then from here, rode round summit trail to Bush Head then turned around and rode back and back down Rapaki...

Monday, July 03, 2006

Greeeaaaasy sunday

FREEEEZING start, huffed across to Steves in the early frost of sunday, just pre 9 am, fingers and toes going numb in the process, but merino hood and Jetson windfleece keeping the core temp good... tony, hubb, andrew, pete, steve and me, assembled, pete realising he'd left his helmet took off home to get it while Andrew set up the camera on pete's bike.

headed up rapaki, warmed up enough to shed some layers by the first gate. on up, good spin, tony only lagging a little. tons of bikers around. turned left along single track, only that first little bit was mucky and the rest was sweet. then up road to Castle Rock, hit the single track there and it was grreeeaaasy. not muddy, just soft moist dirt, and slippery rocks. the odd patch of muddiness, til maybe 30-40 m before the first hairpin, then things started getting a bit sick... then after the first hairpin there was this trench forming, best to stay in it as at this point the hillside is steep and getting out of the trench means you're cutting up the rest of the dirt around it. but, one hole was almost up to the disks. pretty much dab-scooting along through all of this. then trail tidied up before the next hairpin and was good rolling from there... Andrew and Tony had sped down the road and were waiting for us at the top of Bridle Path. Andrew because he wasnt wearing clipable shoes...

then along road to johnbritten reserve, singletrack through there was sweet. i really enjoyed it, cleaned all the rocky bits with only one dab. then down to Richmondhill trail... first off the road the trail is very very nasty. the hillside is very boggy and where the trail should be is becoming a quagmire, so everybody's skirting it, thereby widening it. this section should probably be avoided and people should be entering from the old 4wd track down by the trees. anyway, once past the worst section the rest was sweet. stopped for a top up at the ruins.

the descent... i led, got away ahead, slithering and drifting all over the place. again, the singletrack was just greasy, with rocks a tad slippery, and only one or two wetspots. bombed it all good, round the corner to the native trees (ribbonwoods or lacebarks, never can remember) and stopped just after the wee ups that get you out of the tree's gulley. everybody caught up and we all laughed at what a wrestle the riding was. then i took off again, pete relatively close to my tail, and not far below our stopping point i had some wicked speed on and my front wheel just waaassshhhhed out, and i started scooting then lept off and was running alongside my bike for a second, thinking all the time "i'm losing it, i'm losing it!" and then remounting and carrying on, to shouts of encouragement from pete on my tail... stuck in and got more speed on and bombed the rest of it. it was sweeeeet. the traction was just marginal with drifting and slithering and greasy being the best descriptors. bombed the last section down to the road, trying out some body positioning as read in the latest NZMTBR mag. low, and more forward than in the past. feel quite perched in the middle of the frame, not uncomfortable, and the bike seemed to relish speed in this position... regrouped above evans

and hit the Capt Thomas. i bailed on three of the trickier sections, due to the apparent slipperiness of the rocks, but pete cleaned them all. out to the bottom was great.

then i hoofed it round the road to Joy's, she gave me a lift home and then Tracey and Otis, Mary, and Joy, and me went out to bottle lake and rode some trails out there. Otis in the kiddy seat behind Tracey. he enjoyed it for a while, but ended up kipping a little and then grumpy.
all up, about 4 hours on the bike...

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

brrrrrrrrr.... fiiiiinally after 13 days!!!

having had a crappy day at work yesterday, i split at 3 (i can do that, it just means i have to work longer for a day or two afterwards to catch up the couple hours missing...).

got home, did a bit of a lube (chain and grease-injection for the pedals) then hit the road around 3.40 across town around... 25 mins later i'm riding through Halswell towards the Quarry...

across the muddy and in parts frozen field to the bottom of 'the crocodile', up that, tight switchbacks to start with up through the pines, then a nice sidle track along, all in good nick, no mud, then a small descent into the wee gulley. even when its dry this gulley is wet, so with it being really wet lately, it was a total mud fest. passengered it for a bit (ie, no control, just holdin' on!) then got off and walked, front wheel entirely caked in mud, all splooged down over my brake, rub rub, rub rub... then over the bridge and onwards up the switchbacks, one after the other... one or two of them were soggy, but the rest of the trail was sog free.

then on up Kennedy's... sun setting slowly behind me. there was a cold cold wind blowing, the annoying north easterly, and i didnt really have enough clothes. also, having left it so late for departure, and having picked one of the more furtherly trails to ride, and having the sun set at 5ish, i was only about 5/6ths of the way up when the sun started to get tucked in behind the mountains. so by the time i made the top it was truly gone, with dusk settling its cool blanket over the Port Hill tops. and did i mention the cold. thought i was getting hypothermic for a minute there. but spun it round the summit road on down to where the flying nun (or Marleys) meets the road jumped onto the singletrack through to the kiwi, then, as it was still just dusky and still not quite dark, headed up to top of Vic Park, on road, then down the main fire trail to the skidder site, picking my way down the last bit under the darkness of the trees... no head light you see, just the flashies. so then i rode down the Vic Park Rd, right into Longhurst to the bottom, down the drive then down the track to Holliss and out to Centaurus and home, well dark by now. home around 6, chilled to the bone, utterly exhausted and extinguished of any energy. Had had to ride pretty slow along Wilsons, Nursery and Stanmore home, so slow cos i was so weak. got fire going. ate and ate and ate. hot shower. all fixed...

had i eaten, taken my headlight, and a few more clothes, i would have stayed a bit longer, maybe gone round some of the single track and down Huntsbury or something...

The bottom of Bowenvale is shut at the moment, cos of stock and muck. the Rangers are all freaking out cos bikes are cuttin' up the tracks so bad... Ranger Nick Singletrack said its the wettest he's seen them in at least 10 years...

Thursday, June 15, 2006

on my way to a party...

T's mum had her birthday the other day, saturday, while i was up planting trees... and so she was having a bit of a party lastnight. it was to start around 7, so i had time for a wee ride.

oh, firstly, i must say, we had some wicked snow. here's a pic of the island covered in it. Chch is under that cloud on the right, this was taken 10am ish on tuesday morning...

So, anyway, wednesday, most of the snow had melted off the hills, meaning they'd be pretty wet, but i rode up anyway. i swapped off the Kenda Blue Groove on the back cos it was pretty worn and its been slipping out on a lot of rides recently, in the wintry conditions... anyway, reinstalled the old Green Wildgripper, 1.95, good treadpattern for mud. best darn mud tire i've had so far...
across town, about 5.30ish, closer to 6 actually, then up rapaki, lights most of the way, turned left, walked a little of single before riding cos it was so muddy and i didnt wanna thrash the track. then along road, and onto the Castle Rock - Bridlepath singletrack. interesting. flowy in places, but then messy as all get up in others. especially, before, between and after the switchbacks... i stopped and assisted a couple of drainage spots... then, as time was starting to run short, i headed down Bridle Path. then, after zipping up and swapping back to the windstopper gloves, down Bridle Path Rd to Joy's, where eventually T arrived with clothes so i showered.

i might add. on these frosty cold nights, town is at 0 or less degrees celsius, but hit the hill and its up closer to 10 degrees... inversion. keeps the smog down on the city too. i love it up there on these nights. but its yucky riding back across town.

Monday, June 12, 2006

saturday, trees for canterbury...

beautiful clear sunny winter's day. toodled across to Tony's saturday morning about 11.30, meeting Dan on the way. The fella's had left without us, so we were chasing, 5 minutes behind according to Tony's daughter... Dan's first time up Worsleys. after hitting the dirt section and clearing the first technical challenges got a call from Steve checking on our whereabouts. they werent far ahead, but still we didnt catch them til the bodybag. there's still sections of the track that are unrideable, due to the wetness of the claymud, and this is after a week of no rain...dewey nights, but no rain. so, cleaned most of the bodybag, got to top, and proceeded to top of the Marley's section of track, for a planting... 350 natives to put in, mostly kanuka, but i also got a few 5fingers, lancewoods, lacebarks, pittos and coprosmas in. a lot of them had plastic netting cages to be installed too, slowing the progress, but, probably 25 people took just over an hour or so to complete it. its gonna be great seeing that as the years progress, for i'll always be riding up there, and slowly but surely the bush will return... Pete and Alistair (jr) were dropped off for the planting and to join us riding down
then down marleys, single track still abit greasy, one or two drying mud sections, to kiwi, then up thomsons, i think i was the only one to ride all of that, the others took the road. then down through vic, thru gums, bypassed Dazzas and then down Nationals. bottom of K2 was a mud rut channelled slickfest... sick. Alistair had a nice crossup spill on the lower cattlestop, into the wee creek. i myself very nearly lost it there too. then home across town, too late for GeeGee's birthday arvo tea... on to making sushi in prep for potluck at ours.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

lunchtime teambuilding...

Rebecca and Dan and me from work went for a lunchtime spin. nice ride across town, up rapaki, good clip, and down farmtrack. i had front derailleur issues. the mud from my last ride had caked it seized, so when i used the shifter it shifted but the derailleur didnt, and as a result the little nubbin thingy on the end of the cable popped out of its spot inside the shifter and so jammed. was jammed in middle ring all the way up rapaki, which is just fine, but at the top i fiddled with it again and it slipped into granny, with no shifting out of it possibilities... drat. good fly down farmtrack regardless, some areas of wetness/mud. both Dan and Bex had spills on the lower section, nothing major. riding back across town i grabbed a discarded plastic milk bottle and wedged it under the cable on the top tube, thereby putting it in middle ring.

Friday, June 02, 2006

post work muck

rode the switchy in to work then hit the road at 5.

down colombo, through Ashgrove reserve, along the Heathcote, up Worsley's. sunset was at 5.03pm, so by the time i got to top of the seal it was dark enough to need the light. it was wetter than i'd thought. most of the trail was a streambed, with flowing water. the ruts were deeper and the little ridges between ruts were narrower and in a lot of places the clay was saturated, making it the sticky cluggy muck that builds up on the tires, making large sections of the ride unrideable. the body bag, top section, i walked entirely. it was impossible to get traction, and i had started getting chainsuck earlier, due to the closeness of the front derailleur in granny and the chain to the tire and the mud... made the top of the hill and proceeded to ride up Marleys and hit the singletrack down. surprisingly, or not considering the excellent design the rangers have put in, the surface was only a little slippery, with very few muddy pockets. great ride down to kiwi, with only occasional hairy spots, the odd slick rock. fun! then hit the tarmac at the kiwi, did lower section of Thomsons, and decided to avoid the summit trail and stay on the road. it was getting late and i wanted to be close to home by 7, so cruised the summit road til Mt Vernon, then thought i'd give the singletrack a go again. not bad. the techy rocky section near top was very mucky, but the rest of it was sweet til the lowest bit before rapaki, near that wee pond. then BOMBED down rapaki. quite a few riders on the way up, but if they're like other riders i saw up there last night they will have stayed on the road. i wouldnt have wanted to ride up the Vernon section...

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

bazillion...

so... here's a comment about the proliferation of bike blogsssssssss

Monday, May 29, 2006

foggy start sunday morning...

a whole week of busy nights and crappy weather. so. along comes sunday. early start, 8am at Steves. woke up to a fog-bound city. visibility about 20-30 metres, got quite damp riding through it across to Steve's. Steve couldnt make it on account of his guts, so it was just Pete, Hubby and me.

headed up rapaki, fog starting to clear a little and as we got into the trees on Rapaki we could already see the sun shining on the hillsides above us. looking back over the city, all you could see was the tops of the CBD buildings and the 4 light stands of Jade Stadium (where there'd been a fogged in rugger game the night before). over the course of our ride we watched the fog dissipate.

up into the sun, nice gentle ride up rapaki, cept for the last leg i switched to a 2:1 ratio a la singlespeeding and cranked it up, just to see what it was like. hard. but doable. but man, you gotta have yourself a whopper set of lungs, standing in that gear and honkin' it up that slope. at top of rapaki the harbour was beautiful, a cauldron of fog, hills ringing it in basking sun.

we turned left along the summit trail. the first section i walked cos it was so muddy, my back tire spinning and digging it up, so i gave it a rest. further up tho, the trail was in good nick, our tires barely marking it... got to the end of the first section and hopped over the fence and down to the craterrim walkway (not strictly legal...). it was very very muddy, and technical, slippery rocks (and one clump of Urtica ferox, native stinging nettle (which took a swipe at Hubby)), singletrack, cow trodden. our bike tires doing much less damage than the pugging and pooling of cattle hooves. if anything, we provided channels for the water to actually drain off in...

then from the tors the last bit of road up to the Castle Rock section of bike track down it, which was in surprisingly good nick. cleaned it all nicely, slippery rocks being the only major technical issue...

then down Bridle Path. i bombed it for a change. seems to be quite nice after wetness, well packed, not too loose. we stopped next to the Morgans Valley track, and headed the other way. there's a sign on the gate that said something, but its unreadable now. (i suspect it was something to do with Property?? cant imagine what tho!). headed along the farm-4wd track that follows above the bush thats above the Tunnel Rd Motorway, great wee spin, medium to big ring rollin', with a couple of little climbs, nothing major, then at the end, a gate, hop over it and there begins the barely followable 'secret singletrack'. down to the first of 2 big watersupply tanks, all under a treelucerne and various natives canopy. this trail snaked down and down and around the lower of the two tanks and then sidled down to a turn off that is adjacent to Martindales Rd on the Motorway. We skedaddled across the motorway, and then made our way down to Martindales Rd.

from here, we travelled along martindales, under the railroad, left down Truscotts Rd to Ferrymead historic park, past that to the lower reach of the Heathcote, and then along the true right bank of that, up stream to the Tunnel Rd bridge. This section of riverbank is great, its walked by people with dogs quite regularly, so the trail is sweet, twisty, well defined. and of course, like all the trails today, muddy in places.

once done with that section, we made our way to a Trees For Canterbury planting in Charlesworth Reserve. at this stage, it was a beautiful sunny day. planted a heap of natives, and i biked home along Linwood Ave after 12... later on, the fog rolled back in.

Monday, May 22, 2006

sunday cruise

so, sunday afternoon, al and me cruised to Hugh's, then up to Pete T's and then up rapaki. it had dried a bit since wednesday, pretty mellow cruise as Hugh doesnt get up much, but that was cool. then up singletrack to the right, where there were still some quite mucky bits, but mostly dry. after crossing the road the muddy holes that were there on wednesday were gone. the odd wet patch further round, some good flowy sections, so much flowier than at night when you cant see behind tussocks. hit the top of vic, and headed down thomsons to kiwi, up road to lower section of Marley's, bombed down that, down dyers track the start of which has been newly surfaced and is like a road, the longer flatter section still bumpy as hell, and then up into vic. i peeled off there and headed down to my folks for tea. not sure where the others were heading, down into bowenvale i think. was getting pretty low on light by the time we split...

Marys: performing better still. am getting used to them still. but did enjoy a certain laidbackness they gave. allllmost wonder if a slightly shorter and slightly angled up stem might position them slightly better... but. still getting used to them.

Friday, May 19, 2006

two rides, back to back, muckymucky wednesday, misty forest bottle lake thursday

first night ride Wednesday night, with the lights.

cross town, looked at watch on Wilson's Rd, was 17.31. cruised up rapaki, muddy in places, we've had a fair bit of rain lately, and there's only been a couple of days since, so its still all pouring off the hills. top of rapaki, was 18.06 (i know that cos i txted Nelson that i was there cos he'd txtd just as i was on the last leg). turned right, along the summit trail, first section to the first switchbacks was fine, then the steep bit from them was disgusting, rutted and greasy and wet and muddy... once it flattened off it was alright, the rocks being decidedly slippy, and then the bit round the front of Mt Vernon above the FarmTrack was nice and dry (in the sun all day's why), and actually it wasnt bad the rest of the way up to the road. next section, a few divets with sloppy mud, but mostly dryish. caught a guy on a Marin fullsquisher, i'd been gaining on him most of the way along the summit. and mostly trail was good except the odd spot all the way to vic.

thru the pines was soft, then down to and thru the gums was soft, new berms on a lot of the corners in the gums, gonna be sweet when they're dry. from the skidder site i bypassed dazzas, headed down that firetrack, hung a left down the Nats track, then a right before the 40footer down the valley track, then peeled left on the singletrack that goes into the Darkness... there was two streams in there, running clean fresh water that have never been there before...

crossed the little bridge, rooty section, sheepstop, bridge and onto the sidling track, which was disgusting. mucky, soft, running water, gouged and rutted. front wheel slid hit a hole and sent me over, rolled and tumbled down into the tussocks... unrideable, even with some speed. then down through the trees carefully, and bottom of k2 was its usual gouged out squidgey slippery rutted mess, then the main track down was fine. out, and home. bit of smog. 19.09 i noticed at home, some time after i'd gotten there...

cooked up a delicious feed, after the requisite shower. and hosed off the bike, which left the discs noisy. will lube everything before tonights ride.

Mary Report: good. excellent climbing, and standing out of the saddle pumping, and general singletrack control and comfort. Extremely steep, ass almost on the back wheel, descending, excellent, but middle steepness terrain i'm not so sure about. it might be something in the way i'm holding them, or maybe they just need another slight tweak. tonights ride is bottle lake, so will monitor and adjust accordingly.

Bottle Lake, Thursday night.
Al and me ended up biking out there, meeting up with Steve and Tony and Andrew, and eventually Pete (who got a speeding ticket on the way... hence making him even later. i hope his demerit points havent topped out!!!)Spun round the usual inside loop. checked out the leg towards Spencer Park, but it was closed due to them pulling out all the logs in the burned areas. shame, cos that burned out area was pretty spectacular, would have been cool to leave it the way they do in the states for natural regeneration... but then, this forest is far from a natural system, being a working plantation. mostly pretty good ride. one fun thing was when we stopped for a break, i managed to balance my bike all by itself. just hovering there, then Al and then Steve and tony all got theirs going too. was cool just standing around with all these bikes just floating there... heh.

Marys performed well. they really do excel when standing in the pedals cranking it. i'm still feeling a little crowded by my elbows... but am seeing if my body will respond by developing the appropriate muscles thru riding like this for a month... otherwise, i might return to the Azonics and put Mary on the singlespeed i'm gonna build with my 18 inch frame.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Craigieburnin', Marys first ride

Fresh and early saturday morning, first frost of the year pretty much, al and me split town about 8.30, headed up the plains. gorgeous sunny day unfolding in front of us. crested Porters Pass and rolled down into an icey valley fog, quite thick, which engulfed us all the way through to the Day Shelter at Craigieburn Forest Park, and filled the valleys most of the day.

parked up, rugged up into the appropriate clothes, and headed out onto the road, rougly 10am, low visibility. i was wearing my new Hoodlum, which proved very good for these conditions. my windstopper gloves (Krapmandu) were very good too. then we headed up the gravel road that is the access to Craigieburn Ski Field. starting altitude, 800m. this road winds up the side of this steep sided valley, through beech forest. there's a couple of major scree slopes that cross the road on the way up. its relatively steep, middle chain ring, second or third down on back. and up towards the top you have to slip down into granny and haul. snow on the ground from around 1200 m alt. there were a couple of vehicle tracks in the snow on the way up, and a few people working on the skifield, two on the roadside 50m from the carpark and then a 4wd with chains, heading up.

Mary bars first ride, felt that they made the front end a little lighter, but felt good in general, on the way up.

we got ahead of it and so were riding on virgin snow, apart from some Hare tracks. snow provided pretty good traction. then onto the singletrack descent... fun. had to layer up tho, cos there was snow dripping and dropping from the trees. the track is in and out of the trees, crossing a few big scree slopes. very good riding. swoopy and flowing in parts, then technical and dabby for a bit then swoopy and flowing again. couple of sections with a lot of roots, but mostly fantastic.

Marys very comfortable on this descent. good control, natural hand position, thought they needed rolling back a smidgen.

then a wee climb up to Lyndon Saddle, where we had a wee stop with a small hike up for some view and eats, then onto what they call the Luge... all down, nice rooty drops, swooping singletrack, down down down, all in forest. beeaauutiful. worst roots, slippery and dodgy in the lower third, then out onto the road and quick descent down that back to the car.

found the Mary bars very very comfortable on the steep technical stuff, and in general, i like their feel. still a little bit of getting used to to do, and i've tweaked their position slightly for next ride. i think there'll be a couple of tweaks and i'll be loving them

Total ride, 2 hours elapsed, rougly 600 m alt up and down in about 18 kms.. broken down: 8.5 on the road up 500m alt, ~4kms sidling down 250m alt, just under 1 km up 100m alt to saddle, then almost 3 kms singletrack descending 300m, then around 2 kms down (80 or so metres) hill road back to car, 12ish. had a feed, loaded up car and drove home, arriving around 2. still plenty of day left.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

bikeblogs.com

so... roll along to bikeblogs May06 and you'll see yours truly rollin' with the other bloggahs...

might just get out thursday night. provided promised rain doesnt hit. and then saturday, longrange looks good, Al and me will Craigieburn it... yeah drop in episode one, thats us.

Monday, May 08, 2006

septo de mayo

Al collected me and we rode to Steves for 9am start. hubby, andrew tony and steve were already in attendance, and pete turned up shortly thereafter. we headed up rapaki. good pace all the way up. i was a little ahead of the group when i turned and saw a guy passing them, so i took off at a slightly faster pace, just to keep him on his toes, he eventually caught me and overtook, but i stayed on him the rest of the way up. i was feeling a bit overhung, tired, from two shortnights sleep. cold and windy up top, overcast day, from the south. rode left along the summit trail, donned my jacket on the road section. bombed it down the castle rock section. interestingly greasy down through there, with just slightly damp dirt, which carried from tire to rock so's to make for a more technical ride. good pace along road to Britten Reserve, new section in there needs a wee bit work, it just doesnt quite flow yet. then breezed down road onto Richmond hill singletrack... fun. greasy. quite a few dabs, one near shoulder barge with a rockface when the rocks i was skittering on got too skittery, then most of the way down, i feel like i've bent my brake lever, but no, slowly my handlebars are twisting back (the other day when i tried out my mary bars i obviously didnt quite torque the clamp up enough and now i'm paying for it...) riding got harder and harder as my handlbars became more and more swayed back. levers getting more and more horizontal. we stopped in the Macrocarpa at Evans for foodsnacks and pete's twisted chain link removal and my handlebar reallignment (i got to test out my new multi tool multi5 received as gift for subscribing to Spoke magazine last month).

then off out godley trail. after first climb pete's chain pin had started to poke out so we stopped again and they used a proper pin. then it was fantastic downhill, trail drier out there. next climb and then down to breeze col. decided just to drop it down to taylors.

Anaconda... wickeeeed. couple of other riders had taken off ahead, we'd given them a bit of a head start, but me in the lead soon caught one of them, and on the first right hand sweeper i caught him after a jump and juuuuust about lost the front wheel, washed out a bit, and i found myself heading off the track, so i just held on and cut out a big corner, taking my place ahead of him, and just let it go, screamed down popping excellent air on every jump. caught the next guy on the big long sweeper that i crashed on another time, sat on his tail a bit but he wasnt moving over, so i paused to watch pete and the others behind catch up a bit, then i hammered on and caught that guy again before the bottom. sweeeeeeet spin. then the grind out of taylors. nichelson park, coffee at .com and the long slog home...

Friday, May 05, 2006

Happy birthday Blog...

One year old today.
a whole year of rides contained herein...

Thursday, May 04, 2006

finally, after a week and a half...

just getting more and more antsy, finally last night i managed to get out. split work early, home quick, changed, jumped on switchy.


Left home at 16.32, was somewhere on Rapaki Rd at 16.46 (cant remember quite how far up but well before first gate), made good time up Rapaki. passed a couple of guys between first gates, then caught this smiley youngish but greyhaired german dude on a kula deluxe (same colours as Nelson's) a km up from the second gate but then he caught and passed me 200m from top. made the top at 17.08. me and the kraut exchanged friendly words at the top, what a great night it was etc. then he went towards the Bridle Path whereas i turned right. when i got up to the upper switchbacks (just above Farm Track) i caught up to a dude on a Santa Cruz (Blur(i think)) who managed to keep ahead of me, so i tailed him until i peeled down the oldschool Bow'nvale, took it a little easy down there, as bits were slippy, lovely descent, tho, i bailed on the worst of the rocky outcroppy bits, cos of the minor greasiness issues. then the singletrack was bliss, just cruised it down, hearing voices, til finally i came upon a couple of walkers..., and was spat out the bottom and on the Avenue at 17.35... quite possibly my best time ever for home to Bowenvale Ave via that route. .

no riding light needed either, just the flashies across town home.

so, i feel much better.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

mary mary, quite contrary

so, mary arrived this morning. popped home to see her. eyed them up, and thought i might juuuuuuust be able to install, but got grips, shifters, levers all off the olds and got them lined up and just as expected, the angular bar just pushes the brake hose too far to be possible. it was always a little dodgy since i got the 20inch frame. so. have to wait til i get the cable lengthened. Kris said $75. must get that organised.

too wet to really ride tonight. havent ridden since last sunday, week ago. am seriously jonesing for a ride, as the americans used to say. might just go anyway. bah. will see how she's looking. do the responsible thing, go home, cook dinner for the girl and bubs, and then decide...

oh!, and my Hoodlum is SWEEEET... all good. wear just it and basically a teeshirt in these climate. water beads on the outter and its snug and toasty.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Try this for size...


hooee, just scored myself a Hoodlum, from RaceFace... niiice.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

sunday, anzac a day away...

sunday morning, steve and pete were up watching race cars waste petrol around the Pukekohe tracks, so Andrew and Tony and me met outside steves anyway, and headed up rapaki, round the summit to vic. they went downhill from there due to time constraints, i carried on along thomsons to kiwi, up road to lower section of flying nun, then on down below dyers... heh, bombed down there, caught and overtook a woman who was inching her way down, then tookdown her hubby who was also inching down hill... flew down the rest, then climbed back up into vic, down dazza's, hung a right up a little ways and down the valley tracks, round and down bowenvale. my front mechanism was getting very jingly jangly on the way down, i thought it was my cluster coming to bits, but no, just the cage on the front mech. rode home... all in good time. home by 11.30 i think.
next day, flat tire on bike. pulled the tube, tiny hole, found the culprit gorse needle, but it broke off before i could pull it out, fixed the flat, left tube out and pumped up over night, still hard in the a.m, so put it back into tire, and later that day its flat again. damn. must be more of those gorsey bastards. time for a new tire perhaps...

OH. and my Mary Bars (here or pics of them on a bike here ), by On-One, are nearly here... YAY!!!! scored through Paul at EssenceBikes ... good bloke to deal with. cheers paul. so, ride reports as soon as they're installed... i'm just praying i can get away with my rear brake hose... it might be a bit on the short side.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Banks Pen View Hill


Friday, Good Friday, Steve Pete and Andrew came over to the bay, (T and O and dogs and me went over thurs night straight after work). we drove to top of bay, pete's car overheating in the process, parked on summit road, and jumped on our bikes...rode towards Okains Bay to first ridge, then rode and walked along this to flanks of View Hill (762m) up to pretty much the highest point, then down down down paper road, through Chorlton, down on down to snappy wee singletrack down into Raupo bay where we stopped and enjoyed the beach and the mega surf pounding in from a massive southerly swell. then rode up onto Long Lookout. On the way up, you come up to the cliff edge, and there, framed by the cliffy headland and the pounding surf was the Spirit of NZ, in nearly full sail, heading south, very spectaculer.
That dark smudge in the distance, believe it or not, is the ship...
continued riding back up to Chorlton and down into Little Ak. all up, 20 kms, 440 m ascended, and 980 descended. then after some cheese scones kindly baked by Tra'y and a refreshing beer, we loaded 4 bods and 3 bikes into the fiat and i hauled them up to their car at the top...

Monday, Easter Monday, i biked up to Chorlton, then up View Hill Rd to the fork, then left along the branch i'd not explored before. up to around 600m alt, then turned tail and back down. only this time, instead of riding the 4wd road, i rode all the animal tracks on either side, off piste, technical and fun. then bombed back into the bay. quick trip.

Monday, April 10, 2006

ripsnortin'rockin' it!!!

good turn out yesterday. usual stv peat tone and me, plus hubster and Mark, and an additional Milan, from work. Andrew's wrist is still playing up.

so, toodled up rapaki, good pace, turned left, singletrack road singletrack road singletrack road and onto richmond hill. stopped for a bite at the ruins, and the BOMBED it down. first of me on Mark's tail, hammering it, kept up with him pretty good. then he bailed to adjust his seat just before the sweeping switchies, so i pulled in front with him pushing me. i was going so fast, my arms have never felt that pumped by the time we got to Evans. some vvveeeery sketchy turns... then Capt Thomas, i let Mark go in front again (this guy is on a Kona Coiler, 6 inches of heavyduty travel both ends..., vs me on the switchy, 5inches up front is IT) and again we bombed it down this, i cleaned all but a dab at the bottom of the first of the two dodgiest rocky bits. down past the two stiles and the wee bridge Mark's chain got eaten up, and got some horrendous twists in it. so he had to pull it off and ride the rest of the way without it... he repaired it over coffee at the Com
Milan did good, a bit slower on the downhill stuff, but pretty good round the rest of the singletrack. but then we lost him in Slumner, cos he didnt know which cafe we were going to. i waved and waved, and then went after him a bit but he took off. txted him. no worries...

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

sunday cut short and tuesday speedy to dinner...

sunday, usual suspects, steve's, 9am, up rapaki, right, 'long summit to vic. were gonna carry on up to top of marley's and down below dyers back into vic and down bowenvale, but Andrew's wrist was playing up from his silly crash on the rocks last week. so, we cut it short, headed down thru the gums, then i took them across the upper track to the new track that i rode by myself a couple weeks ago and then rode all of with Nelson another week or so ago... so, i rode most of it, had to shimmy one little steep bit next to a tree, but pete rode all of it, and andrew, steve and tony walked pretty much all of it... we hooked onto my 'favourite' and continued out bottom of bowenvale.

then last night, tuesday, nelson met me at my place after work, and we rode across to farmtrack, up it, quite fast, i was blowin!, cos it was getting quite dark in the clouds so we rode round the road to the rest of the singletrack, bombed it to vic, screamed down through the gums, and on out to the vicpark road, down to top of cashmere, where i was having tea at my folks... niiice ride. i was on fire coming down. but i blew going up.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

wednesday slightly soggy spin

been grey and rainy a bit for last week or so. S.A.D getting the worst of me, so a ride was a damned good thing... left work a bit early, got out the door of home at 4.45pm, rode across to and up rapaki, which seemed very hard, head wind all the way up, and the dirt was softish from previous rain. hit summit trail and got my groove on, one or two muddles but mostly plenty dry, nicely packed, drainage very good thesedays. hit top of vic, and down through gums, GREEEAASY, then i bypassed Dazza's and went down my "favourite" but bailed on the first cross track, cos it really was pretty greasy and sliding was rarking up the leaf matter and trail a bit... took the final bit through (what i've started to call) "the darkness", where the pines and mac's are so thick its really dark in there (especially on an overcast day), and it was hairy through there, with two wheel slides into ruts etc... interesting. the rest of the trails were okay, but that last little cattlestop right at the bottom before the gates i got the bike sideways on, scared the bejeezus out of me. Stopped in and saw Kris on Bowenvale on way out too. then flashies across town home. in the door 6.45...

Monday, March 27, 2006

sumner morning...

rode to Pete's, we drove, picked up Andrew, and met Steve and Tony in Slumner... biked up Capt. Thomas out godley and taylors and back to coffee at .com. way up capt thom was sweet. cleaned most stuff or more than often. cleaned heaps of godley, one or two dabs at the start and that was about it. while we waited for Steve to void his bowels at Godley, Andrew was dooffing about on some rocks and had a wicked tumble. winded the crap out of him. garked up his legs a bit too, and jimmied his wrist. yowch. awesome descent into taylors, they'd really done some work on the trails for the Crater Rim. and nice climb out of taylors. dropped some awesome wheelies on the way up. steve and me first. then down through nicholson park, speeeeedy... good run in all. only a couple hours.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

sunday morning monday night...

sunday morning, biked over to steves, then him and me biked to TFC picked up the van and drove out to Slumner. met andrew there, parked right outside DotCom and headed up Capt Thom... nice climb, i seemed to have heaps of speed all the way up. the other two werent so quick, so i stopped and rested a lot, meaning i had heaps of speed when we got going again... hot and sticky in the top valley just before Evans. quick rest inside the Macracarpas at the start of the Richmond Hill track. then up up up up up... then, turned around and came back down it all. bombed it. beautiful descent, switchy playing very nicely. then down Capt Thom, cleaned everything, except that on the first of the two gnarlies, i had to bale at the very bottom of it, the rock that sticks up straight across the track exactly one bike length from the bottom of the drop jumping into my way just at the last and i didnt want it to do what it does best, which is stop your bike dead and throw you over the handlebars, or worse still, straight onto your top tube, yowch... then cleaned the rest of the trail... lovely, and coffee at Dot com.

Last night (monday), headwind home from work, changed and met Nelson at bottom of Rapaki, up we slogged, turned right, round the summit to Vic, then down through the cattlestop next to the A frame, turned right and along the fenceline and down, (instead of through the fence and riding the "upper fenceline" track), and down the wicked ass DH tracks, steeper than we usually ride... cleaned most stuff, i walked one drop that nelson rode, it was just too scary coming into it, and then rode some wicked bits, and walked one jump that nelson popped off, i'll do both bits next time for sure. it was the track that i hooked up with a few rides ago. then down the usual and out. nelson took an awesome line on the washout next to K2, jumping off this bit the nats DH riders were popping... and now that its daylight saving, i used my flashies riding home across town. home by 7.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Swtchy, in the flesh


a snap of me bike from me fone... blurry eh?

wednesday with da girls...

left work at 4.30 or so, with a couple of workmates, Bex and Snoozen, headed down Clumbo St to Earnsleigh Reserve along the Heathcote River, past coffeeculture and Prncss Maggies Hosp, down the steps just past Cracroft along that wee forest trail and then up the slog that is Worsley's... me in middle ring one down on back, Snuse and bex both in grannies... overtook some big travelly boys, up up up, good ride up the dirt, nice and smooth flowing, no real dabs, all the way up. Marley's was particularly nice, down to Kiwi, then up Thomsons into Vic, i proceeded down through the gums, and the grrrls headed down the fireroads. regrouped at the Jumps skidder area, where a friend of S's was hangin', him on a Crack'n'fail Profit, nice and new. Him and me took Dazza's while the girls took the pikeroute, straight down. then followed the Nats track down. couple new bits. bombed out bottom of bowenvale, then slogged it back across town to work, grabbed my bag and headed home. quite a long one in the long run. home at about 7.10pm... long. lotsa stops i guess. then i went to quiznight and had a few guinnesses (preempting friday by a couple days) and scoffed down a rare-as steak and chips and yummy yummy salad. as usual, 3rd equal in the quiz, and lost the tiebreaker! bah.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

sunday arvo outting...

Sundaymorning ride was planned, but the weather got in the way, with a blistering cold southerly dropping a fair bit of rain overnight and in the morning... so, we duly canned the ride with possibility of getting together for one later in the day. ended up going out by myself at 4.30. tracks were already nice and dry. howling southerly still blowing cold. rode across, into the wind, up rapaki, into the wind, turned right, along singletrack. on the switchbacks above the farmtrack a guy caught me up, gave me a bit of a fright actually, and as i let him past just after the second switchy he said "same bike" and yep, he was on a black Switchback too! cool. i replied, "nice ride". from then on, i stayed just off his tail. i noted that on all the downs and all the flats i was quicker than him, but on all the ups he juuuust got away from me... stayed on his tail all the way round to Vic Park, just before which we'd started chatting a little. we both agreed they're a nice bike to ride. his was a 16 inch, but he was quite a bit shorter than me. he looked like he could easily handle an 18 inch, having quite a bit of seatpost out, like when i had the 18incher... we parted ways, i bombed it down through rockgarden and gums to and out to vicpark road, then down to the below dyers pass road track. went up it, saw the other swtchbckr on his way down, "hello!" and then at the kiwi i rode up the road for the next section, lower nun or lower marley's (depending on your naming convention), down it back to the kiwi, then cross dyerspass road and up to thomson track, all the way up it to top of vic park again, then down through the gums again. then, instead of going down Dazza's or the track Dazza's comes off, i went up the track just to the right of them. this takes you across various of the DH tracks, out to the end, where i saw a new wee track cut, so toodled down it, to a wicked wicked dh track. rode it, with great difficulty, then out to my 'favourite' down it, round to k2, where i baulked the wicky drop, so pushed back up and did it again, out and down, tailwind home across town...southerlies are good for some stuff.