Friday, May 29, 2009

Thursday night, A few McLeans were showing... singlists

prior to riding, i oiled, on the Singlespeed, all the spoke nipples and heads, squeezed oil into the freehub both sides, and the jockey wheel. hoping that would ease the creak... spun over to Pete's, we drove, picked up Nelson (also singling), and zoomed out to Mcleans Island, where we found Andrew, Warren, Wayne, Dallas and a girl i cant remember the name of now... off we tootled, blatting round the trails. about 2 kms in nelson and me out front, heard a ping clatter from behind, and pete had stopped. we bailed up and turned back to find him looking at a seat-less seatpost. the bolt had snapped. he talked of turning back, but then decided to stay with us for the rest of the lap. so, a good work ensued for him, standing. kinda what we're doing on the singlespeeds most of the time too. anyway, on we bombed. me out front most of the time, swapped with Nelson at one stage. and warren not far behind most of the time too. eased up after the open flowy section (near the diggers) and i put more air in my back tire which had been washing all over the place, also took jacket off then. onwards again, and the fucking back wheel started its creak up again. its gotta be in the freehub somewhere. put up with it, rode on. Pete departed leaving nelson and me to catch lifts with the others.

second lap, warren, nelson and me did full loop, others bailed into the shortcut loop. the creak continued, we were faster 2nd time round. good blast all up. nice and dry out there, even after all the rain. shame its so far from town but then again, its kinda more boring than even Bottle Lake, so probably just as well...

Monday, May 25, 2009

Sunday a.m. Cruise. Sumner then back to plant some Trees for Canterbury

crapulent weather for the entire week, trails are all creeks or would be destroyed from the attack of the tires, so jumped on the ratrod-ghetto-backpedal-single-Specialized Globe commuter beast and trundled over to pete's. joined by himself and his lovely wife, him on Grandad - WW2 Swiss Army Doctor's Bike, and her on her brand spanking new Electra Coaster, girly cruiser, we literally cruised down linwood ave and through Charlesworth Reserve to ferrymead bridge to meet up with Wayne, Andrew, Warren (all on mtnbikes) and Steve and J9 on their cruisers. as a large group now, cruised along to sumner, had coffee at dotcom and cruised back to Charlesworth Reserve whereupon we put plants in the ground. O was dropped to me by friends he'd stayed with overnight, and i put his seat on my toptube and he rode home with Pete and me. mellow. cruise.

Monday, May 18, 2009

SundayNight Singles. H.Ell, Nun, Traverse, OldSkool

Saturday night i finally tensioned and trued up the front disc wheel i built for the singlespeed and tightened and tweaked the back wheel and adjusted the rear brakes on the beasty too. then on Sunday due to childcare responsibilities i wasnt able to join the boys (and girl) on their ride... so, while H had his morning sleep i sorted out the front end of the single. put my old Manitou Minute's onto it, and set up the Avid Juicy 5 brake and got nearly everything sorted. needed a Star-fangled nut in the steerer tube, and needed a clamp bolt on the brake, so once H woke, and we went on the vege run, took the bike and dropped into bikebiz out Marshlands. guy there installed both and only charged me $11.50 all up. Sweet as.

So, had to try out the bike, and we were going for dinner at my folks, so, arranged with Nelson to come up after that, and off we rode, probably about 8pm. me, full to the brim with yummy food and a couple of wines, which made riding tricky.

because it was dark, we decided on the H.Ell track, mint gradient climb for singlespeeds. to the Kiwi, then up road to the Nun. the Minutes SPV feature is exactly as i expected for singlespeed, perfect. it locks out excellently for the standing-in-the-pedal-kranking yet still absorbs the bumps when on the trail. i was feeling like i was gonna blow chunks near the top of Worsley's Rd, so had to have a major breather, then up the dirt track to top of Nun same thing happened so walked about 10 m before forcing myself back on the bike.

The descent was decent. nelson led off, and we blazed our ways down. fair bit of wind about, but pinned most of the jumps okay. the minutes feel quite burly, but no where near as buttery plush as the Fox's on the Cotic. a lot firmer, majorly in need of a service methinks after a few years in a cupboard. and the Avid brakes? not bad, not bad, slightly better than v's i guess. blazed on down to kiwi, only hiccup being nelson's commuting rear mudguard snapping off halfway down.

Then it was up the road to top of Vic Park. lighting up some young lovers in the carpark at the top, hehe... then on round the summit trail. not a bad blast round there, singlespeed all you need. all the puddle work we'd done last week had done a good job of drying out the affected parts of the trail nicely. i had one close call just past top of Lava Flow, somehow i missed the track and was heading over the edge but then pulled the front back over the wooden edging and came to a squirrelly stop with a wheel on either side and nearly losing balance... got going again and we picked our way down through the off piste tussock sheep trails.

All's cool on the Old Skool. nelson led the bombing down, staying on the zig zag trail rather than taking all the shortcuts. was kinda fun. hadn't done it for years! was getting pretty shaken up by the end tho. then round and down the singletrack. sweet flowing singletrack. on the second of the splits, old above new, i passed Nelson and led on from there. not much further on, ran into water running down the track. blast. round the corner and back across the face, and near the end there's the big muddy hole again, i stopped and nelson came over the rise behind me and nearly took me out. we walked by the hole, and rode on, with this wet section running across the trail 3 times below that. then, where the single meets the bottom road, we fixed up some of the ruts. and then headed out and home across town. the rear wheel creak winding me up all the way home...

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Moondaynight. Farm, Summit, Worsley rut scuffers

13 days since i last mountainbiked... ugh.
however, an excellent old skool ride last night was had under a 96% waning gibbous moon. drove to Nelson's bout 7.30 and we hit the road closer to 8. Feeling almost frosty, backstreets to Wilsons Rd then up past St Martins Primary, where it was already starting to feel warmer, just with the slight rise. across to Hillsborough Tce and on up the Crescent where the exursion and the rise out of the pooled cool air made all the layers we were wearing a bit much. stopped at the gate and took off jackets and hats as a couple of riders came tentatively down towards us, both on flash vpp cruz type machines. hit the dirt and mud and surprised ourselves with the traction. cleaning stuff i didnt think i should have, but then blowing on stuff i shouldnt. walked for about 5 m below first gate, rode some more but then blew again - due to lack of riding and usual small-child-induced tiredness, and walked again for the last bit before reaching the ridge. Nelson's brake was rubbing so brief pause for quick repair and it was onwards up, soft dirt conspiring to make the hill steeper, and a headwind further up adding to our woes. Nelson rode the whole hill. i walked again briefly on the last steep, getting back on for the last 100 m (without the lights riding by moonlight only). i did middle ring everything i rode tho.

Hit the road, towards Dyers. Poked our noses down and had a look at the summit traverse trail, it was full of puddles. continued. below sugarloaf, hit the singletrack again and in the first 50 m was a few largish puddles just past the rocky bits, so we made some drains and continued on. from here round almost all the way to Vic Park trees was dry as. the all weather surface proving to be quite 'all weather'...

was very mucky under the trees so we picked our way carefully through there and on up to the road again. bombing down to the kiwi was cold and there were several sheets of flowing water crossing the road, spraying up and making us colder... then from Kiwi, up road to top of worsleys. snow and ice appearing around the back, and the top of Worsley's road crunchy and icey...

the downhill. fun. streams of water gurgling, often on both sides of us as we rode the skinny ridges between the ruts. the bodybag looked slick and dodgy, but actually had quite good traction. below there the newly graded cut is being eaten up by the streams of water. more weather like the last week + a few overzealous 4wds will turn Worsley's back to the old one we knew so well. out of the graded section it got more hairy and fun, ruts to avoid, streams of muddy water to hop over and not lose a wheel into, skinny ridges to perch upon. fun fun fun. picking up more speed when allowable, scrubbing it off carefully when not. the lower half, nelson's light was getting more and more orange, and by the bottom of the dirt it was hopeless.

Finally a bomb down the seal, and after the final corner down into the icyness. brrrrrrr... beside a muddy high Heathcote river and thru the burbs to Nelson's, into the car, heater on full and i was home by 10.30, chilled to the bone.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

no ride week. Happybirthday Blog and RIP Freud.

bah. too much fun and other busy-ness over weekend to get out on bike. then missed out on last night, intending on getting out tonight, and now the rain has set in and the trails will be soaked. BLAH!

BUT!!!!! Swtchbckr is 4 years old now!

And on Thursday, 7th of May, we had to put down our beautiful big boy Freud. He was the best dog ever, and we were so so sad to say good-bye to him