Sunday, August 30, 2009

Friday arvo View Hill clamberings

as seemingly has become a (rather tragic) pattern, no ride during week, due to usual mix of children and schedules. Going to the bach Thursday night didnt help, so, friday afternoon, H having a kip, i jumped on the treadly and headed up the road to Chorlton, then on up View Hill Rd, managed to clean the steepest section, which must be one of the more sustained granny climbs around. and considering it starts after you've already done around 300 m altitude, you're already kinda 'warmed up'... anyway, on up into the valley, keeping a wary eye on the magpies that were careening around, past the lambing sheep, past a bunch of staring steers, then to the road's end, through gate and on up through the grizzled totara ruins and pepperwood peppered remnants onto the flanks of the View Hill weathertop. norwest wind was howling across the tops, blowing a bloody gale she was. threw a txt to steve into the ether and figured my time was up, so turned tail and skeddaddled down. chose an off piste way back to the gate, following the odd perfectly groomed natural sidling singletrack or dropping straight down the slopes. then, back on the road (read: farm track at best up top here), i took turns either riding it, or skirting up onto the sides and negotiating livestock trails. got some sweet flowy sections down too. after the fork and the big pine i chose one line that had yump after yump after yump, then into a giant's-head (as opposed to baby-heads) rock garden that stalled my progress immediately. picked my way through it and grabbed more of that sweet soulful flow. bombed down the last gravel section of road, side wind nearly washing me out, then tucked into the 80 odd kph sealed road bomb.

at the church, i exited the road into the cemetary, jumped over the fence into Lukes track and wafted down it. steps got the better of me, i probably rode a quarter of the whole track, and then was left carrying my bike up the last hundred steps back to the road. all up, 2 hours of good hard graft. rest of weekend, just cruised about on the old Phillips, H on the top bar.

bike to Kris tomorrow, get the forks serviced... its been wanting.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Sunday, posse on the highways of the hills - first pollen

trails drying out over week, and too busy otherwise...

Sunday morning, usual meeting place with the usual peeps. Tony, Marie, Warren, Andrew, Hubb, Wayno, Pete and me. Steve had had a bad night's sleep, so couldn't join us, but we met at his anyway. rolled round and up rapaki, along with a billion other walkers and riders. pete was on form, especially considering his lack of sleep and un-lack of excesses... felt the burn a bit up the top section. been a while since i last got up there. ran into Angrywad James and friend, both on Tomacs, who both zipped off for a witch Hill there-and-back.

Hit Vernon Single, very packed, teddingtonshit all firm and good. the two muddy spots were coping okay now too. felt pretty good riding up here, seemingly having sufficient balance and power. then cross the road and pause for a regroup. James and friend passing us by here. Then i led off onto the Traverse. excellent bomb round this, absolutely flying with a tail wind pushing me faster and faster. caught up with James and friend at top of Vic. then it was off down Thomsons, another good flight. to kiwi, brief stop and snackage. and on up road to Marleys. From road, looking across harbour, noticed what at first i thought was a lot of smoke, then clicked on the colour, plumes of pine pollen billowing out of the plantation on the point down to Quail Is. made me realise why i've got this weird 'cold' i've got (that i get every year at this time and every year remember that i get it at this time)... i guess now is the time to realise (once again) i'm a mild sufferer of hayfever. just a tickly throat and mild sinus annoyance... or IS it a cold? aannnyway, no biggie.

Marleys... fantastic run down the top section, blasting through all the curves, blazing all the jumps, into the middle rocky section i slowed a tiny bit and heard someone on my tail. a brief check and realised it wasnt any of our guys, and he was gaining on me quick, so i slowed up and pulled aside, and a matt green burly hardtail passed me by. so, i powered up and stuck to his tail the rest of the way down. bombing. then where trail meets road again, i slowed up and let Andrew and then Pete catch up, then it was time to roost the lower section. flew down that starting to gain on matt-green guy again, but then when i got to the road he'd vanished (up to kiwi i found out later as him and his buds rolled out). regrouped at trail end, and a cluster of crosscountry whippets in full racing regalia turned up, then we blasted off down Old Dyers. very nice run down here too, tho, picking carefully through the rutty wet bits which still plague the middle section.

Clambered up through Vic, legs starting to really burn on last climb, to skidder site, and good run down Dazza's, Brents, Flow, Bridges, with Pete following me across the high line and dropping down through the gut, below which we all regrouped again for last blast down valley track. Marie and Pete bailed bottom of Bowenvale. Pete and me onwards round Eastern, the rest over the river and back to Steves. home by 12.30 or so i think.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Week without a ride, then Sunday Tagalong McLeans.

Weather and timing and family all conspired to keep me off any trails for the week.

But, Sunday afternoon, there was pent up energy needing to be expended, so O and me headed with the singlespeed and tagalong out to Mcleans. hit the slightly splecky trail and O loved it - seemingly much prefering it to the old Bottle Ache. we spun round, him in swim goggles to start with (til they fogged up so much he couldnt see), hit the detour out to the river, parked up at the fence/road and walked to the waimak. river majorly shifted its big flow that used to be right there, now just a trickle. wandered back to bike and hit trail again.

Got to the pond (after the 'rockgarden') (which was almost empty - the pond, that is)), and saw the entrance to the new loop. only 5km, so we took it. O really enjoyed it. smooth, with humps. alongside where John and me were getting wood the other week i was getting a tad tired, from lugging the tagalong along the whole way and O was feeling the cold, but once back in the trees and with a bit of encouragement ("You'll be warmer if you push harder!") we rallied and bombed the rest of the way through. O really likes the G-out cornering. he was raving about it in the car on the way home. saying he wished we could go out there more often... thumbs up. Sunday afternoon ride turning me from tired grumpy (lack of riding and lack of sleep) dad to happy appreciated dad...

Monday, August 10, 2009

Friday nite Spring Living, Saturday tagalonging

Friday night, picked up Chris Cove about 7 and drove to nelson's, whereupon Chris realised he'd left his battery at home, so we all went back to his to get it and then took 'scenic' route thru tunnel and round to Living Springs finally arriving about 8. parked on Bamford under the macrocarpas, and headed in, sidling across Skoolz Out round to the steep grunt up gasping for breath to The Pines, climbed up thru this, enjoying the nicely radius'd switchbacks and middle-ring-ability, onto Rhymes with Orange for a quick swoop through and then up to the OCC. grabbed Mississippi down, near the top stumbling across a couple freshly birthed gooey just-stood-up lambs and mum right in the middle of the trail, on with the anchors and we jumped off and carried our bikes around below them giving a wide berth. continued on down the twistiness and then across onto Zanes. excellent fang down here, only one really nasty wetspot near the bottom. fun twisty tight singletrack..

Back onto Skools Out, back up the grunt, back up through the pines, then we thought, there must be more? (cos silly me hadnt printed off the map i'd gotten off Craig and Rebekah...) so we rode the road round to the main complex, not seeing anything obvious, headed back round and headed up a trail that said Summit... took a wrong turn somewhere and ended up sidling up and across the slope above OFarrells following a cow pocked fenceline. Figured we'd turned wrong so went down to O'Farrells and followed it a bit towards Gov's Bay, but decided it was no good either (reminded us of old skool dayz of exploring trails with cow shit and holes everywhere and not knowing where to go...) turned back to OCC down O'Farrells. then down to Mississippi again, avoiding the sheep and lambs again, flowed down it but this time took the bail out before heading on to Zanes, rode back up open slope and into Rhymes and then Pines in the opposite direction to before, down to the Pines' end. Turned around here and back up Pines, Chris and me swapping bikes for the climb back up. To finish, we headed back down Mississippi (avoiding the mother and lambs again), then back down Zanes (where the leaves that are near the middle nearly threw me off) and out to car. we all rode up the road a ways and bombed back down to try to get all the sticky mud we'd just picked up off that wetspot in Zanes off our tires.

DX LED lights still the biz...

home via Dyers, stopped for a couple beers at Nelson's and would have been midnight by time i was home.

Saturday. Me Sis is over from melbourne, so, O, her and me went to bottle lake. took tagalong and singlespeed, and also O's own bike. rode first a short way into the first section with O riding his own bike. then back out and grabbed the tagalong and did an internal loop. was fun.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Chooseday Night Posse. Dyers Nun Gov's Nun Dyers

i picked up Nelson about 6 and we drove up to find a massive group assembled at Takahe. lemme see if i can remember - there was 11: Steve, Andrew, Tony, Wayne, Hubby, Rex, Steve(abba), Mark, Marie, and nelson and myself, yeah, thats 11. Discussion ensued as to whether H.Ell track was a go, with some of us thinking not, on account of it being a nice night and earlyish and therefore potential for runner conflict. so, we headed off up Vic Park Rd.

At the carpark below the visitor centre Steve decided they'd go up H.Ell from where it crosses just up the road, whereas Nelson and me decided to blat down to Old Dyers and tootle up there. i was surprised to find we were joined by Hubby, Andrew, Steve(abba) and Rex. all had a good spin up, making good time, gradually spacing out, me leading up the first singletrack bit, nelson tight on my tail. i let him pass where the trail headed down a bit, cos i could barely breathe. trail was good, one or two bits still wet, but nothing sloppy. i chased after him up the last climb, and he was probably 20 metres from the end when we saw a couple of lights ride under the Kiwi (STeve and Tony).

Got up to summit road (by kiwi) and waited for the stragglers. Wayne and the others turned up from Hell (steve and Tony had gone on up road). once we were all together again, off we went up the road for Marleys, catching Steve and tony eventually just near the top. more discussion of options, i led off downhill. blazing. funtastical wonderland, tail wind pushing airborne jumps railing corners, flying. beautiful run down, and popped up onto road at saddle to regroup. Nels and me tried to talk anyone into doing a quick lap of Gov's bay trails, to no avail, so...

Him and me headed over onto the Gov's Bay trail (which we hadnt ridden since before all the wet). Awesome descent down that, with only one rut worth mentioning, and only veery slight greasiness in a couple of spots. seemed to go on and on, down and down, chock full of awesomeness.

then the climb up and out. grunty little bastard that it is, back up onto the road, and climbing yet again, we saw the other's lights up on the 4wd bit of Marleys while we were below on the summit road being overtook by a van-load and a car-full of girrrlz... got to the top of Flying nun to find the others all still in residence, apparently waiting for Mark and Marie who'd vanished...(musta buggered off home early).

another good blast down flying nun, me close on the tail of Nelson, blazing all the way down to the kiwi. all in all, felt really good, riding well, feeling totally on top of my game right now. (i wonder if that "edge" is quietly approaching, the one that sneaks up on you when your riding is getting betterer and betterer, fasterer and fasterer, til WHAM, over you go, crashing and burning. - fingers crossed i'm just becoming a better rider, yeah?). anywho. we all reassembled at kiwi, (nelson noticing here that his fork had been locked out for the descent!)

Splintering again, the others headed down Hell (strangely enjoying a groomed wheelchair track over a gnarley twisty tight narrow singletrack), while nelson and me opted for Old Dyers. another nice bomb down here, me leading and having a blast. once again we spotted the other's spots from below whilst they were negotiating the steps. hit lower Hell and blazed down to Takahe, with more and more spots of rain. downpour beginning as we loaded the car.