Saturday, December 25, 2010

Post Christmas Ride number two - View Hill, Banks Pen.

Well. blog post counts aside, only got one more ride within the old year. spent 10 glorious days in perfect weather at the bach in Little Akaloa. built a tree platform (house would be a misnomer) for the boys. swung heaps on our swing, and rode around the section a bit. swam in the warm(ish) sea many many times, but largely just hung out not doing a helluva lot except playing the the boys. so. one day, not even sure which now, i got out about 10.30 am and headed up the road to Chorlton, then on up View Hill Rd, stepping aside for a couple of bulls who were being taken down off the hill by the farmers, then continuing up to the top of the road, checking in on the cellphone messages up top there, taking the trails right to the very top of the hill, then turning round and bombing back down, exploring out the top of the bush and finding a few off piste animal trails then wending my way down across the slope eventually getting back to the main track. bombing down this, chasing a sheep for a while, then on down the fucking steep gravel and on down the seal to the bay. all up a good wee ride to break the holiday up.

Post Christmas Ride number one - Christmas Day.

Well. first "post xmas ride" was actually this morning, christmas day. did all the fun family present opening etc then got something for lunch ready, then took off on my bike to get to Joy's for Xmas lunch. T took the boys in the car. Left home 10ish, got to hers 11.15ish. bloody headset is dodgy.

sped across town, up rapaki at a good clip, over witch hill, road up to Castle and a good fang down there. then onwards round under the gondola, up round and onto John Britten, then off piste down the paddock, under the pylons and down Major Hornbrook, through the park to Cannon Hill Cres then bombage down there to lunch.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Tuesday PFMTBC DVD Release

Cruiser'd over to Petes and met up with all the crew. Andrew, Wayne, Warren, Hubb, Pete (who'd been at Pom's all afternoon), Steve and Tony. We ventured forth into the hot blasting Nor'waster, made it to the Belgian Beer Cafe where we squatted on the outskirts of a bunch of suits and supped our ales (a Blonde and a Brunette for me). then to Pomeroys where we met up with the three M's - Matt, Mark and Marie. Mark had a Tallboy in tow, and we all carparked it trying it out and liking it except for (mark's) floppy seat - (a Hopwired and a Smokin' Bishop for me here).

Then a tail wind blast to Pete's for the unveiling of Warren's video construction. we drank a little more and laughed and laughed and laughed.

Sketchy getting home, with i think a crash on Pete's drive. i've got unexplained chain muck right up my leg...


Only 4 more posts to fulfill my annual quota... These will be pre-loaded because i'm going to Little Ak from Boxing day and we aint got internet over there. I'll definitely get that many rides in prior to Jan 1st.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Sunday Hunting Traversing Victorian Old Skools.

Smaller posse assembled at Steve's this morning, with Wayne, Warren, Andrew, Mark, Steve and myself cruising round Hansen's and up the Huntsbury into the cloud. clammy moist and humid it was. up up up we went til we broke out above the clouds (or they burned off) and Mark took the old steep line up top instead of through gate and up to beginning of Traverse.

hit the Traverse and put on the pace. i nearly lost my back wheel over the edge after one stop, then a dazed and confused large lamb tried to get in everybody's way cos it didnt know what to do with itself alongside the pond, then Wayne got a flat at the usual signpost-Sugarloaf stop. otherwise a pretty event free jaunt.

Off down through coffeebreak with Mark then me rolling the see-saw and the first coupla brakefrees, then off down the rockgarden into the gummies and peeled left down that sweet little track Marie had shown us. Andrew said Steve looked like he was gonna shoulder barge a tree near that steepy corner.

regrouped and off up to for Mark to show us a piece of Raadi Garden. nice wee rideable steep with optional droppage, then he showed us this play area before the top entrance to Rad^Sick which we did a couple of loops of, then off down the valley, taking in some bits that followed Rad briefly before hooking onto the lower reaches of Cool Runnings. then off down Flow, Bridges and rolling the new bit without pedalling at all, making for a fun lower section.

blatted down the valley and hit up Hidden, cleaning it up nicely, rain starting to fall a bit more concertedly. into the Old Skool and a good blast until the wet rubber matting which sent me screaming towards the rocks in a straight line gaining speed. managed to survive and got down the rest okay.

it being only 11am when we got to the bottom so coffee was had.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Wednesday Sandpit singlespeeders

Chris came to mine and we singlespun across to the forest. in the main entrance, hung a right and drafted to the gazebo, ate a biscuit or two, then onwards. along the beach we hit the worst sand, and headed down onto the beach, where chris wheelied and i cruised to the next entrance, back onto the singletrack and on round, quite a few stops, a swapsie for a section, his forks are well plush, mine are basically rigid. i was surprised by some of the freshly cleared forest, open in places i've never seen open before... played round on the wooden stuff at the end and then rode back towards mine, detouring at the last minute to Pomeroy's for a pint...

All Mtn Trials 1

These two posts, vimeos, are awesome. found them via Spoke Mag
Czech them out...

Nicolai All Mountain Trial from Whyex Productions on Vimeo.



Also, these are a desperate attempt at boosting my blog post numbers for the year.

All Mtn Trials 2

Nicolai All Mountain Trial 2 from Whyex Productions on Vimeo.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Sunday Morning Rich Green God-Snake

got myself to Pete's and we drove to Slumner to meet up with the others. good sized posse, with a Force (to be reckoned with), one in a Trance, three Jami (the plural of Jamis), one Stinky one, one abominable snowman, a feminine Merida, and myself, the psy-Cotic one... (ie, Dallas, Wazza, Andy, Tony(new Yeti shock servicing, hence the Shame-us) and Wayney, Mark, Pete, Marie and me).

We entered Richmond Hill Rd with abandon, and flaunted ourselves up the steep grunter to the farmtrack which was most enjoyable up through yards and sheep and farmers to the pines of Greenwood/Richmond corner. on up road and into the single-ator which was most enjoyable. nice bomb down Greenwood Park with much rockiness and side winds. just after what is normally a creek in winter i flatted, and then had tubular issues finally resolving it with a freshy from Tony. the regroup and rest proved healthy and the rest of the bomb was the bomb.

At Evans the Warren and Dallas bailed down the Captain, and i have it on good authority that they had a all round good ride down, altho Dallas came off over his bars (we didnt see that from where we watched them before we hit up Godley). we hit up Godley, Mark making his mark up the first bit, with much hopping and popping - quite spectacular. i got further up it than other recent feeble attempts, but not quite cleaned. not a bad wee haul out with a couple of regroups and a couple of alterior lines had by one or two. nice wee blasts down and good climbing all round.

from Breezey col, off down The Snake we galloped, with berms railed and dust stirred. excellent runs by all and a good blast down the tail too. in Taylor's carpark, passing by the massive posse that was the Chch Mtnbiking Club. the racer-y members (2) of this group passed us on the way up the road, and after regrouping we got off down Nicholson ahead of them all and to Dot Com not long after 12, home by 1...

great ride, nice day, refreshing wind.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Thursday solo there and back again.

what a ride tonight. no word from Chris, so i got out on my own, drove over and parked up Bowenvale Ave about 7.20 and headed up the Old Skool, steepness getting the better of my unfit bod once or twice, but enjoying the cleanliness of the climb on the single up into the sunshine, then really enjoying the smoothed out clay surface under the pylons, its really taken the lurch out of that section. then on up the nasties, spinning out once or twice, not on my game. at one stop, watched some dh'ers on the lavaflow, walking and checking out sections, and a couple of guys bombing, looking spectacular taking mean lines and raarking up the dust in some of the last sunshine as they blitzed it - their woots echoing across the valley. i continued on my way up to the summit.

fiddled with fork tune as i crossed the road and hit up vernon realising the goodness of the fork change, getting my groove on down over the rocks around into the Rapaki catchment, flowing on down and down to the carpark, rolling through and onto witch hill trail where that one rock early on got the better of me, but cleaning up the rest and enjoying some of the new smoothness.

then onto the road and the schluff to Castle Rock. inspiring descent into the darkening valley, managing to dodge most little piles of fresh sheepshit, but managing to get splecked by one lot... smelly. made the top of the bridle and turned back admiring the carnage of the boulders and rockslide off the top of Castle Rock proper. then endured the good climb back up, big ring the whole way (36t (2x9)) and cleaning the last bit that often gets the better of me.

amazing the rocks piled up on the roadside, and the damage (now patched) where they'd fallen from the Tors etc.

getting cooler now on the descent. looked down at the walkway below the road and dreamed sweet singletrack memory dreams, but was a good boy and continued round, over the witch. got dimmer and dimmer as i climbed back up vernon. then crossed the road again and on round a bit of the traverse before dropping back down into the Old Skool, down the shortcuts, taking a bad line on the worst rocky section and bailing before crashing.

on down and into the sweet sweet singletrack, visibility getting pretty dim now, dusk really setting in, kinda fuzzing the bumps out of the trail almost. blitzed on down and out the bottom back to the car dead on 2 hours after i'd left.

Sweeeet

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Sunday family mcleans

kinda almost doesnt count, but i did get a ride in today, even tho T's galavanting off in Sydney leaving me to nurture our sons...

took them out to Mcleans Island, O on his bike and Go on the tagalong behind the singly. pretty mellow cruise in lovely hot day, bailing off cos O was tired. he was sick yesterday so i shouldnt have expected too much from him today. anyway... its one more post to boost the tally for the year.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tuesday crocodiled quarry

got a lift with Pete (and Alister and Brandon, his son and nephew respectively, in tow), off out to bottom of Halswell-that-ends-well Quarry. we were early, so he dropped us three at the top of the road and we jettisoned ourselves down the crock. nice wee blast down there with me tight on Alister's tail all the way. then he flatted on those rocks at the very bottom as we were about to make our way down to the car. made our way back to the road and the boys, Steve, Tony and Wayne had arrived, pete took off up with puncture repairs to Al who was walking.

tire fixed and off up the Rim Track to check out the earthquake damage on the quarry-face. wicked amount of damage. over and up to road, then on up to top of Siberia, nice wee climb up all the way and fun descent popping the roots. up 4wd track to gate and i chased Alister in, pushing him til he let me past and the blast was on. great run down newtasty with a couple of the corners really nearly getting the better of me, especially the last one that shoots you back towards the top of the crock, nasty big rut-trench on it.

into the croc for the final blast, absolutely fanging it. awesome trip down, raising the dust. group of cows in the way near the bottom, then railing the highsides of the berms, very nice work in there. up the grunt, regroup and off down again, and noticed a jumps area across in the trees that really need a trail in them.

said good-bye to the boys, then the young'uns, pete and me ventured forth to find the yumps zone... rode and walked up to check them out. well beyond any of our skills, so we went to the top and rode and rolled avoiding the gappage then back out the bottom.

home nice and early

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sunday untsbury averse lying un ictoria

nice wee ride this morning. trundled a tired ass over to Stevo's and Andro Wayno Mari-o and Tono were there to ride. Tono was on a new bike, another Abominable Snowman has joined the posse... Stevo and Pedro were off to Ruahoono to watch fuel being guzzled and rubber being converted into little pieces scattered across tarmac.

off up Huntsbury we cruised, a pretty good go made by all. up into cloudy tops, feeling good about pushing my unridden body up the hill. through the gates and over the fence and up to the top. off round the summit trail enjoying this track again after more than a month off. passed the same joggers a few times, each time them friendlily leaping out of the way, off down Thomsons to kiwi, blasting it.

up road, with a little discussion of the Gov'no's track, which Andro still has never done(!), as we passed, continuing to top of Marlo's. off down the Nun, having a great, tho cruisy, waft down there, coasting to slow speeds on corners, then powering out, all in all a good blast. Tono claiming the Kendo SmallBlock8s to be pretty good in most of these conditions, and him finding himself thinking there was little difference in ride between the old Shamus and his new Bigfoot, but actually going a darned sight faster.

regrouped at kiwi and off up to top of Vic Park, me receiving a 'get the fuck home now, you're late' call (even tho it was only 11), so off down into vic, over seesquaw, a few brakefro's and into the gummos down the recently enjoyed track and regrouping at the skidder site where i said my good byes and blasted off down Dazzo's, Brento's and Flow, passing a huge group of riders, into Bridgos, nuBridgos and down and out and home across town via a Dairy for milk and cream for a pav(!) by 11.40.

niiic-oh.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thursday evening Worsle Nunnage Vix 2 OldSkool

finally out for a ride. 3 weeks off the bike for many and varied reasons - a party at our place, a death of a friend, a trip to the bach and a week in Fiordland. with family time required around all of these.

drove over to Chris's and we headed across town, parking up in B.vale Ave. round the foot of the hills and up Worsley's we rode, me weak in the legs and struggling while Chris was pushing a cold. uneventful, dab filled struggle up the dirt with me walking more of the Body Bag than i've ever done, peaking out gasping.

the nun however was bliss. Chris led in but in the first of the big sweepy uppy corners he pulled off cos the scab-shield on his elbow was vibrating too sore, so he followed me at a nice flowy cruisy pace the rest of the way down to the kiwi, both of us really enjoying it.

up the road to Vic straight down to seesaw and brakefree and sesame st and dazza's and pono's and onwards, then cleaned up Hidden Valley (me stopping for a gasp of air between top switchbacks after nearly steering over the bank) and into the Old Skool. excellent blast down there, taking in an older new line half way down that neither of us had ridden for ages.

stopped for a couple of well earned pints, including a particularly hoppy Tall Poppy, at Pomeroys on the way home.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Quick Tuesday nighter

only three of us tonight, Marie, Warren and me. met at Steve's and headed up Rapaki. Marie headed towards Vic from there, while Warren and me headed into the easterly, Witch Hill, up road to Castle Rock. allowed Laurence Mote, Ventana-beltdrive-Oli, and some other guy on a Reign in ahead of us, and i did my darnedest to keep on their tails, closing the gap on the descent, then them losing me on the climb. good run. on round the top to John Britten. off piste meandering down there then down the road and into McCormacks bay for a sweeeet run down through there. then finished with a good tail wind run round the back of ferrymead Warren peeling off and me cruising it to Steve's to the car.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sunday Wurst Nunchuck Dying Victim

Pete and steve were out, but a good buncha ring-ins showed at Tony's for today's spin. nice tailwind got me over there in dead on 20mins. Andrew, Warren, Wayne, Tony and Marie, off up Worsley's, me taking the dirt instead of tarmac, feeling good.

Hit the dirt and all had good climbs, i think all cleaning the body bag too? i got up first and struck up a conversation with the tailender of the Canty MtnBike Club group ride, who turned out to be someone quite well known. then we were onto the Nun. AWESOME blast down here, cold easterly blustering the odd jump, but not as bad as all that, brief regroup at half way, then onwards and downwards then off down Old Dyers too. excellent blaze down the bumpy bumpy bumpy to a sheltered sunny spot for a snackup.

then onwards up to road, over, and up into vic park, taking in the wee singletrack leading into the skidder site. nice wee off by Andrew, who ended up having to untangle himself from a friendly bush. Off down Dazzas, then Brents, with everyone going different directions in there, Wayne and me taking in some of the bit we rode the other week. discovered race tape before leaving the forest, with dh groms blasting past on the fast lines as we flowed flow and nubridges. we regrouped below double drop (which was the dh finishline), and waited for Wayne, who'd had quite a good off, nasty scrapes on his arms and knee.

Off up Hidden, managinng to clean it all this time, and off up and over into a glorious descent of the Old Skool. i said good by as the others turned for tony's, and me to a quick blast into the wind home

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tuesday Scarbro conda Godley Thomas

treadled over to pete's and we falconed out to Sumner to meet Andrew and then Steve and Tony. off into the brisk wind for a reversal of the usual around the waterfront and off up at a nice leisurely pace up Scarborough. blatted down into Taylors and off up the 'tail. nice climb and on up the rest of the snake, big(middle) ringing the whole way.

At Breeze col, it surely was breezy, and a split was decided. Pete and me were feeling chipper enough to contemplate the blast out and back, while the others tootled off towards Evans. We made good time, taking the low road, then making like Buffalo Girls and going 'round the outside', then the chase was on. not a bad up, and a good descent to Livingston Col where we could see the other guys topping out on the mucky summit. rough as guts descent to Evans where the boys were waiting.

Time for the Captain, Pete chasing me and passing me when i baulked on the highline taken due to walkers, leaving the rest of us for dead. good blat the rest of the way, absolutely flying. couple brief stops swapping the lead at each gate, with me finishing off the lower half. back to the cars and home before 8.30 just as dark was dropping.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

the trip

so far so good. final night, sittin in a puter room and loading this down. for a far more indepth analysis, see steve's pfmtbc write up.

Friday, roadtripped to Dunners, arrived, settled in, loaded up with food and beer then hit the local Redwoods. rode up steeeeeep roads (Rockside and Tanner) to get to it, up McGouns to top, down a single, through mudtroughs to the top of the 'loop'. off down switchback after curve after curve after switchback, loving it all, slightly loose in places but fun fun fun, and 5 minutes later you're at the bottom and head up for the climb which switchies its way up the hill caning it to the top. how many loops? i think 3 or 4, but on Pete's third, he crashed real good skinning the knee.

day two
massive day, heaped upon a hangover from celebratory arrivals. Multiple hours of riding exhausting all involved, slowed even further by a certain dreaded one's constant flats. took Nichol's Creek Switchback track all the way up to Swampy, hung a left at the top and on over to a speedy descent to the 'bull pen'. tried to find the entrance to a shortcut down to snakes and ladders (alas, took road round instead). No one particularly enjoying the Snakes'n'ladders, so half the party bailing out, while the other half continued through it only to be stopped by Mike's flatting. back up to the bull pen in killer heat with worn out climbs back up to top of the way we'd come down, and time to hit the switchbacks again. Everyone loving the descent, with footage captured. over all, everybody loved the beginning and ends of the day, but not a lot in the middle.

day 3.
signals mixed. up up up up up up road after road to Signal Hill Monument and g-stringed tourist asses to meeting a friendly Brent (from Bike Otago) who led us down descents we'd enjoy to bottom, nice rocky technical but reasonably fast descents, thinking rain would kill the rest of the day.

back base then some lunch, and rain gone, so drove up for a post lunch Redwoods play, multiple laps, then across to Buffoons and an argumentative start prior to blazing around some of the sweetest singletrack yet. starting from the carpark we headed into the Forrester forest into the day before's racetrack, loving it down then getting back to the carpark. quick lap of the bmx track, then off up the hill, into Bethunes Gully, up a singletrack which zigged us down again into the picnic area, over a bridge, up Mt Cargill Walkway, which seemed to get steeper and steeper, us spotting the singletrack below us, eventually up left to a wee play on some wooden things and down to race tape, hard left into Haggis basher or hunter, for a wicked descent popping stuff on the way. back over the bridge and up the xc climb, zigging and zagging through fantastic plantation forest to a top. the speedier ones raced off and took the 'Expert' line, while the slightly slower for some reason took the 'Sport', and so the 'experts' all ended up down the bottom again, waiting indefinitely for the others who never showed. cel contact was made and we all headed on up the way we'd arrived into the clearing originally, then took a zig zag track up left and over to find the others on the road. then we circled out round Forresters park on all of its singletrack back to the carpark.

day 4.
Government Track, out near Waipori Falls. very niiiice. bit of a drive out of town, into fucking nasty looking weather, me in the falcon thinking oooop, steve'll be cross, but arriving up the valley as the sun shone and the bush beckoned. up the first couple switchbacks thinking what are we in for?, then onto glorious benched singletrack gliding through spectacular forest, fuchsia-broadleaf-podocarp in the lower and wetter areas, with dryer beech forests on the ridges, then into manuka scrub getting shorter and nearly subalpine up top. brief time in some farm land with wind trying to blow us over. over an hour to the top, with a bit of hail thrown in on the way up for good measure, otherwise mostly sunshine including at top. black weather coming so off we headed back down, first through the manuka then into the good beech forest and then the podocarp. when the black weather hit, snow started falling, spectacularly. the roots were skittery and all of it was fantastic. to me, this track is everything i love about riding in new zealand.

day 5.
forecast nasty, so didnt expect to ride, but day turned out to be sweet, so we got up the switchbacks again, great ride up and great ride down. arrived back to base as the skies opened, perfect timing. lunched in town then 5 of us partook of a tour with Richard Emerson of his brewery. a great experience, with 'quality control' being a very important part of the tour.

day 6,
packed up, left Dunedin. Pete, Marie, Mark and me in the Falcoon, off up to Waimate. Excellent Peas, Pie and Pud at The Savoy, the best tearooms in South Canterbury, then off up to end of Point Bush Rd to ride the White Horse. Steep ass little switchback trail up through regenerating native bush and macracarpa and pines up top, even seeing a Wallaby mosying through, and on up to the PD gang working around the Horse. Photos, then down, popping most of the jumps on down in no time flat. back in car, off we went. 20 odd kms later Mark realised he didnt have his camera! so, back to Waimate, and on round the road to the top of the track. Retreived the camera and the Mark and me rode down again, meeting the others on the road below, great ride the second time round too.

Home for dinner.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Finally, Sunday Mid Hills Blast.

Good ride Sunday Morning. Usual suspects, plus as a bonus me oldest bestest friend Matt, who was visiting from Melbs. Normally a roadie, his grins definitely showed he liked the dirt - maybe we'll convert him yet. He borrowed my ancient (socalled)"Schwinn". I'd spent an hour or so the night before cleaning it up a bit and swapping bars, stem and pedals to make it more accommodating for him.

We treadled across town to Steve's where turned up Pete, Warren, Wayne, Tony, Andrew and Marie. then we all headed round and up Rapaki. Matt's road fitness got him up nearly effortlessly with Pete and me, and he enjoyed the views to be had from there on round. We singletracked Vernon - Traverse - Thomsons then kiwi road to Marley's and the excellent blast down the Nun, all with numerous regroupings and millions of other riders to contend with, more crowded than i've seen it in ages. A southerly was due late morning (didnt show til much much later) so maybe everyone was trying to get around before that...

From bottom of Nun, up the Thomsons to top of Vic and down, me being the only one to do the see-saw (as usual). through the rocks, into the gums and most of us tried out a new track Marie pointed out to us. great little twist and shout through the gums spitting us out at the lefthander so many usually miss, over the wee jump and then down round out to the Skidder site... race tapes up, so we got in and blazed down Dazza's, into Brents staying between the tapes down to a turn and section i'd never done before, whistles blowing our approach, like we were DH racers :).

Onto Flow, me missing the new highline, rutting instead, and then into nu bridges, down to Hidden Valley and its wee granny grunt up, blowing some of the hairpins. then into Old Skool, first time since April! yay. great blast down there, with a couple of regroups, and then out to coffee at St Martins, then the headwind home.

Friday, PFMTBC trip. hopefully i'll be able to slide a ride in between now and then...

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tuesday repeat of sunday again.

Pete n me treadled the length of Linwood Ave and round to Warren's, finding him, Tony and Marie ready to ride. Steve was off being wined and dined somewhere fancy. We headed round the ferrymead singletrack, then off up Mt Pleasant Rd, spreading out pretty good but regrouping a couple times and then layering up up top before hitting the Greenwood goodness.

once again, I was on fire! felt really good once again, possibly better than Sunday. fanged it, railed, popped, roosted, relishing the dry singletrack. quick reqroup midway, til Marie rounded into view, then off again, cutting through the lower section even smoother and faster than before. cleaning both little rocky ups and floating from there on down. whole ride was totally on form, felt great.

Marie took off down the road, due to light issues, and the rest of us headed into Capt Thomas, once again, feeling very good. usual baulk, then great cleaning of all the rest. quick regroup in the middle and into the rest of it, great times. first night ride without lights (cept for Tony and Wazza in last bits of Thomas).

then the slog home, head winds, once again, but not quite as strong as sunday.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Sunnyday east end blat

Nice wee ride this morn. gorgeous day, hot, norwest. Rode over to Steves. Tony, Marie there, then up rolled Andrew, Warren and Wayne. and off we all went down river, round behind ferrymead, causeway, and up Mulgans, nasty little piece of work that it is. cleaned a couple corners i'd not before, but still dabbed out most. climb climb climb, then up Panorama, and up the nice rooty singletrack, on up to road, and cruised to top of Greenwood...

where i led off and had one of my best descents down there for a lonnng time. every corner smooth, flowing over rocks not being pinged from one to another, great times, high speed, roosting.

was quarter after 11 when we got to Evans, and we talked about Godley, but it was decided coffee at the bottom of Capt Thomas was more appealing. shame, but as i found out later, a bit of a blessing. So, the Captain. was good. my on-form-ness was still with me, and roosted nicely down all but the one nemesis. not too many other trailusers, which is always good on the lower slopes.

after coffee, the headwind. norwest, fucking strong, and relentless. took me probably twice as long to get down Linwood Ave than usual, horrible it were, and i was starting to bonk near my usual place. so, it was just as well we hadnt done Godley, cos that would have left me dead before i'd even got to Ferrymead...

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Tuesday repeater

Rode to Pete's for a lift over to Tony's where we found Warren, Wayne and Tony. Off up Worsley's we chuffed, everybody doing well. the dirt was a tad drier than Sunday, but the ruts and ridges were just as challenging and enjoyable, the odd bit dabbing us all. three cleaned the body bag, one with a blow out part way up.

on up to the Nun. i led off, blazed away, weed-eaten grass strewn all over the whole track now. felt a little more on form than sunday, tho the grass and lights made it a bit trickier. got through all the midlevel rocks and below the old 4wd bit and waited for a bit for the other's lights to appear. Pete had had issues, his handlebar mounted lights had been flopping forward on every bump. continued on down, pete sorted his lights at the carpark and on down to the kiwi we flew.

up the road, ignoring the Thomsons, into Vic, flowed down the first bit, i took the see-saw, then into Brakefree. i peeled off, but then Pete yumped and swooped round it, so i got back in and we hit Sesame St, the landing off the Wall nearly wiping me out, then into Dazza's, and Flow and once again New Bridges, and out the bottom.

pretty much one year on, Camelback Mule is still a good wee pack, however, the bladder has fucked out. leaks if left on wrong angle, and has taken on a nasty freezer smell (if not so much taste).

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Sunday Worsley Nun Victory, ah.

quick earlyish blat this morning. left home bout 8.30 (after unseizing one of my derailleur jockey wheels), cruised across town and up Worsleys. hard work but just kept at it. ridges and ruts provided a nice challenge while grey warblers provided the soundtrack. managed to clean the body bag, but not without a breather near the top.

onto nun, and off i flew. perfect condition, great blat, popping all the airs and railing all the berms. not much sketch. bit of freshly mown grass on the lower reaches.

up road, upper Thomsons, Coffee Break, over the see-saw, brakefree, sesame, dazzas brents, flow, little bit of the upper new bit, then into nu-bridges, and out the bottom. great blast, home about 10.30.

meanwhile, the rest of the usual crew will have started at Steves and gone somewhere...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Thursday muddy hell

Chris showed at mine, no other takers, so we Fiat'd out to Slumner to haul ourselves up the Captain. prior to Chris's arrival i'd rubbered up my wheels, 2.35 Muddy Mary up front, and 2.3 Stout on the rear, turned out they were a pretty good choice for tonights ride. Captain Thomas had more mucky places on it than i've ever seen before, in places i've never seen muck. quite astounding, tho, still eminently rideable, albeit with copious dabs. bailed on the top section knowing its messiness, and rounded the final hairpin of the road to be greeted by the Evans to Lyttelton Road Closed sign, which i'd forgotten about, and explained the extreme lack of traffic.

on up the summit road passed by only 2 cars, and hit Greenwood. not too bad to start, quite good in fact, round the top and down to the ruins. then on down. round the first left hander into rocksville i lost it, catching a rut or something, off balance, really thought i was a goner over the edge, but juuust managed to keep it together, including in my moment of distress, missing altogether a hedgehog in my firing line. adrenalin burst (something i'm used to of late, what with all these aftershocks), and on downwards. rode a bit better after that and caught Chris up after a couple more bends. mucky middle section, then good for a bit again, down, down, then into the bit that'd been worked on the other week, and it was a mess. all the soft dirt that was flattened so nicely was a big rut. we walked around the worst bits. stream crossing and onwards all good.

crossed Evans and slugged up Godley. rocks getting rockier by the day, troublesome climbing for both of us. nice in the windy dried bits, still a bit of wet in places, until you get round onto the grassy slope in the Taylors catchment. Ugh. what a mess. diabolical. and, for the first time, i'll admit, Teddington shit is the shit. once you hit it, it was the only flowy bit of trail there, after it, rutsville again, til the lower descent to Livingston. on over to breeze was a breeze, except the last 100 metres or so by the fence, wet mucky mud under grass.

anaconda top was puddled in places, a few ruts, and one or two flows. onto anaconda itself, the whole top section was sweet, over the three jumps into the berms, nice, but then in the valley, rut city, mostly avoidable but no speed carried. finally, the tail was sweeeet, until you got onto the bottom paddock, yuck.

clambered back up out of taylors, down through nicholson and along the waterfront. home around 9.30.

and a quake hit just as i finished this. 10.30ish

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

De-stressing Earthquakes.

7.1, felt at 0436 Little Akaloa 4th Sept 2010 (where a ride had been intended), munted the weekend and days following cleaning up bricks and mortar. untold destruction, general freaked-outedness prevailing. So, finally today, i skived off the first day back at work on what could only be described as stress-leave, and unwound by getting out on the bike. Chris was at a loose end not being allowed into the cordon to work, met at mine and we StanNurseWilsEastmorerysonerned to the foot of the hill, spotting the odd chimney down as we spun. werent really sure where we'd climb, but ended up choosing Holliss. one i'd not been up for a while, and not having been on the bike for a while either, thought would be some good punishment. Chris's first time too. good wee climb, across the lot that is still vacant, onto Longhurst, and on up Harry Ell past Warnin's place, through a gate and up a well trod wee singletrack through "Private Land", skirting the bottom of Dog Park and onto vic park rd, to drop down to cross Dyers and under and up. lots of water in the first half, good technical grunt up to kiwi and on to the misty cloud topped Marleys.

Nun was good. not as greasy as that other recent time, but with one or two slickish spots and rocks seemed to have grease on them cos of the dirty tires resulting in some careful picking and a scare or two.

Back on the road up to top of vic, round through the trees, and down over the DH fence, chris leading me into Tits. a corner i'd never turned before, and slick as pig shit with me running and skipping over lots of stuff i'd only just manage (on the edge) in the dry. arrived at 4wd track and decided against the remainder, so headed for top of Cool Runnings, chris choosing to go further along and hit yet another DH'y dropper. rode more of that, but again, have managed it no worries in the dry but there was too much grease around. Onto Flow nicely and nubridges wafting sweetly even off the end, and down out the valley bottom, muchly improved by lack of bovine slop.

back across town under the railwaytracks, bumping into Pete, checking on Pomeroy's for openness, parting ways, cleaning up, grabbing some Indian, scoffing, then the boys turning up for an exploration of the local urban carnage. meandering around the river downstream a few kms from here observing the utter destruction a megatonne of energy unleashed over 39seconds, 10kms deep and 40kms distant, can inflict on the crust human settlement lays over a flexible land. Liquifactionville - how long is this shit gonna take to clean up? and yet, as observed (and heard of) elsewhere, barely a chimney cracked for some. mother fuckin' nature, eh?

touch-wood, the rumblings seemed to have slowed down a litte... one can but hope.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Re-opened Singletrack goodness

so good to finally get out today. was a shame i'd been so wrecked Saturday night, cos i felt like absolute shit all morning, except for the actual riding.

so. got my ass over to Steves, overtaken by Pete in the Cosworth on Opawa Rd, and greeted by Tony, Wayne, Warren and Andrew out front of Steve's, who had an excuse of family bother to get him out of riding... not pisscrookedness at all, right?

anyway, off up Rapaki we lugged our sorry states, meeting Mark and Marie and truck at end of road. Marie joined us, while Mark drove off to see us up top. climbed like climbing things, surprising ourselves i think, Pete and me, with our ability to actually succeed. cold southerly wind in our faces all the way up, and into the clouds up top, with some spitty drizzliness going for it dampening everything. decided on heading towards Sumner, but not thinking we'd make it.

Witch hill was like a pinball machine, little bit of grease on the rocks pinging my slightly over inflated tires all over the place. few dabs, lurches and lost moments. but all over quite good. Marie and Warren took the road, Marie due to a bad wrist. regrouped and headed on up summit road towards the Castle.

Castle Rock started out a bit mucky but not bad. a few damp spots down the way, but mostly pretty good, had a nice flow on down round the hill, first hairpin nicely negotiated, on down and after the second hairpin nasty rutsville just before the bridge. pete stepped off to film everybody, and Tony had a nice tumble off down the hill, i think caught on film, nice couple garks on his legs. Marie took the road. Mark showed up and we chatted and then got our ways on round, in the clouds, tailwind, to Britten

John Britten trail: led off and could someone on my tail for a while, til the nasty rock-up, which i dabbed but kept going, under the very wet (rainmaking) shelterbelt on round to the road where i waited. and waited. and waited, and thought, hmmm, and was just about to ride on back to see what'd happened, when Marie and Warren and Tony appeared out of the gloom saying Pete had had an off but they were on their way. he'd been straddling his bike, walking up that rock when one of his feet gave way and off he tumbled down the hill, garking himself nicely i think. Mark rolled up and Marie changed bikes here.

hit Greenwood, for the first time in a lonnnnnng time. started off with a greasy rut which threw me a bit, but dried out nicely on further up, with even some dust appearing at one stage... had a good cruise down really enjoying the freedom of this trail, and pleasantly surprised at how little damage the winter had inflicted, maybe a few more rocks showing a bit more of their teeth after dirt's been washed away. mucky wetspot after rockgap, but all good round into gloomy gulch. still in the clouds at this point, pulled up just down from usual stopping place, and regrouped again, looking down on the willing workers we were intending on joining. got rolling again and cruised down to the workers, stopping to chat with Ranger Nick Singletrack, who basically said no need to worry about helping out and to enjoy the ride!!! gotta make it to the next workday. bolled down the rest of the trail, seeing Mark again, and then hit Captain Thomas.

First corner, more workers (and a "NICE BIKE" comment on the Soul), chatted to Graham a bit then continued on down. bad slip mud eating my wheels before the first of my nemeses. i stopped, walked quickly down, then turned round to see Pete dropping his bike and scuttling down and juuust stopping on his hands... enjoying the rest of the trail, cleaning my other two old nemeses. one or two other wet bits, nothing too major, quite fun dodging and popping the various holes and rutty bits, on out to the bottom. up pulls Mark, informing us Marie was behind. once she arrived we all tootled down to DotCom and coffeed up before the slog home.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

meeting of singletrack minds

townie, with Pete to STeve's, meeting Wazza, Mark and Marie (tandemised) there. all rode round river on paths and roads eventually to Tony's where we were joined by rex wayne andy and plans for October's trip were hatched... Dunners here we come.

Monday, August 23, 2010

View Hill Quickster

Bad weather, then 10 days in Fiordland chasing robins and moreporks, has kept me off the bike it seems all this month so far! shocking. anyway, went to the bach for a slightly extended weekend and finally today i got out.

Treadled my way up to Chorlton, standing singlespeed style most of the way up, relishing the fresh air, then on up View Hill Rd (grovelling the steepest in granny). Took the left fork for a change, and laboured my way up to the end gate. weather was packing in a bit, with some rain spitting up there, so turned back down, occasionally off-pisting it for the ovine-singletrack goodness.

At the big pines i hung a left up the usual fork, but the further i got the stronger the southerly blew in my face and the more the rain was getting me, so decided i'd had enough, and turned back. tailwind pushing me downslope. again, occasional off-piste singletrackage, and then a final blast down to the seal, then round into the rain and wind again for the road descent into the bay. 10 minutes after i got indoors it hosed down...

nice warm up ride for a first after so long.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Thursday hill chuff, Rapaki Witch Traverse Nun Vic

Nelson and Chris assembled at mine and we headed across to Milton St in Nels's car some time near 7 (he had something to do at the old flat). rode through town to Rapaki and on up, starting with a hiss and a bang, and then having to layer off at the 2nd gate. Chris took off ahead, after a guy that'd passed us as we layered off. i didnt have anything left in my legs after Tuesday's ride, and a long townie to dinner on Wednesday, so i struggled horribly all the way up, and Nelson had ridden once in 10 weeks, so was pretty off form (still quicker than no-power me). eventually made the top, i oiled my chain, and we hit up Witch Hill, Chris bailing on a rocky section and ending up down the bank. there and back, Nelson had a good chat to a lamb. wheels pinging and slipping off slippery rocks.

up Vernon, Teddington Sog sapping power on first climb, the other two leaving me for dead, tho i took the shortcut between hairpins and nearly got up to them again.

Traverse, Chris leading off, me next, good blast all the way round, the ups slowing me, but the flats and down i was in pretty good form. then i led down Thomsons, lovely wee blast through the trees. nelson pointed out that it'd be cool if there was a track just like it that went on for a few kms, tight and flowy... (McVicars sometime?). Second half of Thomsons was drier at the bottom than last time.

heaved our ways up the road from Kiwi to Marley's. me lagging seriously on the last steeps, and frost on the lead-in chilling down the feet a lot. munched and layered up at top, then i led off down the Nun. pretty good blast down here, tho i was getting a bit tired, and my hands never seemed to be holding the bars tight enough. some of the improvements done down here have certainly evened up the plan. sweet as. regrouped below middle carpark, and Chris led off down the lower half. i had a couple of really close calls near the bottom, barely staying in control.

up road to Vic, all of us feeling the cold and tiredness now. took off down the first path, steep and rocky, then down all three over the seesaw, first coupla Brakefree jumps then across the mucky flat to the rocks into the gums. great run down here, nelson leading, taking it all the way down and onto the singletrack that takes ya down to the gate. bit messy in there, few ruts at the start.

back up road to Skidder, nelson aghast at the waste of money on the new picnic area, and off into Dazza's, me leading. nice blitz. Brents, highline this time, just moseying, out to flow, where i lost it at the top of rut-city, frontwheel sliding out from under me, and taking a nice lowspeed stack onto a tussock or two. the other two got past me here, and i struggled my way down the actual ruts, then took the lead into the new bits, guiding the way down, less mucky than Tuesday, tho still bad at the bottom.

then, out the bottom, through the disgusting cowshit muckfest and a blast down the final to the road and back to the car around 10.30.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Tuesday opened trail muckiness

treadled across to Steve's with Pete who was on grandad. there, were RacerRex, Tones, Andy, followed shortly after us by Wazzah and Wahayno. Steve emerged from his house with Cruiser, and it was decided they'd all do a townride, and Rex and me'd head up cRapaki.

i gasped my way up the track with Rex barely breaking a sweat. millions of runners coming down the hill towards us, seemingly the whole way up... past a whole bunch of riders at middle gate, i raised my seat and felt a tonne better the rest of the way up, pushing it good (again, i think Rex was just being nice sitting with me...).

Rex led off up Vernon, the first Teddington'd section being pretty soggy. he baulked a bit on the rocks, but kept the lead, powering nicely on the smoother bits. Rocky section up top got him and he let me take over the lead. couple dabs here and there, but mostly pretty good.

onto the Traverse. all good except for the nasty wet bit before the first cattlestop, blazed our ways round there. trail all good. usual damp bits below Sugarloaf, then on round to Vic.

...into the trees, squirrelling through bits of soft dirt, past the seesaw, then down towards the gums across an extremely soggy flat. into the rocks which were okay, but once under the trees, i dont think i've ever seen the ground so wet in there. not for years anyway. bypassed a couple of nasty ruts in same spot as last time next to Sesame St, on round sidling over jump and back to Skidder, then met up with a random orange-lighted-halogen guy, who didnt really know his way around, so followed us down Dazza's, which was all good, then Brents which too was all good, tho has some bad braking holes, and cross the swiftly flowing creek onto a slightly messy Flow, which got pretty bad towards the end with its own Rut-City, and then onto the 'new' exit from bridges...

sorta follows the Hi-line, but a cool switchback chucks you back across Bridges then below with more corners, risers and good flow, and even some ups (which'll put off the DHers). Bottom of this was unfinished and extremely MUCKY. then down the 4wd to usuals, squirrelly and mucky mucky mucky, and the Cows were really trashing the private bit (my bike smells of shit now), before a good blast out the bottom

Rex headed back to his car at Steve's. i txtd the boys, and met them at Pomeroys for a couple nice beers.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Sunday sloppy Wharfdale goodness

Got word on Saturday that a couple guys i know were gonna do Wharfdale on Sunday. i's keen as mustard, so did a little prep on the bike, regreased headset and nicely oiled up the chain. Also, chucked on a new tire i'd got. Ritchey ZM Premonition i'd picked up from Torp7 a couple days before.

Tom and Matt picked me up at 8 and we headed out the Tram Rd. Left Chch's dreary grey and headed into blue skies and sunshine. First car in the carpark, tho some walkers (and dog) arrived while we were getting ready. Somewhere on the road there, something must have been flicked up by the back wheel of the car, slashing Tom's front tire, totally slicing through tire and tube. no spare tires on board, so we cut up the old tube, folded it several times, inserted between new tube and tire, and pumped her up. kinda bulged a bit, but wasnt too bad, but just to be safe, we put a random ziptie (that i just happened to have in my bag) around the tire, which held it quite nicely.

hit the trail. pretty good knick. excellent muckiness, lovely slippery roots. hit first pile of snow at about the 3rd bridge. counted somewhere between 6 to 10 tree falls. wonderful flowy section half way in, love that groove. fair bit of snow and extreme muckiness up towards the switchbacks, and the saddle. Tom figured his tire was gonna blow out, by the saddle the ziptie had gone, so he turned back, while Matt and i headed down for the hut. first 50m or so was messy snow, but beyond that was good, mostly. lots of snowloaded branches down, all of which we cleared off the track, and quite a lot of ice down this side. very cold, and cool eerie mists kinda hanging around.

made the river, got across without too much bother, and then this heinous climb kicked in. i didnt remember this from last time (years ago!) i'd been to the hut... anyway, got to the hut, signed in, had a One Square. brrrr, got moving again, back up and over, then the long slog back to the saddle. one off at a creek when my front wheel dropped and i leaped over the bars and stayed on my feet. at Midday, Matt replaced his front pads.

made the saddle, and the down began. for a bit anyway. not bad, bit splecky. on the climbs my legs were really starting to burn. the second to last descent (the one with the bridges in it), i think would have to be one of my favourites. its when everything comes together, all your skills honed to perfection, cept for feeling utterly shattered having not had a good long inclement ride like this for a lonnnng time.

the climb to the gate nearly killed me. but the final descent made everything better, getting faster and faster, briefly slowing for that metal pipe and following little creek, then on down to car park. sweeeeeet!!

Tom had made it back just as the bulge eminating from his tire was starting to rub the fork arch. he'd been waiting a fair while for us... Lots of cars in car park now too. We'd seen a couple of couples runners en route.

Meanwhile, my new tire worked very nicely thanks. was predictable. a nice size, good and big for a 2.25. didnt hook up as much as some mud specific tires would, but never gave me any issues of spinning out. should be a good tire to go on with. expecting another newby soon too, a Schwalbe Muddy Mary. chuck that on the front for a while methinks.

home 3ish.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Frosty Sunday hill jaunt

COLD start, hard frost, Chris showed at mine and we got our frozen extremities across to Steve's. Up showed Tony, then Andrew, Wayne, Pete and Mark (on a wacky rearbrakeonly 69r carbon 3speed..). so. the 8 of us tootled round and up Rapaki. pretty standard cruise up here, warming up nicely by the first gate.

Took the road round the top towards Vic. with a short jaunt on a frozen solid Traverse trail... Icey patches in the shade. At Vic we hooked onto Thomsons, which was good and the second half of it was bad at the lowest point.

Down more ice to the kiwi, and on up to top of Worsleys. usual boyracers doing their dipshit stuff at the top, and we all kitted back up for the descent. interesting to say the least. first (bodybag) section was a bit hairy, not a lot of traction, if you hit your brakes too hard either one would lock up. at the gate was a big sloppy hole with some broken ice, and beyond that was in the shade, which was nice and icey, frozen ruts, frozen churned up earth. FUN down through here. minty fresh fun. lots of washed-outness, couldnt believe the holes that've formed since last i's up there. met a few hardy souls on their ways up.

Just before the gate, kitted up even more, then blasted down the seal. just before the last descent, we got offroad onto a new side track. nice wee fall-line track parallelling the road, waaay more interesting than the road. at the bottom took the cracroft track round then on round river saying goodbye to Tones and then on to St Martins cafe, coffee, and off home.

All up, quite a fun ride, even with the noticeable lack of real Singletrack.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Tuesday into the drizzly technicality

bit of a mucky one tonight. Nelson picked me up in his new car and we cruised across parking up on Centaurus. both huffed up Hunts, Ramahana, Aotea to the top. Drizzle kicked in now and then and dirt was a bit slick in places. Hit Mt Vernon, and it splecked and splooged about the place, but no worse than Marley's was on Sunday. difficult to control places, so easy it was taken. the Teddingtonshit before Rapaki was very very bad. naughty us, maybe.

Witch hill was much better, rocks slick tho, so slippy-slidey'd our way round there, me chasing a possum for a hundred or more metres on the descent. then on up the road, the drizzle worsening the close we got to the Castle.

I led off down the Castle. damp in places, mud not too bad, but rocks all slick-as, pinging your wheels independently, keeping it well interesting and technical goodness. fair few dabs for safety. very bad spot just after the second switchback, but the climb out was good.

all the singletracking had been interesting, technical, fun, but quite slow, and kinda dirty, splecky mud around the place, so we rode the road back to Rapaki and blazed down there. deliberately gettting into the deepest of the untracked gravel on the top section, just to keep it interesting. then pretty quick down the bottom half and half blinded in the pines at the bottom. back round to the car by about 8.30, and home via a chinese takeaway. yummo.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Sunday, the Return of the Singletrack

Sweeeeet ride today. weather's been fine enough for the singletracks (west of the bridle path) to have finally dried out enough to be reopened.
fantastic day, frosty start, chilly riding across to Steve's, meeting Tony there, then up showed Warren and Wayno. the 5 of us headed round, and up Rapaki. took it pretty easy, cruised on up, one or two of us pushing a bit harder than the struggling lurgy'd one.

at the top, hit Witch Hill, first time on here for ages, really enjoyed popping and hopping up the rocks, cleaning them all and blasting round to the end. Tony got a leak in his rear and we met him on our way back up coming at the highest point. blasted down to rapaki-top and up Vernon. ages since i'd been up here too. was still soft in places, the spongey teddingtonshit being quite power sapping. but mostly good, got up and round and cleaned up all the rocks, feeling a fellow steelrider breathing down my neck, then wondering where the hell he was when i got out the end.

onto the Traverse, quick chat with (the fellow steelrider) a singlespeeding voodoo rider, and then we hit the trail. all good, round to vic, surprisingly not that many other riders out and about. trails all firm and dry, very few puddles, and drier than i'd seen on Thursday night.

big chat with some non-snobs at the top of vic, then off down the bit of frost at top of Thomsons, into the trees, sweet flowing, onto the road, back into it, flying down, some walkers i didnt see at all having leapt behind a tree to let us by. steve losing his chain in here baulking him before the wee up.

kiwi breather then up road. worsley, annnd, the nun... veeerrry sticky on the approach, a harbinger of things to come... into the first corner, nicely dropping down the rocky berm (which caught steve out after he'd just been boasting how easy it was...), then flowing round through the plantings, and into the second corner, both wheels scootching all over the place, drifting totally out of control, bloody surprising i stayed on, but got round and onwards. sections of this were just nasty, no control whatsoever. i think, if one trail should have stayed shut,'s probably this one... not much damage done, but diabolical - numerous places of nasty slickness, and then some nice flow in between. steve had dropped it in the top rock corner and had a rather sore pinky finger... second half of nun all good, cept for one puddle that splecked my eye nearly crashing me.
kiwi to top of Vic again, i took the second half of Thomsons while the rest took the road. all chose different lines down, i did the seesaw then it was off down across to the Gummies. nice rip through here, cept for lower down, nasty rut made me dab, then peeled round, jump, berm back out to skidder site. then off down Dazzas, all good, and then out down K2, figuring Brents, Flow and bridges'd probably be a bit dodge.

home across town in the sun by one.

all up a nice spin. bloody good to be on singletrack again.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Turdsdy night solo hill single

belly full of fish and chips and no one willing to brave the chilly evening, i dragged the singlespeed across town on the back of the car, realising as i approached the hills that i'd left my helmet (and light) behind, so, turned back, considered leaving the car at home and spinning blottle ache, but thankfully decided against that and continued on my merry way back to said hills.

getting ready to ride who should jog up but abbasteve. bit of a yarn with him and off i chuffed, making good grind up rapaki road, then onto the dirt feeling surprisingly good. unzipped, vest off, and on up. a few stops for breath to settle down, but no walking. was catching someone ahead on last bit, but had to stop several times and a guy with gears passed me one of those times. bloody hard yakka workin' that beast up that hill in that gear. anyway, made the top and tootled off round the slummit road towards vic park. cursing the Traverse for not being open when i could see it the whole way round being utterly fine. come on Nick, it could at least be 'Avoid', so that munters like me can make up our own minds, instead of feeling too guilty to get down on it.

got to top of Vic and considered my options, one of which was Worsleys, but the thought of the seal from kiwi to top put me off, so, spun the cranks back round the top and blasted down rapaki again, tears streaming from my eyes either in lament of the eminently more interesting track that the crapaki once was, or maybe from the cold air blasting into them. my front end took on a horrible trait of the steering kinda locking up when braking hard. something to do with the fork being compressed and the headset seizing due to the pressure... very dodgy.

good to get out, great work out on the old single, awesome night and very warm and pleasant up on the hills, as usual.


Oh, and last night, installed the new cranks and bb on the Cotic. Chris came round with his tools, and we had a beer. looking forward to trying it out.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Thursday Mcleans drifting

Picked up Chris about 7 and we drove the byways across town into the wetness. dark clouds from my office window earlier really must've been pissing down over there. arrived just as the security was locking up the gate. i had the singlespeed, chris on his ragley, we headed in, puddles abounding, thinking "ew, we're gonna get muckeeee..."

spleck spleck spleck muddy spray lifting off the front wheels trying to get into my eyes. keeping to the edge of the trail, and high on the berms kept the eyes clear for a while. good blat, old lap, then into the new(ish) Coringa loop, waaay dryer, better made methinks, much less splecky. Then maybe 500m from the overbridge, i thought, hmmm, no hands... gave it a go, slowed us a bit, but from there all the way back to the car we pretty much rode no hands. fun!!! well worth the try. bailed after the one lap cos we were so mucky and couldnt be arsed riding any more of it.

got home and hosed the bike down and showered. bloody mess.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Tuesday night drudge.

bah. somewhat nonevent ride last night. picked up Pete and met Steve Tony Andrew Warren at Steves. round Hanson's, up Ramahana Aotea and on up, enjoying the one piece of dirt up Huntsbury. Then all the tracks closed so it was round the summit road, running into abbasteve before Farmtrack, may as well have been on road bikes, yech, to Mt (un)Pleasant Rd and down down down down down. didnt even ride round back of Ferrymead single(ish)tracks cos Tony and abbasteve's lights were packing in.

all road and no dirt makes swtchbckr a dull boy.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Post Fiji first ride, Saturday to Vic Park planting...

Chris caught up with me on Stanmore Rd and off to Steve's we tootled for 11am start. Steve had txtd saying all the tracks were closed, which surprised me... Pete, Wahayno, Steve and us trundled off round up Rapaki. gravel up here's finally packed in. Chris Pete and me made a bit of a break and we regouped past the middle gate. Steve and Wayno carried on up to the top, while us three ventured forth onto Montgomery Spur. off up through the gates and climbed up to top, little bit of off piste. then coming down, we all chose our own lines, over rocks, between tussocks, meandering down to each set of gates and exploring out towards the Avoca Valley drop off, finding some interesting solid rock lines. then along above the Rapaki a bit to the pylons and back onto the main drag. on up to the top, event free. feeling good to get some air in my lungs again, but feeling three (or more?) weeks off the bike.

Round the road below Vernon, on account of the big Closed signs on the trail, then met up with Steve and Wayne at the Huntsbury start of the traverse. decided not to ignore the Closed signs on this and stuck to the road. Disappointment and annoyance plaguing us as we looked down on a perfectly dry track. Likelihood would have been some sogginess on that south face below Scotts, but from there on round would have been fine. Then round below Sugarloaf was completely dry bar about 3 puddles. the Rangers are overkilling the closures. people are gonna get annoyed and start ignoring the closures if they're overreacting to a little bit of moisture. We reckon leave the Traverse from Huntsbury to Vic Park open all the time. its supposed to be an 'All Weather' track. Armour the wettest sections, trail pixies like Nelson and me with spades can deal to drainage occasionally, and beautiful days like today, riders can enjoy while doing minimal damage.

Dropped down into top of Vic Park, me, then Chris doing the see-saw (dunno what i used to baulk about!), then down the old 4wd route to the skidder site, nearly losing it in the insane area of new gravel and a rock barrier!!! Who the HELL designed this fucking area! WHAT were they thinking!?

Off down the NO BIKES track to Di the Ranger's truck, then grabbed a spade and off down to the 'East Side Bush'... planted a shitload of plants (mostly kanuka), and then off up to the Ranger Station (climbing up the steep wee track from the truck) for a tasty snackfest and barbie.

tummies full, off down the road (Chris and me peeling right at the bottom gate, and down a mucky then slightly slick trail behind the houses (below the microwave tower)), then raced it down Dyers Pass Rd, seeing Steve peeling at Tennyson, and finally catching Pete over Brougham. Chris and me then peeled off at Welles St to C1 for some beans, then to Library to grab a MBA mag, and then home.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Sunday non-event-ride to planting

weather being as it has been hills had a big closed sign on them, and so Steve and Pete decided to watch a 3am game of rugby. i'd had a bit of a late night myself, so was a bit sluggish when the phone rang at 8.30 and those two were out front of my house, still a bit merry, ready to go. grabbed breakfast, coffee, then saddled up on the townie and off we headed, Linwood Ave, along Linwood Drain, Hargood St to Ferry Rd, then along trails on the south side of the Heathcote all the way to the Cut, over a footbridge, northbank crossing Tunnel Rd to the southbank again, then round the tracks to Ferrymead, to the bridge, then back round behind the industria and onto Charlesworth St to the Trees For Canterbury planting. 60 odd people, including some of our usual riders, 2000 plants, and a coupla saussies, and the three of us cycled back up Linwood Ave, Linwood Drain, Linwood Ave home.

was good for some fresh air anyway.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Tuesday bottling.

singled over to pete's and we drove to BroadPark carpark, meeting up with Steve and Steve, then up rolled Mark and Wayne in separate vehicles. Steve then discovered he'd bust his bulb, so, no ride for him. the rest of us headed out. Mark regaling us with his tales of the MoonRide 24hrs solo. crazy mothah. sounded brilliant, and hard to pace yourself to last the distance... anyway, north we rode, along the beach side trails slowly picking up the pace, then in, little bit of singletrack, nice, road, singletrack, and onwards. quite a few stops, yarns, and bits of fast blatting. all up a good wee spin. reminded me how much fun the singlespeed can be out there, and how familiar it all is, the damp cool early winter chilliness, spin spin spin.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Riding drought broken, Sunday night quickspin

a cold and life in general conspired against me getting a ride in til tonight.
the day's weather left a bit to be desired, plus i was super tired so nearly flagged even getting out tonight, but we did anyway. Nelson bongoed up after work and after a bit of a feed we hit the road. headed out to sumner with something in mind. on the way, Steve informed us of the 'Avoid' state of tracks, so we promised not to break any.

parked up round the corner, and headed for Scarborough. up the road. wasnt too bad. only a couple of cars passed us on the way up. i got a bit wheezy. topped out pretty quick and then down down down into Taylors. not that fun. then, onto the snake's Tail. huh! drizzly all day, and it was dry as a bone! good climb up here cleaning it all, then on up the anaconda. still dry as. only a couple of dabs, one spin out and one stall. spitty raindrops started appearing in our lights.

breeze col and onwards up the singletrack. up up quite nice, still dry dirt under us, then over the rockies and down to Livingston col and into the worst of the climbs for the night, a steady one that went on a bit. natural dirt still dry, dust of recent times nice and settled. up onto the teddington shit, and the fucking stuff is starting to get a little bit of stickiness in it, soaking up the little rain we're seeing. back onto the dirt, and all sweet. climbing on along and round, then into the descent. rocks were getting a little slippy, but the dirt was still all good. picked our way carefully down to Evans. nelson had a weird off aimed straight down the hill, bailing carefully.

then onto The Captain. dirt still dry enough, but rocks getting slicker, making the tires glance and slip left right and centre. i walked the two worst sections, both of which somehow nelson rode. then on down the lower bits, flying nicely, good flow into the lower trees, and then out and back to the van.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Tuesday sessioning the nun. and Swtchbckr's 5 yrs old

and happy birthday Blog... 5 years. w00t!!!


so. nelson was at mine when i got home from work and we went picked up Chris at the Cathedral. bongoed across town and bongo-drifted up Dyers Pass Rd to Marley's carpark bout 6.30 as planned. Steve, Tones and Marie were already there, shortly followed by Wazzah! and Wahayno.

Off we treadled up the road to top of Worsley's Rd and up to the Nun. first round, Chris led off, then nelson, then me, then steve and i'm not sure of the rest of the order... dust was an issue, and i felt like i couldnt see properly this first round. still fanged it, tho, and pulled up back down at the vans. all following in at their own paces.

second round, back up road, and off in the same order as before. this time, nelson bollocksed the same corner second time round, and i managed to get in front, chasing Chris to not much avail. this time, the three of us continued on down to the kiwi. excellent blat down that section too. the others bailed at vans, and we pedalled back up to them.

then off up road again, third lap. this time, chris, then me, then nelson, then steve et al. going good again, dust still plaguing the eyes. this time, everybody except Marie rode it all the way down to Kiwi. back up road to vans, and the other two vanloads departed.

Nelson, me, and Chris headed off down into the Gov's trail. awesome blat down there, riding it out all the way down the switchies to the bottom, something i'd not done for ages, and i think never in the dark. then we turned back up with Nelson and Chris cleaning heaps more than me, but i still managed most of the corners. tough tho. then on up the main track, a few nasty wee grunts (still nothing on the lower section!), and then out up to the road.

and, another lap of te Nun. up road, and this time i led the fray. felt pretty good with no dust and no light ahead. did okay, kept the other two at bay for a while, but once in the rocky sections i musta slowed, or they were just quicker cos i could feel their lights catching me. anyway, popped back out to the van, and landed.

all up, good ride and home around 9.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

Fried, eh, Birthday afternoon off.

took off from work early, and got over to Chris's at 2. we jaunted through a heavy police presence down Barbadoes and then on over waltham and wilsons to the Crapaki. wandered up this, keeping a reasonable pace, but neither of us were feeling that on top of our games going up, peaking in a pretty average time.

off to the left, over Witch Hill, enjoying the rocks, up road, and it was CastleRock time. awesome blitz down here, me sticking to Chris's wheel all the way down til the up when he got away from me.

round the road and up to John Britten, Chris getting faster, me getting tireder. Then, into Greenwood, pushing a tall gear up up and round, and then just before that lone tree (that drips in the mist) my attention wandered and so did my wheel off the track then a reaction catching a lip and i went down into the tussocks... nicely cushioned, not a scratch on me or bike, but pride slightly perplexed.

regrouped at the usual spot (just over the 4wd track), nibbled a one-square, then it was off again, flat tack down over the yump, squirrelling through the rocks, round the corners, richocheting off boulders, floating, flowing, popping and weaving our way down. interupted by a phonecall from T in Lyttelton with a car problem (pressurised gas line causing over-rev), then on and on down and down. very good run down, one of my best in a while, and definitely one of Chris's best evah.

Rang T at Evans to see how she was going and she was on her way with the boys up Evans so i said keep and eye out for us on the Thomas. We got into that and my balance was all skew-iff, tho, the first techy i came over the top to see Chris running down it, i cleaned that bit okay, then the next one that i never get we both walked, and then spotted the fiat, which tooted, and parked up to watch us ride the next bits, much to the joy of the boys til we disappeared round the corner. excellent blast out from here on, me taking the lead after the gate and flying down, catching air and having a blast, not a pedestrian in sight (which sure makes a change from Sunday Mornings...).

Then, popped into the movie theater and grabbed me a ticked for

Follow Me - Anthill Films - OFFICIAL 2010 MTB Trailer from vas entertainment on Vimeo.

which looks pretty good. theres even some NZ shots in there. hopefully the boys will all get tix too, otherwise i'm gonna be nigel nomates.

met T and boys at Cave Rock, had a beer, then dropped Chris on way through town, watching him commit a legendary trackstand at a really long red light, then home. I'm now officially middle aged. the age i said i'd wait til before i got a full susser... now, where's that spare couple grand i need for that!?

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Wednesday Mulgan Richmond Greenwood Godley Taylor

chris and nelson assembled at mine and we vanned to scuzner. headed round to moncks bay and up Mulgans, the boys cleaning the first couple of corners, but not the steppy ones. for some reason chris walking a whole bunch (wrong geared i think), and i lagged behind feeling wheezy and asthma'd, fat and slow. sickmaking climbs up the narrow alleys round the watertanks and past York's old place. layer off once on Panorama.

then up to the rooty singletrack, all of us blowing out on that rocky little up, then relaxing it out on the flatter section up to the trees bout 7.45 to some stoned boyracers who were impressed at our riding prowess. cruise up the road to Greenwood reststop.

singletrack, nelson leading off, chased by Chris and me lagging behind again. legs still not recovered from all of sundays treadling, and staying back from them left me somewhat more dust free... gave them a good headstart from above the ruins, leaving a nice big gap and then took off, flowing nicely, and catching them before the first of the big corners below, chris having had a misbalanced nearmiss on the first rockies. ate their dust for a few corners, then sat in closer behind as staying right on the tail of the next guy leads to marginally less dust in the eyes and mouth.

at the narrow rock gap i stopped and watched as they diminished round and til nelson went round the corner of the hill, then i took off and flowed nicely again, meeting up with them just round from gloomy gulch. off again, and i paused and left them to it again, creating dust settling gap, then took off down the rocky descent and into the groove. lots of fun, but with some slippy dug-in corners through the switchbacks, then over the grate, jump, flowy pump section round to the little (dry) creek, then the 'backstraight', bombing down here, i had one near miss over one of the rockydroppy bits, with the bike aiming directly off the trail, somehow managed to swivel back onto trail and changed down and spun up the rocky uppy bit after the tree, getting jammed at the top. off again, flying down the last bit til the exposed-over-evans-pass-rd corner where i couldnt see a thing for the dust raised by the other two, slowly through there and out to the road.

when were still down on the road before hitting Godley trail, i said, "i've already admitted defeat, i aint gonna clean the first section". nelson and chris led off, i followed slowly behind, watching from a distance as first nelson blew it, came back down for another run, then chris blew it, and i selected an appropriate gear and knuckled into it - got over the first couple of holes, up past Chris, popped up the next rock or two, body-englishing my way up the next bit, then gave a line straight up some solid rock a try i never thought would work, and voila, i made it out the top, not an issue! w00t inspiring. the other two had a struggle at it once or twice more, blowing it again and again... i blew the next bit tho, but for the rest of the way out i stayed on Nelson's tail pretty well for a while, while Chris struggled with balance from then on.

i led on the descent to Livingston, in order to show the way on the new bit, which is getting better, and then left the lead to the others for the next climb. got up to the rocky bit and found chris stopped behind nelson who was down off the track, having bounced off a rock and sorta tumbled backwards. garked his shin, so dressed it, and off we flew again, chris, me then nels, chris losing balance in the rutty narrow grass before the sidle line, missing the sidle turn off where i took the lead down to breeze.

into the eye of the snake. nelson lead, followed by me at a distance (for dust), then Chris. good blat, tho still a lot of dust raised by Nelson, making some jumps difficult to get a good line on due to visibility, but a great blat down, and i had a really good ride down the tail too - the other two complaining of off-balance-ness and other difficulties. the climb out of Taylors i immediately bogged down, riding through treacle, the other two left me for dead. caught up at the top and i lead off down through Nicholson, having a mildly close call with a 4wd when we got down to the road. back to the van bout 9.30 and on home via yunkfood

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday Free-form Funkified Filth

the usual crew of deadbeats assembled at Steve's, them being Warren Andrew Wayne Tony Pete and Marie. the 8 of us headed east, along the Heathcote Cut and behind Ferrymead to McCormacks Bay. the Grunt began. steep wee ups followed by steeper wee ups with a couple of steep wee ups thrown in for good measure. cleaned the 9 switchbacks at the top, into the 10th where the steps begin. then up the road and up 'the terrace' to John Britten Reserve. hmmm... no "no bikes" signs in evidence, so we (mostly) rode and pushed (a little) to the top (which is where the title Free form Funkified filth comes from, the sheepshit up there is epic).

then hung a right, onto the singletrack proper, followed by a bomb down the road to Castle Rock track. good wee grunt up here, cleaning everything i didnt clean on friday night (ie the very top). pete snapped his chain, and i got messages from home to be home by 12.30...). at the top were some 48hr filmmakers doing a post-apocalyptic romantic comedy.

another bomb down the tarmac, round, and hit up the Witchy-poo. awesome blat round this, again, cleaning the one bit that got me Friday night under lights. top of rapaki, a snack, and then up the Vernon. good hoof up this too, once again, cleaning the one bit that caught me out friday.

Onto the lowest-common-denominator trail, blottlelake of the hills, the traverse. flew around this having some excellent fun, but how smoooooth is it? into vic park and down through the pines, me choosing to see how the see-saw was, a few yumps through brake free, then peeled out back in behind Steve for the blat down into the gummies. neeaarly lost grip of my bars on the rockgarden intro, but tight on Steve's tail all the way through, over the wee yump, back round and up to the Skidder site.

Then it was a quick spit down dazza's, and a dark and lumpy clomp down brent's, pete and me choosing the log exit rather than the nanna's route, and into flow to bridges highline, funny noise in the brakes down over the drop, and the final blast down the valley. end of the road, tony and marie left, the rest of us onto Eastern with the rest going for coffee and Pete and me having to get home on time.

In the afternoon, family went to Bottle Lake, me and O on the singlespeed and tagalong, T with H in the seat on the back. we took the easy trail out to the beach, played there a bit, then on the way back through, O wanted to blast the rest of the loop so T and H headed back to the car and O and me (utterly exhausted by this stage) headed for the inner (shorter, but still not that short) loop. last couple kms i was shattered.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Frieday night, Port Hills jaunt

Nelson had parked Bongo at mine and we had some dinner and headed for the hills. parked up outside the Grape Escape, grabbed a couple of Kristallweizen and planted them to be earned. Headed up Major Aitken Drive, grunty little bastard that it is, i showed Nelson the little singletrack section, which caused a dog to bark and bark and bark at us, until its owner came out and shut it up and we struggled on up past their house. then up Kenmanure drive onto the main up the grunt and onto dirt sweet dirt.

crept our way up under the pylons the wind finally biting up there. on up to and through the shitty grovel to the top and onto Vernon, sweet sweet singletrack. Nelson took the lead, and i kept catching him, buttoning off, catching him. he wasnt enjoying the Teddington shit, doesnt trust it. onto Witch Hill and he left me for dead. i just bided my time round and back onto the road, then it was up to Castle Rock.

Had a wee look at the trail that had sparked an asshole mtnbike thread on vorb this week, thinking, fuck thats steep. then hit the legitimate singletrack, nelson giving me the lead. left him behind, had a really good run, picking the sweetest lines and flowing and gliding all over the gnarl. he on the otherhand apparently was being pinballed from one rock to the next, thrown all over the place ending up entirely wronggeared. at Bridle, we turned tail and hit straight back up the singletrack. nelson leading again, cleaning it all nicely, meanwhile, i stuggled away in the background.

Tucked in for a fast flight down the road, then onto Witch Hill, Nelson getting away again quickly on the climb, me just managing to get up the bits i needed to and then having a nice flowy bomb back to Rapaki-top. on up the Vernon, Nelson again getting away on me big time, me just making it up struggling away, taking the shortcut from the first switchback above Farmtrack to make some time on Nels (who got a "You are AWESOME, bro" from boyracer when he got to road). Lighting making me blow the very last bit of the 'rocky corner' up top there, then getting on with it and getting back down to the road nicely, we headed round the traverse til just before Lava Flow, peeled right and down, gravelling to OldSkool, bombing to gate.

Off piste, found a few interesting sheep tracks onto and off of the usuals, then into the steep-rocky where i found the coooolest new line... somewhere off the right, down this wicked wee face... anyway, all leading down onto the fun fun singletrack, across, down backwards and forwards, and out. back to the van, home, and Kristallweizen...

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Thursday night East End blast., the late night crazy singletrackers

Nelson had parked the Bongo outside my place in the morning and turned up around 6. we stuffed about for a while, just as well, cos some people came for a dog kennel i'd sold on Tardeme, then we spend a while dismantling the lights switch on the bongo and fixing it so low AND high work now!!!

headed out to Scumner and treadled on up the Captain Thomas. cleaned bits and blew the usuals, last night's legs slowing me down a bit. got out top and headed up the road for the top of Greenwood.

bit of breeze up top, over and round, then straight into the the down. first bit down after the ruins and over that first jump my eyes were watering like mad making the landing a bit sketchy. then on round wind to the side, then round and headwind again. first right hander i kinda washed out wickedly but kept it on track and chased on. not too much dust up here cos the wind was good to go. strangely i thought about how chuffed steve is with his Gravity Dropper on this section, i wonder why... i think cos he'd be raving about how good it is on those sections. my seat was up.

the boardwalk came up very quick, and got through gloomy gulch, but after that i just had to rest. then, big lead by Nelson now, i took off again. good run down down down, loving that bit after the fence, over the jump then pumping round to where the creek is. blew the rocky uppy bit just after the tree as had nelson, rest was okay, tho thought how that exposed bit above Evans Pass Road, just before the macrocarpa is gonna get me one day, kinda off camber and too exposed, apparent big drop (specially in the dark) off down to the road.

Godley... whats there to say. the rocks are all bigger. neither of us cleaned the first bit, nelson tried twice. i was getting tired.

anda the anaconda... yep. pretty dusty, wind just placed right that i was eating all of Nelson's. railed the berms, bombed it down, and the tail was nice too. clambered, struggling now, out of taylors and explored nicholson park off piste a bit and the playing on jumpies off driveways all the way down before the waterfront.

grabbed a feed, and home by 10.30 or so...

gotta watch dis.

full screen it, bol.

Chris Akrigg TEOCALI.0 from chris akrigg on Vimeo.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Wedsdney after yeaster blight, middle hills blat.

took the Cotic to Little Ak for weekend, but didnt get out on it, rode it to beach a couple times with H on a cushion on the top tube, but no ride ride.

was gonna get out last night, but was tired, so didnt.

family still at L.Ak cos floors have been sanded and polyeurothaned so house is toxic like a P lab right now, so tonight, to escape the fumeage, i hit the hills. blat across town through rush hour, the length of Wilsons, then Koromiko to alley then up Parklands Drive on Huntsbury. quite the wee push at its top leading into yet more push on Hunts Drive up to where i'm used to top of Aotea, on up from there. gradually overtook a good sized group of variable speed starting on that last grunt of seal and continuing through them right up past the pylons. then grovelled up the top gravel, nearly losing my balance onto a hottie jogger, and on up to top.

layered sleeves on and mounted headlight and headed round the traverse superhighway. at the highest point i ran into Jo from work. so, we hooked up and rode together. cooling down, so vest on. we debated which way to go and settled on back to top of Rapaki, then back round to OldSkool. so, thats what we did. me getting massive gaps on her, and then waiting, riding briefly with her then gapping off again, repeat, numerous times. but was good. lights on for the descent.

rode together up road back round past Farm Track. sleeves onto vest at fence, and then hit the single again, then down the rockies, and Jo headed down the grovelly gravel and i pranced between the tussocks.

then the blast, down, a massive CRACK sound when a rock hit something (bashguard? downtube?) juust before the gate, no marks tho. then down all the shortcuts, only baulking/dabbing once, while Jo took the easier lines. then into the OldSkool, lovely, except... under lights the dirt's grey is just sooooo grey, and featureless, but its such a clean track now its not an issue and you end up just wafting down it, like riding a cloud, albeit a very grey one.

then quick stop at StMartin's NewWorld for Ice Cream and Boysenberry's then to Colins for an impromptu dinner of Crayfish, roastied spuds and fresh picked salad accompanied with a bloody nice Chardonnay and then the dessert and an O for Awesome Montepulciano. followed by a cold ride home to a toxic house.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Saturday Packhorse and Living Springs

round to pick up Chris 8.30ish and after a little faffing we cruised our way to Gebbies Pass. parked up and the southerly was already in effect, which was surprising, cos it was such a nice mild norwest night and morning...

headed round up the 4wd road 9.30ish, wind turbine revolving rapidly over the hill, and ducked into the forest, where a good noseblow got my nose bleeding. staunched that, and got on down the hill, overcooking one of the corners entirely, but having a nice blast down to the bottom, then climby climb up to stile and climby climb on up the paddock, newly dug over with a bulldozer, scrub removed, and flowy singletrack disappearing once or twice. steep steeps and then down, narrowly missing that gorsebush inappropriately placed before the next stile.

back into the forest for the wide open downhill, then ducked into the nice shady singletrack, overtaking a couple of walkers, on up the grunty switchbacks, one of which i blew, followed by Chris blowing the next one. then on up past the little bach in the woods, and on up and up cleaning the odd surprise and losing the odd one too, and on up to end of the forest.

hit the traverse, Chris losing his balance so me smacking my shin on his pedal as i squeezed past him, continued on through the Remarkable Dykes and round up to the Packhorse Hut. Southerly clouds catching on the back of Bradley, and wind howling over the saddle, but no sign of rain. scared off the hut's only occupant and took in the ambience of the hut for a one square or so, then headed back out into the wind.

Excellent cruise down the open stuff, hi to the walkers again hut side of the dykes. layered up a bit at the dykes, and then round to the forest again. awesome blast down these trails, flowy sweet sweet woot inspiring blazing, ducking and dodging trees, popping sweet airs over risers, and tucking into the switchbacks. amped by the time we got back to the wideopen 4wd climb back up to the stile, over the paddock with some cool drops and sketchiness towards the bottom, stile, then tight barbedwire-edged descent and sidle, climb back up, couple corners getting the better of us, and then a skid filled slidey fast road back to the car.

drove round and parked up Bamfords for a spin round Livingsprings. bout 11am, some guys driving off as we got there. usual trails, round to the up, to the pines, enjoying the nice new bit there (thanks community servicers!). then hit up Goodie Gum Drops (for the 1st time) in both directions, and round down to mississippi and clambering up to zanes for a final arm-pumping blast down there. home by 12.30. great ride.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Tuesday evening Worsley Kennedy Croc x 2.

Jo and me cruised across town and up Worsley in the heat of the nor'west evening. nice cruise up the hill, nicely cleaning the bodybag gasping for air as usual. then round the road to Kennedy's. plod plod then zooooom down the first section barely able to see due to the rapidity and the roughness. strange noises eminating from my front end... stopped and tightened a couple of spokes, and all was well again. then off down the next bit between the forests and over to a txt (i thought was from steve) saying "how far you"? i replied "2 mins". then the last descent. a few riders on their way up were buffetted by our wind as we sped past them, the last section i'd say well over 60kph as usual, down to the boys at the gate. standing next to Pete, my "2 mins" txt came in...

off over Siberia, Wrecks powering off ahead, racerboy. then down the fun stuff, me in the lead and keeping it, bit of a regroup at top of crock and off again, burnin' it. in the last switchies before the gulley i came flying round a blind corner into an uphill rider. SLAMMED on the anchors and slid, leaning away from him, our tires meeting (ie, my front and his back, his front and my back). SO close... continued on down squirrelling a couple of times on cowshit, then changed down nice and early for to clean the up. big regroup here, watching everyone else down the switchies, then down through the trees, nice air on the roosting jump, and some cool wheelie action over the humps at the final run out.

then crossed over the valley and back up the trail to the farm bit, up the loose zigzag, up the road for another fang of the Crock. light getting pretty dim to the end, and a FAST ride home in the Cosworth...

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Sunday morning 'paki slummit gnarleys vic

woke up with a mother of a headache and got my weary ass over to Steve's to find wahayno, tony and andy. steve stumbled out in his dressing gown complaining of tiredness. so the four of us moseyed on up the Rapaki Track, 4 laned highway that it is. i was amazed at the number of bikers we met riding down it... bah. anyway, pushed and shoved our way to the top and had word from Marie that she was heading our way.

got going up Vernon, twisting and turning round and up and over, bumping into her above the upper switchies.

onwards round the summit motorway, accompanied with maybe $50K worth of Specialized's and their mounts. we kept ahead of them til Vic Park, then bumped into them all again several times from there til top of the Nun. also chatted with various others on the road to top of Nun too. regrouped at top and then set off, blasting down it with it fresh in the mind from Tuesday night. awesome ramble, then it was back up road to top of Vic.

Straight in, dropping down, popped over the see saw and caught some air on the first few jumps before bailing out and heading down the gummies. blazing down the old skool trails and regrouping at the skidder, then off up to take in Cool Runnings, which none had done for a while, me not since november. bit of fun in there, then out flow, bridges, highline for me dropping right down.

Hidden Valley up to OldSkool and great blast down taking in the new bit in the middle. all enjoyed, went our separate ways around the river, was home by 12.30

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Tuesday Worsleys Nun x 3 plus Govs and Vic

Good ride tonight.
Rode with Jo and Derek from work across town. Jo had flat on Frankleigh St, fixed that and we continued up Worsleys. Derek on his cyclocross with commuter tires, powering off up ahead of us ontop of his gearing. uneventful climb, cleaned the body bag with extremely sore legs. derek continued on homewards, down somewhere other than kennedys...

at the top, txt'd steve to say where you at, and lo and behold they (warren, tony, wayne, steve, marie) showed up. so, off up the nun, steve on my tail pushin. then seats down, off i led fanging it. great blast, lots of yumps. regrouped at halfway carpark, and headed over down the Gov's track.

o for awesome blaze down here, really enjoying it dry, daylight, and nicely cleared. carried on round and up the old trail, then back up road onwards to top of Nun again.

txt from Chris at top, him still 10mins away, so another good blast down the Nun, really flying again, this time i continued down all the way to Kiwi. sweeeeet blast. rode back up to the regroup of everyone. Jo took off, steve stayed at the vehicles, while the rest of us continued back up for another go. the last climb killed me, but breather at top i still had my downhill head on and flew down, loving every minute of it. Arrived back at Steve chatting with Chris. i very nearly grabbed a lift home with Wayne, but decided otherwise, and rode off with Chris, leaving the drivers to drive.

we bombed it down the rest of the nun, me staying close on Chris's tail the whole way. then off up road to top of vic, the climb burning me up. down top, brakefree, sesame street, dazzas, ponos, old nats, hospice corner and out the valley. rode home tail wind across town and stopped in for a lovely pint of Hefe at the Pom's. utterly shattered now.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

no mountain biking, but bike related activities...

So. didnt get out on the trails. had friday afternoon jacked up briefly, but then babysitters plans changed and weather was inclement anyway, at least, trails would have been drenched after the system that went through friday lunchtime.

but. Saturday, boys taken care of, i jumped on the ghetto cruiser and cruised thru the ghetto to Robbies New Brighton. there finding steve pete warren rex and significant others (mine being away for weekend or she'd have joined us), and abbasteve, and then wayahno and his missus arrived too. beers had, hit the ride, over the bridge, palmers rd, keyes rd, to Chats Bar. 'nother beer,

then wattle drive to river, me dropping the chain and discovering the joys of having no brakes... then along river and peeling into Horseshoe Lake. very nice cruising slowly through there during the day time, usually its flat out at night... then joy st to Fox'n'Ferret at the palms. nother beer, and a nibble,

then Banks Ave to River Rd, following it all the way to Pomeroys, me dropping home to feed dog and chooks on way, 'nother beer here.

then Avon Loop, poplars, vic sq, river to Worcester, museum, boatsheds, river, cashel st, high, into Poplar Lanes. beer beer beer food beer and home. fun.


Sunday
got a random call, and told 4pm, polo... didnt think i'd go, but ended up with only one boy for the afternoon, so grabbed the beater and over we went to Hillsborough Park, where the hardcore hardcourt players play. i got into two games, and it was fun. my bike was poorly geared for it, a 2:1 or even less would be better, probably try the singlespeed next time, but it was easy to pick up, good fun, balancing. i even scored a winning goal, easy as.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Sundaze rich green god snakes

rode linwood ave to catch a lift with Andy and Wahayno, driving to sumner, passing Steve and Wazza nearly there. parked up, and headed up Richmond hill, nasty little grunt that that road is. at least steve and myself were slightly under the weather from previous night's frivolities, but we survived the ups, taking the lower track rather than Steve's route. cleaned all the roots, but blew the last rock, then the rest was good up to the summit road and on up to Greenwood.

hooked into the singletrack and wafted round, stopping to check out this cool ass iridescent green/blue/black beetle i nearly ran over, then seats down and the descent began. yee haaaa. rocky as all buggery, but fun fun fun, felt particularly on form most of the time. howling easterly giving the nudge now and then to keep things interesting. on the home straight, that little rocky up just after the hook under a tree caught me out and my pedal smacked my shin (nice lump now).

seats back up and off up Godley. completely blew the first rocky bit, but good blast the rest of the way out. checked out the new section being built above Livingston Col, and we stopped for a snack down there. it was here i noticed that my chain-tensioner jockey wheel had gone! dang. noisy it was after this.

onwards and up and down and hello to jogger a few times and down the snake, rip snorting it, then out the tail. taylors up up and away and over nicholson, through surflifesavingchamps to dotcom for salmon bagel and nice long black. made some good time, was only 11.45 when we got to the .com
goood ridin'.