Saturday, October 26, 2013

Top of the South, Day 5: 629, rain, Codgers

Txting with Ian who'd taken me up top of 629 last time (then up Sunshine and down Peaking), we arranged to meet at the bottom Tuesday 22nd, at 9.30.  Only a few takers for this trail, which Ian assured me had changed somewhat and wasnt as bad as it used to be...  The takers were, Pete, Nelson, Mark, Alistair, Nico and me.  The rest of the crew went off up Sharlands Rd, and down R&R etc.  We saw Stu riding into Sharlands as we passed.

Ian took us up the track we'd finished on the day before, which was a nice gentle climb and around the pipeline track to the first forestry road off up to the right.  This immediately kicked in as granny steep then walking, around a corner, a little riding then more walking, Nelson pretty much cleaning it all.  Alistair was struggling with the weighty Diablo.  Up and up we went, a few pinches, a few ridings til we got to Bob Taylor Rd where Nelson was waiting for us and we had  good rest.  A few spits of rain were starting to threaten, but they held off for a while anyway.  On up through the forest (a section very similar to the steep in McVicars), and onto the fire break.  Nelson cleaned the first bit, i got a fair bit, Pete did pretty good.  Nico put in a damned fine effort.  Otherwise we walked some, then some more further up.  Eventually we made the top of this bit, quick descent then up the last bit to top of hill, 629m above sea level.  We'd started at about 100.

Into the descent, first Ian, then Nelson, Pete, Mark, me, and Nico.  All good to start, steep and rooty, no worries.  Following Mark and seeing the others ahead cleaning everything made it all possible.  A couple of sections came up that were just so steep, even Mark hesitated, which put me off and to stay safe, i walked down them.  Cleaned up heaps more tho.  Then the last bit before the road had a heinous rocky drop, with a rideable line but i only saw the drop, and had major trouble even walking down it...  Ian warned us about the entry to the next section, and sure it was steep, but we all rode in and cleaned it nicely.  Down into the bush, more steepness, then out into the recently logged and replanted open area.  Ian warned us of "a series of three switchbacks" which were actually like a squiggly bit down a cliff...  anyway, i walked these, then cleaned up heaps more with only one or two more walky corners.  the rest of the trail rode really well, and was much fun.  Nelson somehow crashed off a couple times.  Lower down it got back into bush and was awesome.  then crossed the main track and shot down briefly below and then out across the bottom and onto the road.  All up, about 2 and a half hours?  2 of which were climbing.

We drove down the valley and passed the others' cars and txts were sent as we went to Sprig and Fern on Milton St for beers and takeouts from next door.  The rain set in good and proper by now too, pishing down for the afternoon.

In the evening the rain stopped in time, so a good sized group of us, minus Steve, Robin, Mark and Marie, and the boyz, met Norm and some other locals in town for a quick blast up in the Codgers area.  Rode up Codgers, Pipeline, Jack's.  then up to top of Sharland's Hill, and down Firball, which was a hoot.  quite greasy in places, from the rain, then across and down P51, and down and out.  then to Sprig and Fern Hardy St for a couple beers.  I picked up Noodle Canteen on way home and feasted.

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