Saturday, December 21, 2013

Early Saturday pre Eczemass B Line Jet flushing.

Up early and so much stuff to do, so Jet and me left home in the Fiat about 6.40 and we were part way up lower Worsley, on the corner past the powerlines, by 7.05am, and less than 15minutes later were at the top of Tommy's Too, having cleaned every bit of everything on the way up.  Into the new-to-me Hang Loose, the right hand option at the top of Tommy's2.  Jet taking the lead and mostly staying out of the way.  Only one log-drop i bailed on (no chance of rolling it, but it wouldn't be a big ask to drop off it), enjoying the way the trail used so much of the hill, including a clearing I didn't know existed, and then after some rather steep corners, rolled into the bit Nelson and me had originally tracked out, the builders having hardly altered the route but having dug it out a heap.  Out the bottom onto the logging track and into the climb back up, less than 10 minutes since i was at the top, and back up to the Junction in well under 10.

Next, up the guts to the cliff top, three lady runners eventually catching us at the top, and into Wayne's World, Jet in behind, bomb bomb bomb, relishing the pump.  Into Fight Club and revelling in the pump-ability of this too.  Trail is getting a little blown out lower down, roots and rocks getting messier. Out the bottom and back into the climb again.  Back up to the Junction, and up the guts again, but this time only to the pylon clearing, then turned around and in to the left, across the guts track and down the old short chute blat down back to the climbing track and back up to the junction.

Down from the junction and checked out what turned out to be a new top half of Dave's track, including jumps and drops.  Couldn't be arsed climbing all the way back out from the bottom, so walked back up from part way down, back onto the main track and down past the tank and through and out, including a new wee sideline that skirts the gate, and back to the car about 8.15...  still nice and early, both Jet and me having had an awesome ride, flushing out some of the 'festive season's' excesses that have already started to pile up...

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Tuesday Poms

Not really a ride, but got a lift with my bike in Nelson's truck to meet the rest of the pfmtb crew for to drink the beer at the Pomeroy's...  drank the beer then rode the Troll home.  a good night was had by all.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Sunday eastern scorcher

Great ride this morning, but hot!  Drove the Fiat to Ferrymead bridge and Wayne turned up in his van, then Steve and Wazza showed on their bikes, and Andy and Tony drove past without seeing us, then finally Pete turned up having dropped the TFC van off.  We raced down the causeway and round into Sumner, met Marie, Andy and Tony, and headed up Richmond Hill.  Steep, and hot as, roasting up pretty quick, desperately seeking shade at every opportunity.  Straight up the farm track through gates and to the trees, then up the farmtrack entrance to Greenwood, a shady regroup above the ruins and straight in.  I started off a bit pingy in the rocks but gradually got my flow, til by the time I was lower down I was scorching down the trail.  Excellent descent.  Heaps of other riders around, including a group we saw repeatedly.

Into Godley and I cleaned the start again!  W00t!  Did it last time I rode it, which was on GuyFawkes day.  Onwards and cleaned the bit after that too.  Then into the rest of the climb, feeling pretty good, even with the heat.  Once I was up on the level, my balance was all squiffy, kept scrubbing edges of the trail and rocks, and feeling all off balance.  Quick regroup before heading down towards Livingston Col, I got smooth again, momentum my friend, and just flew.  Another regroup at the col and Steve tucked in front for the climb and kept a good pace.  I got past him again before the descent and rocketshipped down, swoopy swoop, round and across then back round and whoosh, over the PFMTBC rock, back wheel barely skipping over it as I flew off the end.  The rest came through and Tony did it for the first time (which surprised us greatly - not that he did it, but that it was his first time!).  Marie was slowed by soreness from a tumble on Greenwood, so she took a shortcut down Anaconda from Breeze Col, and we headed off into the climb around above the road. Grass was very long, making the narrow overgrown bit even moreso, then a blat descent to the end of the road and a quick regroup there before scorching around below the road back to Breeze.  Some other riders tucked into the Anaconda before us so we waited til they'd gone over the brow of the hill.  Slowly increased speed as we descended.  Finally the tailenders (Graham the trail maintenancer and friend) came into view and I was chasing, catching them at the end before the 'tail.  That nearly last corner still a bastard.  Into the tail and cruised on down, catching up to Graham's mate, stopping for a sec to gap him, then Graham turned up so we continued on.

Through the bottom of Taylor's and the heated climb began.  Just had to push on and get it over with, i went ahead and ended up catching up to Graham and friend again, cruising with them for a bit.  Found Marie at the top of the hill, and we all moseyed on down the hill, along the esplanade (above a very very busy beach) and into DotCom.  Then a jetship ride along the causeway and back to the car.  Home by 1.

Afternoon, went out to Nelson's, chainsawed a bunch, made a VERY full Fiat which I had to drive extremely slowly back to Nelson's, unloaded and split it all, making for a lovely stack to dry for winter.

Sunday, December 08, 2013

Sunday morning Wharfdale pre firewooding

Up early and off out to Nelson's place, with Pete's trailer in tow, stopping to grab a few pallets at Homebase first, got out there just after 8am.  Nelson took his truck and trailer and we parked it and my trailer up at the woodlot and headed through Oxford and for Wharfdale.  Made the trailhead about 9.  Good climb to start in and i was wheezing.  Bit of dampness about, and spitty rain now and then, and muggy as.  First blast downhill from the gate was good, but into the main climb, the odd bit of slick rootage caught us both out a couple times, having not ridden them for so long, both felt a little out of practice.  Great climb followed by a better cruising rolling descent.  Trail pretty clear of trees, but quite a few have fallen away, making holes in the track having lifted their root boles.  Bit of a climb and got to the rocky section, clambered up and we were about an hour in, so figured may as well turn back here.  Walked ahead tho, and checked out how the trees just past the steep creek bit had been cleared.  They had.

Turned back, rode the rocky droppy descent section then cruised and moseyed back, climbing the gentle climb.  Met a couple of (campervanning) Aussies, one from Melbs and one from Hobart.  They'd been touring around the south of the south, and were finishing off with the Wharfdale.  They seemed to be enjoying it.  We climbed on a little ways then the funnest descent began.  Heaps of good maneuvers, excellency at the handling, well and truly on form again.  Wet areas spraying up the muck, splecking me in the eye one time badly, nearly taking out my stereoscopy, and causing me no end of gyp the rest of the day.  Alas, all good things must end and the bottom arrived, and i just about slid out into the final corner trying to carry momentum into the climb.  Nelson jetted off, and i kept the pace for a bit then mellowed off and in no time was back up to the gate.  Then it was the final blast.  Eventually winding it up into top gear and really blasting, spraying ourselves with splecky spray, railing through the final throes of the track, high speed, back to the car 45 mins after we'd turned around, bikes and clothing covered in wet gritty muck.  

Drove back to the wood lot and proceeded to chainsaw for 2 hours.  Filled two trailers, killed one chainsaw...  (Nelson had brought the wrong fuel and hadn't realised til it was too late... :(  
Unloaded the wood back at his and i got home with time for a shower before T's fancy schmancy aunt and uncle came for afternoon tea at 3.

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Tuesday evening Packing the Horse

Nelson and me de-wheeled our bikes to make room in the car and picked up Craig, cramming his retro classic fluoro rigid '91 Marin Muirwoods in with ours, and we ventured forth over the Dyers Pass and around the bays and up to Gebbies Pass.  Parked, reassembled our steeds, and headed up the gravel road.  Not long to get puffing, then into the singletrack with the rigidity slowing Craig down a bit, Nelson and me blasting down into the trees ahead and through, then the wee climb up to the stile and out into the paddock where the two others dropped me.  Gasping for breath I caught them at the next stile, then it was a wee blast down before heading into the sweet dark Douglas Fir forest, around and through the wetspot and up the zigzags, Nelson cleaning them all.  Next section across and up to the cool wee bach in there, and then more climbing.  I pretty much left them to it.  Craig yarning away the whole time, not slowing him one bit, I kept them in view for a while, but eventually lost sight of them and just plodded along left to my own devices.  Eventually, after much grunting and groaning I arrived at the end of the forest.  Great trail from here, interesting and not too grindy, around through the Dykes then onwards.  Craig toppling off soon after them on some rocks.  On around and up to the Hut.  Around an hour in.  Signed the book and Nelson took some pics and we headed back the way we'd come.

Nelson, then me, then Craig.  Soon left him behind, our 'modern' bikes so much smoother and the braking offering so much more control we flowed and cruised carefully back to the forest.  He wasn't far behind and had really enjoyed it.  Next bit, the drifty blasty goodness, nailing it down, swoopy swoopy, drifting round corners and nearly shoulder barging trees and all around having a great time.  No time flat and we were back to the bach and waited a second for Craig and he had a massive grin on his face.  First time for him on this track and he wondered why he'd never done it before.  Onwards down, meeting a couple of nice girls heading into the hut for the night, and on down dodging trees and into switchbacks and through the wetspot and douglas fir and blazing down, tucked right down and right on Nelson's tail.  Out to the end, climb began and my gears stalled and that made Craig stall and we walked a bit then ground on up.  over the stile, on up over the paddock hill and then blasted down down down to the next stile.  Back under the trees, along the barbedwire fence skimming at the elbows, finally to the last climb, grind grind grind, stall, walk walk, ride, walk riiiide out the top and over in the open, and back to the road and blast back to the car.  After 8, and the bikes a pain to unravel, so we headed home rather than Living Springs.

Noodle Canteen for dinner.  mmmmmm

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Sunday Hunt Vern Witch Castle Cavendish Pleasant Green Thomas -ness

Three weeks off the mtnbike due to Fiordland field trip and then illness, leaving November's tally of rides pretty sad...

Got to Steve's at 9am and Wazza, Wayne and Andrew turned up.  No sign of Pete so we headed off across to and up Ramahana Aotea and Huntsbury, Steve getting word from an unknown number that they'd meet us up top.  Steve set a worthy pace up here and we all rolled in to the top.  Unknown number let him know that he was behind so we Vernon'd like rocketships down, letting uphill riders through at various points, but still rocketshipped our way to the Rapaki-top.  Then we saw Mark rolling down the road.

Into Witch Hill, cleaning it all nicely and enjoying the wee climb before the pin-balled descent.  Onto the road and a pleasant cruise round, first time for Wazza (ever, on this bike), the others having done it a week or so ago.  Into Castlerock, no stopping, I flew down here, it being a very familiar trail to me, enjoying it's dryness and lack of muck.  Still one or two wet spots, but nothing like winter's.  The last place Nelson and me worked could still do with a couple more large boulders, and it'd be set.  Finally, out to Bridle Path and a shady rest before tackling the climb none of us had ever done before.

Rideable in quite a few sections, only one or two rocks lower down that stumble you and further up, the steps kick in disabling the rideability.  But, not long after them you're popping out of the bushes (next to the No Bikes sign) and there was a bunch of people looking out a window of the Gondola building smiling and waving.  Hung a right, round the back of the building then into the ziggy zaggy trail down to Cavendish Saddle, riding very differently than at night.

Steve wasn't stopping so we hit straight into the climb, grovelling a bit in the steepest bits but getting the hang of it as it mellowed out and finally reaching out for the top, to find a heap of old walkers and vehicles and bikes and trail maintenance crew.  Off down the trail, with them grubbing or placing rock armour as we rode through.  Then over the stile and down round to Nick Singletrack and a quick chat before having to move before a small group of walkers got ahead of us again.  Swoopy swoopy, flow, stall, flow then some rapid descending ensued and flew down to the bottom.    Cruised down to the ruins and we stopped for a quick snack.

Off down Greenwood, initially i was all out of whack, but after a couple of smooth runs I got my groove on and started to bomb it.  Faster and faster I went, Warren not too far back, but then I'd gap him for a bit, then slow up on a flatter bit, and he'd close, then down and i'd gap him and then into the gulch I slowed up to rest a tad and I heard him closing as I headed into the downwardness again.  Again, faster and faster I went and flowed and grooved down through and around to where we saw Dave last time, and looking back I'd put a good gap in again.  Kept up the speed and fanged on down, back and forth and through and then screamed down through the two rocky ups and on out the bottom, allllll good.  Back, killing me, having to wait at the stile for a minute or two to regain the ability to lift the bike.

Into Capt Thomas, this time, Mark tight on my tail, and could I shake him?  Nup.  He kept the pressure on but I kept my end of the bargain, and even cleaned the bit I never used to clean, nooo worries - the cutting out of the steps has infinitely improved it.  A bit further down down, around through the next wee gully, I decided I was slowing him down so pulled up and let him through.  We rolled good from here down, through the next to tricky bits and then both just lost momentum in the wee climb, but the rest of it was smooth.  Fast down into the new switchies, nearly lost it on one outside corner, but man it was betterer lower down now that it's dry - dust even getting lifted by our speed.

The others all rolled in and we headed for DotCom for well earned liquids and solids before grunting round via the causeway, strange cross wind, bit of slipstreaming required.  Into the back of Ferrymead trails and round where we went our separate ways at the roundabout.  Weird side then tail-ish winds home, and utter utter exhaustion awaiting me upon my arrival.  pretty much only able to lie around most of the afternoon.  Too much too soon after the illness?, perhaps.  But, good to get out.