Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Mid Week Captain God and the Conda

Nelson picked me up across from work and we got our way into the fog (near Steve's) and out to Sumner.  Parked up by the beach and hit the road about 6.10pm  Through the fog up Wakefield and into Sumnervale and Cascade to enter the park.  Fog starting to thin, but not quite til we were on the Captain Thomas proper.  Cleaned everything from the start, out of the fog and then up the switchbacks, cleaning all of them for, I think, the first time.  A good wind was pushing down the valley and as we watched was pushing and churning the fog into retreat.  On up and lights on just as we hit the first wee rocky descent, around the corner and up the two unrideables.  A couple of lambs got in front of us here and ran ahead of us for a while.  The further we got with them the more concerned we became that we were taking them from their mum(s), so we stopped, and Nelson headed below the track.  They continued on up while he got juust ahead of them, caught one, really making it bleat, before they both took off up the hill to some baa-ing mums (theirs?).  Rest of the journey up was uneventful.  Dumb gate then climbed out to the road, feeling pretty good with a tail wind on the last stretch, and our breaths wafting away ahead of us like little self made clouds. 

Nelson let me lead the pretty much the whole way tonight, which was great.  I reckon his glycogen reserves were a bit down from him riding with the rest of the boys last night.  Anywho.  I let him take the first crack at the beginning bugger of Godley, which he duly cleaned.  I followed, and also cleaned it!  Yippee, first time in quite a while (since Feb).  Then he went on and I followed up the next section, but then I took the lead for the rest of the ride til the climb out of Taylors.  Kept him at my pace which was good.  One dab up the next lot of rocks, and the rest was a great climb, good pace, good times, tail wind cruising.  So nice in the dry.  Around through the fence, back into the wind for a bit over the wooden bits, through the still-a-bit-boggy bit, then the Teddington Shit, hardly any stones left in it, and round onto the new gravel, tail wind again, bombing on down, suspension doing it's thing soaking up everything the descent to Livingston Col gives us.

Short break just past the fence humpy cattlestop thing, and then into the climb up and over, bombing around to Breeze Col, a rut half way across the slope above the PFMTBC Rock giving us both gyp.  Out to Breeze and onto the cool little climbing track above the road, good pace, up and round.  Don't think many people are riding it, certainly doesn't look it.  From it's end, we continued across the slope and spotted the stile to the Breeze Col track.  Hadn't done this for a while (May last year) and it was greasy as anything on the dew covered sheltered rocks, but where there was a breeze the rocks were okay.  The slippery bits were sketchy as, with that drop precipitously below.  It was a longer descent than I'd remembered.  Then it was over the stile and across and pretty much straight into Ana the Conda.

And the Conda, was, sweet.  Nice mellow cruising start, gradually picking up speed.  The top sections all opened up a bit, better drainage installed, and a bit of berming.  Rolled quick down and round and had a great run.  Nelson thought pretty damned quick.  I felt like we weren't quite letting it all hang out, but certainly was close the the ragged edge a couple of times.  Remembered the crappy corner well before I hit it and had scrubbed enough speed for it.  The 'tail was sweet too, just as rocky as usual, but the earlier bits had been tidied, like that (usually) boggy bit before you go through the fence.  Fast bomb to the end and into the climb.

Grind grind grind, I managed to stay on Nelson's tail most of the way, til the last few corners, but he didn't totally drop me.  Then I led down into Nicholson Park, and we reminisced the old descent, before dropping into Flowers Track riding some steps, taking a droppy shortcut here, walking some steps, and riding then finding an exit track that snuck across the slope between numerous houses and eventually spat us out onto Whitewash Head Rd, down that and then along the waterfront back to the car dead on 8pm.  Excellence.

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