Sunday, October 04, 2015

Sunday reGruppo before the winds.

Forth ride in 5 days.  Left mine at 5-past for an early 8.20 start at Steve's.  Pretty much early, being overtaken by Andy and Tony in the Hydestor van on Opawa Rd and finding Steve out front ready for us.  Short wait for Wayne to show up, whilst the overslept Pete was chasing.  We headed around Aynsley Tce and up Crapaki for a change (most of the year since last up here).  Easy climb, cruising chatting to Tony for a start, Pete catching the boys before the gate regroup.  Steve continued on ahead and got a good lead.  I rode with the boys for a second then engaged pursuit-mode, catching up and chatting for ages til the rest caught up just before the flat.  Up the last climb Andy's turn for the chatter. 

Regruppo'd up top then up Vernon.  I was pushing as hard as my multiple-days-riding-weary legs would allow, finding them surprisingly not lacking.  At the Farmtrack halfway point a young guy on a Nomad got in behind me and so my pressure was on.  He was fresher, younger, and catching me...  Ugh, it hurt getting over the last rocks and along the final stretch before dropping to the road.  Another regrupping here and off around the Traverse.  Nice pace through here too, with tail winds assisting along the downward travelling length before the pond.  Gale force winds forecast (which hit much laterer) hadn't shown up thankfully (cos when they did hit, the hills were obscured by the dust of the Canterbury Plains...).  Brief pause at the usual spot, then onwards through the perfect morning to the top of Vic Park, everybody rolling up in short shrift, before heading down Coffee Break and avoiding the see-saw and heading down across the rabbit paddock into the rocky rocks of the rock garden. 

Gums, fun.  (really must get up there with the chainsaw and clear that lefthand trail).  Skidder site, regrouped and off down Shazza's, weird lines abounding, especially towards the bottom, and then into Brents, managing to nail the pop up to the left, then taking the high line all the way down.  Again, no body too far behind and all for another regroupage betwixt creek and fence.  Off down Flow(?) finding myself untidy at times, but managing to hold off Andy who I felt like was gaining fast.  Into Bridges and some random control, commenting that I always feel like I'm gonna lose it on that dry clay leading across the top before the turn back up valley and dropping down into the swoopiness of (was once called)NuBridges (whether it still deserves the name New... I'm not so sure...).  Fun yumpi-pumpiness down through here and then fast blast down to the creek. 

This time, gear selected well in time and balance in check.  Cleaned the crossing into the first climby bit, then around the first corner, as usual no worries, then up up and somehow cleaned the second corner, rejoicing with a slow pedal, hearing the boys below, then grunting on up the next, Pete not too far behind, and up the steepest bit into the last two corners, polishing everything.  Another regroup at the socalled Bowenvale Bonus, before climbing what we decided was that, and into Old Skool, or Bowenvale as the nom-de-terre.  Sweet blast down this, tho the lower we got the more overgrown it was, hiding holes and rocks in various spots, making for some cautious speed.   A few groms on DH rigs passed under us and we arrived at the bottom, 10am on the dot, to find a DH grom convention.  Lucky we didn't meet any of them up top somewhere. 

Down Bowenvale to Kaizuka, another breakfast had along with a nice Funk Estate Renegade Red, then it was off to Steve's to watch the England Aussie game he'd recorded earlier, a lot while we rode.  Hallertau whisky barrel aged stout as an accompaniment, leaving the day with a rosy glow.

Mapppppd, just about 30kms, with 534 m climbed.

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