Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Wednesday Night Godley circles

Usual pick up from work and traffic, Moorhouse to Ferry, to Causeway and through to Sumner, then over the hill and parking down in Taylors, we got riding up the Snake's tail then onto the chip surface and out Boulder Bay track.  Nice we spin, hardly technical, but a good place to ride when everything's closed.  Climbed up past the gun emplacements finally having a rest (and me stripping off the jacket) at the barbed wire fence.  Off again, over and down the zigs and zags, then climbing again back up past the barracks etc, and finishing up at the carpark, while the ranger was locking up the gate.

Off up the climbing 4wd trail and onto the narrow wee sidling track we usually ride in the other direction.  Quite good in this direction, back towards Breeze Col.  Quite greasy, especially the rocks, tires glancing off them on occasion, and my descent down to the Col was sketchy.  From here, back out towards the Head on the old skool trail below the road.  A couple of quite wet spots along here, but mostly pretty good.  Climby climb around and out, then down and over the cattle stop to the road. 

Off up the 4wd track again, but peeling off to the left half way up, to the stile for Breeze Bay track.  The work there'd been a little of last time we rode this has come all the way through it now.  They've dug it wider all the way, even removing the nice rock feature we'd built.  The surface was damp dirt, so rocks were sketchy as, but there's not that many of them anymore.  Our once techy wee challenge is now gone.  They'll probably bloody put a gravel chip on it next.  Ugh.  I took the final blast down to the stile carefully.

Onto the Anaconda, starting off easy, and continuing that way.  Half way down, on the corner I once crashed on, my front wheel started to do the same as that crash, washing and threatening to take me down.  Was VERY close but managed to keep it rolling and adrenalin kicked in a little further down the trail.  Into the valley, back and forth, a couple of real water flow ruts.  Around onto the tail and Nelson was no where to be seen, he'd blasted away ahead of me so far.  Into the planting area above the beach and over a rock and whallop, my seat smacked me in the balls, causing excruciating pain.  I had to stop and get my breath, and the ache lasted til we were back at the car.  Needless to say the rest of the ride down the final section was tentative, and I was groaning.

13kms, 480m climbed, all in just over 1 hour ride time.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Saturday shorty with O and Jetty-puss

O and Jet and me dropped some hockey gear off to H and T in Hornby and then found our way to Halswell (that ends well) Quarry Park, parking in the Cashmere Rd carpark.  We'd forgotten Jet's lead, so I made do with one of the bike tubes we use on the bike-rack.  Perfect!  Gives just the right amount of spring, so he basically towed me up Kennedys Bush Rd, where we rode the foot path up.  I got a pissing bleeding nose half way up, but once that'd stopped we continued to the top of the seal, climbing the stile to the top of the Croc and reading the 'absolutely no dogs in this part of the track' sign...  Damn.  Oh well.  Continued upwards where they were allowed, but on their lead, up the singletrack.  Passed an older guy working on the singletrack, and rode the first berm he'd just finished.  Very tidy.  On up, and a few cattlebeasts around, but Jet was on the lead and very well behaved.  At the tank we got on the main track and continued to the top. 

Turned around and rode down the singletrack.  I let Jet off the lead but kept him very well heeled; he was a good boy!  A little greasy in places, and so gave O the tips he needed and he rode it all well.  Down past the tank and around the bends and down, past the track work guy and on down.  O had a wee off just after the last hairpin, but he was fine.  At the top of the Crock, we had to head back down the road, jet galloping down alongside us.  At the entrance to the Quarry Park that we often used to ride out of, we headed down, ignoring the no bikes sign and the dogs on leads sign, and headed on down towards the switchback track that comes up from below.  Half way down I figured we were right next to where the C2 track is, so we went over a fence and pushed/carried our bikes to the pines and there indeed was the track, below us below a cliff...  Hmmm...  Up and around following the edge of the trees and then across to the trail, we rode up this to the Van Asch entrance and then turned around and headed back down.  This was mint; O really enjoyed it, saying it was his favourite trail ever.  Met 3 boys his age climbing up, dad following behind.  On down and into the valley and a cool frost mist and patches of frost holding on in the valley bottom, even tho it was balmy up the hill.  Final climb out and then down the dog park and back to the car. 

 Nice spin, but not much mileage, under 8 kms, and only 180 m gained.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Wednesday Night, unexpected solo.

I collected a new mouthpiece for my camelbak from Bivouac then headed to Nelson's work for 5pm.  We waded through the quagmire that some would call traffic at that time and eventually got up Dyers Pass Rd and over the pass into Governors Bay and around to Allandale, planning to ride a few laps of Living Springs.  Alas, it was not to be.  Upon arrival, Nelson's slightly tweaked back of earlier was now in full blown agony-making spasm, and there was doubt whether he was going to be able to ride.  After some attempts at stretching and resting, it became obvious that it wasn't gonna happen, so I drove us back up to the Kiwi and we parked up.

I sorted myself out and, leaving him in the car, headed up the road to the Nun.  Climbed the road fast for a while, keeping a roadie ahead of me in sight for the first half, running out of puff a little in the second half.  Up Worsleys Rd to the dirt then climbing comfortably to the top of the Nun.  Could see a couple of lights down on the road below.  Stopped to adjust lighting, then hit it.  Popped and grooved down the first bits, slowing right up into the first big rocky corner, then blitzing down and through.  The rest of the ride down seemed to be like this: periods of quite good speed, flow and roll, followed by bits of slow, near-muppetry.  Pretty good, not the fastest, but not the slowest.  Lower half was mostly good too.  And no pinchflats, which is always a bonus these days.  Stopped in on Nelson, still resting in the car, and he was doing okay, and hopefully would be able to drive, so I headed back up to and hit Old Dyers track.

Rolled down the first section quite nicely, loving the flow through those corners below the Kiwi.  Then around and through the pumpy bit, slowly gaining speed, then meeting some climbing riders just as I climbed out of that wee valley.  "gudday" and onwards down, rolling it easy, slowly gaining speed, but never quite trusting the grease.  Around the 4wd section, there's been diggers working up here, obviously for the Park, then climbing under seemingly bigger trees to the road, across, climby climb climb up and through to Vic Park Rd, and a piss here (only a day late for Pee on Earth day), then into the singletrack climbing around to the Skidder Site.

Contemplated heading straight down from here, but headed up instead, climbing the grovelly steep 4wd track, cleaning it, gasping for air, then up to top of Brake Free.  Messed with my light here mounting it betterer, then headed down into the rock garden and gums.  Lovely flow down through here, tho what the fuck is it with that really humpy section in my wee favourite trail on the left..?  Don't think they're braking bumps, but they kinda act like it.  Anyway, popped and weaved my way down, back and forth, down below, then back up to the Skidder Site again.  Now it was time for Shazza's, kinda following some dude into it and pretty much staying on his tail.  At the Brents crossing I headed down the ridge onto the new section of track, and explored.  Nice.  Some steep challenging bits, and some random off camber back and forth zig zags lower down, then the wooden jump ramp onto the Flow?Bridges? track.  Stopped and checked it out first, but it was sweet, pop straight off it the drop is like a foot!  Onwards down familiar trails back and forth, the dude from Shazza's before me just ahead, following the progress of his light below me, then chasing him down the bottom of the valley, and following him through the creek and up Hidden Valley Link, always just out of striking range.  Gasped my way up the steeps and stopped over the stile to breathe and txt.

Then on around, clearing my throat loudly just as I rode under the dude who'd been ahead having a rest.  "Gudday" and onwards, no flats, having a good run down here, tho, similar to earlier, some smooth fast flow, some slower 'what am I doing?' moments.

Finally, the cruise back across town to home.

So, all told, over 20kms and less than 300m climbed (on account of it being mostly down hill from the Kiwi)

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Wednesday Night, new zone - Urumau

Good ride last night.  Nelson picked me up from work and we headed through to Lyttelton.  Parked down on Norwich Quay, and rode up Sumner Road, then up two long flights of steps and up Gilmour, just as Chris and me attempted to do back in 2010 but were stymied by a Mr Arsehole. 

Things must have changed in that neck of the woods because access seems to be by this way, and so we continued up into Urumau Reserve, climbing steadily.  I was wheezing like mad so when we got finally got up to top of the 4wd track section I got some Inhaler into me.  From here, more up, climbing on a nice benched track, with good hairpins zigging and zagging up the hill to the top of the ridge.  A wee explore here, on foot, up the rocky ridge checking for other trails, either coming in from above, or sidling below.  Then back to the bikes, and up into the trees, a steep wee grunt of a climb, with a couple of slightly tricky switchbacks up to a high point.  Seats down for a droppy corner then a look at where to go from a place we rested each time we got up there.

Then off down the 'blue' line, me following Nelson, and immediately a massive steep droppy face which I baulked on and walked, then got my head together and rode the rest of them, drop, then platform, then drop, all rollable.  One was really sketchy looking and I walked it too, and then we got to one that scared me, but I rolled in and it was fine, just on the verge of control.  Down and to the left, around over logs and a couple of droppy bits and and a couple more logs, bunny line on one of them, corners back and forth and down and around, until we could see the Sumner Rd below us, and the coal storage area below that.  Found a 'green' line heading up so followed that, and it took us steeply back and forth up and back around to what became to us a central point.  From here we sidled around the hill back in the general direction of the main entry trail.  Some swoopy down, then brief climb, then through a gap in a rock-fence, and some climbing from this, eventually rolling out at the top of the 4wd bit where I'd had my asthma blast.

Climbing up the benched switchback trail again, and back up into the trees to the top, and this time trying out the 'green' track from the 'rest spot'.  It was pretty much right beside the blue track, and felt a bit unfinished for a start, then we took it around to the right, fun ride down, nice bermed corners.  Near the bottom it comes in towards a tree and around the bottom of it, and looks like it continues on, but to no avail, we backtracked back up and found that you were supposed to loop around the tree, then back the other way, and back down to the Asthma puffer spot.

Again, climbing up the benched switchbacks and up into the trees again to the top.  Resting out of the wind at the 'rest spot'.  This time hitting the blue line again, but from the top of the first big droppy section we took a line off to the left of this.  Mint trail we swooped on down it, bypassing the worst of the droppy sections but including the final 'scary' one, and back down to our 'central point' again, we headed off around to the left on a trail we'd spotted on the first trip down there, which stayed higher.  It was a 'green' trail mostly and part way down we noticed a blue off to the right, but stayed sidling on the green.  Past a sign that said 'Track closed due to rock fall risk', and onwards across the slope til the track ran out at a fence/edge of the forest.  There was a foot track across the slip which we explored without bikes, into the next forest, and lots of scope for more trails over there.  Back to the bikes and back up the green track, a couple of bits steeper than we'd remembered, then into the blue and dropping again, a bunch of steep switchback drop corners.  I walked one.  then suddenly we're on the green climbing track we'd ridden up first lap, wondering how the hell we'd not seen it earlier, but then crossing the blue and on up to the central point again.  Swooped to the gap in the fence, then climbed again and back to the asthma spot.

Climbing once more, switchback switchback switchback, and up, into forest.  This time Nelson took the green climber to the right, while I went all the way.  The green climber goes straight around and meets where we'd rested every time. Final blast, taking the blue left hander off the top drop and heading down, flowing and rolling and swooping, over the last drop and down to the 'central point', then around to the right, dropping through the gap in the fence under the tree and little bit of steep climb then down this hairy steep overgrown trail that ducked and weaved through native plantings and eventually dropped out onto the climbing 4wd track.  Up this 50 m or so, and off down another narrow steep track down towards the streets of Lyttelton, across and down, trail becoming progressively steeper and narrower, til eventually dropping out on Reserve Tce...  From here, down the road, down Stephenson's Steep, little bit of St David's then down steps to Oxford St next to the school, and down to the car.

Not the biggest ride, only just over an hour's riding time, just under 10kms, and not quite 500m climbed, but all full-on climbing or full-on descending, very little sidling...

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Sunday Classic

9am start at Steve's (who was doing his own flat heart recovery thing), and I was running late, then got stymied by the railway tracks on Wilson's Rd being worked on, so detoured through Charleston, thinking I might be able to get to the railway for a shortcut...  nope.  Met the boys by the church: Tony, Andy and Wayne, and we toodled around to Crapaki and headed on up. A lot of walkers today, older folk, and a few riders.  Delayered after the 2nd gate, and then I got my climb on and just tapped away at it, putting a bit of a gap between me and the boys, regrouping on the flat then pushing off ahead again.  Brief stop at the top and then off up Vernon.  Not a bad climb up here, and over to the Traverse - Andy flatting on the final drop to the road.

Chatted with a couple guys here then we headed off around, for Vic Park.  Nice flow around the Traverse, such a familiar puppy.  Noted some new brick work on what I never thought of as a particularly damage-prone section.  On the descent to the pond, bits of head wind, I was chasing some dude, who put the power on the climb to keep ahead of me.  Regrouped at the usual spot before Sugarloaf and then off again, chasing down the some dude again, some sections of no wind, some of tail.  Stopped before the trees and then we headed in, down 'coffee break', Andy hard on my tail down here.  Bypassed the see-saw and off down the paddock, looking back to see the rain on the plains heading our way (or so it looked).  Good tail wind down here too, over the cattlestop and into the rocks, ducking and weaving through them and into the trees, across then around and down, peeling left into my old favourite, all cleared of the trees of old storms, and heaps of fun again.

Out to the skidder site and we re-layered before heading into Shazza's.  Nice pop and weave down through here, tho rootier bits at the bottom were less so.  Across and down into Brent's, taking the hard left line, and blazing down through the forest to the bottom.  Regrouped again, and off into Bridges and Flow, across and into Nu Bridges, back and forth, back and forth, last couple of corners starting to get a bit weird.  Then down onto the 4wd track and blazing down to the Hidden Valley.

Bollocksed about a metre after the creek then rolled on round the first hairpin, down into granny for the sluggardly climb.  Dabbed around the second corner and waited until Andy swung into view, then off again, climby climbing like a climbing thing.  Nicely nicely up the last, wind really howling in the trees and powerlines overhead.  Regrouped at the stile, and off again, up and around then blasting.  I thought I was flowing really nicely; certainly felt good on the bike.  Floated over some rocks and blasted away, then pffft pffft pffft...  dang.  Stopped on one of the corners and had to swap out a tube.  A few riders passed through while we were stopped, and Tony and Wayno continued on ahead.  Once fixed, Andy and me continued our merry way.  BLAST of wind nearly took my bike from me climbing the stile, then off again, staying light on the tires, and prancing down the hill.  Slowly wound in the girl and her guy that'd passed us earlier, stopping briefly to give her a bit of gap.  Then caught her later and she pulled up, then I chased down her guy.  He stopped pretty much at the bottom for her, so I passed on by and proceeded to stuff up the last dodgy offpiste final section.  Rolled down the final track to Tony and Wayne at the bottom stile. 

Off down the road, tail wind pushing us all, and Wayne and me split from the others, over to Eastern and around, him continuing on when I peeled off for Wilsons.  Had forgotten about the roadworks, and had to go to the tunnel, then back streets til Stanmore for the last, tail wind assisted, blast home.  Home by 11.30 am.  Nice.

28.7 kms with just over 500 altitude.

Thursday, June 09, 2016

Wednesday night Fatty and skinny went for a ride

T was working late so Nelson got to mine and we had some dinner and then set off just before 7.  Out to Scumner and parked up near a netball court.  I had the fatty, and he was on his singlist; the NuclearProof being in the shop receiving new bushes.  Discovered I'd left my gloves behind, but luckily one of Nelson's pairs fit me (-ish).  Off up the road and up through Slumnervale, fat tires on the road humming away like the usual box of angry bees, quieter on the grass.  Up the steps and onto the Captain, crossing on the new bridge, and the grind began.  Nelson jettisoned off ahead as usual, particularly due to him having to stay on top of his single gear.  I gasped and wheezed behind - at least the fatty has some good granny gears.  Up the switchbacks, some of which he didn't clean, and a rest was had on the bench.  Onwards and easier going for a while til the rocks.  Faffed through them and riding again cleaned up the next section til the next rocks and on the same, the rest of the way; 3 possums scurrying away on the last stretch towards the top.

At Evans, the decision was made to hit Godley.  Neither of us bothered much on the rocky climb.  Both of us were having trouble clipping out of our pedals for most of the ride, with both of us crashing from stationary at least once somewhere along the way.  Another break at the top, usual location overlooking Scarbro, and then onwards, railing around and down towards Livingston.  The fatty was performing perfectly on the smooth stuff, but as soon as rocks were added to the equation it became bloody hard work.  Nelson got a pinch flat when the going got rocky, and the rest was a relief to me.  More battering ensued once that was fixed and through Livingston and into the clamber over towards Breeze, a good blast on the smooth stuff.

From Breeze Col we took the narrow trail above the road, Nelson managing to stay on top of his gear most of the way and me just gasping along, pushing my monster along.  Then down a singletrack a little further over from the usual descent to Godley car park, bombing down and dodging rocks and tussocks.  Across the road and onto the original singletrack back below the road.  Nice blast round this, fatty riding nicely.

Second time from Breeze Col, the other direction, on the road for a stretch, small climb then bit of descent to Livingston, and back onto the singletrack for the climb, with a rest and a bite to eat at the Col first - Nelson consuming a Sweaty Faybar.  Climb wasn't too bad.  The lower section with the rocks was hard cos the fat tires grab every second one, slowing progress and making it harder.  As Nelson pointed out, if it was easy, then everybody would be doing it! - referring to both fatties and singling.  Out the top and off around the last of the Goddles, usually my favourite section...  Not so on the fatty.  As I've learned before, rigid and rocks aren't friends.  Ugh, by the time I finally got down to Evan's Pass I was thrashed.

Across the road and I disposed of a little air from the tires, hoping that would help.  It did.  My roll down Capt Thomas wasn't so bad.  Bloody possum nearly ran under my tires on the first section.  Further down, I cleaned the upper of the rocky-drop nemesises, and the first of the two lower down, but not the second of them...  On round and into the switchbacks, then the cabbage tree 'shortcut' and flying down the last sections around the bend, rear tire feeling a little wallowy (maybe I'd let too much air out), then ducking down under and using the old bridge next to the new bridge.

Final spin down the paddock, and roads, back to the car, low pressure tires dragging on the tarmac.

It was late (9.50pm) as we drove Humphrey's Drive heading home...

Riding time 1 hour 40 mins, 726 m climbed, in 21 kms

Saturday, June 04, 2016

Saturday out of the Gloom into the Gloaming

At the bach, with the fatty.  Finally got a chance, after bonfiring all day, to hit the road at 5 to 4pm - house had lost the sun before 3.  Headed up towards Chorlton, into the sun, then up View Hill Road.  Nice cruise up the gravel, then grovelled up the steepest bits then cruised on again further up.  Got to 606 m in 52 minutes, and turned around just as half the sun was behind the distant mountains.  Bombed it.  Nearly 60kph on the gravel bits, then over that once on the seal below.  Finished by taking Lukes Rd across and then down to the courts and then back up our drive.

14.15 km, just on 600m alt.