Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Tuesday night Captain GreenHeat Pleasant and back

Nelson picked me up from work in his big blue van and we went to Craig's place to pick him up.  He had a very flash new Commencal that he'd only built up the night before.  Nelson had forgotten his shoes (in his car) so grabbed some regular pedals off Craig.

Hot nor-west day, blustery winds and sunshine, we parked up in Sumnervale and headed up the Captain Thomas.  Craig took the lead and set a really pleasant pace that even I could keep up with, which meant the three of us stuck together all the way up.  He made various adjustments to the new bike as we proceeded.  Cleaned everything we'd normally clean and not those we don't.

At Evans we headed into Greenwood, the first 'new' 50m or so fricking steep, the rest a nice cruise.  This is a great climb, and with Craig setting the pace again I got ahead of Nelson cos he was struggling on rocks so much with not being clipped in.  We stopped for a break at the top of the steepest rocky section (just before Gloomy Gulch) and then got going again, cleaning most until some of the rocky bits up in the corners section.  As we approached the ruins I spotted a new trail over to the right.  I'd heard something of this but had looked for it in the past and not seen it, but there it was, so we headed on up to take it in.  Craig decided here that he was tired and wanted to go home so he headed onwards and Nelson and me headed down into the new trail  Sweet rolling flowing wee trail takes you across above that bush reserve below there and then across to the big trees on the Richmond Hill corner.  From here we headed back up the 4wd track, chatting to a bloke on a big Yeti most of the way.  We peeled right and he headed off down Greenwood.  Around to the road and met another guy here (on an interesting Banshee Paradox (29r Hardtail)) we chatted to for ages - watching roadies struggling on the newly sealed and chipped road, up which eventually we headed into Britten.

Around Britten the overgrowth making it perilous and once on the west side the wind and overgrown tussocks making for some even more bloody tricky riding.  Across the road and into the climb, tail wind helping here and all the way I was in the lead and feeling pretty good.  Clambered up to the top of Pleasant and sat down for a snack.  Up rolls another rider, older guy, but fit (on some crabon 29r HT), just climbed up from Greenwood and proceeds to chat away with us for a good while, laughing about how someone's been feeding the rocks something to make them grow bigger.  Talk about a friendly night out...

Into the descent.  Lee of the hill or tail winds, made for fantastic riding, quiet, just the sound of freewheel, tires scuffing dirt and rocks, and flowy.  Had a really awesome blast down, grip in corners was magic and blazed down through the tussocks to the 4wd.  Then down into Greenwood, again, fast, and in pretty good form.  Some stumbling in some rocky sections, Nelson would catch me up, then I'd drop him, only to have him catch up again, then drop him again.  Was a game of cat'n'mouse with him never quite getting me, being pinball pinged rock to rock and losing his footing.  Took a break where we'd breaked before and (stupidly) I let a little air out of my tires.  Off again, blazing down, Nelson dropped the drop (and finding it bigger than he remembered), and then down through Dave's corners, I was thinking my rear tire felt a little washy, but figured it was just grippy...  til through the fence, fssh fssh fssh...  damn!  Quick turn-around replacing the tube and putting plenty of air in, then checked my front axle and found it loose - another thing contributing to the washiness of earlier...  On down, steaming down to the first rocky up, wrong-geared, and then out the rest at speed.

Across the road and I gave Nelson the lead, and we blasted down the Captain.  There was a couple further ahead I'd spotted, but they were miles ahead.  Cleaned everything beautifully and at speed and then both wrong geared on the climby bit, then blasted out the rest, catching the woman of the couple as we entered the cabbage tree detour, (the guy was a little further down, but behind us when we got out of the detour), then fanged it down to the bottom, amped at 9pm.

1 hour 36 riding time, 600m climbed in 18.7kms

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