Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Tuesday Night Overgrowth and New Places

Countdown pick-up and down Ferry to the mead. Parked in the park and rode around to McCormack's whereupon we trundled up the hay-feverish asthma-inducing hill - me walking more than usual but then getting all but one of the upper switchbacks. Up the roads into steep under-the-pylons Britten.Up top, long grass overgrown round the top front trail; long grass up to our ballbearings.  Not much better once we were below the road with hidden rocks jumping out to catch us multiple times.  Up, across the road over the fence and quick zig to zag up to the Mt Pleasant trail, flying down this over the stile and across Cavendish Saddle, to climb the zigs and zags up the back of the Gondola building.

The signs up here now say that Mtnbikes are allowed on this section of the 360 trail, including the stretch down back to the Major Hornbrook track and Cavendish Saddle...  Anyway, down the steppy bits and on down the rocks cranking and clushing through to the Bridle Path.  From here, climbing up the walking track (Crater Rim / 360), up, up and around, brief jumpy-off-rocky descent and into a grovelly climb up towards the ridge above the Castle Rock.  Bit of a break here out of the (blasting) (b)easterly, and then into the fun descent below the Tors, cleaning the techy descent rock bits near the bottom, but not the poppy-over bits, which required small dabbages of foot on rock.

Down on the saddle, horrible wind powering through, and just before the walking track above the road starts, we jumped over the gate and headed up the ridge up a cattle track for the top, eventually pushing through the tussocks to a high point of rocks, where I found 'the track'.  Started off, a nicely scratched singletrack heading off down to the right side of the ridge, progressively exploring more and more interesting droppy features over natural rock.  This is Port Hills mountain biking at it's best.  Sketchy, techy, steep and interesting. Down then to the left of a rocky knob, with Nelson checking out a super sketchy wooden feature up on the right.  On down, a little further finding the trail to the right which took us down more techy drops, and on down the ridge.  Super long descent, at surprisingly low speeds, arses over back wheels.  Nelson rode most of the super techy stuff, while usually I found ways around.  Eventually, we got to the bottom, a big pylon, and fences and gates.

Proceeded over these, and followed a singletrack around towards the block of pine forest on the right, in which we found an insane number of trails and jumps, yuge jumps.  Down we meandered finally cruising out along the bottom edge of Mary Duncan Park, onto Port Hills Rd, under the motorway, then Martindales, Trustcott and through the park to the car.

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