Thursday, December 26, 2019

Boxing Day Mounting Grey

Sweet ride today with Nelson and Pete. 8.30 or so pick-up from mine... Jetted up and parked at the usual 'Lake' Janet, and got toodling up the road for a start.  Pete's first blood appeared when his leg caught the warratah at the gate. Turned off into the singletrack, stopping to clear some branches, then hitting the steeeeeeeeeeeep.  Gasping, no asthma remedy so gasping all the way.  Pete had a tumble getting going on one of the stretches, heels over head below the track, blooding his leg good for the second time.  Got to the lookout and some walkers turned up.  Got riding again, up the singletrack, best way to the top.  Up, pretty much in the clouds by this point

Dropped in and the down was magnifique.  Stopped and Pete went ahead and got the drone up, pulling in some footages, and onwards down, meeting some walkers on their way up.  Into the forest and switchback city.  All getting better and betterer the further we descended.  Somewhere along the way Pete blooded his nose on a lawyer too.  I led a lot of the lower stuff, all the way out to the end.  Nice.  Another drone flight over the river and then we were off up the road back to the car. 

Usual couple hours, 665 m climbed, in 13.35 kms...

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Thursday Night Captain Green in the Parlour with the Candlestick.

Tires.  Tires, tires, tired of tires...

In the morning, the back tire was flat, so, thinking it was just a slooow leak (as it had been prior), I pumped it up and chucked it in the car and headed for work.  Parked, rode to C4 to get some beans and on the way there it slowly deflated, becoming too low to ride just as I arrived.  Borrowed a pump from one of the guys there, but that didn't work, so I walked myself and the bike to work.  End of the day, the pump in the bikeshed at work didn't work, so, walked to car.  Drove to Sumnervale.

Nelson arrived just after me and his front tire was flat too.  His was a valve-core issue which he couldn't fix so he left again.  I replaced my tube, and patched the one I took out - 15 or so minutes.  I started riding, and my tire got flatter and flatter...  I stopped up on the grass just off the cul-de-sac (before the stile) and patched this tube.  Another 15 minutes or so.  Then, as I removed the pump the whole fucking valve-core came out.  WHUUSH,  I struggled and got more air back in, got riding even tho the tire was a bit too low, at least it wasn't getting any lower.  Got up round all the switchbacks and sat down on the seat to pump it more, and the valve-core came out again, so I spent another 15 minutes or so messing with it, also discovering a loose spoke, which I tightened by hand.  Found that part of my chain-breaker managed to fit the valve-core, so got it good and tight, re-pumped and finally got riding.  It was getting close to 7 o'clock by this stage!

Good climb, finally, up Captain Thomas.  Cleaned everything I usually clean, and walked all the usual bits. Rested at the annoying gate, letting a couple of girls ride down through.  Headed up the Summit Rd, as far as the Richmond Pines.  Over the stile and up the 4wd farm-track to Greenwood.  Hung a right on this and stopped again, flipped bike, and got the spoke-tool out and tightened up several spokes.  Got riding again, up, around and hung a tight right on Sheepshit Alley, bombed down this, then around 'the Greenline' climbing back up to the start of Greenwood from the 4wd track.

Into it and bombing.  Nice bit of work done on the edges all the way down, a tickle since the Enduro?  Smooth popping through the top rocky sections, cruising and bombing in turn.  Around, pumping okay towards Gloomy, but getting bailed up on the rocks just after.  Then rested the spine before the rocky descent, good flow through this and the airy bits, and off the drop, then slow to start around into Dave's zone, speed ratcheting up as I was bombing and flowing, feeling pretty good.  Wind got stronger as I headed into Evans Pass, gale across the saddle.

Across the road and back up into the Captain, and bombing into the flow again.  Rocked all the goodness on this, having an excellent run, except the usual climby bit just after the last of the rock drops.  Flow and ping the rest of the way down and back to the car...  After a bad start, a good finish, solid solo, 15 and 3/4 kms with 12m shy of 600 altitudes climbed.

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Sunday Slow Short with Hot Dog

Lots of riding during the week, around town.  To TFC meeting, then home from Poms on Tuesday night.  On Thursday, work picnic at Kate Shepherd's house, home, then Moon Under Water and back. 

Sunday, took Jet across to Bowenvale Ave and we headed down then up Major Aitken Drive. He was a happy boy, bounding and trotting along beside and ahead. Higher up, once on gravel, he met Stella, a cute young black lab, who thankfully he didn't try to hump too much.  We left them to go up the singletrack usual, then up the landing-strip, and met them again on the gravel.  I plodded on ahead, thinking he'd catch up, but when I got to the bit I was going to walk up onto the Traverse, Stella and owner rode past but Jet was still way down the bottom of the gravel straight looking for me.  I whistled, he heard, and started running up, but went out of view behind a knoll and never reappeared.  I walked down, and he was nowhere! I stood there and whistled and yelled, and then saw him finally, waaay down in the tussocks.  He heard me and came puffing up, looking hot and exhausted...  We made our way to the Traverse and settled in for a little break. 

I took off down Fourpause, and bombed down doing the first 3 jumps then stopping and waiting...  and waiting...  and waiting...  He showed up, just trotting along.  It was hot.  I was worried about killing him with heat exhaustion.  All the way down.  Popped the jumps with expertise, then down the landingstrip zone, ride, stop, wait, ride, stop wait...  Down to the stile, then on down, stopping regularly to let him catch up...  He was hot!  Panting majorly.  Popped all the fun bits, the steepest big one with an audience of 2 women and a guy, who I saw walk it after I'd gone through.  Lower down I met a guy who'd lost his mate...  then found his mate lower still.  Jet was slow.  The nasty grass from last time has mostly cleared, so not as slippery on the off-camber bits now.

Old Skool.  Jet found water in the first gully, under the gorse.  I'd say it was pretty dirty...  A few more breaks and further down he rested.  I really thought I was gonna kill him from heat exhaustion!  Panting, lying down on the track...  When we got to the bottom of the valley, he went looking for the creek, but it was bone dry... Down Bowenvale a bit, and I parked him in some shade, tied him up, and bombed on down to get the car... 

Up at lunch at mum and dad's he drank and drank and I hosed him off.  Very happy he was.

A short, 9.33kms that took a long time.  409 m climbed.

Sunday, December 08, 2019

Sunday Short and Hot, HuntsBowenSkool

Quick one this afternoon after a couple nights in Kaikoura.

Got over to Nelson's about 3pm, and we headed up the hill.  Grindy grind.  There was a dude ahead of us on Huntsbury Ave and I just could not catch him.  Nelson jetted off ahead, passed him, then eventually rode back to me.  Then did that again, meanwhile, I'm just grinding away at the same speed as the guy...  Stopped for a rest on our (now) usual spot (grassy track, just above the cattlestop above the pylons), and I stretched my sore arthritic back.  This helped me a lot, and my it didn't get as sore for the rest of the ride.

Up the singletrack, over the fence, up the landing strip, then UP Fourpause...  For a bit, then across to the top cattlestop and on up the Huntsbury gravel.  Into the Traverse, headwind across here, and then another rest at the top of the descent. 

I led in, and man got pushed sideways on the jumps.  Nelson didn't even do the bottom jump for that reason.  The landing strip descent is now mowed, but the dead grass is dry and slippery, making for some serious sketch, especially as you hit the first rocky descend-over before heading for the stile on the 4wd.  On down, dry grass proving sketchy, but thankfully missing from all the steepest rocky bits.  Super tricky down in the off-camber corners at the bottom tho.

Into Old Skool, all non-stop, passing a dude scrub-cutting-mowing the track and then bombing the rest of it.  Lovely tail wind across legs heading up-valley.  Finishing off down the road and around back to my car, and popped up to his for a quick beer.

A moderate 10.8 kilomenators and 408 altitudes altituded.

Thursday, December 05, 2019

Thursday HunTraverse ThompsoNun Draino'd

Sweet wee spin tonight.  Left Nelson's just before 6 and headed straight up the road.  I'd had a massage earlier in the day and so my legs, glutes and lower back had had all the juice squeezed out of them.  By the time we made the top I was dissolving into jelly, and it was a struggle around the Traverse.  A little better on the descent on Thomson's, then onto the second half where the girl died last week, burned hole in the scrub right there...

Up the road, struggling again, and all the way up to the Nun...  Checked out the view from the very top of Marley's above here, then hit the descent.  Nice blaze, bomb bomb bomb, fuck it's bony.  Into the Park zone and madness ensued. Buncha buncha passing through and past.  STopped at the top of the end of Gnarley and watched a young dipshit lose it over rocks.  All balls no skill.

Followed, and overtook them down and then dropped into Drainpipe ahead of them.  Awesomesauce blast down this, catching a couple of guys, them pulling over then catching some more.  then getting stuck behind an ignoramous down the last remnants of 3rd base finisher..

A rather good 21 kms, with 628 m climbed.

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Saturday HuntVern WitchCastle TorLava Skooled

Early-ish ride with Nelson. Headed up the road from his, then up the dirt, singletrack to landing strip and gravel.  Around across Vernon, meeting many, and through a packed Rapaki-top.  The Witch, cleaning bar one dab, and resting at the highpoint.  Then down and across the road, onto the Crater Rim 'walkway' just above the road, good tech, then up the road to Castle Rock.  Awesome bomb down this, turning around and back up the road from the Bridle Path top. 

Up onto the Tors, Nelson cleaning the climb, awesome bomb down this, usual dab over the only bit I ever dab on now, then up onto 'Crater Rim' singletrack again, better in this direction.  Across onto the Witch, then decided on heading up the road instead of Vernon due to the beginnings of tiredness.  Into the Traverse for a spell, and for a change, we heded down the Lava Flow.  Awe.Some.Sauce  Nelson took all the ubertech lines, while I doddled down the easier stuff.  Good times.  Then, we checked out the nice new exit off down to the right.  Lots of fun, steeper and steeperer and more and more off camber as you go, one last tricksy rock to pop then into steep exit onto the valley corner of Hidden Valley 'Bonus' link.  From here it was up, up, and up, around and into Old Skool for a wicked flow...

Bloody mint. 850 altitudes and over 20 kilomenators

Monday, I went to Poteriteri for a week to get eaten by sandflies and scratched by ferns and lawyers, oh, and to count birds.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Tuesday Victraverse Bowenvic Latters

Climby McClimbface.  Parked up at my folks place (which will be ours at the end of next year) and checked out the place with T and H. 

They'd brought H's bike, so they drove to top of Vic Park while I rode with Jet up the road and up from Skidder through to top.  H's rear brakes needs some serious looking at, lever to the bar and barely any response...  Usually a bunch of pumping and flicking fixes it up a bit but not tonight.  "You're just gonna have to use your front brake more..." "Okay."  So, off we went, down into the trees and we swept round to that first jump which I popped nicely, then down to the cattlestop, opening the gate for Jet.  Then down Brake Free, and into Sesame St, but peeling left into the gums, all the way down but not my usual lefty (cos the steep would be too hard with his brakes).  He did amazingly well, and didn't crash due to brakes once.  Bypassed the skidder site on that swoopy through trees, and then down the old (obviously hardly ever used) singletrack to the end of the road.  T was at 19th Memorial.  H rode from here on the road with her following and I booked back up into the park.

Up next to Sesame St, 2nd climb up here tonight, and I hopped up to BrakeFree just to try out that first Sesame jump again after last week.  Way over popped it and flew, actually dabbing the rear brake in the air, then landing with a stopped wheel, miles down the ramp, straight into the next pop, then finally gaining some composure as I flew over the next double...  Round the woodwall, and contemplated but didn't commit into the next double, popped off the ! drop and then around and straight back up K2 climbing, up, up, then up Worm and onto the Traverse.

Got riding around here, been a while since last in this direction in particular.  It was rush hour, I pulled over quite a few times to let others through.  One guy I didn't (he was descending, and had a perfect opportunity to pull into a wee spot, but missed it) and he looked very confused.  Meh.  Rest of the run was good, and got to the top of Fourpause with four paws intact and had a nice pause here.

Dropped in, fanging, wooah, a little overgrown, making for a bit of edge catching sketchiness.  First jump was further down than memory served, nice, then overgrown corners slowed me down into the second one, and the third I popped nicely, landing on the transition.  Bombed down through to the final one for a nice leap and landing.  Continued on, and MAN was it overgrown.  Wading through tire-deep grass, barely able to find the line, and not seeing any rocks under it all.  All the way through and down to the gate, over grown long grass as hell.  Over the stile and into the first shortcut, not so bad, second, hmmm, rocks???  dropped, into next steep one, better, but everything from here on down was too overgrown to function...  not as fun as usual, especially the lower switchbacks which you couldn't even see and had to go really slow. 

Decision time.  Left, down HiddenValley, or right and down Old Skool for some more descending goodness.  Obviously I decided on the latter, and had a smooth and fun blast down here, with a couple of very close calls. 

Straight into the climb up the valley, oh the grind, 3rd time in as many weeks, meeting several of those who had passed me on the Traverse, and then after some seat adjustments, up K2, cleaning, again, and on up past 40fter and zig and zag to the Skidder. 

Blast down the road, detour around the back of the slide, then into the lower Dog Park and over to the Harry Ell Drive track, but detouring to head all the way down the back of the houses, fast next to the trees, then over the stile and down the (VERY OVERGROWN) Latters Spur track below the houses all the way to the bottom of Longhurst.  Finally, climbing again, back up (STEEP) Longhurst, and finally up Amherst to our new house.  Phew.

A surprising 15.25 kms with even more surprisingly over 650 m climbed

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Tuesday Pre-Trees Bowen-Victorian Sessions

Thinking we would meet workmates either at the bottom or at the Skidder Site for a bit of a skills session Nelson and me rode up Bowenvale Valley and K2 like I did last week...  Got news half way up that they were piking (cos the Park was closed and they couldn't Lift up, lazy kids), so we continued up the grind (which didn't seem as bad as last week (muscle memory??)), and got to the top of Vic Park ready for some action. 

Figured we'd keep it a skills session, and rode down to the first jump in the trees, scoping it out and clambering back up for another go.  Nicely cleaned first time round, then into the see-saw, which I baulked on first, then did the 2nd time round, no problem at all (wtf was I worried about??).  Don't know why I've been so psyched out by it for so long.  Into BrakeFree, and rode back up for the first few jumps to ride again - I reckon I rode it best the first time...  Then into Sesame St.  First big gap jump Nelson just piled over it no problem and I baulked.  We climbed up, back into it, I baulked again.  Back up, baulked, but rode down through the rest of it nice following jumps and wallride no problem.  Stopped and walked back up, right to the top again, and met a young fella here - got chatting, then I followed them in and GOT IT!  Again, WTF was I worried about?  It was easy.  Enjoyed the rest of the jumpies and wall ride and Nelson cleaned the big gap below the Wall, and then we got chatting again with the young guy, Michael. 

Headed into Shazza's, and stopped not too far in to check out a couple of the jumps in there.  Decided the wooden feature with a downhill landing was too dodgy.  At this point we were joined by a lovely young woman Michael knew (Hannah, I think?) who rolled up and decided to join us on our way down.  From here we bombed down the rest of Shazz and down and into Sneaky Ridge, which Mike hadn't ridden before.  He decided to try the No Road Bikes section, while the rest of us rode around it.  Then him and Nelson decided to do the big drop in the oaks...  Both cleaned nicely and then we hoofed off down over the wee jump onto Bridges (or Flow?).  Regrouped and bombed it across into Nu-Bridges, zigging and zagging down this to the bottom of the valley.  Hannah split into Hidden Valley bonus and the three boys fanged it down the valley, and we made our 7pm curfew to get to our meeting (after grabbing some dinner), juuust on time.

A massive 7.5 kms, with a huge 350 m climbed....  

Saturday, November 09, 2019

Saturday Micro-tour to Sculptures - *Happy 1100 Posts!*

Was the day for the Fam to all go to Sculpture on the Peninsula at Loudon Farm, Teddington - Anth had 10 pieces in it.  I decided to ride the Troll there.

Left home 9.05 and perused my usual route into town, across the front of the Gardens and straight down Antigua, Strickland, Colombo to hit Dyers Pass Rd.  Low on the Troll is just right for this hill, not usually needing to stand up, unless to occasional popping into 2nd or 3rd to stand up and give the bum a rest.

At 1 hour in I was at the Sign of the Kiwi, hung a right and along the Summit Rd, climbing, then nice rolling coasting pedalling high gear down to the old top of Kennedys, before the surprisingly big climb up past the top of actual Kennedys and beyond before the fast drop down to the Bellbird.  Climbing again, to the photo point, and on around, nicely cruising, but keeping a good pace most of the time.  Met a lot of roadies along here, all looking surprised at my bike choice, and very few cars by this point.

Finally, just before the descent into the Bastard, I stopped and wound in my brakes a little, and the hit the descent - and what a descent.  Highest speed was up the top here, just over 63 kph, bombing - modulating the braking to occasional jabs just to keep the disks cool and the speed reasonable, opening it up a few times when the road allowed.  Quite a spectacular descent.  You feel like you've been rolling down for ages, and you're still really high up.

Eventually got to Gebbies and this is where more speed kicked in, over 60 kph for a time, with a couple of massive blasts down here, before it levelled off all too soon and the head wind kicked in (it'd just been a bit of a tail and blustery along the tops).  And then the brakes were making annoying rubbing noises, but I persevered to Teddington and hung a right and around to Loudon Farm.

Exactly 2 hours, door to gate... 34kms with 802m climbed...  a hot blitz.

Thursday, November 07, 2019

Thursday Hot Solo Vic Nun Old Skool.

Drove from work and parked up top of Bowenvale Ave, not really having any plan as to where I'd ride.  I'd brought my ex-front Maxxis with me in the car, and so changed off the split, worn rear one first, and then got riding up the valley...  just past the bottom of Old Skool I realised I'd left my wallet on the dash of the car, in full view, so jetted back down to grab it, and then headed back off up again.

Struggle Street further up, but cleaned everything, then paused and headed up K2.  Managed to clean the rock at the bottom and keep my power on all the way up the gravel steep, then hung a right into the singletrack, pausing for a good breather here.  On up to the 20footer and another rest (it was WARM) while I looked at the jumps, then on up below the DH track and under the pylon and onwards upwards to the 40fter.  Continued past top of Rad^Sick and up round to the right, steeeep baaasssttaarrd, up finally to the skidder site where I had a nice rest.  3 fellas I'd been hearing behind me the whole way arrived and continued up the steep.  I followed.  Managed to clean it all still no dabs or walking, nearly puking.  On up past Brake Free and up past the seesaw and then up to the top of Thompson's where the 3 guys were waiting.  Brief chat then they took off.

I waited a bit, then followed in.  Down to the Kiwi and on up the Summit Rd, them not too far ahead.  Round and up to top of Worsleys, then up to the Nun.  The three guys were there.  More chatting, and another couple of guys arrived.  First 3 headed off, then me after a pause.  Eventually caught the tailender after the corner closest to the Park, and overtook, then went down to the Gnarly Nun drop down, just after a massive posse of the mtb 'elite' (including Mel (of Rich and Mel fame)) had bombed through so I was eating their dust the whole way down, and said as much to Mel at the bottom.

Off across Dyers Pass Rd and back up to the top of Vic.  The 'elite' all arrived not long after me, and I let them all head down first, they peeled across towards the big jumps, but I peeled left and down my usual route into the Gums and my favourite lefty.  Bombed swoopy swoopy in here, then Shazza's and then nice run down through Sneaky Ridge, jumping onto Bridges and into Nu Bridges, bomb bomb bomb, then climbed up HiddenValleyBonus, and up into the Old Skool for a pretty good run down here.

A very balmy and exuberant 14.6 kms, with 557 m climbed, all at my own pace.  

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Thursday Night Eastern Beastin' Feast-yearn

Met, as per, Nelson, in Scumnervale after work, about 5, parked up and we rode off up Captain Thomas.  Good climb, asthma not so bad, but usual struggling once the going got steeperer for me up the first bits.  Once on the level things got better, and Nelson cleaned further than usual on the rockiest bits.  Usual near-death on the climb before that top swingy gate, but other than that the rest of the climb was good.  At the road, we knuckled in behind a couple of other guys, climbing the Summit Rd, and eventually caught and got chatting with them, riding the rest of the way with them up to the top of Broadleaf.  They were practising for the Enduro to be held up there next weekend.

Chatted some more at the top, for quite a while, then we led off keeping our blitz power on to stay ahead.  One of them was pretty quick, but the other guy not quite so much.  Tho, seemed on the techier rock stuff we would huss over they bogged down a bit, but on the smoother bits his speed was mental.  I was on Nelson's tail hard the whole way til the lead in across to Gloomy Gulch, then I was utterly blown and had to pull up, lower back killing me, allowing them to pass and go ahead.  Got started again, and saw that Nelson had pulled over below the dropjump, so he took off again once I'd caught him and we chased again.  He caught the slower guy before the rocky ups.  I wasn't that far behind, really...  Bit of a rest at Evans, chatting some more.  The faster guy was responsible for MtbTrailMagic on You Tube...  they took off down Capt Thomas.

We rode out Godley Head Rd, and stopped to watch their descent.  They kept a good clip.  Not long after this, we noticed my back tire getting flatter.  Good slash in the side of my tire...  Stopped and replaced the tube, got riding and it was going down again, but I leaned forward and managed to ride all the way to the cattlestop entry to the climb track, where we stopped again and I patched it this time - tube must have had a hole in it from last time!

Climbed up, gasping, to the trail, and we got rolling back to Evans.  Nelson jetted off ahead, and I stumbled and wheezed through the flatter rock bits, then actually struggled further down more than usual, even having one VERY close call with an OTB.  Bloody close.  Just couldn't seem to get a good flow on.  I took the final high-line walkway bit at the end. 

Across Evans, and into The Captain.  Better descent down this, sticking surprisingly close to Nelsie for a start.  Cleaned everything as usual, and bailed up on the wee rocky climb.  Final blast down the flat into the switchbacks was good, but the Cabbage Tree track was overgrown as.  Blasted out the bottom and finished down past the horses.

Just about 19 kms, with 710 m climbed.  

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Tuesday Kaniere Canaries in the Mine

Parked and promptly killed my phone in the boot lid - I put it on the spoiler to catch the MMR satellites and then stupidly forgot all about it an opened said boot - not noticing it slide into the gap.  Then once we were ready to go, Nelson completely unknowingly closed the boot, crushing half my phone in the process.

Hit the trail.  Tech city.  Flat(ish), just lots of little ups and downs, to start.  One of the most fun trails of the whole trip.  Slippery roots, slippery rocks, low speed, hard work.  Big climb towards the end, with a fair bit of pushing, dragging up rocks to a platform, then a little more climb before a technical arsed descent, followed by a cruisey cruise round to find Steve looking sleepy in the car. 

Amazingly, my phone caught it all, even tho at that point I could only see half a screen...
10.12 kms, 305 m gained.  Screen progressively became unuseable over the next day, and on the way home utterly impossible to see anything on it.

New phone purchased the next day.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Blue Monday, Spurring On

Wet night and morning, but cleared a bit, so Nelson and me headed south of Greymouth to Hoki and up to the Station carpark for Blue Spur.  Had a doozie of a ride in there...

Climbed up the access road, first left into Doolittle, fun little doing, descent back to the road, climbed back up, then left into Seesaw.  Excellent blast down this into the valley.  Up the valley, shoes off 3 times to cross the stream, then up Elevator, and UpCycle, which was really cool.  Then up the main 4wd track again, climbing seemingly forever, passing the starts of all the tracks we'd hit on the way down. Eventually the very top of Edge.

And, down... First The Edge, then a climb on 4wd to Stagg's Drop, which Nelson immediately crashed on, tumbling down and disappearing into the bushes below the track, landing completely upside down.  I had to drag his bike up, while he tried to untangle himself upright.  This was a fun trail, one of the better ones.  Next into Bad Boys which had a heckuva lot more climbing that it should have.  Then the Cutting which was quite good.  Out of here, we headed up a bit over and down the road to the tech top of Tunnels, and dropped in.  Awesome wee trail this, tho a few too many ups in the middle bits.  Through the tunnel, and then out the valley out to Tucker Flat Rd, right here, and along, then up a couple of steep corners back to the car.

A reputable 15kms, with 414 climbed (felt like a lot more than that)...

Sunday, October 20, 2019

Sunday's Undeniably Platitudinous, Denunciably Platonic Denizens of Denniston Plateau

Day two of the annual trip.  Checked out of Holiday Camp, so our departure was 10am, headed out of town via petrol pump, and up to Denniston Plateau. 

Nelson's gears weren't working so we waited around a little while he faffed.  Steve set off, with Robin and Pete, while Andy and me waited about a bit longer, but then Nelson said it was gonna take a while, so we set off in chase...  Up the road, fourth right, into Loopy, ex-bulldozed track, wide, but eroded and rocky, short climb followed by fast and rocky descent, with the boys in view across on the next climb.  Pete saw us, turned back to film us on the groveliest wee climb section, which I cleaned!  On up, and over, and met up with the other two.  This trail did this down and up thing a couple more times, then hung right onto Rocky, which dropped over and down.  Pete went ahead to film.  Then we all followed, me first.  Turned to look back and saw Steve have his tumble here.  Damn.  He picked himself up and we climbed over and down, and met Sullivan's Track.  Hung a left on this and climbed steeply, and technically, up and then across and around about the place, with Pete heading ahead to get the drone up for some filming of us.  Eventually back to the road, and Steve and Robin continued on to the car, while Pete, Andy and me checked out Lunar.  This was excellent.  Narrow, hard to follow, technical, and interesting.  Climbed out of that, back to the road, back to the car.  First lap, a smidge under 7 kms with a puny 126 m climbed.

Out with Nelson, without Steve or Robin, for the next lap.  Back up the road, and dropped into Lunar again, and sessioned a couple of sections, and tweaked a bit here and there.  Tidied up the markings too.  Then, climbed Miner's, up and down and up and over, then peeled off into S.O.B, which was techy as all fuck.  Pete flew his drone, tried to capture us riding it.  Got a bit of footage. Then down the rest of Miners, wet and sloppy, to Burnetts Face, and climbed back up the road.  Looked at Teapot, which we should have ridden, but didnt...  Second lap, tiny bit under 11 kms, and only 175 m climbed.  (certainly feels like more when you're doing it).

Saturday Heaping the Heaphy

First ride of the annual trip...  This year featuring the smallest group for a while: the three originals - Steve, Pete, Andy, second original - me, 3rd original - Nelson, and later addition - Robin. 

We'd driven to Westport in POURING rain on Friday, checking into the Holiday Park motel units and having a jolly old time of it.  Up early, and departure time of 7.30am set... 

Day dawned not raining enough, and with a good hour's drive to Karamea, we were on the trail about 9.30.  Nice climb from Kohaihai, followed by a nice descent, then it's just up and down the whole way, with a few flatter bits in between.  We all kinda took turns hanging back with Steve, who's struggling these days, but soon spaced out pretty good. 

At the halfway shelter, Pete chucked his drone into the air and promptly lost it.  It lost touch with his base, climbed up to it's ceiling and sat there til the battery ran down enough to send it down.  It came back into view after about 10 minutes and he kinda guided it back down, but then it crashed in a tree.  I'd seen exactly where it had landed, so we guided Nelson and Pete through the bushes up to it.

On riding again, and easier stretch from the first half, ending at the Heaphy Hut where we cooked up Dehy-meals for lunch.  The 3 less ridey turned back here, and Nelson, Andy and me continued on.  Nelson, I think, had the intention of getting all the way to Mackay's.  Andy was happy to turn back at Lewis, while I wanted to get a little bit of altitude - having come all that way, but knew I'd die if I went too far up.  So, we said our goodbyes to Andy at the hut and headed on up.  That was about 1.35pm, I said I'd go up til 2, which I did.  Nelson kept on at it and I turned back and enjoyed the fuck out of the surprisingly good quantity of down hill.  Then enjoyed the cruise back to Heaphy Hut (back over the bridge not quite finished with the 3 DOC guys working on it), but trying to keep a bit of a pace on, thinking maybe I'd catch up to Andy somewhere. 

Stretched and snacked for a few minutes at Heaphy, then hit the trail again, dead on 3 I think.  Again, reasonable pace kept up, but towards the end I started to really flag.  Type 2 fun was being had along here, suffering and wishing it was over.  Finally got to the top of the final climb and with glee, flew down the trail, detouring left onto the wee loop track and riding this around to the bridge, over, up, and on the final approach to the car park, there's a rat loping towards me on the track.  I veered, ran over it, feeling it under at least my front tire, but when I looked back it was a blur leaving the track!  (later Nelson saw 'a rat' near a culvert just a bit further up the track).  I suspect it was poisoned - dopey, but amazing it didn't die with me squashing it.

Andy was in the car, had been there for 20 minutes.  Then we waited 1 hour 10 for Nelson, who had indeed made the Mackay Hut (his mmr is from hut back, ie, half)!

MMR stuffed up big time, putting me as having started at Heaphy Hut, heading south down the coast then, back north again and finishing at the highest(ish) point that I got to...  mental. Somehow i gained 32000 calories... The mileage is too little, but the altitude may not be wrong.

Monday, October 07, 2019

Sunday Quick Dog Loner Juggle Tings Proper

Didn't know when I'd get to ride.  Was told 5pm would be fine.  Then, at about 2 T said Vanessa had cancelled, so I could go earlier...  Drove across with Jet in the car and parked on Eastern just over the bridge from Bowenvale.

Jet on the lead, headed around to Major Aitken, and up.  Kept him on for a while, cos he was kinda giving me a tow, and cos the road narrows a bit further up.  At the hairpin, quite a way up, I let him off and he ran free from then on, right til the bottom of Bowenvale at the end.  Up Kenmure and up Huntsbury to the top.  Up the gravel, climbing pretty good, my own pace, not too hard, not too soft.  Up onto the singletrack and up the landing strip then up the gravel, and before the top cattlestop we peeled right onto the wee climbing singletrack, walking a stretch, then riding the last zig and zag to the top of Four Pause.  Schlumphfed down here for a rest, small snack, and took a pic.

Onto the bike, Jet in behind, and away we rolled.  Good fang down this favourite trail.  Better traction than the other night, and I did the jumps a bit better too, even with the easterly blasting across the track.  Waited for Jet after the final jump, and then down through the tussocks, weave weave, and dropping off over the left down to the gate, Jet not too far behind.  Over the stile, and blazing, down, drop, weave, pop, drop, sidle.  Skipped that one bit that has the blown-out rocky ledge, using the 4wd briefly instead, then back into the rocky descent down to the water troughs, where I stopped and encouraged Jet to have a good long drink.  Off again, back and forth on the off-camber over-grown corners, and then onto the Old Skool proper.  Bomb bomb bomb, jumpy, pumpy, flow across and back and across, and from where we watched O's crash (almost a year ago!) I stopped to wait for Jet, and then when I got started again, couldn't clip in, making those rocks tricky.  Got clipped, and bombed on down the rest, stopping a couple times for Jet to catch me.  

Bombed down the gravel to the end, and waited.  Jet got straight into the creek opposite the jumps, and soaked and drank, then off down the road, he took his sweet time sniffing and peeing on every. single. tree. down. Bowenvale Ave.  Felt like it took longer to get down this than it had to ride Old Skool...

Thursday, October 03, 2019

Thursday Night Groupies

Hit it with some new peeps.  I met at Nelson's and we rode round to the bottom of Crapaki, meeting there George, Glen, Jackie, another Richard, and another whose name I dont recall.  We headed up the Crapaki, climbing at a nice pace, talking all the way.  Glen was sporting a brand-new first-ride-ever Yeti SB-something with 29r wheels.  It was spanky a.f.

At the Taramea we regrouped and were joined for a stretch by an older guy on a 'lectric contraption.  Headed up into the singletrack.  George OTB'd almost immediately, which was amazing considering it was on the climb.  Regrouped again at the rocky techsession bit, then Nelson and me blasted ahead of them down and around and across and all uppy downy as it is.  The climb back around in the sun was pleasant and not at the same time.  Straight into the singletrack climbing above the maindrag, and then Nels and me stuck to the main drag for the straight and up around to the top.  All the rest of them took the singletrack.

Up Vernon, and Nelsie and me seemed to have the lead, but George wasn't far behind me, then Nels met someone to talk to, so we continued on, me following George at his pace.  Regrouped again at start of the Traverse.  Sun was lowering (half hour to sunset), so we decided to show them Fourpause and 'the' way into Old Skool. 

Around the summit and no mucking around, straight into the descent.  Dirt was damp under overgrowing grass, but grippy enough, and we blasted down the rocks and over the jumps and as per usual now I cleaned that last jump.  Regroup and they all arrived with shit-eating grins, not having expected so much excitement...  Down through the tussocks and over the edge, down, again, the rocks catching some of them out.  Then the real descending began.  Most of them didn't clean the steep rocky droppy sections, and Jackie bailed out and rode the 4wd track.  Glen was wary of destroying his brand-new ride, so was careful Colin all the way.  But mostly they enjoyed it, and now they know the way, they can come back and practice.

Into Old Skook and it was a blast.  Best flow I've had, chasing Nelson tight on his tail, for ages.  With all the regroups, I was still feeling pretty fresh, and so pumping through the flatter bits was easy and good.  Out the bottom, and FREEZING cold in the valley.  Ice-cream headache making.  Regrouped, and then down the road.  Most of the group stopped in at the Brickworks, but I needed to push on so Nelson and me headed back to his.  I even had enough energy to clean the wee alleyway next to his place up to the car.

Not a bad 17.86 kms, and 526 m of altitudation.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Saturday Solo Jet Grey

Nelson organised to ride Mt Grey on the weekend.  We (and I invited Derek) were going to ride and Kirsty was going to run.  Then she pulled out.  Then Derek said he couldn't make, then Nelson decided he had too much to do at his old place, so I decided I'd just go do it myself (with Jet).  Left home just after 9 and took about 45-50 minutes to get to the "Lake." Only a couple of months since last time, and a year (almost to the day) of the previous to that

Left the car at 10 and cruised up the road, not detouring to the singletrack this time, just sticking to the gravel climb.  Met one woman riding down.  At the Look Out I stopped and took a couple pics

 and then walked the steep singletrack to the road above, crossing over and riding the upper singletrack sidle across what, if it isnt, should be called, Sunrise Face.  Gorgeous day up here.  Warm, sunny, windless - mostly.  Tight in the trees, fun climb.  Wind over the top was howling in the towers, but so sheltered on my side.  Fantastic views.  Got to the top at 11.

Took the immediate descent track to the saddle, a few very steep techy rocks to start, then the wind was absolutely blasting across the saddle, nearly pushing me off the bike.  Quite tricky.  Around into it, dropping down the guts to the singletrack the other direction, around the face, wind lessening a little but still strong in places.  Wetspots were still wet, but not bad.  Met a quite a few couples walking/running up this section.  Switchbacks, then rocks, and then into the trees.  Jet on my tail, happy as anything.

Switchback City.  Cleaned some, didn't clean some.  Usual percentages.  Awesome descending.  One corner I went round, quite quick, and there's a woman down in the forest below the track.  "Hello!" I said, and was onwards cruising, popping and weaving downwards.  Creek crossing, more switchbacks.  Met someone I knew (Rowan) and her partner(/friend?).  Descendy McDescendface.  Another couple in the thick of the busiest switchbacks, then good rolling cruising down into the pines and then into the open usually very muddy section, was a bit muddy, but there were greasy 2-wheel-slidey dry enough bits to stay on.  Passed a couple of young girls walking up here.  Blasty lower sections, stopped to move a few branches off the rutty rooty part, and flowed out the lower half no probls, no more punters.  Big drink for Jet in the river at the bottom.

Time for the road.  Grindy McGrindface, climbing climbing up and around, met one guy riding a bike down hill towards me at some point, and finally back up to the car, just after 12.  Hit the road, and was home by 1.

A very enjoyable 14.14 kms of country riding 729 m climbing

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Thursday Night Eastern Struggling Singletrack Goodness

Met Nelson at Slumnervale... Traffic on Linwood Ave getting there was a shocker. 

We headed up the Captain.  I felt weak and useless.  Either not recovered properly from Sunday's ride, or I was suffering from too much sugar during the day at work...  Either way, I felt bad.  Once above the switchbacks tho, everything gets a bit better until the trail heads up again near the end.  We paused for a bit at the (crappy) gate to let an XC Yeti woman through, then got going to the top. We watched some lights coming down Greenwood from here.

Through Evans and onto Godley.  Cleaned the first rocks but then was so wiped from that effort that I buggered up the next lot.  Managed a bit better further up, still struggle street though, while Nelson powered off ahead.  I'd totally lost him by the time I was up the top, tail wind pushing me a long.  At the ridge, he was crouched down out of the wind.  Brief stop here and the 3 Greenwood lights climbed up the 4wd towards us, then continued on down towards Livingston.  We gave them a headstart then headed in.  Nelson chased hard, but I just rode my own buggered pace.  Once on the down, I was a bit better, swoopy swoopy fast through the lower descents.  Past the 3 boys at the col and straight on up the climb, up and around.  Nelson was waiting at the top, and we headed down the same triangle of paddock to the road, and over to the new Anaconda entrance.  Brief break here.

Into the descent.  Lots of sheepshit and the dirt still unused since I was through on Sunday, I reckoned.  Bomb bomb bomb, then fast and airy through the original lower Anaconda.  Then around and climbing again, stopping to watch the 3 followers descending, making lots of noise and 'aaaaah!'s as they swooped.  They ended up following us up this walking track.  I was starting to struggle more on this climb. 

Then from Breeze, up the singletrack ever more.  Struggle struggle struggle, then fun descent, then reeaally struggling on the final climb.  Rain started to fall a little bit up top.  We put jackets on and headed around.  Good run down to Evans, me taking the high walking line at the end. 

Then into Captain Thomas.  Excellent downhill.  Feeling sore, but enjoying the down.  Blasty blasty, cleany cleany.  The tree root at the start of the Cabbage Tree track nearly stopped me...  then the final blast into the bottom of the valley was gooood.  So glad to be done.  I was aching all over.

An expeditious 17.15 km, with a quite thorough 713 m climbed.  

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Sunday Solo Brit Green God nuSnake God road Brit

Parked up Parkridge and got riding at 8.30. Up Britten, into the clouds, everything grey and a little damp. Down the road and into Greenwood OG entrance, where shortly I took the Sheepshit City trails down around towards the Richmond Pines and then around and mostly climbing back up to the Greenwood ruins.  9 am on the dot, into Greenwood proper, and down (seeing reasonably fresh tire tracks on the odd rock (but no sign of anyone ahead)).  As I rounded one of the first corners I noticed a guy chasing me down.  Huh! I thought.  Better put the pedal down, so I started honking a bit harder, and increased the gap.  Around Gloomy and through I looked back and I'd made the gap massive and he was dab-walking through the worst of the rocks up there.  Got bombing on into the next rocky descent and swooping through the swoopies and off the drop jump, and around into Dave's Zone, and then looking back he was way up there.  Kept the pressure on, blasting through the turns, all good, even where there was grease.  Around into the wee valley and then the shot for the end.  Dab through the first rocky up, and then down to the new end, passing a climber in those lower reaches.  Across Evans and a wee breather break, 9.10am..

Into Godley, climbing and (nearly) cleaning the first rocks.  Slightly better luck most of the rest of the way, just one or two dab-scoots.  No one else about at all.  Over the top and blasting down to Livingston where I passed a couple of runners (one was Meg - James and Caro's daughter).  Climbed up towards Breeze to just before Breeze descent where I peeled off for the new entrance to Anaconda, dropping down through the open gate next to the cattlestop, little triangle of paddock above the road, across, and into the newly signed downhill.  Swoop swoop, all finished now but needs more tires riding it.  Fun, bar all the sheep shit, and lambs jumping out of the way.  Onto the old Anaconda and a sweet bomb, jumpy jumpy, around into the valley, back and forth, nearly lost it in one corner, front wheel squirrel, then out onto the walk track a the bottom and climbing up the new walktrack back up to the original snake entrance, Breeze Col, and back up the road for a bit.

Up the triangle of paddock I'd come down, walking, then onto the singletrack again, heading up and over to Livingston, then the grinding climb up, up, up.  At the top I looked at my watch, and discovered it was 10am, 1 hour since I'd been at the top of Greenwood!  Continued on, having a great run down Godley to Evans, roughly 5-10 past the hour at the pass, and climbing again, for the long slog.  Towards the top my left leg was getting a bit peaky sore.  20 minutes the whole climb took me to the top of Britten.

Final fang down, easy to start then ramping up the boost as I descended.  At the hairpin corner, went straight ahead, exploring a new line, which took me all the way across, nicely flowing, and down to just before the final droppy descent under the pylon to the bottom.

Back to the car 10.37 or so, and home just after 11 am.  Nice.

A rather lengthy 23.5 kms, with 999 m of altitude gained...

Saturday's Park Lot

O and me headed for the Park. Nelson was at the top when we got there, so said he'd wait.  He was on his DW DH Rig.  O and me got to the turnstiles and no swipey! - I discovered I didn't have my card, so I sent O off up to meet Nelson while I went to the office and sorted out a spare. They came down Yeah Yeah and Jandal, and I didn't have to wait too long. 

Up we went, and off into Summit Connector, across Nun and down the lower Gnarly rocks into the lower Nun, bombing it.  Into Choir and bombing through, fast fast fast, then climbing round to Captain Cooker, dropping down and into Shredzilla.  Chasing Nelson, O on my tail, we all cleaned everything smoothly.  Good fun, fast run. 

Back up the lift again, and this time into Swinger's Party.  Another good run, tho some groms caught me up and I let them through.  Otie did good again, and then we hit down DOHC, which was better than the last time I did it...  Slightly less rough.  Good finish for me, and O's hands were blistering cos he'd decided he didn't need to wear gloves...

MMR output.  Basically none climbed, that's all the lift.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Tuesday Pre-Meet Quick Lap

Last Tuesday (10th September), forgot to post, as have been away all week since...  Nelson and me parked after work up top of Parkridge and headed up through Britten.  Was still rather wet, tho not quite as bad as the my previous excursion through said zone.  Climbed up and around.  We had our lights with us but was light enough to ride the whole ride without them.

Across the road and up Mt Pleasant, some pics up here, then over and down, swoop swoop, bomb, through and around, then the trail towards the Richmond Pines and then back up climbing, some mucky spots, then up the road and down Britten again.  Back to the cars by just enough light at 6.22 (sunset was 6.13pm)

Reasonably short, 9.43 kms with 316 gained.

Went and ate Thai at Talay, then off to the Trees Meeting.

Monday, September 09, 2019

Sunday One Mucky Lap o' th'Adventure Park.

Took Hunter and O to the Park.  Hunter had a brand spanking new Trance.  It'd been raining overnight so there was only one route open, Summit Connector, Choirboy and Loess (and Shred).  Trails were mucking fucky, and greasy not-easy, so Hunter was a bit out of his element.  I followed him and it was amazing watching teenage 'confidence' being outweighed by lack of innate ability.  He surprised me a few times down the Nun, but wasn't going nearly as quick as O was, bombing off ahead of us.  At the Kiwi, we continued on down.  Hunter was surprisingly quick through the first few bits, but around the big corner into the woopdedoos (before the wee valley and climb up to Old Dyers Pass Rd form) he lost his front wheel to the left, the back wheel spun round and he went down hard.  Scraping a big gark in the track a good 4 metres long.  Scuffed his knees really good, and hands (no gloves) were numb with pain (and scuffed too).  Blood appearing through mud on the knees.  Took him a while to regroup.  I checked over his bike, and eventually we got going.  Him being a lot more cautious from there on down.  Rocks were pingy and slick the rest of the way, til the sidling clay and climb.  I made sure O rode with him for that stretch, and they chatted.

Then it was into the descent to Loess.  Reasoned against Captain Cooker, on account of grease.  Descent to loess was sketchy.  Loess itself was the worst I've ever seen.  Quite dodgy.  Slick as.  I let him go ahead (O disappeared immediately, and occasionally I'd spot his fluoro orange jacket below us).  Hunter took it very easy.  I'd wait, bomb, jump, haul up, wait, bomb, jump, haul up...  Good run in the end, but we pulled the plug and headed home to hose off bikes and bodies.

Around about 6 kms riding.  Almost all downhill.  Didn't map it, but registered...

Monday, September 02, 2019

Sunday Coupla Lapsa Th'Adventcha Park

10.45ish O and me met Nelson at the bottom of his first lap for the day - on the DH rig.  Got Otie a 5 pass and we headed up the lift.  First off into Summit Connector, down the nun and down the Choir Boy.  Stopped and adjusted O's brake levers just past 3rd Base.  He was struggling cos of a hand injury from crashing off his board last weekend.  Into Captain Cooker and then Nelson headed down KarmaSutra while we took the easy route down Loess Rider.  Good fun run. 

O wasnt up to another lap, hand hurting too much so he went to the cafe and socialmedia'd with his friends while Nelsie and me headed back up the lift.

Into Swingers, nice run down this.  I stayed pretty close on his tail most of the way.  And at one point these young guys were on my tail, putting me under pressure, which kept my speed up.  Excellent fun this trail.  Bombed on down it all and Nelson was surprised when he stopped thinking he'd wait and I was right there.  Into Handle and we popped and floated and flowed all the way down.  Good times.

Forgot to start MMR til the top...

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Thursday Night Huntsbury Castle Tors Duncan

Up hill from Nelson's, via the steep-arse alleyway (taking a call from my dad on the way).  Up the road, ever pedalling, then up the gravel, I was feeling pretty good. Up from the cattlestop to the singletrack, and headed up the rocks of the new Rock-Up (usually down) single, walking a bit, then riding over the top and down the hairpins on the backside, and back onto the singletrack.  Over the fence onto the landing strip, and across to the newly developed descending next to it, up to the jumpy Fourpause. Finishing up on the gravel top of Huntsbury.

Across Vernon, bombing down, pulling over a couple times for climbers, and then, for the first time in ages, I cleaned all of the Witch.  Along the road a bit, then up onto the single-track above the road, clambering and struggling a bit, then up the road to the Castle.

Fast bomb down this, bombing, and nearly losing it into the drainage channels on the righthand side before the first corner.  Around, and back across, balance pitching me left into the hillside this time, nearly losing balance again.  Around the next corner, down through and into the climb, cleaning it smoothly and with power.  I was getting more tired on this last descent to the Bridle. 

Back up the road, and up onto the Tors, with Nelson cleaning the entire climb from the road, most of which I walked.  Stopped for a bit of a snack in the nice sheltered spot.  Then into the down, good ride, only one dab, and not as nastly greasy as last time.  Back along above the road on the tight wee trail then over the fence, up onto the top, over the fence again, to the very top of Duncan's.  Some very fresh lambs up here, and on into the descent. I took the easy way because a little tiny lamb was following us. I thought it was a weird noise from my bike, like a squeak, then realised it was this tiny little lamb...  Down the ridge, all the fun, cleaning heaps of steeps, then over and through the lower gates, and around into the woods, dropping down our usual drops, drop, drop then out. Back along the road, getting tired now. Final climb over Centaurus and down, and back up Parklands to Nelson's.

18 and 3/4ths kms and a bonza 820m climbed

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Sunday Groynes Planting

Moseyed out to the rail trail (where I then realised to start MMR) and slowly, eventually, made my way down to Wroxton Tce before I saw the crew coming my way from Fendalton Rd.  I waited there and we (Nelsie, Andy, Petey, Stevie and Jenna-ey) headed north at a nice pace.  I was feeling rather seeeedy due to consumptiousness evening previous, but somehow survived the thrall.  Railtrail, then at Tuckers the others peeled left while Nelson and I explored the singletrack to Sturrocks, left and met them at the Cosy Cafe.  Long black settled my nerves a bit, then onwards again up Cavendish, Styx and up Main North to Northwood, meandering through and around this and up Connemara to Johns, under the new motorway and into the Groynes.

Planted lots of Trees for Canterbury plantages.  I amazingly survived, and then the double-fisted Sossies helped a lot.  Robin's speach done, we headed and off again, south.

Back the way we came except explorational explorages through various other ways in Northwood, through parks and back streets, finding future pathways eventually through a shortcut to the Styx Mill intersection.  The future will also, in my book, see explorings through Regent Spark, cos there are ways to be had through there too.  Back onto the Rail trail and cruising nicely, tail wind, which I then turned into when peeling off through St Jame Spark, Dalriada, Windemere and home.

I managed 23 odd kms, with no real altitudinal gainage.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Tuesday Night Avoidance of the Muckeriness

Parked at the bottom of Mulgans Track and relaxed listening to music and watching the rabbits in the redzone while I waited for Nelson to show up.   He turned up, we got riding - an excellent ride ensued.
Up Mulgans, corners and steps getting the better of both of us.  Up the steps and steep, then up the steps to the water tanks and riding up past York's old place and into Brownlee Reserve.  Over the top onto Clifton Tce, climbing, climbing and over the fence at the first stile.  Took the singletrack down and across the valley around to climbing up around stormwater catchment gabions onto Richmond Hill, climbing up a walkway to a new cul de sac and then up the dirt, clambering ever upwards, around eventually onto the ridge and easy riding up to the big trees corner.  Had a snack here.

Next it was up the road and over the stile onto the Greenwood 4wd track, avoiding the soggy singletracks, climbing up to the gun emplacements on the ridge.  Bit of a cruise around these, then hit the descent, down the ridge track, tricknical rocks and fun to be had.  Across the top of Chalmers and Nelson's bike suddenly had weird gears - somehow the rear screw on his derailleur had unwound...  Fixed, and headed down the trail across onto the ridge above the Evans Pass Rd.  Speeeed (Nelson got 65 kph, (me, only 50 odd)) down to Evans, ended up at the old Greenwood exit.

Onto the road and out Godley Head Rd, meandering around to the new cattlestop and then climbing up all the way, crossing the singletrack, all the way to the top of the ridge.  Nice trail climbing up here, and mostly pretty dry.  Brief rest up top here, in the shelter of a rock (strong wind), and then down the techfun trail, dropping straight down to Evans Pass.

Dropped down into Rapanui Bush, skoodling around to the Scarborough Bluffs Track, where we stopped for another snack.  Nice dry mild spot here.  Then off, fun descent, waaay longer than I always remember it, across and in and out of little valleys and techy rock features and drops and then into the switchbacks, various levels of success for Nelson and not for me.  I cleaned the last one.  Onto the road and coasting, faster and faster (me 69 kph down here) descending down into Sumner, and cruising around back to the cars.

Good ride.

A quite acceptable 15 kms and 640 m of altitudes

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Wednesday Night Solo Hunting Castle Tor Witches

Doctor's appt after work, so I'd parked there and ridden to work.  Then hit the traffic across to Huntsbury, up to the end of the road.  Changed in the car and got riding.  A couple of guys had ridden by while I was setting up the lights etc, and so they were my target.  I gained slowly on them.  Just after I'd passed the pylon a fast dog sprinted past, leapt the cattlestop ahead, and bounded on ahead.  Caught up to the guys, turned around and bombed back down as I approached the cattlestop.  It looked confused, like it was looking for owners.  I turned right just after the 'stop and climbed the trail up to the singletrack.  Stopped for this pic...

Above the other guys briefly.  Then they were further ahead.  Ended up catching them at the top, as they turned around and rode back down.

Across onto Vernon, and between the first tech rocks I dropped the front wheel off the track and crashed.  Quite randomly, just landed on the ground.  (following day, a couple of bruises, hip and elbow).  Handlebars were crooked, so I had to adjust them, then got riding again, letting a few climbers through, had a good bomb down to Rapaki-top and through, 3 rider lights ahead of me on the Witch.  Didn't catch them, but they remained ahead of me on the road all the way up to Castle, waiting at the top when I got there.  I said my Guddays, had a wee stretch, and headed straight into The Castle. Excellent bomb down, remaining contained within the track sides even tho I nearly de-balanced a couple of times.  Fast through the rocks and onto the 1st hairpin.  Across and through then climbing quite nicely, tiring towards the top.  Out onto the road, and climbing again.

2/3rds of the way up I climbed up off the road onto the Tors track, clambering up and riding around to the usual stopping point.  Suspension and light adjustments made, off down.  Wetter in spots than last time, and the first of the techy droppy bits were pooling with quite a bit of water, which made them super sketchy.  Dropped down, cautiously, quite a bit of dabbing, but rode out the last descent well.  Strong wind across this saddle, coooollldd southerly, straight across onto the above-road singletrack, enjoying the tech but contending with the wind.  As I approached Witch, a group of 4 guys were approaching on it.  I pulled up, said my guddays, and they took off back along Witch.  I left a pretty big gap and then followed.  Caught up the last couple and passed the rear one on the rocky climb, chasing the 2nd to rear one (on a Honzo ST - nice).  On the descent, he nosed up and so nearly went over the bars.  I gave him more gap then.  

Across the Crapaki-top and climbing I tucked in between the last two of these guys, with the dude in front going nice and slow, all the way up.  Kept me in check and we chatted as we climbed.  Quite good really.  At the old line up near the top he peeled left, while I continued straight, putting on more speed and cruising out to the end.  Passed by the other two waiting and hit the Traverse, around to and then into Fourpause, excellent blast down this, jumping ALL of the jumps no problem, then on down the new next-to-the-landing-strip section, following it better this time, then over the fence and onto the final singletrack.  All the time looking for the left hander to the new Rock-Up track I'd spotted on Trailforks.  Good couple few switchback low gear climb, then up onto the rocky top ridge, barely able to follow faint bits of green spraypaint, but finding my way.  Fun descent down and back onto the singletrack, jumps, wetness up top there, then terrible wetness lower midway down, and the final corner before the last couple of jumps is blown to shit with boggy soggy shitmud.  Back to the car, before 8.

A minty fresh, poppin' 14.6 kms with 662 m climbed.

Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Wednesday Night Uplifts and Downdrafts, 1080

Good spin tonight. Left Nelson's place and headed around to the Park. He'd bought a Winter pass, and so had 7 (of 10) lifts left on a card, which they kindly transferred to me and we headed up.

First round, into Yeah Yeah Gnah, weird in the dark, and pretty rough in spots, but fun.  Nelson put on speed but I didn't trust tires or myself and kept mine on the lowdown.  At the mid point a couple of guys he knew pulled up on DH rigs.  We led them into Handle, and half way down my battery strap snapped dropping it into the front wheel.  "WTF is that!?"  Pulled up; Nelson taped it onto my stem and off we went again.  Good blast the rest of the way and we made it to the lift just in time to be the last uplifts at 7.  Johnny accompanying us for the up.

At the top we went our separate ways from Johnny, him down the park, and us down Slummit Connector, new bits to play on (big doubles), and then all the way out to the road.  Puffy up this to top of Nun. Fun Down, quite greasy in spots, so I's watching out for myself all the way down; pumped and tired as at the bottom.

Across Dyers Pass and up the Scummit Rd into the top of Vic.  Took off for the Traverse, and the first rocks biffed me all over the place, nearly dropping me.  Continued on and failed to chase down Nelson who powered off ahead, leaving me to struggle up the ups and ease into the downs.  Regroup at the midpoint, then again, he slowly left me behind as we cruised round the rest. 

Brief discussion whether Lavaflow as the go, but decided against it, and headed for the Huntsbury Downhill track, apparently called Fourpause (in Trailforks).  Nice bomb down here, though I wasn't overly trusting of the greasy dirt, then I bailed on the final jump.  New section through the tussocks beside the landingstrip, and then all the good lines from there down to Old Skool.  Took off into this, and around the first face I rolled up and find Nelson off the track grasping his knee.  He'd clipped a pedal on a rock that'd thrown his knee into the stem and him and bike off the track.  Yowch.  I was tired, so a bit slow on down, wary of all the little rivulets of stream across sections of the trail.  Final blast down, all good and out, then back to his down around the river.

A worthy 29.03 kms, with a grand total of 1133 m climbed...  (obviously, 800 m of that was on the lift)

Just noted, this is auspicious post number 1080.

Sunday, August 04, 2019

Sunday Orton Fattley

Met Pete, Steve and Nelson in time for the 8.50 am ferry.  I 'adjusted my suspension' (pumped some air into the tires) and we headed up and had a coffee at the cafe.  Then we hit the road, cruising, up, down, up, down, around to the park. Up the driveway, to the end of the 'park' bit, and met Ian (manager) who told us where to go for the planting.  Lucky for us it was pretty much at the top end of the MTB track. So, off we cruised, mucky and puddly in places, with a bit of dynamic straightlining (squirrel factor on high).  Fun little climb up and around. Stopped and helped water off the track a couple of times and then down, and we parked and climbed the fence and planted super quick, given the easy digging soaking wet ground and good sized crowd of people.

Back on the bikes and down, enjoying the cruise, to another site where we put in a totara forest - 150 totara trees planted in no time, all up a nice corner of hillside.  Will be amazing in a few years. Then off down again, brief stop at the loo, and on down. Steve tootled off ahead while we raided the Krispies and Gingernuts before the rest of the punters got anywhere near them, decided time was too short for a cuppa, so set off in chase of Steve.  Nelson ditched Pete and me, powering ahead, catching up to Steve, then Pete and me caught them eventually just after the fire-station.  Down to the wharf, and 12.30 ferry back to the cars..

Mildly respectable 20kms, and surprising 443m climbed...

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Tuesday Night East End Triangle

Parked at Slumnervale and in no time Nelson turned up.  He had is XCWhippet, I had the Rocky.  I changed and we headed up the Captain.  Mucky in spots and beautifully dry in others.  Stopped for a dose of Asthma below the cabbage tree trail exit, and continued on, hoping for relief from the lack of air.  A worthy climb, I chuffed and huffed my way, feeling weak in my legs and gasping for oxygen through the lungs... 

Crossed Evans to Godley and started climbing.  Nelson cleaned away the whole damned thing.  I struggled and dabbed and walked and then lost my light and fixed it and was miles behind.  Regrouped at the top and then headed for Livingston.  Teddington Shit section annoyingly bad, but the rest of the trail sweet as.  He let me past on the lower swoops to the bottom, and we headed up for Breeze.  Around and down, the last paddock below PFMTBC Rock a sucky mucky quagmire piece of crap.

Where to from here?  Lets go check out the new section that leads into Anaconda from above.  Back up the road a to the second corner, and found a wee solar light marking the start of the new track.  Hmm, lets come back via this way.  So, back down to Breeze Col and into the climb for the skinny track.  Again, gasping, but once on the narrows I was okay, around, tight, then up to Breeze Bay track.  Huh, another couple of lights.  Oh, gudday Daryl.  Stopped for a chat with Daryl (Ex-Cactus GM) and a mate on road/cross bikes.  We carried on, bombing around the Breeze Bay trail, fun descent, a couple of wee climbs, but all good.  Finally over the stile and back down to the road.

Up to the new entrance, and into it.  Barely built, lots of nice swoopy corners down the sunny (dry) ridge, til they ran out and it was off camber, just sketched into the hill, but leading down to a natural entrance onto the Conda.  Good blast down here, mostly dry, tho a couple of sections with running water, and in the lower wobbles, one or two bloody awful bits, but no damage, and onwards down the 'Tail.  Nice, and then across and I really needed a snack at the Carpark.

Final Climb, ugh, somewhat of a second wind towards the top, dropping down a couple gears and standing and cranking for a bit, made the top and into Nicholson's Park we headed, down the steeeeeps, slightly slippery on the rooty, and then down onto the Flowers, and down the alleyway out to Whitewash, bomb to road, and ride back up, picking our way back to our cars.

Ended up being 18 kms with a very respectable 763 m climbed

Monday, July 29, 2019

Sunday Jetting the Mucky Tops

Jet and me parked up the bottom of Britten, usual spot, and headed up.  I was surprised how wet everything was, with water pouring out of the hillside.  We climbed over the fence at the bath, and boy was the hill wet, with water flowing across the track just up from here, but once up on the actual mtnbike track, it wasn't so bad, with recent drainage additions having done their job well, and only one or two spots with water soakage.  Higher up had some sogginess too.  Around across the top, I figured the out the front trail would be greasy as given it's quite flat, so I just headed for the trees, then over the stile and up Broadleaf.  Good climb up here, missing the Track Closed sign, but figuring against heading down to Greenwood, and so hung a right towards Cavendish.  A couple of really mucky spots up here (muckiest I've ever seen it, not just bikes mucking it up too), and a few walkers including one grumpy old lady who was just looking for something to hassle "You know this track is closed, don't you?"  "Nope, didn't see any signs" Ride ride ride...  No biggie.  Mostly it was dry enough, and a good blat down the last to the stile and bottom. 

Then onto the Summit Rd, down under the Gondola and ahead I see some familiar helmets heading towards me.  Andy, Pete, Wazza and Wahayno out for their jaunt, on the roads.  Short catch up and we went our separate ways.  Jet and me up the road, keeping him in check all the way due to fast roadies heading down, then we were at the Castle Rock track.  (also Closed, but it didnt need to be).
Tiny bit of wet in that first descent, then very good condition for a long way around, fun descending, til that rocky section (close to the road), which was running water, but no mud so all good, down into the hairpin and back across, usual wet spot (now in good condition), next hairpin, and down, bit of moisture work needed, then climbing, dry as a bone and good to go.  Across and back onto the Summit Rd, back around under the Gondola, and up, up to Cavindish Saddle, and climbing the first section of singletrack before taking the trail down to the road crossing.

Into Britten, (closed, but I wasnt using the mtnbike track), dry as across the first section, and then I headed out onto the point, and straight down the ridge, off piste, and eventually finding my way down to the very very mucky traverse section in the lower middle of the hill.  Once out of that, it was the sweet bomb down under the pylon back to the car.

Only 11kms, but over 500 m climbed...

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Tuesday Night Muck a Duck

Messy as. Met at Nelson's and it was drizzling after quite a few days of rain and wet.  We headed up the steep bastard that is Parklands Drive, onto Huntsbury Ave, steep to start, then up up up to the top of the seal and onto the gravel.  Climby climb climb, weather thickening then improving as we summitted.  Felt like a long way up to me.  At the top, the view was quite awesome, with visible patches of muck across the city and hills, but we were in the clear.  Hit Vernon which had a few puddles, but was good.  Blast down to Rapakitop and then into Witch which was a bit muckier but not so bad. All the way to the end of that and then turned around and headed back.  Better run back, slick rocks not being too slick, and then we headed up the road below Vernon.  Into the Traverse, mucky as mucky gets, so at the top decided not to continue, and headed down the steep fun trail.  This was dodgy as.  My tires gripped surprisingly well, but Nelson's XC tires were caked up and all over the place.  Then we bailed off down the main Huntsbury, and once on the road took Kenmanure and the Major down, speed and seal clearing our tires very nicely.  Bikes got a good hosing when we got back to Nelson's.

15.3 kms and 600 m climbed.  Not bad for a non-event.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Thursday Short Dog Hanmerer

Took Jet out for last day's ride.  We headed across to and straight up Timberland, into Jolliffe up and over, not feeling nearly as long a climb as it had the day before, over and down, continuing on down past the bridge, down Dogstream, a very nice wee section of trail that I haven't ridden many times, and crossing over onto Mach1, passing a family before the road.  A good hoon down here, climbs not feeling much, then into and back round Basecamp and Western Link home. 7.8 Kms and a tiny 175 m

Then half an hour later or so, Tra'y (on O's bike) and me went for a short cruise, around the Woodland, onto the Western Link down to Basecamp, looped around the far end of it and back mostly the way we'd come. Would have been maybe 5 or 6 kms and 50 m of alt, if that.  Nice wee spin tho.

Wednesday, Extended Hanmering

Out on my own yesterday, no dog, no boy.  Toodled through town and on the road around to Chatterton's, up the valley to the single track.  Up the steep pylon track, into the forest and across to Tank.  Great bomb down this, then for the first time ever, headed up the back of Conical Hill - stopping to answer some directional questions from someone at the C-Line/Eagles Nest juncture.  Continued on up to the top and had a rest and small snack. 

Then off down Eagle's Nest for some technicality, and straight across into C-Line some extra (walking some of the corners on account of not trusting myself on the steep-head-angled rigid Fatty.  Into the rest of Swoop, swooping through the turns, and then across the flat to Timberland.  Grunty climb up here then straight into Jolliffes, gruntier still, with a break at the top.  Into the descent, bomb bomb, corners steep and handlebars nearly scraping.

Across the bridge and up into Bigfoot for the nice slow meandering climb.  Great views from the top and off down, slightly faster than the day before.  Next into Detox, climby climb climb, and bombing of the descent, around the top of Mach 1 and across the bridge and down half way down Dogstream,  hanging a right up the road to Red Rocks, good run here and finally back round to the house.

20 kms covered, and strangely only 575 m climbed.

Tuesday, July 09, 2019

Tuesday Hanmered Again

O, Jet and me headed out again. Along the flat to start, round Basecamp track to Mach 1.  Climb and descend and climb and descended in here, then up the Fir Trail, more climby and up to and into Bigfoot.  Super climb here, ziggy zaggy, on and up, and then an awesome run down this -  O in the lead and Jetty chasing the whole time.  Fun blast down, goes on for a nice amount of time, then out.  Across into Detox, climb climb climb, and down down down, then back into the top of Mach 1 and climbing briefly before hitting back across the bridge onto Lower Dogstream, rolling smoothly down this, through some mega permafrost at one point, and into Western connector, around the field Forest Walk track and back across the field and up to the house.

12 kms this time, with only 290 m climbed.  Climbs always seem so much more than they really are around here.

Monday, July 08, 2019

Monday Swamp Yankee Swoop Red with O and dog

Nice short wee warm up with O and the dog. Headed down from the house across the field and up into the Swamp trail.  Good pace, then up into Yankee Zephyr, climbing climbing, puffing O out for a bit.  Climbed to the top and hit the down.  Swoopy swoopy back and forth down.  Both enjoyed and Jetty running along happy as larry.  Back onto the top end of Swamp and we climbed up to Swoop, for another down, back and forth, swoopy swoopy down and out to the field again.  Then climbing up Timberland, puff puff, and into Red Rocks, climb, over, and through, then out Eeny and Meeny, and back to the house.

9.43 kms with 250 m climbed

Tuesday, July 02, 2019

Tuesday Night Solo Brit Pleasant Green and a little Goddling

Parked up on Parkridge in a gale, donning jacket for a start, and rode up through the bathtub entrance to Britten, climbing at my own pace, and getting pushed around a bit by the wind.  Mild as by the time I got to the top, so jacket off, and off around the front, tail wind pushing me across to the cattlestop and cutting crossing.  Over the fence, little bit of a rest, and onwards upwards.  This paddock has been munched.  Gone is all the long grass, and even the native broom and tussocks has been hammered, making for a much easier view in the dark to climb by.  Around and up, into the wind then tail wind then into the wind again, and over and up the gravel through the gate to the top.  Bit of a rest here and time for the down.

Dropped in, having one of the smoothest flows from gate to stile I think I've ever had.  Over the stile, and the smoothness continued, albeit battling the wind a bit slowing the lower tussock reaches.  Good blitz across tho losing my momentum as I approached the fenceline, transition through to above the ruins, losing my way briefly before meeting the Greenwood-proper.  Into the descent, flying over the first rocks and around, really on my game, even cleaning all the dodgy rocks in Gloomy Gulch.  Brief pause along here, then dropping in for a flowy bomb down swooping through to the drop and around into Dave's Land.  That mucky corner from last time has had a tidy up, better drainage, and was dry, and I had a good flow on down from there too.  Best run in ages.  Into the valley, and final stretch, bomb, jump, bomb, and around into the rocky up.  Not cleaned but further up it than any recent rides, dab through, and on again, flow bomb to the end.

Across Evans and along the road, more climb and way further than I'm sure it is meant to be.  One car passed, and finally into the climb up to Godley.  Grovel and sore, granny or second, lay down for a nice rest and stretch at the top.  Into the across and down, smooth through all the rocks and flying on the down.  Another of my best runs for a long time.  Took the walk-track end drop to the end.  Then across Evans again and into the road climb.  Ugh.  Long, drawn out, and I was starting to get a bit sore.  Climb climb climb, not seeing a car until I was just about at Jollies Bush.  At Jollies I decided to head up into the tracks here.  Walking the steps, but riding most of the trails, climbed up to the stile and over, then up to the singletrack and heading for the pines.  Then around and up the sheepshit alley track to the OG start of Greenwood.  Onto the road for the last climb and into Britten.

Descend descend descend, fun times blatting through and around, straight down and then across.  Phone call.  Home "I'll be half an hour".  Riding again, and awesome bomb down the rocky finalities below the pylon, over the fence, and back to the car.

18 kms and 661 m climbed. Bonza

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Saturday Crock of Short and Mucky Crocs

Attempting to change my internally routed gear cable proved more difficult than previously imagined. This is no longer a simple trail-side fix.  Ended up being a right pain, but I got there in the end. I ended up strapping a torch to the downtube, shining through one of the bottle rack mount holes, then used a spoke to guide the end of the cable to the hole exit hole (below the bottom bracket).  A remedy to this problem would be to insert a full length outer, which I may well do eventually.

Due to my troubles, Nelson had detoured to mine to potentially assist, but I'd got it sorted before he arrived, so we schlepped out, convoyed across to Halswell Quarry and rode up through the dog park into the trail network.

Straight into Dowload, then up C2.  I was getting wheezy, so stopped for a puff on one of the hairpin corners, then while we were looking over the edge of the clay cliffs I managed to drop my puffer.  This required a scramble down the bank.  Back on the bikes climbing up.

Decided to drop down Murph's, which was fun, a bit rougher than it's been in the past.  Out the bottom and we headed up Upper Crust, which zigs and zags, I think nicer than C2, crossing Murphs near the top.

Back onto the Crocodile climb, taking the high road up, up, up, and finding a new line built earlier this year, that takes you off the original trail after the Deviation turn off, and zigs and zags a bit more, keeping the up for up and the down for down.  Nice!  Up into Low Road and climbing climbing, new bits here too, new fence crossing at about the water-tank, and then up the last to the top.  Siberia:  dropped over this down, trees cleared from next to this, biiig piles of swag ready for fires (we reckoned they should burn one at a time and have dance parties.  Or an even, bike race while they burn...).

Into Ange's Climb, zig and zag.  Pretty sure I swore I'd never do that again, but it wasn't so bad this time.  Over and back to the top again, ready for the descent.  Dropped into Low Road descent, usual droppy fun, gaining speed towards the new fence.  Then into the new sweepy lines back and forth across the slope towards the gate and lots of off camber corners.  Still settling in, and not really properly formed yet. 

Into the top of the Crocodile, dropping rapidly down this, crossing over and dropping down into Deviation - the start of which was dodgy as hell.  Frost damp splecky slick dirt, traction was potentially terrible, but we both spotted it and entered carefully.  Proceeded up Deviation, feeling the splecks on the back in the shady southfacing would-have-been-frosted-hard section before dropping zigs and zags towards the top of the old Croc and into the trees, where we coasted down Elegator.

Straight back into the climb of the Croc, back up to the top of Spurious, and down this, Down and Out, through the still-frosty bottomlands, Upload, back up the Croc, again, and this time at the top Nelson did Coopers Creek while I decided not to (didn't like the look of the entry drop, not that it's that bad), so I followed off down Spurious again, through the bottom and back up Upload, deciding to finish here, and head down back down to the cars to finish.

A bit uppy downy 10 kms with only 272 m climbed.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Wednesday Night Three Laps Old Skool

O, Jet and me headed across to meet Nelson at the end of Bowenvale Ave, 5.45pmish by the time we'd gotten through traffic.

Headed up the valley, O flying off ahead, Nelson not far behind him, and me gasping away at the rear.  Bunch of runners had started same time as us, and we'd passed them, then one by one a few of them got past me by the time we got to Hidden Valley Link Bonus.  Up into there, feeling warmed up now, going okay.  Passing O in the steeps in the trees.  Then onto the Old Skool.  Very dark, and so Jet couldn't see anything, and O rode with him going his pace.  If you left him behind he'd take forever, but if he was with you, he'd get along a bit quicker.  Greasy in spots, but a good flow down, regrouping periodically.

Lap two, back up the valley, O slowing down a bit now, and dropping back a bit up into Hidden.  Cleaned all this up this time and then regrouped at the pylon.  Around and my gears were a bit shifty.  At the high point flipped the bike and we found my cable is hanging on by a couple of threads, hence the change in performance.  Headed down.  At the cattlestop (where the stile used to be) we stopped and O nearly crashed off getting a bit sideways on the bars.  Then I sent him off behind Nelson and I rode with the dog.  Again, if I got ahead, he'd slow right down, finding his way by smell.  So, I rode slow with him for bits, then got ahead and then waited.  Repeat most of the way down.

At the bottom, O didn't wanna do another lap, and because Jet was a pain, they headed to the car, and we headed on back up.  Granny most of the way cos 3rd to 6th messed about.  Not a bad climb, but was feeling more tired.  Into the down and I tried to stay on Nelson's tail.  He had both lights, but I only had my head, so was definitely harder.  Good bomb with better flow through the lower corners.  Then out the bottom and back to a very steamed up car.

MMR crapped out (behaving stupidly, look at the climb?), but by my reckoning it was rougly 10 kms, and around 360-400 m climbed - here's Nelson's - take out 4kms and 40 odd m of climb and you've got mine).

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Sunday Mt Grey with Jet and O

Had chucked on a new front tire, Surly Dirt Wizard, 3.0 inch, on Saturday and, also, first ride on the chainguide I'd got from Josh - so was ready to test.

Headed out of town with O and Jet in the Roomy-On(-the-inside)-mobile and we bombed on up to "Lake" Janet.

2.11 pm, headed up the forestry road then cut into the 'new' single-track link to the walking track zig zag climb.  A few wind throws messed us about at the entrance, which was mildly annoying, but was all clear once we were on the proper track.  Met a couple and a small group and a solo woman as we climbed.  Bloody hard work this climb, reflected in our 7.9 kph average speed.  Still ill, but on the tail end of a cold, I nearly died several times, thought I was gonna have a heart attack at one point.  Felt like absolute garbage.  Eventually we made the look out tower and headed up the road instead of the singletrack.  Not much easier, I don't think.  And the upper km was all in a freezing northerly foggy cloud, quite bitter, and here was us both with insufficient layers.  Brrr...  Jet enjoyed every inch of his journey.  About an hour to the top.

Into the descent, fun down the first steep and onto traversing benched singletrack; all the fun.  Bomb bomb bomb, wet spots, hairpins cleaned or not cleaned as well as last time.  Down the rocky bit and into the forest for switchback City.  Jet loving every minute, O not quite as convinced, not really enjoying the corners but loving the rest.  Vaguely warmer down in the forest, but still pretty chilly.  Close encounter with a kereru at the creek crossing.  Then around onto the ridge, and bombing through the pine bit, then switchback City again, and around through the mudmire, which wasn't nearly as mucky as I'd usually expect it.  Was actually pretty good, with only one dabby bit near the bottom.  Into the lower beech, fun exposure, and bomby roots, all pretty dry and smooth sailing.  Finally, out the bottom reaches and onto the road, mission accomplished, bar the climb back to the car.  About an hour from top to bottom, maybe less?

Climbing.  Road.  Ugh.  Painful this was, long and slow.  Took us a while, but got there in the end.  Back at the car maybe 4.30ish? 
One happy pooch!

On the road a fair bit before 5, and home well before 6

Totals, 13 km, with 653 m climbed, 1 hour 38 minutes total riding time.

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Wednesday Night Pre-Trust Gusty Pea-soup Muss

Drove up and awaited Nelson's arrival on Stonyridge - he was running a little later than me from a Physio session.  Horrible bitter wind blasting through here, so stayed in the car til he arrived.

On the bikes, still enough daylight, and headed up the streets to the old gate on Upper Major Hornbro, and off up under the pylons, visibility due to lack of light a bit of a struggle, also, the bitterly cold wind making it a struggle too.   Up to the top, and then as we rode round to get over to Broadleaf, we entered the fog and visibility got nasty.

No problem on the climbing, but once we hit the descent, it was tough work picking your way down.  Ended up turning off the handlebar and running the head light on low for a start...  Lower down, in the tussocks I tried a bit of handlebar which worked.  Still, no where near the usual speed.

Then into Greenwood, and down through the top rocky sections, around the various bends, and we started to get below the fog down in here.  Lights on brighter and going got a bit better.  Some heinous headwinds approaching Gloomy Gulch, and I lost my mojo/flow right through there.  Nelson was waiting and we got rolling again and it a bit got better.  Then, down in Dangerous Dave's dug-outs, one of the corners was porridge.  Nelson had warned me so I popped off the track and scooted around the inside.  Lower down was all good, flow and groove.  One adjustment to light made near the bottom.  Then the new final bit down to the road.  One nasty off camber corner, and then lots of water on track right at the end.

Onto the road and climbing, head wind, no wind, head wind, tail wind, head wind, one car, me struggling a bit to keep up with Nelson's relentless pace.  Over the stile at the trees and up the climby track to the Greenwood Entrance.  Again with the struggling.  Road, and Britten.  So nice.  Tail wind, good visibility, speed, and flow.  Straight down to pylon from the right-hander, missing the turn onto the traverse, then around across the front and down the funnest final section below the pylon to the cars.

All goods, 12.7 kms and 522 m climbed.  Off to Noodle Union for a number 2 and then to the meeting, followed by a nice pint at the Hop and then I visited Josh, who set me up with a super lightweight cSixx(?) chainguide.  I was home late.