Friday, 30 December 2011

The Southside Epic

Well finally it's done and dusted. What started out as an idea to link up a few of the MTB parks on the southside turned into an 82km Group ride of Epic proportions.
The idea was to go from Capalaba thru Daisy Hill, Cornubia forest, Bayview, Mt Cotton, Scribbly gum, and then back to Capalaba. Going via as much as dirt and single track as possible.
First major stop was Daisy Hill where we picked up a few stragglers leaving the park with a total of 26 riders. I took the group down Stone Henge, Turning Japanese, Tunnel of Love, Joala Trail, Ripley's and Gillians. Before heading up the big red hill.
Next on the list was the untamed wilds of Cornubia Forest. Where we wound our way down Stupidly happy and then on to West MT Cotton Rd for some tarmac riding thru to Bayview.

Bayview was always going to be hard work. Due to its exposed tracks and the heat starting to hit. We made our way up Bensons and down Grass trees. Then up a rough climb and onto the killer climb of Doom Hippy ( hard after 40kms and some heat thrown in) Then we regrouped at the top before a split up decent down Blow and Fluffer ( probably my favourite tracks) and thru some rough stuff out onto Days rd and Lunch.

My lovely wife Michelle was good enough to put on a spread and deliver down to us for a quick lunch break and much neeeded rest before the real climbing begins.
Next challenge was the long climb up to the Mt Cotton Summit for the Eastern Escarpment "Granny Ring King Challenge". This was always as I feared the hardest part of the ride. Due to the long slow climb of around 10km along the road and the up thru the MT cotton Gardens.

At the top of the hill those with the will and the lungs to do so attempted the EE. Very Technical and steep climb which only the bravest and gutsiest of riders can make it up. As expected only Jason and Jim were up to the challenge where Jim smashed it up followed closely by Jason. Who made with only putting a foot down once. Hell of an effort for his first attempt. Althought some parties will argue that they didn't complete the true EE challenge as they only did the top section. But anyone who can make that section with 60km's on the legs is dam good in my books.

Picture does not do the hill justice. From there we hammered dwn the track past Karingal and onto Thornlands. There we ducked into Scribbly Gum for some more single track and thru to the Bike path and Home for a much needed BBQ and drinks.
Huge thanks to all who turned up to make this a Great ride. And to my wonderful wife for getting up before the sun and getting me and the food organised.

Otago Update: 8 days to go. New bike bits have arrived- New pedals flats with clips. New shoes-A lot more grippy for running when needed, New cassette, rear deraillieur and have new Cranks on there way. Going to change to a 2 X 9 setup with a bash guard. hope it to be a bit more reliable.
NZ here we come!!! Forecast for Wanaka on the day we land is 5-16 Gunna be cold!

Friday, 23 December 2011

Yarrabilba Photo shoot

Sunday I managed to drag a couple of mates out for a spin at Yarrabilba. None of us was up for a big ride so we decided to do a photo shoot instead.
Halfway up a single track Craig spotted an obstacle we had to have a go at getting over.

Don't know why but I like this piccie

Up the top of the hill we found some fun drops amongst the boulders. I didn't realise I wasn't wearing my helmet for this one.

Another big rock Craig had to tackle. Doesn't look it but the rock is about 5 foot high. He was using all 150mm of travel so I wasn't having a go with only 100mm of travel.

This is probably the best shot of Yarrabilba I've seen. Captures the mood of the place perfectly. Rocky and side by side riding. Choose your own adventure.

And one of my dodgy Pics This track is really steep and now has the nickname os S.A.B.I.P. Steering and braking is pointless.

Hope you enjoy the pics. All the good ones are Gav's. More here More Pictures Here.

Update for the Epic. Only for those that read this. Shhhhhhhhhhhh

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Duck Creek Rd Kerry

Sunday saw a group of us heading up Duck Creek rd Kerry. After a foggy drive down this is the view which waited us as we headed off.

The first few climbs are quite a battle. With a 1000m of climbing over around 14km with road adding a further 4km to get to Oreilly's

 Andrew aka Hootsman ( All shots courtesy of him)enjoying the friendly and persistant birds at the Cafe at the top. Pancakes were the order of the day but the milkshake is not advisable when you've got 18km to go back down.
 A Beautiful shot of one of the trees at the lookout halfway up.
 The sign at the main lookout which spells the end of the main climbing sections.
 Troy doing his Superman inpersonation at the lookout.
 The view from the top over Oreilly's farm.
 The crew at the bottom. After the high speed decent, we decided to have an impromptu road race. Which really hurt the legs averaging over 35km/hr for the last 10 minutes immitating roadies.
Thanks to Jason for putting it together always a good ride and challenging ride. And to Andrew for the use of his piccies. I was on Video duty. And to everyne else for an enjoyable ride.

Last thoughts- BRING ON NZ!!!!! After a 60km ride Friday and then Duck creek rd Sunday I finally feel ready for NZ and The Southside Epic.

Monday, 5 December 2011

The week so far

It appears that I have done some real damage to my ribs after the Explore ride. Don't think they are cracked or broken just badly bruised. So that's making life farken hard.
So didn't get a lot of riding in last week.
Did a 25km explore /night ride at Scribbly gum. About 3km of which was repeats over a set of jumps, a natural bowl we found and a really technical log roll over ( nearly 4 foot high).
Some really cool little tracks in there. Little being the word, at night they are quite hard to follow because they are quite fast and narrow. This was almost my last ride as the chain slipped on the way back home at around 35km/hr I got up to give it some and came very close to coming off straight into a park bench. That would have really hurt.

I finished off the routing for "The Southside Epic" on Sunday with a 32km explore ride between West Mt Cotton Rd and Mt Cotton rd. Turns out the road that is meant to be "isn't". Ended up getting lost and found my way thru to Karingal where I got abused by some old guy for tresspassing. Sorry I didn't mean to get here and I didn't pass a gate or any signs so BLAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!

Then went up Wodlands drive to Thornlands and thru the tracks and bike path back home. There's a really cool track thru to the path I am taking everyone on. The epic is now around 85km long and around 1400m of climbing!

We are having a pump track competition afterwards to crown "The Pump Daddy" Trophy winner. If I lose on home soil I'll never live it down.

Now scarily enough I've started thinking of the next big ride and it will be HUGE!!!!!. More details next year.

Only 4 and a bit weeks to go till NZ. CAN'T WAIT!!!!!

Thought of the week... Apparently trying to shoulder barge big thick trees out of the way while riding can be painful.....Might be better to try and avoid them in future I'm thinking...