"Organized" is used lightly - as this ride is an Ed McDonald special. He provides the GPS nav details and in theory you are on your own to follow the route down.
Although there were originally nearly 30 names down for the ride, Thursday and Friday saw the excuses roll in thick and fast. Some mumbling about weather, and others blaming their self inflicted "haematoma".
So, at 6am (ish) about 7 of us rolled out of Dickson McDs - and there was another 5 or 6 single-speeders already an hour ahead.
Usually, the ride would see a quick lap of Majura under lights, but with the heavy rain overnight we opted to head straight over the ridge between Ainslie/Majura and out to the airport road heading for Queanbeyan.
The group (Ed, McAvoy, Spoonboy, Joel, Speary, Roony) stuck together until the climb out of Queanbeyan, and then Jase and I went off the front.
Although we did not see any of the others until the end of the day, apparently Joel was hot on our tail until Rossi.
For Jase and I, we set out at a reasonable pace. Nothing too hard, which was good for me as I could definitely still feel my ride from last weekend.
The route takes us out on the rolling Captains Flat road, then turn off for a gentle false-flat to Hoskintown.
From Hoskintown there is a mixture of rolling sealed and dirt roads that eventually leads to Rossi.
From the back of Rossi there is a climb up into the forest - and if you look carefully enough you can see single-speeders hanging out in the trees ...
Coming out of the Rossi forest we hit some low cloud / fog / rain and the fast descent was nasty with no visibility.
The eventually leads back to a short tarmac stretch and then back onto the dirt for a gentle climb to Majors Creek. From here there is a super descent down to Araluen ... well, it usually is a super descent but in the rain it is not so much fun :).
A quick stop at the pub for some water and we hit the rolling Araluen Rd. Although this road takes you all the way through to Moruya, we took the left up to Knowles Rd - a 500 vert m climb. The upside of this is that we come out above the Mogo single track trails, and we get an awesome run down tracks like AST and Snaketrack!
A quick food stop in Mogo and we were heading out the back of Mogo, climbing up to the top ridge line above Batemans Bay. It was probably now that I realized that a "burger with the lot" was not a good quick food stop. With the blood rushing to my gut at the top of climb, I had a lovely few minutes of dizziness and hot/cold sweats.
Luckily Jase was patient as I slowly got the blood flowing again, and we hit the single tracks above Batemans Bay.
Rolling into the town, we quickly ended up at a local fish & chip shop ...
The ride back the next day was always going to be a lot more social. But social means "lets have some fun" - so Ed, Jase and I played some games - attacking on climbs, pace line shenanigans, and general baiting and smack-talk. All good fun!
Well done to all the riders for making it back in one piece. Aside from Roony's dodgy front wheel valve, there were no mechanicals or other injuries.
So, all up ~ 195km on Saturday and 190km on Sunday. A good weekend of riding.
Food wise (excluding the burger with the lot) was simply a Torq Gel every hour, and 1/2 Torq Bar every hour. 2 litres Torq Energy ever 4 hours.
Bike wise the Scott Spark held up well. The Ergon GX-2 grips were really comfy on the long fireroads, and handy for getting out of the saddle on the climbs. The Spark's remote lock out was (again) super. Quickly switching the bike between fully-rigid and full front/half rear with the flick of the thumb is great!
Time now for a rest week!
|Double saddle bags to carry extra gear|
|Ed showing off at the top of Majors Creek|
|Hanging out in the forest above Rossi - waiting for a bent Spoon|