Sunday, 12 June 2005

Sunday 12 June 2005 – Coba Point and The Valley!

Well, well, well. At Doug’s urging, rather than just a short Coba Point ride (which already had me knackered in the first 30 minutes, total round trip say, 20kms), we added the drop to Marramarra Creek, and the associated crawl back up! Total journey 37kms, the second part of which was straight down, then straight back up again. The profile is a joy to behold! All those who were supposed to be home by 12 noon were working on their 2pm excuses on the way home.

The ride is just beyond Galston Gorge / Arcadia, in the Marramarra National Park, and it’s a dead set beauty. We rode out along a nice gentle intro section with fog settling over the view down into Berowra Creek, and then watched as it cleared to a most magnificent day. All along the way, the sheer natural beauty had Doug “David Attenborough” Hoatson in awe (and we even managed to get some rare photos of Doug in action…). Unfortunately, Whisperer had control of the camera, so there were only limited chances to capture the currently fashionable nature shots.

Brian, yet again, proved to be a match for the circumstances – and, in particular, took the Whisperer on and overwhelmed him with his technical skills on the ridge part of the ride. The Whisperer got his own back, however, by blowing away Brian and the rest of the assembled masses on the ride back up from Marramarra Creek (have I mentioned that it’s a 230m drop down (fun enough, although the brake pad smell was pretty strong at the bottom!), but about 9,342m vertical metres on the ride back up? For some reason, this doesn’t appear to show up on the profile…).

Lunch at the Marramarra Creek edge, munching on the oranges from the overgrown orchard, was a necessary and enjoyable stop – and the sharing of water for the H2O impoverished amongst us was a very generous act (having decided it was winter, and a short ride, there was a general shortage of carried water!).

No injuries, very limited blood (Brian’s exit from the road over the edge on one of the last drops – at a time when just holding on to the brakes was proving difficult – was spectacular, but ultimately un-productive!).

There is apparently an interesting variation via Smuggler’s Creek off to one side, which will need to be explored in more detail soonish.

Some samples from the day (the rest are here):

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