Sunday, 8 January 2006

Sunday 8 January – Mooney

We were just a mite apprehensive about our first serious ride of the 2006 season, but the weather turned out to be absolutely perfect: rain overnight, a little drizzle on the way, but clear and dry when we arrived, with a cool start. The only challenge (to the extent there was one) was the muggy atmosphere on the big hills – and the increasing heat as the day went on, but never too much.

Unfortunately, a lack of pre-trip bike maintenance meant that the start was a little delayed – and we set off with Stephe’s front brake level touching the handlebar with no discernible effect on the brakes; and with Brian’s back wheel continuing its now weeks old saga of not rolling around very well… (perhaps, Brian, at the risk of pot / kettle / black – you might consider visiting a bike shop one day? On that subject, the folks at Bike Addiction seem to know what they’re on about and there’s parking beside ‘em – we may yet find a decent bike shop in Sydney!).

Given our fitness, it was a good call *not* to do Old North Road this week. Despite that, we were all looking fairly comfortable technically – particularly along the rock bed sections, which were all accomplished in both directions with a minimum of fuss. Rees’ first ride at Mooney on his dual suspension bike had him looking pretty darn good – born to ride!

All in all, a really good and enjoyable ride out to the water tanks – some big efforts on the hills (Brian managed a one stop climb (well, sort of), but then buggered it up on the little rock ledges towards the top; Doug was looking good whenever the chase was on, but became complacent whenever he went to the front. Rees just kept on working hard, despite having just recovered from a two week kidney infection – *and* came down everything we threw at him, including the big steps!). We also bumped into a couple of downhill riding dudes, who gave us a fair description (most of which we’ve now forgotten) of how to get to Ourimbah – any other hints are welcome…

BUT – the real fun was to be had when we ducked out for the loop to the Orchard and back. On the way back - with some fairly juvenile egging on - Brian decided to test his capacity to fly. Turns out, he can’t. But – given that he didn’t break his back – it was pretty funny… Will be even better next week, when he tries to ride the Old North Road with a Really Sore Knee. The movie of the incident is here (caution, language warning!).

Today’s photos are here, including a couple of other movies – with a selection below.

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