Saturday, 17 June 2006

Saturday 17 June - Redhill / Oxford Falls / Deep Creek

Hooooooooeeeeee!

One of the best technical rides ever executed... We met this morning at the Academy of Sport, with Ben coming along for his first ride with us, and only his second ever mountain bike ride. Matt was there bright and early, and Paul arrived in his standard 'fashionably late' manner!

The silliness looked like it would be kept in check, once we had climbed up the rocks behind the Academy of Sport and Stephe tried scooting down the red rock drop and encouraging the others to join in - with no success. Unfortunately, that was the last time that maturity won out.

We hit the Redhill technical rocks, amid a bunch of hooting, hollering and wheelie drops over the ledges, and then started the long process of playing on each stage and egging each other on. What Ben made of this nonsense wasn't clear, because he maintained a dignified presence throughout, with no sign that we were boring him stiff given that we weren't doing much riding!

The real start of the fair dinkum nonsense was the end of the first set of technical ledges at Redhill when Paul decided we would take the direct route down. For Stephe, at least, not only had he never taken that route - he'd never even contemplated it as possible.

The next thing you knew, we had pulled off an ugly execution from Stephe, a fearsome shot from Matt, and a beautiful descent from Paul. It was on...

We played around a bit on the rest of the Redhill side (including a quick drop down the rock face that Doug wouldn't let us do last time, and lots of wheelie drops and the like), and then hiked across to Oxford Falls. While we're hanging about on the rock at the top of the singles track (which was great, as ever), Paul proposed that we do the Northern drop into Deep Creek at the end of the Road to Nowhere.

So, off we went - a great ride to get there (marred yet again by Stephe dropping into the coffin and stuffing it up, and causing Paul to have nowhere to go), and then we were down over the precipice into the drop to Deep Creek.

We each managed to nail the various sections on the way down, although Stephe had a fairly embarrassing debacle at the end of the drop just as we made it to the creek (and Matt was mildly cautious at a mid section which was at least 40% easier than the stuff he'd done just two minutes before!).

Paul was an absolute model of poise and elegance for the entire drop, and looked like a legend. Scary!

Finished the ride with playing along the Deep Creek run - with a fair bit of it being ridden rather than walked, and some great work on the big rocks in the middle. It definitely looks possible to pull of a very small number of touches to do the entire run...

Mountain bike riding is VERY, VERY GOOD and there should be more of it!

No photos or GPS given the absence of Doug, although it may be that Ben has captured a couple of the sillier moments on his phone (I'll get them up here if he has).

We look forward to a report from our Sunday colleagues...

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