Monday, 23 April 2007

29 April 2007 - Coba Point

Liam and the NobMob crew invaded Coba Point big time today, and Pete (second ever mountain bike ride, with lots of "but I'm a roadie, this isn't the same" attitude), John (first ride back since the concussion and broken hand sustained on this very ride...) and Stephe tagged along (joining lots of folk we hadn't met before, as well as Steve, Matt and Rob to make sure we knew some folk).

The ride started at 8.30am (wow, it's actually hard getting up that late), conditions were perfect and around 15 people turned up. Turns out that 15 is a *lot* of people...

We did the Out and Back ride to Coba Point (with a quick detour to the lookout first), and had around five mechanical failures (tubes, gears, whatever) along the way - with the resultant many hands offering to assist etc. We pulled the pin just before the end of the track, where the local land owner has started destroying the trail to prevent thoroughfare, and gathered up the stragglers as we went back (probably a bit harsh on those that hadn't made it to the end before, but we had already used up a loooot of time on that section...).

More failures on the way back - including one stop of around 30 minutes waiting for a hanger repair I believe. In any case, by the time we got back to the car, the "roadies" were despondent (too much stop/start), and there was a bit more wear and tear on folk than expected at that stage. That said, predictions that lots of people would pike it before the second section did not turn out to be at all true, and we all motored on to the Smugglers Ridge ride.

We had a fairly good pace along the initial part of the ride (with the delays being due to Stephe mainly), and John was slowly warming up back into the groove, and even Pete found some bits of ride that were acceptable. Dropped into the first technical section and started to spread out the field - Matt, of course, wins hands down the elegance award, and Steve was without a doubt the "silly line, but no problem, I can get air here anyway" winner...

There was a minor spearing incident when a tree went into a gap in Stephe's helmet and then into his head (and it still hurts), followed by some colourful bouncing on the final seriously steep section of the ride (with all of Matt, Steve and Stephe bouncing over the edge at one point or another - and, again, still feeling the pain!).

In any case, we were all ultimately down at the bottom safely (to one degree or another), and then set about the long climb out... Lots of impressive work here, and - while it was fairly slow - very few folk actually blowing up on the hills. There was what looked like it was going to be a phenomanal storm as we climbed Hill 2 (and went past the site of John's debacle on the other side), but in keeping with the excellence of the day it blew over without anyone getting wet.

Back to the cars around 3pm - happy and tired, but perhaps not convincing Pete that this was a viable alternative to the road...

Rob was doing photos - they're up here...

The planned ride details from NobMob are here, where (presumably) there will also one day be a ride report.


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