Sunday 1 July 2007 - Acron Oval to Terry Hills
Sunday's ride was an exploration trip, with some old and a whole lot of new (for us) stuff along the way.
We set out from Acron oval (Stephe, Brian, John, Matt & Whisperer), in arctic conditions surrounded by flocks of Oxfam walkers. We took the excellent descent into Garigal, flowing over the water bars as well as we could 'cold'. Went round the lower Cambourne track down over the creek crossing (with a couple of wet feet adding to the arctic feelings) and on to Bear Creek track.
About 3 1/3 metres along the track, a huge stick decided to impale itself in Stephe's derailleur, smashing the jockey cage into uselessness, and taking a spoke with it (the bang was heard by one of the Oxfam group 50 meters ahead,to which one of the women muttered 'that sounds bad')....
No amount of whispering could have fixed it, so Stephe had to turn around and walk back to the car for an early finish. The remaining crew continued on, led by Whisperer who was trying to find a 'lost' track to the north east of the park, coming out near Bunnings warehouse for a quick cross over Mona Vale Rd and into Terry Hills. It was not to be, and after a few forays down power pylon access tracks, we ended up at the Belrose substation. A short trip up Forest Way, and we were into Terry Hills fire trails.
We went on an out-and-back trail, deciding not to do the Duffys Forest link, and returned to Mona Vale Rd. The track was relatively dry as anticipated, and a few challenging pinches made it reasonably interesting. On the return to Mona Vale rd, we took a small promising track that ran parallel to the road east towards the St Ives showground. This turned out to be a real gem, tight, twisting and fun.
We stopped at the showground for a snack, were nearly tempted by the sizzling sausages and coffee at the markets there, but resisted and continued on. We crossed Mona Vale Rd and picked up the northern rim track of Garigal, an undulating 'tight' fire road, and came out near Acron for a short 'where the blazes are we' trip back to the cars.
All in all, a reasonable alternative to the 'trails of endless puddles' when things are saturated generally, a good bit of climbing, some single track,and a decent distance.
Unfortunately, Doug has become a road rider, and so no photos or GPS again!
Addendum from Matt:
Not much to add to the ride report except that Stephe wasn't the only one with a mechanical
as I discovered back at the car... Taking the front wheel off things feel a little looser than normal in the axle/skewer area and lo and behold on taking the skewer out 1/3 of the axle comes out with it! I must've been riding a snapped axle for a fair while as I recall having to tighten the skewer very early on.
The moral being she'll be right mate / what you haven't a clue of can't possibly hurt you ;-}