Sunday 20 April 2008

Sunday 20 April 2008 - OGNR + Spiders

Magic, brilliant, and fantastic. It was *great* to be back out on the bike on a 'real ride', after an absence of a couple of weeks...

After more than a week of bad weather, and ominous portents overnight, the day started with what looked like a light sprinkle - but was clear by the time we arrived at Mangrove Mountain, and stayed that way throughout the ride - other than a brief shower on the road section at Wisemans Ferry (where it could do no harm, and - indeed - was probably good for cooling down!). That said, there was plenty of water around, and we all had wet feet within about ten minutes of kicking off.

We had an excellent complement along, including a rare guest appearance from an old time mountain biker, Weeties! The obligatory group shot shows Doug, Weeties, Stephe, Richard and Whisperer just before we started the first climb...

Doug's GPS carked it along the way unfortunately, but it's worth showing the profile of the last "Spiders" ride - it's a beauty, and shows just how much fun that early warm up climb is:

The climb was also made more challenging by the boghole at the bottom (bigger, badder and smellier than we've previously seen it - unfortuante for those that put a foot in it!), and the fact that the road had been graded and was soft clay, and very slow... But then we made it to the ridge line and the single track, and we were into it with much happiness.

Spiders was well covered in both spiders and vegetation, but remained a technical challenge and - more importantly - an asbolute hoot:

Even the best of us found it hard (albeit immediately recovering for the next tough section):

The rocky creek garden at the bottom was well slippery, so there was no chance of a zero dab ride through there, then it was back around the road to Shepherd's Gully (where a downhill bunch forgot that it's polite to give way to the folk coming up!), and time for a quick snack at the top of Devine's Hill. On the way back we had a quick chance to play on the mound of death (with nothing spectacular eventuating), then Whisperer blasted back to the cars as the rest of us cruised slowly back - happy but buggered.

The full set of photos are up here...


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