Thursday, March 28, 2013

Why ?

This is the question I get asked quite regularly. Why do I ride mountain bikes? Why do I go bike packing? Why put yourself through that pain and discomfort?

Well, in the time honoured interweb tradition of ripping off someone else's idea, over at Grizzly, he makes a fairly good fist of explaining the WHY of why we do it.

Well, one that resonates like a tweaked spoke with me anyway. Enjoy.

Tomorrow is Good Friday here in Oztraylia and it will certainly be GOOD once I have finished work for the day. After that, we will be packing up the family Truckster and heading out to Hidden Vale for the Kona 24 Hour at mid day on Saturday. 

Yep, 24 hours of riding around in circles, eating and drinking as much as I can suck down while pedalling rocky hillsides until my legs won't function or my arse rebels on me......

And they have to ask WHY....?!!

Cheers and have a great weekend.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Island Hopping

With a few days off last week we headed across Moreton Bay to spend a bit of time on North Stradbroke Island. Having only visited once before in the ten or so years of living in Brisbane, I thought it might be time to take the kids over for a look.

The ferry ride is only a short 40 minutes from Cleveland to Dunwich. The kids explored pretty much every section of the ferry in that time.

The main activity for the weekend was to be sitting around doing pretty much nothing, with the odd walk down to the beach for a swim.

Teaching the kids how to cast a line was also one of the activities. I was surprised how quickly they picked this up with confident casts on the second attempt.

I also managed to bring a bike along for a bit of beach combing. It also happened that the BSMC social ride was to be on North Straddie as well, so I pedalled the 20km (13mi) across the island to meet the guys and girls as they came off the ferry.

I arrived with enough time to scoff a bacon and egg roll while sitting under a massive old Moreton Bay fig tree taking in the view.

The ferry was pretty much on time and we were quickly on the road to Amity Point.

We cruised along the beach at a good pace with a low tide and great tailwind.

The gearing on my single speed was a tad low for this section and I was spinning like crazy to keep up. Thats the good thing about a SS I guess. You get a great workout on the hills and the flat.

It was a great day for a ride and a very pleasant weekend in all.


Monday, March 18, 2013

A Day In The Sun

Sunshine is finally bathing South East Queensland again and I have been out working on getting more than my fair share.

I managed a ride on Sunday morning with Dean0 that worked some of the kinks out of my arms and legs that were put in there on Saturday morning at trail care. That ride was much needed. Thanks mate.

On Saturday it had been basically just Neil and I absolutely burying ourselves with what felt like countless barrow loads of rock and gravel to keep the berm builder's efforts fed. 

Neil had the good sense to go home at 9am and afterward I was wasted for the rest of Saturday. I even suffered the embarrassing forearm cramps later at home while trying to wash my hair. And its not like washing my hair is very taxing on my strength any more!

The trail is looking awesome and you can't really blame people for wanting to go for a ride with such magnificent weather after the last 6-7 weeks of rubbish we have been dealt. Although, that rain is why the trail is looking so awesome, actually.

Thanks to the regulars again this morning. You know who you are. 

Monday, March 11, 2013

Low Flying

Not much happening around here this week. Another solid week of work left me feeling pretty run down by Friday and sure enough I have developed a bout of the dreaded "Man Flu". I am hoping it isn't a particularly virulent strain but am taking it easy in case I have the version that floored a mate a few weeks ago.

So, how do you take it easy when "infected?" By taking a morning off trail building and rolling along behind an excited bunch of 8 to 12 year old kids on muddy trails.

Not single track, just fire roads but it was still enjoyable.

While I wasn't trail building this morning I was still keen to see what the lads had done so we headed the kids ride across to Cornubia to check on the progress and help with the sausage sandwiches.

The main gully crossing is a very special area. We are trying our hardest to cross it with absolute minimum impact, only making the trail corridor just as wide as it needs to be.(above) Looking left from this spot you see a beautiful moss covered stream bed and fern laden gully.

This trail will allow riders and walkers alike to better appreciate the environment we actually live in.

The kids thought it was pretty cool too judging by the smiles on their faces as they inspected the work.

There were quite a few new faces in the group which was great to see. Ash, from Nerang, came along to lend a hand and share his experience. He added some nice rock armouring to the gully crossings.

Derek is working on a technical trail feature right at the start of the trail. This trail "qualifier" will sort the men from the single speeders.....

We soon got onto the serious business of eating sausage sandwiches at the BBQ. Once again the kids were a great help in this area!

Oh, and the low flying part? Watch this snippet from the British Superbike Series. Anyone that has ridden one of these road racing monsters knows how stupidly impossible this is.....

Miss-almost-11 got to ride her new bike today. Someone was pretty pleased with herself about it too!

Cheers and thanks for checking in.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Looking For A Roof Top.....

It is Saturday today so guess what I did? Yup. Went and dug dirt again. Was it wet? Yes, wetter than it has been in the past 5 weeks and THAT is saying something.

We had another good turn out of trail diggers in the face of much more rain. I was truly surprised that the dozen or so guys (still no persons of the fairer sex) turned up despite the inability to see where the ground ended and the sky begun this morning!

Significantly, we hit the 300 hour mark with volunteer hours this morning! This is only week 5 of the build so the volunteer hours are simply awesome so far. I personally think it really shows in the quality of the trail so far. Sure, there are a few parts that need "tweeking", but these are far less than any trail we have built so far.

Here is a section of benching that we time-lapsed today. I am sure my Go Pro battery is lasting less and less. It only lasted about 45 minutes here, but you get the idea. Does my bum look big in this.....?

I must thank many of Brisbane's mountain bikers for answering the call for trail building and showing up despite the atrocious conditions. The sausage sandwiches afterwards must be bloody good to keep you guys turning up each week!

Thanks to Andrew for my sweet SEQTA T-shirts. I can't wait to gain 10kg(22lb) so I can do them justice!(just kidding mate!)

The downside to all of this 'effing rain is that we can't do anything. No mountain biking, no road biking and definitely no R1, with a bald rear tyre, riding! It has basically gone from drought conditions up until the 25th of January to non-stop rain for the last 5 weeks! FFS!

It is now 10pm local time and the rainfall chart since 9am tells a story....of today. The last 5 weeks have been very, very similar so you can just imagine how much rain we have had! We are about where the "N" is in Logan, just to the north of the centre. (Hint: 25mm = 1 inch) Also, as a point of interest for my foreign readers, Cape Byron at the bottom is the most easterly point on the Australian mainland.

So...............what to do.................?

Grab an AK-47 and find a rooftop..............?

Luckily for all of us Australian gun laws are pretty tight! I need to go for a ride!!!!


Friday, March 1, 2013

Thank Dog Its Friday !

Let this get you into the weekend mood...

And check the look on the face of the guy at 1:27. Priceless!