From up the Putty yesterday.
From up the Putty yesterday.
It’s a day off for me, exams. After they were done though, I was torn (well not really) – go and see Captain America, go for a ride on the bicycle, perhaps even a MTB ride, or take the Daytona out.
But where? Ten Mile Putty is too far, be at least 4-6 hours and I did have be home with dinner ready. Colo was an idea but I didn’t really feel like the hour plus to get there. Google tells me that Mt White on the Old Pacific Hwy is only 1 hour away. That was a real surprise as I always thought it was ages and ages away.
Well it’s not.
And I always thought it sucked as I remembered 60kmh limits and loads of traffic.
Well the part around Pie in the Sky is actually 80.
And it was Tuesday, I guessed traffic would be light.
And it was, lol.
So I rode up Old Pac, completely changed my opinion of at least the 80 part. And it really did only take an hour. I left home about 10am and after riding to Mt White, and back to Pie, having a Pie and then doing a lap in the 80 zone before heading home, I still made it home before 1pm.
I wasn’t impressed though with the guy who passed outside of me in my lane around a tight bend. If I had f’ked it up we would have both gone down. Much rather he was like his mate and just blitzed past me on a short straight on the wrong side of a solid line.
I’m still slower than everyone.
Mrs has the day off for a change and wasn’t quite sure what to do with herself. So I went for a ride. I headed up the Putty with another rider who had not been up that way before.
The weather was cloudy, but clearing however the cool night and perhaps some early morning rain had made the road damp around Colo. This was a little concerning, but soon after it was clear that it was just localised and with the cloud expected to clear, it would be dry later.
Grey Gums for breakfast, and a warning from someone southbound about cops further north and we’re back on the road. No real surprise that cops would be about, sunny day, Sunday and no double demerits – I actually expected more bikes around than I saw.
I was keen to get right up to 10-mile Putty so my friend could see the best part. If only it wasn’t nearly 2 hours to get there. We did make it, but I really didn’t have time to cut some laps which was a shame. It was also clear that I’d met yet another rider who was faster than me – I think every rider I’ve ever met rides faster than I do.
We fuelled at Broke and repeated the trip down the Putty. The cop was again spotted, with a fellow rider pulled over this time.
We had Comms between us the whole time, his Sena linking into one of the phone channels of my ScalaRider. Worked fine, but I was unable to listen to music or I think take other calls (no reception on Putty anyway so who cares).
I am more encouraged about doing a track day as well, perhaps I’ll work something out to tag along the next time he goes.
Mrs Mab let me out for a ride this NYE Eve. I headed up the Putty, leaving home at about 6am. This way I could be home with some time with the family.
My first time up here since the previous spring (in 2014 that is). There didn’t seem to be much different along the road itself. I expected only a few bikes if any – even though it was shaping up to be a clear 25C day. It is double demerits from before Christmas until after New Years, so a lot of the young or silly crew stay away.
I passed a police car just outside Wilberforce, he had a customer (and it was a car) already so ignored me.
I got to Grey Gums shortly after 0730. By this time, I was pretty hungry, I kept getting distracted by imagining a big bacon, eggs, sausages sorta breakfast. Didn’t quite cause me to crash, but I certainly had to refocus a couple of times. I had never arrived this early and I was worried it would be shut. As I rolled down the road (the entrance a little past the cafe when you are northbound) it was clearly open. Apparently from 0700. Everyday except Christmas Day.
New owners I think, certainly some renovations. More shade, more tables and more concrete exclusively for bikes, gotta love em.
A hearty breakfast (which also included toast, mushrooms and onions) and I was on my way.
I hit Ten Mile and did 5 laps to end up heading towards Broke (for fuel). It is a great stretch, but it takes almost 2 hours to get there from home. There has been some roadworks done. Some corners widened but the most significant was on several of the corners the armco now stretches right to the ground and the posts are behind. Importantly that should mean its harder for a crashing rider to slid under or hit a post when they hit the armco. A lot better than more wires.
Very happy with how I improved across the runs as I loosened up. Still slow compared to most, but smooth and safe. Interesting, even though I generally stick close to the speed limits, even I felt an overwhelming urge to check my throttle early out of many of the corners. That did put a little damper on it.
After Broke I contemplated going home via Wiseman’s Ferry, but decided I would already be away a long time and I don’t know if they have repaired the river side leg, it was pretty rough on the VFR. On the taunt Daytona I would be scrambled.
My last trip down the Ten Mile was spoiled by some old tourists from Queensland who drove slow and couldn’t stay in their lane. Eventually they were passed.
I stopped again at Grey Gums for a snack then straight home. An enjoyable ride, but its been a while since I’ve done such a long one (about 6 hours in the saddle) and I felt a bit weary the last hour.
Also, my weight loss over the past month has meant my pants went on a bit easier 🙂
Its the last day of a couple of weeks off work for me. Most of it was spent with the family overseas. And that part was great. Just look at it 🙂
But today was the last day. I am already back in Canberra as I had a bit of stuff to pick up from some shops around Canberra. The mountain bike had a service and needed to be collected. This iMac has had its graphics card replaced and that needing picking up as well. And some parts for the Daytona arrived too. More about them in another post later.
With them collected it was time for the main goal for today. A couple of hours ride on the Daytona in the sunshine. Remember, Monday is Daytona day and it’s Daylight Savings now and almost summer…..
Initially I wasn’t sure where I would head. I wanted to explore more of the rides around Canberra and not just along the Cotter road again. I thought I might head to Tarago and then link back somewhere, but I wasn’t able to really plan a loop that way.
Then it hit me, go up Sutton Rd, over the interstate to Gunning. Along to Yass. And back via a road a bloke at work was talking about the other week, Mountain Creek Rd. He did mention there was a small stretch of gravel coming that way, but that he had no trouble on his VFR1200. I planned to get to the gravel and decide what to do, once I saw what kind of state the road was in. If it was big drifts of large gravel, for example, then no, I would find another way.
Sutton Rd, up to the Canberra – Goulburn interstate was uneventful, and the stretch from there to Gunning was quite disappointing, as it was fairly straight and flat. At Gunning I got on the Goulburn – Yass interstate (Imagine a triangle, with Canberra, Yass and Goulburn as the corners – there is an interstate, mostly, between these points)
Yass I stopped and looked for a nice bakery. Couldn’t find one, or perhaps the cafes were bakeries in disguise . I did stop and get a water and a sausage roll, but I wasn’t impressed with it.
From Yass I headed along the Wee Jasper Rd. This is typical back country sealed road in NSW. If you’re lucky enough to get sealed road, its usually rough, lumpy and narrow. The best stretch was the descent into the Murrumbidgee River Valley and across the bridge.
Shortly after that I took a left down Mountain Creek rd. This was nice and quite pretty too. Eventually I knew it would turn into gravel and my alternate plan was to turn around and ride back up these roads (hmm, maybe I should have done that anyway) and head back down the Yass – Canberra Rd. The whole way today there was patches of small repairs of the seal with loose gravel around to add to the concerns.
Mountain Creek was nice and when I got to the turn at Firelight Rd, where both ways are dirt I didn’t hesitate. The gravel was well graded and firm, with only small berms forming. Taking it slowly it would be fine.
So I got to do that as well.
Might actually just head up and do a lap or two of Mountain Creek Rd next time I have a few hours.
Had a bit of a head cold for about 5 days now. Couple of short days at work last week. Yesterday seemed fine and I even managed at MTB ride.
But today I was feeling worse again, so instead of continuing to infect everyone at work I left and went home.
And decided to self medicate with a ride up to the Cotter. Had some lunch and then headed up. It had warmed up from the -4 this morning to a pleasant 10-12C. Sunny and almost all of the roads had dried out.
I only went up Brindabella rd as far as the seal and then turned around and came home. Enjoyable lunch time 🙂
Not sure it improved my cold much, but I feel better!
Monday seems to be a standard ride the Daytona day this summer.
Not that I mind.
This time I headed somewhere different. The road from Canberra to Bateman’s Bay is apparently interesting.
Well it is, but you have to ride for about 45mins down a pretty boring road across the plains to get there. But Clyde Mountain, wow. It’s pretty steep and winding and I don’t think I got to the end before I hit my turnaround time. It was also in the middle of being resealed so I’ll give a month or so and might head that way again. Except for the hours of boring stuff.
OOOOhhhh Friday morning on the MTB, I was massively happy. There is a turn on a track called See Saw that I fallen on 3 times and skipped at least twice. Rode down it without falling or stopping Friday. I think the whole forrest heard my happy yell.
Got out again this afternoon, trying a newly built trail. A fun ride actually, “Brake Dance” and “Rock and Roll”. Both had some tricky stuff and both were mostly downhill, so good fun. However the uphill bits were harder as the new trail was still pretty soft (not compacted by lotsa tyres).
Disappointment though in the end as I hit “Creek Run” a fun quick blast at the end…. the back started getting really loose and it was obvious I had another flat. Two in three rides.
Spoiled that last hurrah.
Home and I FINALLY washed the Daytona, the Trance (my MTB) and fixed the tyre. Actually pretty happy about getting that stuff done.
Wednesday…. you know I’m really loving this summer time at the moment, anyway, early knock off Wednesday so I jumped on the Daytona and headed for the Cotter… again.
Hey, it’s a great road, and its close, about 30mins from home here.
So this time with no thunderstorms looming to the south I followed Paddy’s River Rd, that the Cotter Rd turns off and headed south towards the space tracking station at Tidbinbilla.
I rode up and back (Partly as I didn’t feel like dragging myself all the way through south Canberra) for another afternoon enjoying the Daytona. This road is a lot more open with the southern half a stretch of open sweepers that are a nice change from the technical tight Cotter Rd.
And Australia… dodge a Blue Tongue Lizard down the street and have to change lines mid corner because a snake was crossing.
Can’t tell you what kind, I didn’t stick around to check…
And it wasn’t me.
I got an early mark on Monday and with the sun shining I rushed home to change into my leathers.
I headed out to the Cotter again. I spent about an hour practising up and down the road. Enjoying the road and the Daytona.
I did laugh to myself at one point. I was about a third of the way back down when a Ducati rode past the other way. He looked to be going fairly quick.
At the bottom, where Brindabella Rd meets the Cotter I paused to see if heads back this way. I reckon I was stopped for about 30 secs when he pulled up. A quick hello and he was off back to Canberra.
Another fun afternoon.
Daylight Savings (Summertime) rocks.