Links

Audax Australia
This is the umbrella organisation running long distance cycling events in Australia Their website includes a calendar of events.

Bikejournal
A place where cyclist can keep track of their mileage and any number of other statistics, as well as an attached forum.

Bikeforums
A set of discussion forums covering almost every conceivable cycling related topic.

Cycling Adventurer
The Cycling Adventurer has tossed in the structured life of an urbanite to explore the world by bicycle. A well-written site detailing how he came to cycling, and what he learned along the way.

Crazy Guy on a Bike

Bicycle touring journals from all over the world, including a couple of my own.

Johns Cycles

This is my LBS on the Gold Coast. While they cater more to the racing market, their service, advice and workmanship is the best on the coast.

St Kilda Cycles

Importers of all manner of things hard to find in Australia, including the legendary Schmidt hub dynamo & E6 lights.

Blogs

Bicycle-eye
Wonderings and wanderings out and about in Portland, Oregon, US

The Journey
The journey begins in Perth, Western Australia.

Lance Notstrong
The "other" Lance!

Ms Mittens
The Wired Cat on-line

Iron Gambit
.

Aussie Writer and Cycletourist
A blog chronicling the writing and cycling of a seaside baby boomer.

Up in Alaska
Jill's subarctic journal about ice, bears and distant dreams of the midnight sun.

The Kin Chronicles
Taking mediocrity to a new level of ordinary.

Allez
Riding and running with a vengeance.

London Cycling Diary
Pedalling across the capital since August 2005.

CouchPilot-2-BikePilot (Zin's cycling blog)
Living an adventurous life with Type-2-Diabetes.

The adventures of Crazy Biker Chick
... Including cycling, adventuring, cooking, knitting and ranting.

Redneck Espanol
The two wheeled Spanish redneck.

Treadly and me
"Work is something I do between riding my bicycle".

Crowlie
Womanist philosophy and theology. Cycling, climbing, art, single-motherhood and fire-twirling.

Adrian Fitch's random rambling.
A bit about cycling, a bit about genealogy, a bit about radio but mostly a lot about nothing at all.

Geo's big adventure
The life and times of Geo.

It's about the bike
Musings on the cycling life.

Spinopsys
Various cycling tidbits.

Industry Outsider
A blog about bikes and stuff.

Tweed Coast Treadly
An old man's bicycle riding diary.

A cyclist's life in Tenerife
(Canary Islands).

Bike to work to live to bike
It's never too late to get back on the bike

Stupid Hurts
Just the random scribblings of a guy with a bicycle

I'm not drunk enough for this
Really, I'm not.

BikeHacks
What can I say? Just read it.

Mozam's cycling adventures
A random collection of the things I like to do most, and mostly that is to ride my bikes, bicycles that is... My musings from competitive riding, long distance endurance to puttering around the neighborhood..

More cycling blogs

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Monday, August 06, 2007

Welcome home



Having tried various ways of dealing with the condition known as Post Tour Depression in the past, I have concluded that the only thing a person can do about it is to simply get straight on their bike when returning home and just ride a lot of kilometres. With that in mind, the organised 200km ride through the Tweed Valley with Audax was just what I needed. The drama started before the ride did, however. Running late meant that I had to ride the 12km to the Currumbin start like a time trial rather than the relaxed warm-up I was hoping for.



The practical upshot of this meant that I was already struggling just 20km into the ride. At least the surroundings through the John Hogan rainforest were pleasant. They did not, however, provide an indication of what was to come. I have been living on the Gold Coast since 1995, and regularly riding through the Tweed Valley since 1997, and one of the constant descriptions that applies to that part of the world is "green". Evidently that is no longer the case. While the rolling hills are still pleasant, the green has been replaced by yellow in many places. One hopes that some rain will arrive in the near future to rectify this, but for now it's just the way it is.



While there was a sense of tiredness about my own ride for virtually the entire duration, the Tweed Valley is an area with which I am familiar, and my experience in these situations gave me an advantage. I maintained a consistent rhythm across the hills to Tyalgum, back to Uki and across to Stokers Siding. At this point the enjoyment returned, and I really felt good crossing the Burringbar Range to the second checkpoint at Mooball. I knew then it was just a matter of finishing off what could still be a reasonable time for a 200k.



It was at the southern end of the Tweed Coast, after negotiating the first magpie of the season, that the first problem started. A slow-leaking flat tyre, and a pump that wasn't effective. Fortunately I tested the pump before deflating the tyre, and knowing it wasn't going to work gave me the opportunity to limp to a service station and change the tyre there. That cost me time, but didn't hinder me in any other way. I rode north from Pottsville to Cabarita, turning inland and taking a slightly more complex route back to Murwillumbah for the final climb of Tomewin.



The southern climb of Tomewin is always a challenge, today it was done at the end of 200km and my legs were less than enthusiastic about it. The great thing about riding the extended tour of Scotland was developing the ability to maintain a constant (if not necessarily fast) rhythm. I just sat and grounded out the climb, occasionally checking the altimeter to guage how much longer I would need to sustain it. Looking back it doesn't really feel like it took all that long, and I was soon over the other side, preparing for the final descent back to Currumbin.

The reminder of the event itself was relatively uneventful. I finished with an elapsed time of around 10 hours, which is basically what I was aiming for. Take away the flat tyre and I can be more than satisfied with it. The ride home from the event gave me the opportunity to get hit by a car (as discussed in a previous post) and late on I picked up another flat tyre. I just let the air leak out as I pedalled the last two kilometres or so. I could fix it later. A long ride with two flat tyres, a magpie attack and getting hit by a car. Welcome home.

1 Comments:

Blogger dave said...

Chris, you saw first hand what I was saying about needing that Scottish rain!

Dave (Tweed Coast)

8:47 pm  

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