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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.

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Bicycle-eye
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Lance Notstrong
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Iron Gambit
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Aussie Writer and Cycletourist
A blog chronicling the writing and cycling of a seaside baby boomer.

Up in Alaska
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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..

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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The yearning



It is rapidly dawning on me that at some point this weekend I need to clean my tent and assemble my touring equipment and have it at the ready. At the moment I really feel the need to get away for a weekend, to tour somewhere. I have no idea where I would go just yet, or when the opportunity will present itself, but I just need to be ready for when it does. Right now nothing else really seems to interest me. I managed 44km on the bike before work this morning -- it was pleasant, but it simply wasn't long enough to offer the sort of escape that I feel I need right now.

Ironically, I had the chance a month after returning from Scotland -- with the Gold Coast Show long weekend. At the time I opted to stay back, feeling a little "toured out" and nursing an ankle problem. Ever since that weekend, I have yearned to get away, not just for the ride, but for the whole experience of pedalling to a destination unknown and setting up camp wherever I feel like it at the end of the day. There are no more long weekends this year -- so it can only be for one night at this stage, but that alone would be worth it.

* * * * *

In other news, Tweed Coast Treadly reports that tomorrow is National ride to work day. I must be out of the loop because this is the first I've heard of it, and I wasn't even aware it was a national thing (I think Brisbane runs it's version in March). Ironically, tomorrow may well see the start of a spike in the number of people riding to work here on the 'Coast with all the road closures in Sufferer's Parasite because of a car race this weekend. That said, my route is usually gridlocked regardless, so it won't impact on me at all.

I'll be riding to work as normal tomorrow regardless, but I often wonder at the effectiveness of running something like this once a year. I really think using a free breakfast to entice a large number of people to get on their bikes for one day a year without any kind of education, training (or even a clue in a lot of cases) has the capacity to do more harm than good. Essentially the problems occur when these people have "close calls" in the traffic, or encounter other problems like flat tyres that they have not yet learned the skills to deal with. These people then end up telling all and sundry about their bad experiences, which only puts more people off (the old marketing saying is that a person who has a bad experience tells 30-50 people, whereas a person who has a good experience usually tells 3-5 if you're lucky).

A better option in my view would be to abolish the free breakfast and t-shirt altogether, and just run smaller group rides to the city centre for work on more regular intervals. That way, the experienced cyclists could actually ride with and instruct the newbies rather than slaving over a barbecue. Once people have learned from the experienced cyclists, they might just enjoy it enough to do it more often than once a year. Sure, we might have to survive without the politicians speeches that way, but anyone who's watched the opening of the election campaign this year will realise that those rarely lead to enlightenment.

6 Comments:

Blogger fingers said...

Chris; I only new about it because I joined "Bicycles NSW" a couple of moths ago to get public liability insurance so I could ride through private property to get to the State Forest. Otherwise I would of been totally unaware, not living in the city or being a member of any BUG, (such an ugly word)

1:18 pm  
Blogger fingers said...

Wow! I should do a preview before I publish with the moths

1:20 pm  
Blogger Chris L said...

BUG is a pretty ugly word, but I guess they need to use some kind of abbreviation.

I'm interested in hearing more about this State Forest that you've discovered. I may be heading down your way for a ride on Sunday, so any other options would interest me.

8:40 pm  
Blogger fingers said...

Mooball State Forest is small and quiet.. most of the bushfire trails are gated and last time I did a short run discovery ride was a dry with a clear longish grass surface mainly folllowing spurs saddles and ridges. If you ride around the Tweed Coast area yo can nearly always see the dish covered transmission tower near loders camp road... here is a map site

http://www.satelliteviews.net/cgi-bin/w.cgi?c=as&UF=-1588479&UN=-2249509&AF=V_M

look for smarts rd loders camp road and wabba rd also accessable from the top of Burringbar range hill on Cooradilla Rd (I find this access a steep start on the gravel)

11:18 pm  
Blogger fingers said...

Chris;
If you are interested I have aranged with another rider to meet at my place at 8:15 on sunday morn to get to the top of Cudgera Creek Road by 9:00am (wabba rd). I thought we would send a few hours doing a bit of discovery riding and exit the forest at Quarry Rd Mur'bah to let me ride back home about 1:00pm. You are welcome to join me and Mark for all or part of the ride.

3:18 pm  
Blogger Chris L said...

I might just take you up on that, I haven't explored Wabba road yet. There are probably a few other areas that I'm not familiar with, so it could be an interesting day.

2:10 pm  

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