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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
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Bikeforums
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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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Lance Notstrong
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Iron Gambit
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Aussie Writer and Cycletourist
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Up in Alaska
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The Kin Chronicles
Taking mediocrity to a new level of ordinary.

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

The adventures of Crazy Biker Chick
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Redneck Espanol
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Treadly and me
"Work is something I do between riding my bicycle".

Crowlie
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Adrian Fitch's random rambling.
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Geo's big adventure
The life and times of Geo.

It's about the bike
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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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Monday, July 21, 2008

Chris L takes on Henri Robert



The name "Henri Robert Drive" tends to send a chill up the spine of the majority of Gold Coast cyclists. I've heard a lot of "war stories" from people who have attempted to climb that particular approach to Mt Tamborine, but none who have succeeded. I'm sure there are others who have conquered it successfully, but for some reason I've only heard about those who failed. On Saturday morning I made a "spur of the moment" (i.e. I didn't feel like Wongawallan) decision to do something about that.

I'd spent the latter part of last week nursing a sore neck which was still only around 60%. I figured that I wouldn't need to turn my neck too many times on the climb, so I wasn't expecting a major hindrance. I took a nice, gentle ride through Nerang, Mt Nathan and Clagiraba to the start, and prepared for the climb by removing the leg warmers that I'd started the day with. I wouldn't be needing those anymore. I thought about removing the jacket too, but as it was still only 7 degrees C, I decided to stick with that for the moment.



The climb began gradually before hitting a "parabola" (i.e. a steadily increasing gradient) before zooming up steeply. I hauled a full touring load up a hill on the Isle of Skye last year that was 31% -- this felt even steeper. For the first time in my life, my pedalling speed fell below 6km/h, but I refused to stop pedalling. I wasn't going to let this one go under any circumstances. The gradient simply couldn't continue forever, and after around 1.5km, it started to ease, becoming almost flat around 500 metres later.

Now I was virtually on the mountain, but my altimeter told me to expect more climbing. There was one final kick, it was signed as 800 metres at 18%, but it didn't feel that difficult, and I had arrived. Despite all the hype about this climb, it felt like something of an anti-climax to actually reach the summit. It could have been the fact that it really was a short climb, but I couldn't understand why a lot of others had simply given up on it. For my part, I still had a full two hours to kill before meeting with friends for a short hike through the rainforest, and a tour of a glow worm cave, so I just pottered around on the mountain for a while.





The hike was interesting, if anti-climactic due to the closures of the side tracks. The glow worm tour was probably the highlight of the day, it was nice to learn something about the creatures I've been observing on my night time rainforest rides for years. That said, learning that they have cannibalistic tendencies when food (usually insects) is short makes me think differently, even if just about every other species on Earth has shown similar tendencies when desperation strikes.



The only thing left was a late afternoon ride home. I took the back way through Maudsland to avoid the idiots that would almost certainly have been filling Sufferer's Parasite by that time. It was extremely pleasant. Someone, somewhere was mapping a hike through another part of the Hinterland, which has given me cause to wonder about another region to explore. One day...

1 Comments:

Anonymous Ross said...

Some very nice scenery. You live in a very special part of the world.

3:04 pm  

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