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

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

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.


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.

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".

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.

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.

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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Wednesday, September 24, 2008


The first "nervous" commute out of the last several thousand turned out alright in the end. We seem to be right in the middle of the windy season at the moment, which has meant decent headwinds riding into work over the last two days. Coming from the north, it's also meant high humidity and air thick enough to cut if anybody could find a knife sharp enough. The first morning I actually made the junction between the lights on Rudd Avenue, which it quite doable, but usually requires a reasonable level of performance. That was a sign that I was closer to being "back" than I thought.

Unfortunately, the exhaustion at the end of that first ride (an 8.5km commute is usually a pretty routine exercise for me) suggested that I still had some way to go. But it was interesting to note how much easier it all felt yesterday in identical conditions. I'll be seeking out 30-35km after work this evening, and possibly making it to Austinville (pictured above) on Thursday night. Hopefully by then, I won't be reduced to using old pictures from previous rides in this blog any longer.

Sunday, September 21, 2008


I have now officially spent five days in a state that could only be described as "totally useless", which also coincides with my longest break from riding since 1997. Frankly, I'm scared sh!tless of tomorrow morning's commute to work, but I'll have to deal with that one sooner or later. The enforced lay-off did give me the opportunity to get the Lennox Head/Minyon tour journal completed. Interested parties can read about that here.

In the meantime, I've had an opportunity to think about what I want to do when I return. I'm planning to ride The Wonders of Glorious Mee in Brisbane, that iconic Audax ride with three substantial climbs on October 4. I actually rode that for five consecutive years before missing last year's ride in the middle of a form slump. At one point I had a reputation for going on big (and largely pointless) attacks on Mt Glorious. Whether I'll be capable of that in this year's edition remains to be seen. The way I've felt over the last few days, I'll be glad to just finish within the time limit.

I also need to return to the Mullumbimby region to explore the Wanganui Gorge. Apparently this Gorge, 20km west of the town is supposed to be home to spectacular views and some giant strangler fig trees. I should be able to make that into another 200km day without too many problems. Those are going to be the goals that I focus on over the next few weeks. I'm sure other things will come up between now and then, but as long as I'm back on the bike, I won't care too much.

Friday, September 19, 2008

To Hell and back

Hell's Hole

First of all I should apologise for taking so long to get this update, but I have been to hell and back in two different ways this week. The most recent one (and the one I'll mention only briefly) was having my wisdom teeth removed on Wednesday morning. Actually, the pain since hasn't been too bad, but the headaches, the hot & cold flashes, and the almost total lack of sleep in the last 48 hours have not been pleasant. Far more pleasant was the ride to Hell's Hole in Mt Jerusalem National Park with Dave from Tweed Coast Treadly on Sunday.

The day started in seemingly typical fashion with me leaving home about 20 minutes late and trying to make up the time over the course of 45km between home and Round Mtn on the Tweed Coast. A roaring tailwind (which would later be a roaring headwind) took care of that problem, and we set off through the back roads, over the climb of Cudgera Creek, past the village of Billinudgel to where the ride would really start.

I've often commented that one enters another world when they hit the back roads behind Billinudgel and points further south. There just seems to be a more laid back feeling about the narrow country roads passing the green fields, hippie cottages and remaining patches of rainforest. This day would be different again, because the spring flowers were blooming all through the valley, creating a riot of colour. Dave and I made our way relatively slowly, but I decided to hammer the first climb up to Mt Jerusalem National Park, as I actually had some form from the previous day at Mt Nimmel (more on that later).

I hammered the climb, then waited for Dave at the summit with a group of high school kids who were riding the other direction. Somehow, the didn't really want to know that they'd climbed the range on the harder route. After Dave and I reunited, we set off on the climb of Middle Ridge road. While this climb only gains 100 metres or so, it was negotiated on a steep, loose dirt road. I surprised myself by climbing it relatively easily (relative to what happened last time I was here).

The Middle-Ridge fire trail branches off from Middle Ridge road and ultimately leads to Hell's Hole. Unfortunately, Dave and I decided to waste an hour discussing whether we really were in the right place or not. Eventually, a pair of walkers showed up and confirmed that we really were where we were meant to be, and we were able to descend the trail and walk through the forest to find the holes.

The hole is basically a series of smaller swimming holes linked by little waterfalls at the top of a much larger waterfall. Apparently the larger one can only be viewed by accessing it from the other side. This is actually something I plan on doing in the future, but just when I'm not sure. The falls did make a beautiful lunch stop before returning to the Middle Ridge Trail for the ride home.

Middle Ridge road was a scary descent, but was negotiated quickly, before we continued through the Mt Jerusalem National Park, eventually descending to the village of Uki, and the cafe for a well-earned drink. I was a little surprised at just how thirsty I was after the day's exertions. I knew I had a ride home against a headwind (why do all my Southern rides finish with a headwind this year?), so I opted to throw a mountain at it after Dave departed for the ride back to Round Mountain.

I knew this could be my last solid ride for a while, so when the 350 metre climb of Tomewin ramped up the gradient to 11%, I went on the attack. This was one of those special moments when I went for the limit and suddenly realised it wasn't there. The mountain crumbled. Later, back on the coast, the headwind that I had dreaded had one final go. Fortunately, coming home over Tomewin doesn't leave me with much more than 10km of suburbia to negotiate at the end, so the headwind at the finish wasn't an issue.

All in all another extremely rewarding day. The next mission in Mt Jerusalem National Park is South Chowan road, which is supposed to lead to some cave paintings high in the hills. We shall see.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Tosspot of the week

This one's personal, and it goes to the f*ckwit who hacked my email address last night and used it to spam (and deleted my address book). I'm not sure exactly how much damage they did at this point, and I'm going to have to wait a little longer to care because I have 190km to ride tomorrow. I have, however, taken steps such as changing passwords to put a stop to it. I'm also in the process of suiciding that email address, but I digress.

Apparently there was a debate in Victorian State parliament last week about whether or not to legalise abortion. As far as I'm concerned, this idiot is a big argument in favour of making abortion not only legal, but also cheap, accessible and in some cases, mandatory. A classic tosspot.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Close, but no Brum

On Sunday I needed some big kilometres, I decided on another "century" in the Tweed Valley, this time I decided on the climb to Brummies Lookout, at the top of a rather steep climb on dirt roads. Getting up that particular climb was always going to be interesting after the previous day's work, so I decided to change the route slightly.

I opted to enter the Tweed Valley through Urliup rather than Tomewin this time, figuring I'd just climb Tomewin at the end anyway. Urliup really is a pleasant place early in the morning, as the rainforest fills with the sound of the morning bird calls. I figured it might also give me the opportunity to inspect the dirt sections to get some idea of what I'd be up against on the big climb later. I took a similar opportunity by detouring along Chilcott's road near Chillingham, and crossing a flooded creek.

There were two smaller climbs to negotiate en route to Tyalgum, and a potential detour to Bald Mountain that I will take one day. Today I had other things in mind. The main climb is steep for about a kilometre, levels off into a couple of rollers, before kicking up steeply again on dirt. This road was a little more cut up than the early dirt roads had been -- not surprising as this road had been closed since February. I pressed on steadily, reached the intersection with Condowie Road (that would be my descent), and continued climbing.

I passed the start of the walking track to Brummies Lookout completely as the sign had been removed. Fortunately the road ended in a palm tree grove shortly after, and after retracing my steps slightly, I found the start of the track. The track itself is closed off by some tree falls and land slides a little way in, and the removal of the sign suggests these aren't going to be cleared. Essentially that means there will be no more trips to Brummies Lookout, which will probably be overgrown before much longer anyway.

All that was left was to return to Tyalgum by Condowie Road (a screaming descent on dirt, but perhaps slightly less steep than what I climbed). A magpie tried to chase me out of town -- evidently trying to stop me draining their water supply. The return to Murwillumbah via the "other route" was pleasant as it always is. My legs did have some complaints climbing Tomewin after the earlier work, but it wasn't the end of the world. I finished the day right on 161km, with over 1,900 metres of climbing, not bad after the previous day is factored into the equation. This weekend the plan is to explore Hell's Hole in the Mt Jerusalem National Park with Dave from the Tweed Coast. Bring it on.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Not my day

To be totally blunt, I was in pretty poor form last Saturday. The fact that it had been a slightly stressful week didn't help. I set of with my regular ride partner Martin for the climb of Springbrook and simply didn't climb the way I usually do. On reflection, I had probably also overeaten at the breakfast table in the morning, as I didn't need a muesli bar for the whole ride. Either way, on the long grind to Salmon's saddle where we would part company, I felt as though I was really hanging on just to complete that section.

Yet bizarrely, on the higher (and considerably steeper) slopes of the mountain, I started to feel better. Along the way I passed Wunburra Lookout, where some elitist "roadie" was resting after deciding he couldn't climb any further, despite having earlier wanted to make everyone else look stupid and inconsequential. That's when it dawned on me, I could climb higher than this guy even if I wasn't 100%. Now I was going to finish the climb regardless. A rather persistent magpie gave me something else to think about a little later, but after passing the steep pinch that follows Craft Corner, I knew I was getting back into form. I reached the summit at Best of All Lookout surprisingly quickly after that.

So what's the insight? For Saturday at least, it all seemed to be about patience with one's self, about realising that not every day will be the best day of your life. Once you accept this, you can focus on getting the maximum value from what you have. It's an important lesson, because often, the stress over whether or not you're in form will affect you considerably more than whatever is slowing you down in the first instance. That's certainly the way it happened for me on Saturday.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Adam Spencer on cycling

This comes with a language warning, but I can't find too much to disagree with here. Former Triple J radio host Adam Spencer on cycling. Definitely worth a look.

Yes, I do have a ride report or two to post, but right now I can't because photobucket is experiencing yet more regression to childhood drama as expressed in the form of a functionality phobia. Hopefully normal service will be resumed shortly.