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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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Tunnel vision

This is actually a relatively ancient post, but one that I've not got around to writing up, so I'm doing it now. A while ago, Martin and I decided to finally explore the infamous Burringbar Tunnel, which, despite the name, is better approached from Stokers Siding these days. I had been there before, but that was before the legendary downpour of 2010, and thus I had considered the possibility that things could be totally different this time. I was proven right.

The early part of the ride through Urliup, Murwillumbah and toward Stokers Siding was elementary enough, although it took me a while to adjust to the ride along the old railway line (literally) on a bike with really crappy suspension. Martin, of course, took to that section like a champion. The glow worms at the tunnel itself were spectacular as always. I haven't had as many night rides as usual over the last six to nine months, which has, of course, meant fewer glow worm encounters.

It was after the tunnel that my earlier prediction came back to haunt us. Last time I was here, the section to the south after the tunnel was actually easier to ride due to a slight downhill gradient, but as I said, that was *before* the legendary downpour of 2010. This time, the track was completely overgrown. Being brave or maybe just stupid, we decided to trek through it, knowing full well there would be plenty of spiky lantana among it. I managed to obtain a rather memorable cut on my calf when one particular vine wrapped itself around particularly effectively.

Only an idiot would think a cut on the leg would stop me after last year's injuries. Besides, now the fun part of the ride was coming up, on the old fire trail over the very top of the Burringbar Range (the one that's almost twice the height of the "pass" on the main road). Things never really got as interesting or scary as they had on the old rail line, but the scenery was probably much prettier.

Beyond that, there is little to tell. We were both in agreement that now the section along the old rail line was in the "it's done, never to do again" category. Of course, I'll probably change my mind, but the few minor but annoying tweaks my lantana-inspired broken skin was giving me on the final climb over Tomewin may tell a different story. The one quandary that remains is how I can include the forestry section over the Burringbar Range into a longer MTB epic. I suppose the next item on that particular agenda will be exploring the possible connection between Burringbar and Mt Jerusalem to the west. I really should set aside a day next winter (the dry season) to do just that.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

The search continues

My obsession with finding the way to Horseshoe falls continues. Last Sunday I joined with a friend of mine to explore further the area around the falls. We started at the top of the unmarked Chesters Road in Numinbah Valley, and headed up the hill. These falls are actually on the western side of Springbrook, which means they may be accessed one of two ways. We opted for the bottom way from the valley.

A few rather interesting discoveries along the way ensured the trip was going to be worthwhile whether or not we found the way to the falls. The two tracks leading off what I thought was Chester's road up the hill actually resulted in dead-ends. We started making our way back to the trailhead, figuring that was pretty much that, but with time up our sleeve, we found another track branching off. We later discovered that this was the old Chester's road, despite being slightly more overgrown than the others.

This particular track eventually led straight down to Waterfall Creek, the source of Horseshoe falls, with quite a descent into the gorge. A big cloud was now approaching from the south, but we decided to wade through the creek, largely because the water was so beautiful on a hot day. A little further up the creek we realised we were running out of time, so we made our way back along the creek, and eventually back to the top of Chester's Road. Along the way we found another trail that branches off toward the falls, could this be the missing link? All will be revealed in the near future.

15 minutes before the end of the track, the rain started. By the time I started the ride home, it was a downpour. The dirt descent of Chester's Road now had rivers running down it. It's times like this I'm glad to have had "the crash" last July, because otherwise I might not have bought the Salsa Vaya that handles so well in these conditions. I dealt with the descent, then returned to the ride home through Numinbah, Advancetown and Nerang. I haven't ridden through a sustained downpour like this since the typhoon in Japan back in 2010.

The rain didn't seem to ease off at all, but on what was otherwise a hot day, it was simply relief. I was loving it. I explained how much I was loving it to a couple of horse riders I saw at Advancetown. I'm not sure they shared my enthusiasm, but who cares? It was a great way to conclude a wonderful day. May there be many more of them in the future.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Evading the flood (again)

Was that Tumbulgum Road or Tumbulgum Canal? I'm not even sure they can decide, how is a visitor like me supposed to figure it out? Last week the wet season finally arrived, with something of a vengeance. My riding plans for last weekend were pretty much shot, largely due to the number of road closures due to flooding and/or landslides (I know of at least six roads that were closed, without even doing a great deal of research). I still managed to salvage a couple of nice outings, however, and the weather did make them a little more interesting.

It just happened that on Saturday I had a heap of menial chores that had built up, so being limited to a quick 60km jaunt by the road closures may not have been a bad thing. In the event, I opted for a quick ride through Austinville and Little Nerang Dam, figuring that after the rain, this should at least be pretty scenic. It didn't disappoint. A couple of new waterfalls always make the ride worth the trip, as does the flow of the newly refilled creek (even if it did block the road toward the end of the valley). Someone just had to help that horse find it's way back to high ground.

I added the extra kilometres of a quick jaunt out to Little Nerang Dam, with the mist through the gorge probably being the high point of the day. This is one of those rides that I never seem to get sick of, whether I'm doing it early before work, at night after work, or using it as a weekend fill-in. The only downside is that the section through the gorge is so short. I was tempted here to deviate even further and take a quick shot at Springbrook, but figured that I had already crossed one causeway that was perilously close to flooding to get here, and decided not to push my luck any further. It may have been just as well, the flat tyre I had to fix on the way home suggested my luck was out anyway.

* * * * * * * * * *

On Sunday I wanted to head South, but where to go, with Tomewin and Urliup roads both closed, and having only done the Tweed Coast last weekend? The logical answer was a quick 90km jaunt around Terranora and the John Hogan rainforest. My progress was hindered by another flat tyre -- the result of riding over a bolt -- but as I hadn't been specifically along this road for a while, it seemed like it was worth the effort. After crossing Terranora and heading for the bottom on McAuley's Road, I encountered an unusual sensation. It was clear from the surrounding vegetation that this stretch of road had been well and truly under water very recently -- I wondered how some of the surrounding houses survived.

The final ride home was the pleasant jaunt through Hogan's Rainforest. I don't come this way nearly as often as I should -- especially when I climb through the rainforest on the Tumbulgum side. The good thing was that the climb didn't seem to be nearly as steep as I remembered it, which can only mean one thing. I did have one moment of alarm when I realised the causeway on the other side might be flooded and out of action, but the depth of water when I arrived there was pretty insignificant.

In the end I was left to ponder a weekend that had been unplanned, a lot less involved than I would have liked, but strangely rewarding. Long may the rain continue.