Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Hunting a giant extinct bird

This bird apparently lives at the top of an enormous hill, and I don’t love riding up hills. So to prepare for said Hunt I’ve hit the hills a few more times in the last week. On Thursday I headed back up Rapaki with my speedy hubby and Michelle and him with whom she lives (what a mouth full, hehe). Michelle had a nice gentle ride up and was chatting away, while I managed to keep up with her, but was not capable of chatting. On the last stretch up to the top she got bit by the competitive spirit when a guy tried to pass her and she was off. I keep grinding my way up and was still happy with my time which was only marginally slower than Monday. I raced up the road while everyone else did Mt Vernon and had the luxury of waiting at the start of the Traverse, unusual for me. Then the most amazingly thing happened, I rode the whole Traverse clean for the first time, no dabs, feet down or anything. Woooo hoooo, I kicked those rocky sections arses.
From there it was a fun blast down Sesame St, Dazzas, Ponos and Bridges before zipping down the 4wd track. Fool that I am I forgot to put my seat down at the start of Sesame St and my back end was super loose in the berms. I quickly fixed that before Dazzas and then on Ponos I rode everything, although I did end up detouring towards a tree at one point (oops).
It was a great fun ride, but would have been better if Pete hadn’t broken his bike. Thanks Michelle and Richard for the ride home.
A busy rest of the week at work and working on Saturday meant no riding on Friday or Saturday, but we had a big ride on Sunday. A group of us headed up Kennedy’s, I went up the road this time and met them at the start of the 4wd track. My mission for Kennedy’s was to keep it out of the bottom gear till the top section and I managed that but again my rubbish line choice left me pushing the last couple of hundred metres. I must get to the top next week! From there it was up Flying Nun and in another first I rode everything I hadn’t ridden before, in fact I would have cleaned it but one of our riding companions was stopped in a corner in front of me and I had no choice but to get off. Bugger. It was a much faster ride down for me and I was buzzing. From there the decision was made to head up to Vic Park and do the Traverse. Again I made sure I was pushing my self the whole way up the road. In hindsight I really should have eaten my muesli bar in the car park before we did the Traverse, but I didn’t. We were off, with me in my natural place at the end of the line. I was feeling a little light headed from lack of food, but also feeling very confident from my descent of the Nun. That came to an abrupt end when I decided to ride the dreaded dip and made a complete mess of it. I went over the bars (I think) and some how my brake rotor rubbed its way along the inside of my left leg while my right knee skidded along the dirt. Ouch, but at the time it was really only my pride that hurt as a man was right there when I crashed. After assuring him I was fine I struggled to get my bike out of the ^^*($(%&)@!# dip continued on till I caught up with Pete. By the time I stopped my burn from the rotor was incredibly sore, OMG it hurt. I squirted some water on it and just about screamed. Owie. After eating a muesli bar, better late than never, we were off and caught up with the others to show off my new wound.
We then decided to head down the Bowenvale Singletrack. I’ve never ridden this before and once we got off the horrid, rutty, loose rocky 4wd track the flowing singletrack was a great reward. It was fantastic and I really can’t wait to give it another go. Back down the bottom at Bowenvale Ave I decide beer and wedges were called for. After a good feed I was back on my bike feeling very grateful for the tailwind home and Pete was being a mad man and heading back up Rapaki!!?!
It was good preparation for the Moa Hunt and I’m really looking forward to the race on Saturday. I’m not sure how I’m going to go, but I’m feeling confident that I’ll finish it in under 4 hours. I got my roadie out for the first time in ages today and had a flyer into work. I’m going to head out at lunchtime and see if I can get up to the Kiwi on it, could be a tragic attempt.

Post ride edit: Well I didn't make it to Sign of the Kiwi, but not because I couldn't, I ran out of time. I did make it to Sign of the Takahe, which means I got up the steepest bit and from there to the Kiwi it flattens off lots. Wahoooo! Just to give you some idea of the difficulty on my road bike compared to my lovely mtb, my easiest gear on my mtb is (I think) 22:34, my easiest gear on my roadie is a horrific 39:26.


CrazyChris said...

hehe, another scar for the MTB trophy cabinet! Hope that heals before the Moa (described by Steve Gurney along the lines of "45 mins of uphill grind in your granny gear") - but you're becoming a champion on the hills now!

Tinkerbell said...

Thanks Chris, and thanks for reminding me about the grind uphill! If Steve Gurney says its 45 mins I guess I'll be on it for an hour and a half :(