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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Samsonvale Sunset

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Samsonvale Sunset

Harrison and I took a quick ride by Lake Samsonvale this afternoon. As the sun was setting over the D’Aguilar Ranges, I was fortunate to get this quick picture. I’m so happy to be living in such a beautiful place and to be able to explore it with my son.

He’s doing pretty well on the hills too!

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Monday, April 26, 2010

More Fun at Mount Glorious

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We did an epic ride around Mt Glorious again today – this time with some amazing mountain bikers from

This involved some tough climbs to Mount Glorious, and then a bone jarring steep downhill ride down the Lepidozamia Track. This track has to be seen to be believed with some incredibly steep sections, strewn with rocks, sticks and logs. It was doubly difficult for me this time as it was my first serious bash on dirt using my new clip-in pedals which still occasionally refuse to free my feet when I need them, which results in some humiliating “gumby stacks” where I come to a stop and just fall sideways for no apparent reason.

I was impressed with the skill of the other riders – powerful hill climbers and amazingly nimble over some of the more rocky sections. Despite this, they were patient with me, waiting for me when I dropped behind, and never complaining about it.

The view at the top was breathtaking.

Western Window

Some of the spiders on this track are huge. Here’s one that hitched a ride part-way down:

A Passenger

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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Deepwater Bend

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Deepwater bend is a quiet reserve at the mouth of the Pine River and forms part of the 380 hectare Tinchi Tamba wetlands.

It has some beautiful boardwalks and tracks among mangroves, she-oak swamps and grasslands, and best of all, it’s pretty close to where we live.

I decided to take a quite ride down there today on the bike, and was amazed at the cloud formations.

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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Ewen Maddock Dam

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A Giant's View of the DamNeil's new bikeDown the trail

Today we did a short loop around Ewen Maddock Dam on the Sunshine Coast north of Brisbane.

It was the first chance I had to give my new Giant XTC 29er a try out on the trail, and it (she?) passed with flying colours! The 29er has larger tyres than the usual 26 inch ones found on a mountain bike. This gives a smoother ride, less rolling resistance and more fun.

We rode through quite a bit of mud and sand in the rainy weather, and the bikes held up really well.

Ewen Maddock Dam is a beautiful reserve bounded by ferns, tee-tree swamps, eucalyptus and sub-tropical forest. The tracks are well developed, clearly marked, and low gradient – so anyone could walk them, ride a bike, or a horse.

For the last bit of the ride we got onto the bitumen and burned up the Steve Irwin Way. On the flat my speed maxed at about 50km and Simon went even faster – he’s been working out and was keen to see whether it made a difference (it does, Simon!).

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

King Adrian

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Meet Adrian

He turned 12 a couple of weeks ago, and today he rode past me on my attempt to climb Old School Road.

I conked out with about 50 metres to go where the gradient was about 26%. But Adrian kept going, and made it to the top on his Giant Alias Mountain Bike.

I watched in awe and cheered him on. Then when he made it I shook his hand, asked if I could take his photo, and (if I would have though of it) would have asked for his autograph.

Imagine what this kid could do in 10 years time?

Good on ya, Adrian, the new king of Old School Road.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Cashmere State Forest

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Cashmere State ForestCashmere State ForestCashmere State Forest

Thanks Glen, Steve and Harrison for a great ride around Cashmere State Forest this morning. Everyone put in a great effort.

Q. “What do you call the bottom of a hill with 35% gradient”

A. “A hole”.

Some of those hills were pretty steep. The camera seems to flatten them out – they’re much more acute than they look in the picture.

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Saturday, April 10, 2010

Old School Road – Again

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Foiled Again!

I had another try at climbing Old School Road today. I did better than last time, but still haven’t beat the hill. My poor bike is a geared a bit too high, but I hope I’ll eventually conquer it if I don’t surrender!

From there it was a brisk ride down the other side of the mountain maxing out at 70km/h, and another beautiful ride along Bunya Road to the single tracks in Bunyaville State Forest.

Samford Valley

I’ve lived in South East Queensland for over 45 years, and I think I’ve taken it for granted for most of my life. This place is paradise. I love it.

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Thursday, April 08, 2010

Old School Road -vs- Neil

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Clear Mountain is about a 15km ride from my front door. All of the roads up it are pretty steep, but today I thought I’d try giving one of the more difficult dirt roads a try. It was pretty good going most of the way until I was about 100m from the top. Then the gradient increased quite markedly. I was determined not to give up, and kept pushing, but the wheels stopped turning. As you can see from the video, when your wheels stop turning, you end up kissing dirt :)

I’ll be trying this one regularly over the next few weeks until I beat it.

My mate Steve has ridden up it a few times. And there’s no way I’m going to let him own that hill by himself!

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Monday, April 05, 2010

Around the Glasshouse Mountains

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Neil at the Glasshouse Mountains lookout - about halfway through our ride.The Glasshouse Mountains are beautiful. We thought the best way to see them was up close, under our own power, on bike.

We started the 50km loop at Wamuran, and proceeded in a large clockwise loop along fire trails, logging tracks, and finished via the route of an old railway line, now converted into a recreational “rail trail”.

Glasshouse Mountains Tour

Glasshouse Mountains Tour

Glasshouse Mountains Tour

Glasshouse Mountains Tour

Here’s a bridge over one of the many small creeks we crossed in the forest.

Glasshouse Mountains Tour

Glasshouse Mountains Tour

Heading down one of the many trails that cut through the pine forests.

Glasshouse Mountains Tour

Simon checks out the damage done by 4wd vehicles to one of the trails. We think the huge mud bowl looks a bit like a lake of chocolate, which fits in well with the Easter theme.

Glasshouse Mountains Tour

Simon demonstrates why I try to let him go first through most flooded tracks:

The best bits:

Picturesque views,

pine forests,

secluded roads,

quiet creeks.

The worst bits:

Motor cyclists / Trail bike riders illegally riding on state forest trails.

Dirt roads ripped up by 4wd’s and turned into mud bowls.

Piles of rubbish left by morons in the middle of the forest.

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Redcliffe Easter Ride

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Ken and I rode out to Redcliffe to meet everyone else for a picnic. It was a perfect day for it.

For someone who hasn’t ridden more than 10-15km at a time, Ken handled this 60km ride really well.

I think all the nice food at the picnic might have helped too!

Redcliffe Easter RideRedcliffe Easter RideRedcliffe Easter Ride

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