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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Ocean View

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Ocean View is a quiet place high up in the hills near Mount Mee. I thought I’d go for a ride there this afternoon, and try my luck at some steep descents and one horribly steep climb.

Glasshouse Mountains from Ocean View

Some of the homes around here have amazing views over the forest and farmland towards the coast.

Dean Drive, Ocean View

I followed one of the roads looking for this track that just disappears over the edge of the mountain and heads steeply down to Rocksberg below.

Thornhill Chase, Rocksberg

Thornhill Chase – the steep road down to Rocksberg was an intense ride. I skidded most of the way down this 2km road and had to walk the final bit to make sure I didn’t skid into the gate at the bottom of the hill.

Five Pound Crossing

Rocksberg was originally settled by the Zillman family in the mid to late 19th century. It’s the source of the Caboolture River which crosses the road at places with fascinating names like “Cockies Crossing”, “Ten Bob Crossing”, “Zillmans Crossing” and this one, “Five Pound Crossing”. The old photo is from the State Library of Queensland and shows some of the Zillman family playing in the water at “Five Pound Crossing”. Incidentally, “Ten Bob Crossing” – just a few hundred metres down the road, is still a great place to swim on a hot day.

Ocean View Paddock

Unfortunatley, what goes down must eventually come back up, and I had to start the long climb up Mountain View Road. This gravel road is a challenging climb. I rode all of it except for 150 metres which were in the middle of a bush fire (that was my excuse) and also happened to be a bit too steep even for a hill-o-phile like me. This view at the top is a panorama stitched together from several photos overlooking some pleasant farmland on the edge of the hill.

Sunset. Townsend Road, Ocean View

I made it back to Townsend Road just as the sun was going down over the D’Aguilar Ranges. As I saw it, I said out loud “Now THAT’s bloody beautiful”, and then happened to notice an old bloke at his letterbox looking at me. I think he agreed with me, so I didn’t feel too embarrassed.

All up about 24km with 750 metres of vertical climbing and 1,530kcal burned. I’m going to give this one 10 out of 10 on the tough-o-meter. The descent was precarious, I was by myself, and it took all my concentration to stay on the bike. The climb was the toughest I’ve done – 4km with some sections having a gradient well in excess of 30% (according to my Garmin track log). It was pretty hot (over 30C) and smokey from bushfires, so in my judgement this short ride really pushes the envelope.

If you can ride Mountainview Road from the bottom (Moorina Rd Intersection) to top (Oceanview Rd Intersection), please let me know. I live in hope that this monster of a hill can be beaten!

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