Monday, March 03, 2008


The next adventure.

The next family adventure is nigh - next weekend in fact. We are heading off to loop a lake.


Specifically, we are going in the Loop the Lake event. It is an 85km bike ride around Lake Macquarie, which is basically a bloody big lake down near Newcastle. Which is not too far north of Sydney - depending I suppose on your definition of 'not too far.' (It is under two hours from Sydney these days, with the freeway - but more like 5 hours from here. We will drive down on Saturday to Marc's mum's place about an hour and a bit north of the start. I am trying not to think of the early start we'll have to have on Sunday morning!)

By 'we', I mean, as usual, all of us, on the triplet and tandem.

Well, it just seemed like another box to tick!

So a bit of last ditch training was in order this weekend, and so we headed off yesterday morning for a 50km + training ride. The route I chose encompassed parts of other local rides we have done, and all I can say is that I reckon we've done enough hill training.

Marc had, last week, replaced the chain rings on my tandem, because on recent rides I'd had a bit of trouble with what you call 'chain suck' - basically the chain jamming and falling off the smallest chain ring (and on one occasion actually breaking.) Which is slightly inconvenient, as you might imagine, as well as leading to a lot of undesirable language on my part.

Today Cait and I were pretty chuffed to be able to shift up and down with no dramas. (Well, I was doing the shifting, but she was also pretty happy we weren't jamming chains every few kms!)

The only downside of the ride (apart from the 'up' of the hills - and the wretched southerly headwind we rode into for around 30km) was that the triplet got a flat about 3 or so km from the end. We changed that, but then got another one just as we arrived back at the township where we'd left the car! (So an anticlimax to finish, as Marc and I continued the last kilometre on my tandem to collect the car, and then drove back to get the kids and the triplet.)

We were all a bit weary afterwards (and I wouldn't have minded another.. oh.. three hours sleep this morning!) but the 'why the hell do I do this?' factor was of course, as usual, fairly quickly replaced by a certain sense of achievement once we'd finished. [Some call it delusional. We call it 'The Retrospect'.]

Although Caitlin's "COOOOL!" just after we zoomed down, down, down at over 60 kph after a bloody long slog up, up, up, was worth bottling. As was her assertion that said slog up was worth it for that 'yee ha' downhill. Maybe we have our kids hooked on 'speed'.

Sometimes I wonder (and worry) about how much and why they enjoy these big rides that we do. Particularly when we drag them out 'for training'. (And for how much longer they will do so.) Perhaps it is, for them, also the sense of achievement afterwards. Cait does seem to enjoy being able to say nonchalantly to her friends 'We've just been on a 50km bike ride'. Though she backed up yesterday's ride with 2 hours of dance practice for the school musical, so she was theoretically more 'weary' last night than the rest of us.

Perhaps it is that more often than not when we do these rides, we buy them snacks that they wouldn't otherwise get! Yesterday we bought apple pies at a store 20km in to the ride, and then burgers and chips at the pub on the way back (with only 12 km to go.)

Maybe they enjoy (like I do) the smiles and reactions we elicit from people that we pass. While the tandem may or may not get noticed, it's pretty unusual not to get a double-take as the triplet whooshes by (and when Cait and I are riding behind, we get to see the responses. Parents pointing it out to their kids. Boys on bikes exclaiming and saying they want one. Older folk smiling broadly at the family out riding together.

Whatever it is, we'll enjoy it while it lasts.


Wow - I would have counted the 50km training ride as a family adventure! We are flat out getting to the beach all together.

I am sure they are storing lots of family folklore for their own children one day - can you imagine the ammunition they have for their children not wanting to do something?

"You're lucky - our parents made us cycle around lakes 5 hours away, and we didn't even have our own bikes"
Well, they actually do have their own bikes! LOL. Only they don't have it so tough that we "make" them do these rides on their own bikes! I hope they remember that when they are doing the 'Looxury' spiel to their kids!

(Actually, Cait is making noises, and actions, about wanting her own road bike. I think she WANTS to see if she could do these rides on her own!!)
you are all amazing - we need some more pictures of the bikes.

What great adventures you have.
Hi baby~amore... well, currently I have 67 posts tagged 'bike riding'.. but they don't all show up when you click on that label. A Blogger failing I guess. But still, in that lot you'll get a few pics of us on bikes over the past year.

You can also see more of us on bikes at though I haven't updated that for almost a year now! Oops! There's a link on that blog to our first Big Ride. Unfortunately I never got round to writing up our Big Ride 2007.

I have great plans to turn our Family Website into something more, and including all sorts of photos, stories, and tandem talk.

Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?