Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Ticked THAT box.

Around The Bay in a Day. A 210km bike ride around Port Phillip Bay, Melbourne to Melbourne.

There and back from home in five days.

On Friday we drove to Sydney with the kids (around 600km).. left them with the grand-parentals, dismantled the tandem and packed it up into an extended cardboard bike box (ok, so my beloved Bike Mechanic did most of that tricky stuff)... got up early Saturday morning, drove to the airport, kissed the bike goodbye into the oversize baggage section, picked it up in Melbourne, caught a Maxi Taxi to the motel, put it all back together again, did a 12km return test ride in 30+ degrees through the centre of Melbourne.....

..... got up at some very ungodly hour (ie. 4.30am), rode back through the city centre to the start...

did the ride....

.... and pretty much did it all again in reverse (from the dismantling of the bike bit) to get home again last night.

Fortunately the weather gods sort of smiled on us... instead of heat (it was 30 degrees on the Saturday - and 38 degrees for the same ride last year!) we got a cold southerly - so the temperature didn't get above 18 degrees! (talking Celsius here...).... The downside was that riding along the edge of the bay wasn't as picturesque or pleasant as it might have been on a mild and sunny spring day.

We did it all without too much trouble .. (unless you count my body sabotaging me - I ask you, is it fair for a woman's body to betray her by giving her 'that time' just in time for the next marathon bike ride only three weeks after the last time (and last marathon cycling effort...)???)

Total riding time, about 8 hours. First hour was painfully slow, riding in a big bunch of people from the start - I think we only managed to get about 5km in the first 3/4 of an hour. And we got a puncture about 20km into it! After that we didn't stop too many times, though loo stops were a priority, and by the end my bum had pretty much had enough.

Generally there weren't as many slow and erratic riders as on the Brisbane-Gold Coast ride, so we didn't feel quite as paranoid as we.. I.. might have after the previous weekend! Mind you, we had one near miss when some bystanders with a dog on an extendable leash let the dog rush the curb, only pulling it up at the gutter. There were more than a few 'whoas' in the group we were riding in.

We only heard later about the deliberate injury of bike riders on their way to the ride by some drunk b******s in a car. And the other accident.

Otherwise, we felt that Melbourne drivers were far more courteous than Sydney (or Coffs/Pacific Highway) drivers - I guess they are, in general, far more used to bikes; we were amazed by all the bike lanes, even right through the centre of the city!

I think I'm looking pretty happy to have finished it, although I knew (after a well-earned beer!) I had to climb back on and ride the 6 km back to the motel!

Strangely today I am still feeling a bit weary. Can't imagine why.


Major applause.

Sitting here grinning right back at you.
Can't believe I just plum forgot to come see you - I wasn't even drunk or anything! :(
Adam's now riding through the city on his twice-weekly ride into work. He's finding it more bike friendly than he'd imagined. Plus, there's so many, he usually joins a group and they have the run of the road, bascially
Congrats! (You make it look so fun!)
I'm glad your arm is well enough to do the jaunt. Fine athletes heal fast, I hear!
Wow - many congratulations for a job well done!! I've driven around of course, I'm sorry I wasn't there to wave you on your way. I'm currently in Paris on a fairly bleak autumn day.

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