I’m a huge fan of badly sung music. Not for everyday listening, but for when riding gets really challenging. For example, at the end of a long day, with 120 km of dead straight road to ride, into a headwind, in the dark and rain, with the prospect of a soggy bivy and soggier chips your only reward.
A serendipitous chain of events a weekend past meant I had the great fortune to ride my bike in a place I’ve never been before. The seed of the ride was planted on the previous weekend’s jaunt on Nelson’s classic Coppermine Loop. When Tristan, Anja and I looked across to the Mt Richmond Forest Park from Windy Point, and wondered what exquisite trail lay on unseen faces. And so the idea of a Dun Saddle - Rocks Hut - Browning Hut - Hackett loop was born.
When searching for a holiday destination, the constraints were tough but few. It needed to be warm to offset the cold winter we’d been suffering, cheap to fly to, and we wanted quiet roads and friendly people. We ended up landing in France’s Pacific territory of New Caledonia.
Riding a bike off road is a challenging affair, so why do people choose to ride in costume? This quandary struck me whilst riding the Three Ring Circus event at Wingello Forest Park amidst a gaggle of clowns.
With the tingly fingers and blackened toenails from April’s Cloudride finally subsiding, the itch had returned and I was well overdue for another bikepacking adventure, if only to break the daily monotony of a blustery Sydney existence.
With busy lives that seem to follow us all, long weekends spark a strong temptation to cram in an extended adventure. Whether by fortune or design, the four and a half day break over Easter 2014 coincided with the inaugural Monaro Cloudride.
The Trans-Savoie (pronounced Sav-wah, or Saveloy in franglais) is a daring experiment in big mountain enduro racing. While mountain biking needs another niche sub-discipline like it needs a sidewall slash, big mountain enduro gets a big tick from me.