winery > winery, mudgee

 

it’s summertime and if you’re wanting a weekend getaway out of sydney and into wine country, fuel up for a 4h road trip to mudgee.

now we’re approaching end of year, a therapeutic country cycle from winery to winery was on our agenda. with 40+ cellar doors, you can clean up just on wine tastings alone (remembering drink cycle responsibly – always have a plan b: walking)

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we picked up fat wheeled no gear cruisers at peiter van gent winery ($10/h, great port).

you’re on the main road mostly, upside is that it’s very flat. the wineries are all grouped together so hydrate yourself with white/red at lowe, peiter, short sheep, di lusso and robert oatley. di lusso estate is known for their ovens so get a bite there.

cows

the country skyline sure looks different from sydney. blue rolling mountains, never ending rows of vineyards, green and yellow fields spotted with grazing cattle.

flat track is true until you get to the outskirts, our final visit to lowe is on a hill. the track changes to gravel with grooves is like making very rough love.

worth it to get to lowe, they have their own little cycle course in the vineyard with lookouts to all of mudgee.

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don’t get drunk, cycle into a vineyard and eat all their grapes like black bike. very enjoyable summer cycle trip.

if you’re looking for a place to nest in mudgee, can recommend perry st hotel ($250/night) excellent location, fully fledged kitchen and bath salts included.

company: tipsy black bike

return distance: 11.6kms                

estimated time: 20 mins                         real time: 3h 30mins (lunch inc.)

x red bike

gearing up, girl 2015

red, the colour of chinese new year (happy new year!) and the theme of 2015 gear up girl to support the heart foundation. the costal track is set marking 3 years for this girl gang ride.

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the ride is on 8 march and you can peddle 20-40-60k. if keen to join the redbike team, please drop us a note! best way to celebrate summer, check out all the good times from last years ride. we welcome all sorts of wheels.

register now. x redbike

spring cycle 2014

st leonards park > sydney harbour bridge > iron cove > sydney olympic parkScreen shot 2014-10-25 at 8.14.14 PM

spring chickens at spring cycle this year. the red bike gang took on the classic polygon ride from one tourist attraction, the sydney harbour bridge to the next tourist attraction, the olympic park.

7am start. the journey to nth sydney was tetris. in one side of the carriage we stacked 16 bikes, no one could get off or get on. carriage demographics: lycra population 15, no gear cruiser population 1.

highlight. we rode over the sydney harbour bridge with 360 views!

on the bridge

after the bridge we did a spin around the botanical gardens  at mrs. macquaries point and headed back into suburbia through glebe and haberfield, missing anzac bridge all together.

this means inside of the spiral climb up to anzac bridge you got the corkscrew which is the first real gradual climb (saw a man on a unicycle, i don’t know how he did this – respect). somewhat hilly in the city and inner west until you get to iron cove.

iron cove

at iron cove we had a breakstop and ate the energy bars given in our packs (food rating, 8/10). by this point, my preferred breakstop meal would have been a lasagne.

from iron cove you detour around bicentennial park, cross concord rd bridge and back on silverwater bridge. the park underneath was holding this fancy old automobile showcase with dapper gents everywhere.

the track around meadow bank to the finish line is easy going.

look at these winners below (medals medals medals): medals

we finished up at the cathy freeman park, how fitting because we are olympic gods in olympic park. you know it must be true because we’re wearing 24 carat gold medals to match our precious metal thighs.

blendr

there was a little stall called bike n’ blend where you had to use leg-ectricity to make your own smoothie. once you’ve pedalled for 3 minutes, ring the bell and you get to drink your creation. excellent innovative homeware to have in your new kitchen.

a big congrats to the bike gang, another 55k bites the dust. from the north to the west, for some, completely new terrain.

x red bike

company: crouching tiger, mike-the-bike (cell fixie), bikebikebaby and figure8.

challenge ride course distance: 55km.

parramatta > huntleys point wharf > taronga zoo

they should really build bike exclusive mesh bridges over parramatta river to keep hazards off the road. it is very likely that i am that hazard.

i love roads, but i confess i’m not familiar with road rules and dynamics. i cross roads like i’m wearing a zebra suit. so, if you are a driver, here is an apology for my recklessness: sorry.

let’s call it truce. and comprise by writing letters to sydney of city to make more cycleways.

this issue is apparent when i ride into the big city, you urban jungle you. we did our usual route to putney then went on further to huntleys cove. huntleys point wharf is cut-the-ribbon brand new. if you’ve got a wharf/ jetty fetish like me, welcome.

huntley cove

i’ve always want to take our bikes on boats. the rivercat/sydney ferries and well, all public transport aren’t bicycle friendly. we need bike boxes in train carriages, bike racks installed on the back of buses and cabs etc.

from huntleys cove we bob to circular quay and changed boats. rivecat

we wanted to cycle in taronga zoo.

you cannot cycle in taronga zoo.

so we cycled from the wharf to the other entrance where the sky line drops you. it’s a steep incline up and smooth curve down. from there, you can see into the zoo and check out the resident peacock who we motivated to stand up and walk away from us.

after, you can take military rd and cross sydney harbour bridge but we were warned against it because we’re not lycra and it’s a volatile road.  and whatever.

bike light do it yourselfi saw this bike in surry hills and it deserves a shout out for ‘diy’.

deets:

company: black bike

ferry distance: 22.6km, bike distance: 21. 9 km

estimated time:  2 h 45 mins, real time: 6 h (motivating peacocks, waiting for ferries and food stops)

x red bike

night light, rhodes > bicentennial park after dark

when you buy something, you will buy other somethings to go with that something.  so organically, I’ve become a bike accessory hoarder.

modest collection: 2 bike locks, front and back LED lights, a swedish handmade bell, rayncape, lycra suit, turtle shell bike speakers, a broken outdoor tech speaker bike mount, a pair of broken DIY portable speakers, cyclometer, isotonic energy sports gel.

I haven’t used all of these yet but we were keen for a night ride. it’s a struggle to find well lit off road cycleways so we chose rhodes promenade and bicentennial park for familiarity.

night ride

our front LED lights are moon mask 5 ($40.54 AU), swayed by CHOICE magazine. Our backlights are different, I have the knog blinder ($41.72 AU) and black bike uses the knog skink ($20.85 AU). we purchased these at wiggle.com.au.

all these lights are rechargeable using USB. knogs are a bit over priced. my blinder feels at least 5 times brighter than the skink but because of its intricate design, it’s difficult to press the buttons and they tend to get stuck under the rubber. visibility, it wins over but usability, the skink is easier and feels more durable.

knog blinder

along the promenade it’s wonderful, once you enter the park, it’s a different ball game. pitch black. the moon mask 5 made it rideable and gives out impress light for such a tiny device but it was a struggle to see more than 6 m in front.

we were going to go down the bird watch path but chickened out big time. silverwater prison is just around the bushes. we value life.

the track’s lighting is fragmented and though freeing to ride in darkness until it gets creepy, we craved a longer route – suggestions?

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a quick shout out to the handyman boys at blackman’s and papillionaire for all the top service and doing it with loads of charm.

deets (unplanned ride):

company: black bike needed another pair of pants.

actual distance: 9.2 km

x red bike

gear up girl social ride : parramatta foreshores > wentworth common

if you’ve ever fantasied joining some fierce bikies, you’ve found one.

lock away your good-looking son and small children.

the red bike gang

riding in excellent company is key for cruisers, mostly because speed and inclines can’t be.

red bike teamed up with 6 others at gear up girl starting from parramatta foreshores, across silverwater bridge, through newington armoury to wentworth common. a well-worn path.

gear up girl is an event run by bicycle nsw encouraging women’s bike riding. there are 3 different rides – challenge, park and river. we paid $30 dollars for river and your 20kms supports the kid’s cancer project.

we started off in amidst light pro bikes; mountain bikes; bikes with baby carriers, bikes that had a leashed dog running beside them; little kids on tricycles; pink bikes. every piece of the bike pie was represented, even the minority, the cruiser bike.

the volunteers were pretty cute, standing at corners cheering you on as if you were cadel evans snagging the tour de france.

fun in between your legs

at wentworth common they had a festival where after a long hard ride you could get a massage and of course, manicure. there was some live music and we hijacked a trisled, this bullet with pedals in it. I hadn’t seen one before and it wasn’t really my size, you’re mean’t to sit in it but I wasn’t tall enough so I was lying down. it was some out of this world experience like I was in a half rocket half coffin.

trisled

red bike was also lucky enough to win some cool prize for the most referrals. in my pack was a knog blinder rear light, party frank knog bike lock and a bunch of lyrca.

lyrca on my cruiser bike, one day I shall cycle in the daylight but, not today.

a horribly big thank you to the red bike girls who made the distance to join me at 9am. you’re all absolutely gun riding with little fuel.

some manicures.

put the fun between your legs was made in sweden and shipped her bike all the way here! black betty chopped bits of her brother’s bike up to fit. ruby sparks is some adventure traveller. santacruz is a hybrid creation with a couch for a bike seat. red blaze rebelled out in her dad’s bike. diamond black bakes her own bread.

you all have a special place in my heart, please don’t brake it.

a shout out to my friend who was a boy and could not ride with us, grease lightening. I stand back in awe of you; you always go above and beyond.

deets:

company: put the fun between your legs, black betty, ruby sparks, santacruz, red blaze and diamond black.

river ride course distance: 20 kms.

x red bike

parramatta> putney punt > rhodes > bicentennial park

after so many people peddling rumours about the tracks around meadow bank and putney, we did it.

standard route out of parramatta but instead of going over silverwater bridge, go under. at first, it seems a little bare compared to newington armoury on the opposite side, but in a refreshing way – low over hangings and brand new mesh bridges connect this costal ride all the way to meadow bank.

many costal outlooks off the tracks

many costal outlooks off the tracks

a nice break spot is putney park. they’ve got a giant spiderweb and slide, both worth a climb just for the views. there is a little water feature for kids, and the park opens up to the river for big kids.

we were disappointed to find the putney punt (mortlake ferry) was on a very indulgent break until 2:45pm so if you’re hopeful to get your bike onto sydney’s last cable ferry then make note of these operating times:

weekdays: 6.45 to 9.25am – 2.45 to 6.15pm.

weekends: every half an hour between 10:45am to 5:15pm from putney.

we backtracked to concord bridge, then followed the rhodes promenade straight down to the opening of bicentennial park. though much of rhodes is still a work in progress, the boardwalk is lovely and with lights all queued in, it makes a beautiful night ride.

rhodes boardwalk & cycleway

if we got our timing right, this would have been the perfect river circuit. recommended.

this ride was soundtracked by my new turtleshell outdoors speaker and claw, a gift from black bike. will review after a couple more rides. for the last month of summer, here are some loved tunes for the upwards crawl, the fly down and all those other times in between.

deets:

company: black bike, purple mystique from the 90s, arched grey bike (whose seat suspension broke along with a pedal, the chain fell off and the bell was lost also).

good (looking) company is essential.

good (looking) company is essential

estimated road: 37ks,  real road: 33 ks ( missed the full circuit because no ferry )

estimated time: 2 h 37, real time:  5 h ( inc. lunch and children’s playgrounds )

summer loving and 50 shades browner,

x red bike