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.

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?

IMG_2349

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

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