Strathbogie Slider

Organise and talk about upcoming rides group rides. Don't forget to check the "Find a ride" calendar too!
NixTrader
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby NixTrader » Sun 15 Mar 2015, 9:40 pm

Cleatus:
I didn't take any photos, myself. One of the guys did he is sending them to me.
I've asked the first group for any tips for the second group. I'll try and write up a ride report in next few days.

Claude:
Yes those climbs, I had blocked those from my memory. The first is strange because it happens in short sharp steps - no wonder I had to drive it a few times to work out where to say it started on the route docs. The second starts hard and keeps getting harder. I'll sure try and travel a bit lighter next week.
I'd rather remember the bit where we pulled up at the cafe after a dusty 20km gravel climb to see the owner had set up a big table for us under a huge shade tree with 2 large plastic barrels of chilled fresh water from a natural spring out the back of the cafe. Food was pretty good too, but really she had us with the water!

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Claude Cat
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby Claude Cat » Mon 16 Mar 2015, 9:54 am

The climbs look like the best bit ;)

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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby NixTrader » Wed 18 Mar 2015, 1:16 pm

Canuck wrote:
Hint: ride reports with pics are expected for this ride now :mrgreen:


Ride report is on this link ... with some key lessons for next week.
https://nixtrader.wordpress.com/2015/03/18/strathbogie-slider-ride-1/

I took the picture below when I was doing a reccy drive for this ride. I've always thought it was a pity we wouldn't be riding this section at golden hour with the setting sun coming through the trees like this. However, it transpired that we did ride this section late in the day when it was this pretty ...

Image

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Claude Cat
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby Claude Cat » Wed 18 Mar 2015, 1:33 pm

Looks great!

fixie
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby fixie » Wed 18 Mar 2015, 9:35 pm

This does indeed look great.

Without wishing to downplay your efforts in organising this I would just take exception to the comment in the info page that there is not an Eroica type ride. There have been a few genuine L'Eroica rides out of Beechworth with the same Eroica rules, i.e. no new technology bikes. Regrettably they have not been run for the last couple of years which may explain why you may not have known about them. Having been there, not only are there gravel and strade rosso surfaces but a full spectrum of what our heroes experienced. One that I went on had what appeared to be railway line ballast for a section which I was able to survive on even though I was on singles(tubulars).
Stay fixed. Keeping a cool head.

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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby NixTrader » Wed 18 Mar 2015, 11:17 pm

fixie wrote:This does indeed look great.

Without wishing to downplay your efforts in organising this I would just take exception to the comment in the info page that there is not an Eroica type ride. There have been a few genuine L'Eroica rides out of Beechworth with the same Eroica rules, i.e. no new technology bikes. Regrettably they have not been run for the last couple of years which may explain why you may not have known about them. Having been there, not only are there gravel and strade rosso surfaces but a full spectrum of what our heroes experienced. One that I went on had what appeared to be railway line ballast for a section which I was able to survive on even though I was on singles(tubulars).


Actually I do know about Beechworth L'Eroica which was run as part of the Beechworth Gran Fondo weekend. There was one in 2013, then they planned another for early 2014. I registered and pre-paid to ride it. Then the organisers cancelled the whole fondo event - and refunded my money. My understanding is there was community backlash against all the road closures. Also from memory the Beechworth L'Eroica ride was only 50-60km.

So my comment was that there isn't a current event for me to ride in Vic, so I decided to make my own ride, rather than hope someone else would step up. The only current big event in Australia that is close to L'Eroica is Strade Bianche in Noosa, Qld.

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Heather
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby Heather » Thu 19 Mar 2015, 8:59 pm

OK, I'm in (along with Cleatus & Toyopet). We have worked out logistics, planning on driving to Violet Town and catching the train back to Seymour.

Looking forward to this :mrgreen:
I'm not bossy, I just have better ideas!

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cleatus
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby cleatus » Thu 19 Mar 2015, 9:37 pm

Heather wrote:Looking forward to this :mrgreen:


Same here. Haven't done a long gravel grind for a while.

I'll see if the Violet Town pub lists its tap beers online. :D

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Heather
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby Heather » Thu 19 Mar 2015, 9:41 pm

cleatus wrote:
Heather wrote:Looking forward to this :mrgreen:


Same here. Haven't done a long gravel grind for a while.

I'll see if the Violet Town pub lists its tap beers online. :D


From the Violet Town pub website: we have CD, VB gold and bulmers all on tap :shock:
I'm not bossy, I just have better ideas!

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Claude Cat
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby Claude Cat » Sun 22 Mar 2015, 8:58 pm

What a great day. Great to meet you all.

Extra special thanks to Nick for:
1. organizing this ride
2. despite having a mechanical 10km into the ride he still came make to make sure we were all ok and everything was running as expected.
The day wouldn't have happened without you Nick, cheers!

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Heather
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby Heather » Sun 22 Mar 2015, 9:03 pm

Ride report: my legs hurt
More later

Awesome ride, thanks Nick.
I'm not bossy, I just have better ideas!

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cleatus
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby cleatus » Sun 22 Mar 2015, 9:29 pm

Another thank you from me Nick. Awesome ride and a grand day out. Bummer about your crank but I suppose at least you did the ride last week.
Nice to meet you Claude cat and thank you for the great company Toyopet & Heather.
I'll try to post something with more substance tomorrow. :)

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Claude Cat
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby Claude Cat » Sun 22 Mar 2015, 9:46 pm

I can report that Heather descends on gravel like the devil!!

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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby NixTrader » Sun 22 Mar 2015, 11:26 pm

Thanks folks .. pleasure meeting you all. Glad you enjoyed it.

Image

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Toyopet
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Re: Strathbogie Slider

Postby Toyopet » Mon 23 Mar 2015, 8:47 am

Ride Report.

Well, what a ride! Riders came from all over and joined in from various locations. For many it was train from Violet Town back to Seymour, with cars left at Violet Town. For some it was train from Euroa to Seymour. And joining in at Seymour directly.

V-Line made the ride interesting before it even started, with our southbound train coming into the wrong platform at Violet Town :evil: . This had riders and other waiting passengers scurrying to get onto the right platform before the train departed. There was good bike storage in the train’s baggage car.

Riders came from Melbourne – north, east, south, inner. Castlemaine. Bendigo. Kyabram.

There were bikes of all types. A couple of Trek roadies, a good selection of cyclo-cross, a hybrid/commuter, a stealth de-logo’d Repco roadie which had been lovingly restored and upgraded, a 20 year old steel-framed Fondriest roadie with beautiful chrome-work in showroom/wall-art condition, and others.

The weather was on our side. Clear skies. Cool morning. Predicted maximum temperature in the mid to high 20’s. The possibility of headwinds, but not too strong.

Priorities first. After the train arrived at Seymour, there was a café stop before we even started. This allowed for introductions and a good coffee before we commenced. The café stop delayed our start a little, putting us slightly behind schedule. But we knew where we stood due to detailed timing information from the previous week’s ride along the same route. We set off at a leisurely pace and soon cleared Seymour’s outer limits.

Disaster struck about 10km into the ride, with our ride guide/leader’s bike’s left crank arm deciding that it didn’t like his bike anymore, and undergoing permanent separation :o . Poor Nixtrader now had a bike which was no longer rideable. Fortunately this occurred only 10km into the ride. Even more fortunately it was a gentle downhill roll for him to get back to the start at Seymour - although his car was still at Violet Town.
Our group continued on, leaderless. However, Nixtrader’s good ride notes, gpx file and directions meant that we were able to continue on as planned.

We soon hit the gravel and uphill sections. This was a challenge, especially for those on the skinnier tyres. Gravel, corrugations and deep sand drifts made detailed bike control imperative. Deep ruts also appeared occasionally on the “roads”, plus there were some rocky outcrops on the surface to mix things up a bit. The need to continually focus on the ride surface meant that some of the nicer views could only be glimpsed for short periods of time. But beautiful views they were.

A pinch flat on the rear tyre of one of the road-bikes was quickly sorted out. The location was well worth stopping at anyway; in a valley by some rocky rapids in a fast flowing creek. Very picturesque.

Some more climbing. Some more rocks/sand/dirt. Some more jarring corrugations. Some plagues of locusts - a "biblical" ride(?). And soon we were at Ruffy, about a third of the way into the ride.

The café at Ruffy is an oasis in the middle of nowhere. Expansive old oak trees shaded the outdoor lunch tables. Permanently installed retro bikes adorned the cafe's fence and added to the atmosphere. Occasional acorns dropped in our vicinity, and bike helmets may have come in handy if one of them dropped on a rider’s head. Nixtrader had set up a much appreciated water refill station at this café the previous day, so our bidons were replenished as required. The food, drink and service were great at this lunch-stop.

We could easily have called it quits there, as it was so relaxing sitting under the oak trees enjoying good food, drink and company. But Violet Town was calling, with more hills, gravel, dirt and corrugations in between. So off we went to tackle the remainder of the ride.

Some riders had to be back in Melbourne by a certain time, so took a bail-out option and headed straight back to Euroa. The remainder continued on for some surprisingly steep climbs which were encountered during the second part of our day in the Strathbogie Ranges. The steepest parts of these climbs had riders zig-zagging or walking to get to the top, very thankful that the steep sections weren’t too long. Figures of 20% were bandied about. It certainly seemed like it.

A little more distance under our belts and some new scenic areas soon had us riding into the Strathbogie township. By this time, Nixtrader had endured a two hour wait for his northbound train at Seymour (with the train again coming into the wrong platform :evil: :evil: ), made it to Violet Town to pick up his car, then driven back to Strathbogie to wait for us there. What a guy! 8-)

The time spent Strathbogie café stop was shorter than Ruffy, as we were still full from all the delicious lunchtime food. However, there were good drinks and milkshakes on offer at Strathbogie. Plus another of Nixtrader’s water drop-offs for bidon refills. This water drop-off was nicely chilled!

Note: these isolated townships don’t have mains water, so if you ask the shop to refill your bidon, they’re using their own expensive bought water or boiled tank water.

After the Strathbogie café stop, it was time for the (mostly) downhill run back to Violet Town. The group split in two, with some riders following the planned dirt route, and others opting for an alternative sealed road route.

Violet town was reached by remaining riders well ahead of the latest time schedule. Nixtrader had even marked a finish line for us, which enhanced the feeling of a great day’s adventure and achievement.

Some celebratory drinks were had in an outdoor setting in front of the Violet Town pub, accompanied tales of what had occurred on this memorable ride, including a Snake Tales story for the riders on the dirt road back to Violet Town :shock: .

Over 100km. Up and over the Strathbogie Ranges; both the south section and the north section. Only the occasional car. Heaps of climbing. Heaps of gravel. Heaps of fun! :D

All in all, a wonderful day was had by the riders, thanks to Nixtrader’s meticulous ride scoping, planning, organisation, communication and support. Plus the keen riders themselves. It was a shame that Nixtrader couldn’t complete yesterday’s ride due to his mechanical problem near the start. However, he completed the same ride with other riders the previous weekend, so was with us in sprit all the way.

Thanks Nixtrader.


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