This is one of Allan’s regular ‘classic’ rides for Cycling Geelong. This year, riders were Allan M, Kelly, Karen, Kevin, George, Barbara and Dirk, David S, Keith, Virginia, Denise and Richard, Tina and Russell. The ride start was Red Rock Picnic Ground, part way up the Red Rock volcano at Alvie, north west of Colac.
This was the starting point for Allan’s first Red Rock ride, way back in around 2003! In this group, along with Allan, were Helen and John, Rod C, Marilyn T, Joy, Coralie? and several others. It was a drought year, with the surrounding lakes mainly dry. That year the group rode to the north and east, skirting Lake Corangamite, and through volcanic plains, lakes and dairy farms back towards Beeac, returning via Warrion – with a stop at the Warrion Pub. From the following year, rides began in Colac.
This year’s ride made use of the club’s bike trailer, leaving from Rippleside at 8am, with a second pickup at Waurn Ponds. The group arrived at Red Rock Picnic Area at 10.30.
Thanks to Allan M, ride leader for this report and photos.
When we arrived at Red Rock we went up to the top at the look out for all to see over the western plains and the lakes around there. Then we came back down to the picnic ground to unload the bikes .
The wind was blowing at a stiff NW so the whole group agreed to do the 50 K ride and look after one another. Off we went with Kelly yelling at me that I hadn’t locked my car. I was at least 100 meters down the hill before I stopped. Richard H was delegated to take the keys back up the steep hill!
It was great travelling with the wind to Coragulac. We then turned left into a side wind to Warrion Three of the slower riders turned off just before Warrion to bypass Beeac saving 8 k, with the whip opting to support them. From Beeac we had a tail wind all the way to the M1 (Princes Highway). A potentially dangerous right turn across the dual highway and round the roundabout was successfully negotiated with our ‘faster’ group crossed back to the northern side of the highway to take the road down to Colac Lake.
Just before the Colac Botanic Gardens we met up with the other 4 riders. We then took a back street so as to come down to Murray Street to the La Porchetta for lunch at about 1pm. We spent about 1 ½ hours there as they were quite busy. There were lots of talk and laughter and friendly banter. We all had a good meal then headed for the highway again.
The sky looked very dark and there is a chance of getting wet. As we had arrived at the cross over to leave the highway back towards Red Rock, it just poured down. Some of us tried to get our rain jackets on .
The rain stopped for a while and we made good time. On the way from Cororooke to Coragulac it thundered lightning rain and hail we were like drowned rats. The faster riders were under a shop veranda from there. We had 5k to go. The water was gushing down the road like a River, and we had to ride in the middle of the road to keep out of the flood.
It was nice to see the “Red Rock 300 metres” sign. That last 300 metres up to the cars was extra tough as water had washed gravel all over the road surface.
We packed up, took some more pictures then headed for home . Once again, the trailer didits job admirably! Not a thing went wrong. Most of the riders said that they would do it again.
Next time we might revert back to starting in Colac, with the lunch stop at Colac.
My report – Allan
Allan finally reached home at 6pm.