Cycling Geelong Christmas Party – Wednesday, December 11th, 2019

Fyansford Hotel Function Room

The room was bursting with cyclists’ chatter.  Stephanie had done a superb job of decorating the tables, and everyone was in festive mood.

After a bumper year for Cycling Geelong, with many thousands of kilometres ridden, millions of pedal turns, and coffees too numerous to count, this was a most fitting party to end the year, and celebrate Christmas.

CYCLING GEELONG PRESIDENTS’ AWARD*

After a year with our Moonlight Ride Queen, Tina, it was time for the President’s Award to be given to a new recipient.  This year there were joint winners.  Two members had put in many hours, without turning a pedal, to ensure that our members could ride far afield from Geelong, in certainty that their bikes would arrive safely at their destination.  Allan and Kelly have spent many hours, and probably a few sleepless nights, planning, drafting and researching the best possible solution to refurbish the club bike trailer, and many hours sourcing parts, getting welding done, building, painting, and ensuring roadworthiness.  Up until now, it was a difficult job to load bikes, and the trailer could not deal with some non-standard bikes.  After the refurbishment, the trailer is stronger, simple to load, and the bikes are held securely, allowing for easy towing over long distances.  The trailer was trialed with the Drysdale ride participants, and since then has been used for the annual Goldfields Tour and the Red Rock ride.  This was a most fitting win.  Allan and Kelly are long-time members (Allan a foundation member and Life Member) and have contributed greatly to the club over many years.  Congratulations, Kelly and Allan.

After this formal business was over, Santa appeared on his trusty fold-up bike, to give out the annual Kris kringle gifts to everyone.  Santa then led the rousing singing of cycling-themed Christmas Carols, with words modified by our bard, Doug Merritt (who, unfortunately was unable to appear in person, though he has been seen around Geelong, on various bikes since).

Thanks to Stephanie and Geoff for all the planning for the event.  Thanks to all participants at the party, and special thanks to Santa and Doug (wordsmith) for making the function such a festive one.

*The Cycling Geelong Presidents’ Award is awarded annually to a club member chosen by the president.  The trophy was made by Peter Smith, a long-term member and past president.

Allan’s Mystery Ride – On Ya Bike! 2019 -5: Wednesday, October 30th, 2019

Lucky thirteen!  That’s the number of cyclists who appeared for the final ride of this year’s On Ya Bike! rides.  It was beautiful sunny weather.  Summer was near, so it was time to ditch the ‘bird strike’ helmet with cable ties.

The last ride of the series is traditionally named “Allan’s Mystery Ride”.  No one knows the route till they get the start at Rippleside Park.  This year Allan had delegated ride leadership to Kelly, with Dirk as tail ender.  Allan had planned the ride, and rode the entire ride, including arriving by bike from Norlane West.

The route took the cyclists to the north, along the new Balmoral Quay path to St Helens, the on to the docks area.  As the riders turned right past the old Ford site, a motorist yelled, “You’ve lost someone!”  Dirk had a puncture.  He sent the riders on while he fixed it with the help of Paul and Allan.

The second incident happened on the ascent towards Geelong Grammar.  It was Clive this time – another puncture.  Helen went back to make sure he was OK.  He was going to fix the puncture, and then, with Dirk, join the ride.  Helen rode on alone past GGS.

Attack! Attack!  From nowhere a direct hit to the ear.  The magpie struck, not just once but four times.  With no cable ties, Helen was a pedaling duck, and the terrorist bird took full advantage!

Bulls eye on the ear lobe

The rest of the group were taking a break at Limeburners Lagoon.  Dirk, Allan and Paul soon rejoined the group.  Clive had decided that, with a slow leak in his tyre, his best option was to return to Rippleside Park, stopping a couple of times to add air.

A large wattle tree was across Hovells Creek Path at the Lara highway underpass.  Bikes were passed over, and the riders continued up Rennie Street to Old Geelong Road and rode towards Little River.  Helen left the group at McIntyres Road to ride a shorter route.  The main group continued on, without further incident, to Little River, returning to Lara via Mill Road.  Coffee was at Xpresso.  Helen rejoined the group for coffee.

The return was via the Hovells Creek Path to Rennie Street, and then, to avoid the fallen tree, via roads to Geelong Grammar and the waterfront path.

The final puncture was at North Shore – Don had succumbed.  His mate stayed to help with the repair.  The depleted group returned to Rippleside – Rick, Allan and Dirk peeled off on the way.

Despite the drama, it was declared a most enjoyable and successful ride.

Thanks to Kelly, ride leader, Allan, ride organiser and tail-ender Dirk.  Thanks to all cyclists.  We look forward to seeing you again next year, if not before, On Ya Bike!

(Helen’s magpie helmet will no return to service till December!)

On Ya Bike! 5 – Allan’s Mystery Ride

Ride maps – click to go to detail in Map My Ride

On Ya Bike! 5 – shortened route

On Ya Bike! 4 – Torquay: October 24, 2019

On a glorious day for riding (and for the Geelong Cup) Dirk led 20 cyclists on a ride to Torquay.

Horseshoe Bend Road is closed for road works north of Blackgate Road, so the ride route took Barwon Heads Road to Warralily Boulevard.  Barwon Heads Road now carries very heavy traffic, even with a public holiday in Geelong.  The closure of the bike lane for road works for some distance made for less than enjoyable riding.  However, the ride along the wide bike lane in W Boulevard is a delight.  Doug joined the ride at this point.

There was a mix up with a puncture which resulted in a mislaid rider (sorry, Hermann), but thanks to our wonderful tail-ender (who, having repaired his puncture, located Hermann and rode with him) the riders regrouped at Maccas Torquay for a refreshment break.  (Most Torquay coffee shops were closed for the public holiday).

The return trip was via the same route, except that the ride through Warralily was on a delightful bike path beside a wetland park.

Thanks to Dirk and David for their wonderful support as ride leader and tail-ender and to all those who supported the ride.

The last of this year’s On Ya Bike!  rides for Seniors Month is tomorrow, October 30th leaving from Rippleside Park at 8.30 am.  Please note the earlier start for this longer ride.  This final ride is “Allan’s Mystery Ride” – we find the destination and route when we arrive to ride.  The ride is, I hear around 65km, and to the north of Geelong I believe.  Riders need to be able to maintain an average (on the bike) speed of around 20kph for this ride. 

On Ya Bike! 2 – Geelong Circuit: Wednesday, October 9

Despite the wet, cold and windy morning, 14 cyclists attended the second On Ya Bike! ride, led by Helen.  Unfortunately, three more cyclists, who had planned to ride, were unable to – due to work commitments, punctures and transport difficulties.

The short circuit of Geelong began at Rippleside, taking in the new waterfront path at Balmoral Quay, Cement Works Rail Trail to the old Cement Works at Herne Hill, and the new path through Fyansford development to Fyansford.  While this last path is off road, it’s steep in places, and a little daunting, especially when wet.  However, everyone made it safely to the Barwon River Path for the short ride to Swanston Street.  Refreshments were at Little Creatures – most welcome after the convoluted ride so far.  The weather had improved so the group opted to sit outside, in sun or shade depending on rider preference.

The ride then continued along Swanston Street to the waterfront and returned to Rippleside via the waterfront path.

Thanks to all riders, and especially Dirk who did an admirable job as tail-ender.

Next week’s On Ya Bike! goes to Drysdale, via the Bellarine Rail Trail.  The starting point is the Rail Trail, corner Car Street and Tucker Street (near the Showgrounds entrance), at 9am.  This ride is mainly on an excellent shared path, with a short on-road section in Drysdale (to get to that essential coffee stop).  The distance is around 38km.

See you there On Ya Bike!

On Ya Bike! 2019 1 – Barwon River Circuit: Wednesday October 2nd

Cycling Geelong historian, Rod Charles, led 21 cyclists around the river path, with stops on the way for short talks about the history of Geelong around the river.  It was a perfect day for cycling.  This was the first of the annual On Ya Bike! series, run by Cycling Geelong as part of Seniors Month.

It was wonderful to have Maxine, who was an original rider in the very first On Ya Bike! rides, and a regular rider, meet the group at the start, despite not being able to ride.

Stops were near La Trobe Terrace (woollen mills), the Breakwater, Princes Bridge (Shannon Avenue) and Queen’s Park, before a final stop for coffee at Barwon Edge.

Thanks to Rod for once again leading this most enjoyable and enlightening ride.  Every year, not matter how many history rides I’ve been on, I’ve learned something new about Geelong’s history.

This Wednesday’s On Ya Bike! ride is a 29kmGeelong circuit, on roads and paths, taking in the old Cement Works Railway path to the Cement Works, the new path through Fyansford development, the river, Eastern Park and Geelong Waterfront.  This ride begins at 9am on Wednesday, October 9th, at Rippleside Park near the Adventure Playground.  There’s plenty of parking available.

On Ya Bike! Ride every Wednesday in October

You are invited to join Cycling Geelong for a friendly On Ya Bike! ride any (or every) Wednesday in October.

The schedule is as follows:

Date Title Starting time & Place Distance Grade and details  
Wednesday 2rd October Historical around the Barwon 9:00am

Balyang Sanctuary Car Park, Marnock Road, Newtown

20km Easy (all bike paths) Rod Charles
Wednesday 9th October Geelong Circuit 9:00am Rippleside Park (near Adventure Playground) 30km Easy (sealed bike paths and roads) Helen
Wednesday 16th  October Drysdale via Bellarine Rail Trail 9:00am Bellarine Rail Trail (cnr Tucker Street/Carr Street)

near Showgrounds entrance

36km Easy (mainly sealed bike paths) Doug Merritt
Wednesday 23th October Torquay South Barwon Reserve, entrance, Barwon Heads Road,

 

50km Medium Dirk
Wednesday 30st October Allan’s Mystery Ride 8:30am, Rippleside Park (near Adventure Playground) 60-80km Medium/hard (sealed roads) Kelly
    Riders need to be able to maintain an average of around 20kph for this ride.   

For more information contact Helen. 

Better than brand new: Trailer refurbishment

The trailer is transformed.  Allan and Kelly have spent many hours reconfiguring and strengthening the Cycling Geelong bike trailer.  This will not only make it safer and fix problems exposed in the original design, but will make the trailer much easier to load and unload.

Thanks to Allan and Kelly and their engineer welder mate for this wonderful transformation.  The trailer is now ready for this year’s Goldfields weekend which it based around Heathcote.