On Ya Bike! – Ride 4 – Barwon Heads & Ocean Grove: Wednesday, 24th October, 2018

The 4th On Ya Bike! for 2018 was scheduled to be a ride to Moriac.  However, after finding that the Moriac Store was to be closed for the Geelong Cup, ride leader Dave Simpson, opted to ride to The Cheeky Cow in Collendina.

There were fourteen cyclists, who enjoyed the ride along Barwon Heads and Thirteenth Beach Roads to Barwon Heads and Ocean Grove and down to The Cheeky Cow for coffee.  Several of these riders had been supporting On Ya Bike! since the very first series in 2008!

After a welcome break, the only real hill of the day was tackled – Bonnyvale Road to Shell Road.  Then it was an easy ride with a tail wind back to the start at South Barwon Reserve.

Thanks to Dave for planning and leading the ride and all our On Ya Bike! riders.

Next week is the final On Ya Bike! for 2018 – Allan’s Mystery RidePlease note, this ride begins at 8.30.  The starting place is Rippleside Park, and the distance somewhere between 50 and 70km.

On Ya Bike! 3 – Drysdale via Bellarine Rail Trail: Wednesday, October 17th, 2018

Once again, there was an excellent turn up, with twenty-one cyclists assembling near the Geelong Showgrounds.

After waiting for a few latecomers, the ride got underway.

The rail trail initially passes through Geelong’s south eastern suburbs, before crossing the Bellarine Highway at Moolap.  From there on the area is more open – farmlands.  Thanks to the work of the Friends of the Bellarine Rail Trail, vegetation shelters the path for most of the way to Drysdale.  Doug, the ride leader, joined the group at Leopold.  As rest stop was held at the top of the Leopold syncline at Christies Road.  The rail trail is the easiest way for cyclists to climb this hill, with all cyclists accomplishing this easily.

From there the group quickly traversed farmlands to the Portarlington Road, past Curlewis Golf Club, where a new path was underway into the cafe at the driving range.  From there, it was only a short way to Cafe Zoo, with the final section from the trail to Drysdale being on road.

As usual, the cafe was friendly and welcoming, and a noisy group only quietened a little for Doug’s latest On Ya Bike! poem, delivered in his best radio announcer voice.  The group was joined here by Jeff who’d ridden over from Point Lonsdale.

It was good to see a few new riders to On Ya Bike! for this ride – we hope to see them back next week.

The return to the rail trail was via Wyndham Street and Jetty Road before a return to the showgrounds at around noon (with afternoon storm clouds threatening).

Thanks to ride leader and bard Doug Merritt, Gerry and Terry our tail-enders, and photographer John Hagan.  Thanks to all riders.

The fourth ride in the On Ya Bike! series is to Moriac, leaving from South Barwon Reserve at 9am, next Wednesday, October 24th.  See you there on ya bike!


On Ya Bike! 2 – Lara: Wednesday, October 10th, 2018

We have had better days for cycling!  The wind was gale force, with early morning waves washing over the new Rippleside-St Helen’s pathway and a temperature of no more than 16 expected.

Despite this less than ideal start, 22 cyclists arrived to ride to Lara on the second On Ya Bike! for 2018.  The ride was led by Helen, with Terry and Doug sharing sweeper duties at the back.

Cycling Geelong’s bard, Doug, had another few verses of his latest masterpiece On Ya Bike! with which he regaled the awestruck group (who acted as Greek chorus at Doug’s signal).*

On Ya Bike!

As the tide was on its way out, the group rode the new path, with only a few cyclists being unlucky enough to be wet with sea spray.   John H once again took some stunning photos along the way!

There was considerable wind assist, and without any hindrance from the local magpies, the group enjoyed a pleasant ride to Hovells Creek and along the path to Lara.

(One rider, finding the wind too difficult, decided to backtrack from North Shore.)

The coffee stop was at Xpresso Lounge Cafe in Lara, where everyone was made welcome.  Despite the big group, service was friendly and swift.

With some trepidation (the wind was predicted as a south-easterly) the group took off for the return journey.  However, conditions were fine – the wind direction had steadied to an easterly, and it was a comfortable ride back to Rippleside.

Thanks to all cyclists, John and David for the photos, and our tail-enders Terry and Doug.

*Doug’s On Ya Bike! poem.

The third ride in this year’s On Ya Bike! series is to Drysdale, via the Bellarine Rail Trail, next Wednesday, leaving at the rail trail, corner Carr and Tucker Streets (near the Showground entrance), at 9am.  This ride is around 36km, and mainly off road on the rail trail.  Coffee is at Cafe Zoo.  Doug Merritt will be leading.  On Ya Bike! 

On Ya Bike! 2018 – Ride 1: Wednesday, 3rd October

History Ride around the Barwon River Trail

Thanks to Rod Charles, our cycling historian for leading this ride, and to Hermann who was his excellent tail end Charlie.

There were over 30 participants, on a pleasant overcast morning. 

Rod began with a short explanation of the founding of the area by Foster Fyans.  Doug provided light entertainment with a newly penned poem “On Ya Bike! – Barwon River Ride”.  There were riders of all abilities and a large variety of bikes – seriously light road bikes, mountain bikes, hybrid bikes, historic bikes like Rod’s Peugeot, at least one e-bike, small wheels, cruisers, Doug’s recumbent Cruzebike and a single speed retro ladies bike.

The group set off around the river path in a clockwise direction.  Several regrouping stops were held, with Doug giving a progressive rendition of AB Patterson’s “Mulga Bill’s Bicycle”.

The river circuits provides lots of options for those who would like a shorter ride.  One or two decided to head straight to coffee from the Queen’s Park Bridge.  The rest completed the circuit through Fyansford Common.

As usual, the service at Barwon Edge was excellent, with the whole group served coffee (and other refreshments) with friendly speed.

2018 is our 11th year of On Ya Bike! as part of the Seniors Festival.  With around 100 participants each year, in the last 10 years, we’ve had about 1000 riders.

On Ya Bike! 2 – Lara

Next Wednesday’s ride in the 2018 On Ya Bike! series is to Lara.

The ride begins at 9am, on Wednesday 10th October, at Rippleside Park, near the Adventure Playground.  It’s an easy ride, along quiet roads and paths, of around 36km distance.  There are a couple of small hills.

The ride will be lead by Helen.

See you ON YA BIKE! 

More photos from the Barwon River Circuit ride…

On Ya Bike! 2018

Starts tomorrow!

Starters at Balyang 2017

Our very popular ride series On Ya Bike! for the Seniors Festival begins tomorrow with History Around the Barwon led by our very own cycling historian Rod Charles.

Come along to Balyang Sanctuary car park at 9am.  The ride is 20km, with coffee at Barwon Edge

The series is every Wednesday during October.  Rides are:

Date Title Starting time & Place Distance Grade and details
Wednesday 3rd October Historical around the Barwon 9:00am

Balyang Sanctuary Car Park, Marnock Road, Newtown

20km Easy (all bike paths)
Wednesday 10th October Lara via Hovells Creek path 9:00am Rippleside Park (near Adventure Playground) 36km Easy (mainly sealed bike paths)
Wednesday 17th  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)
Wednesday 24th October Moriac South Barwon Reserve, entrance, Barwon Heads Road,


50km Medium (some hills)
Wednesday 31st October Allan’s Mystery Ride 8:30am, Rippleside Park (near Adventure Playground) 60-80km Medium/hard (sealed roads)
    Riders need to be able to maintain an average of around 20kph for this ride. 



On Ya Bike! 3 – Moriac: Wednesday 19th October, 2016

Once again the On Ya Bike! turnout was splendid – 22 cyclists braved the strong wind and icy morning to cycle to Moriac via the old Princes Highway and Mount Moriac, returning via Ghazeepore Road and Grovedale.  Helen led the ride.  (Click on map for route details)161019-map-screen-shot-south-barwon-to-moriac161019-john-h-1-group-sbracr-editThe outward journey was taxing, with the long climb to Mount Moriac made worse by an the unrelenting westerly wind.  Most of the height was lost in a wonderful downward sweep on Hendy Main Road, with the promise of coffee and warm at Moriac General Store, which is extremely welcoming to cyclists.

Sheltered from the wind, the group lingered in the warm sunshine before taking off to the south and east for the return to South Barwon.

With the westerly now a helpful tail wind, the group’s speed and spirits were high, and the return was uneventful except for a front and rear puncture caused by a pothole in Ghazeepore Road – courtesy of the recent wet conditions.  In the usual way of punctures, the puncture happened half way up the Ghazeepore Road hill, with no flat surface in sight.  Thanks to Doug (our tail-ender) who mended one puncture, and then waited until back-up “i.e. partner-assist” arrived.


Cheerful competence. Thanks, Doug.

Thanks to all riders for making this series so successful.  Thanks again to John Hagan for coming along and taking photos.

The final On Ya Bike! ride is on Wednesday, October 26th, leaving Rippleside Park at 8.30am.  This ‘ultimate’ ride has become a favourite over the years as ‘Allan’s Mystery Ride’.  Once again, Allan has selected an enjoyable circuit, with a bit of challenge and an excellent coffee stop.  As this is the hardest ride of the series, riders need to be able to maintain an on-the-bike average of at least 20kph and be able to cycle comfortably for an extended distance (usually around 60-70km).  As it’s a ‘mystery’, you’ll need to come along to find out more.

On Ya Bike 2 – 3 Ps to Lara

Thanks to ride leader Stella for this report


22 riders met at Rippleside for the yearly seniors ride with Cycling Geelong  It was  a windy day and grey skies but  bright enthusiasm  from the group.

The ride to Lara was uneventful  no rain and pleasant views  The riding track was good a small flood at  Hovells Creek and a tree on the path but easily maneuvered by all the group.

Coffee was at the new cafe within the shopping centre at Lara called 7Grams – highly recommended. Good seating for a large number  of people       friendly staff and delicious cakes and coffee.

Unfortunately the return ride was with some  minor difficulties.  3 punctures ! and very heavy rain and quite windy.  Consequently the group became  divided with some waiting and some going!  However excellent team spirit was  shown and all was sorted out very quickly.   Thanks to everyone who helped out with the punctures.  That was  very much appreciated by me !

The last riders arrived back at 12.30 a little later than planned  and also very wet, but it was a great ride.

Thanks to all who rode  and joined our team.  We were happy to welcome new riders to the series – Bernard Costa,  Dirk Vanderburg and Lynton Leigh and welcomed back Judy and Ken Machin who ride with us for the first time last week.


And from ‘tail end Charlie’ – your editor…

Pedals, Pluck and Perseverance

Stella was today’s ride leader.  Despite strong south westerlies and a lowering sky full of storm clouds, twenty-two cyclists set off for Lara from Rippleside Park.  The road was dry.  The first incident occurred even before pedal turn.  Chris’s chain was off both the cluster and chain ring, and required a little coaxing (with moral support only from tail end Charlie – also doubling as CG web coordinator).  The ride to Lara is pretty flat, with only two potentially irritating rises.  A couple of riders were caught out by the St Helen’s cliff road – short, sharp and needing a low gear (or high level of bike fitness) for comfortable riding.  Doug caught up to the group at North Shore, riding his Cruzbike.

Most of the ride to Lara was on bike paths, including Hovells Creek Path.  The path under the highway was passable, though still a little wet from the recent rain.  A fallen tree on the path at Rennie Street was easily detoured (except for John H, who, on the recumbent, was able to ride underneath).  Hovells Creek itself was still in minor flood near Lara.

Stella always does her homework.  Coffee was at a newly opened cafe in the Lara shopping centre – great venue with plenty of room for our large group.

It was on the way home the fun started.  First, Ric, then Jeff, then Chris, all had punctures.  Chris’s was the most spectacular, a sudden implosion due to a broken beer bottle.  Thanks to the support of other riders who stayed to help.  At Limeburners Lagoon, the group was welcomed with light rain, which eased off as soon as rain gear was donned.  However, by North Geelong it was raining steadily, and by St Helens, the rain was a torrent.

So the 3 Ps were not only the positive fun of pedalling in an On Ya Bike! group, the pluck of those who coped with various adversities, and the perseverance of everyone in cold, wind and rain, but 3 punctures.

Thanks to Stella for leading the ride, our mechanically minded puncture mechanics and once again, to John for the photos.

Keep those pedals turning.