Thanks to Kevin for this report and ride photo.
Three riders left Balyang at 9am to be joined by four more at Breakwater, including first time Saturday rider Virginia. Coffee was at Waurn Ponds, because Barwon Edge was closed.
Several members were busy riding the Ballarat BAD ride, so an easier home ride was chosen for Cycling Geelong members.
Helen led David J and Barbara a circuit ride to the north south and west of Geelong.
After following the coast north to the Grammar School, the ride headed west for the Ted Wilson Trail. It is noted that this trail is still closed at the southern end (more than 8 weeks after the re-opening date shown on the road work sign).
After a fast descent of Hyland Street, the riders followed the Barwon Trail to Highton, for an enjoyable coffee break, with Nancy at Two Sugars.
The ride resumed along Bellevue Avenue and Waurn Ponds, following the final section of the Ted Wilson Trail from Waurn Ponds to Hams Road. The return was via Heyers Road, Bailey Street, Barwon River Trail, Swanston Street and the waterfront.
Thanks to all riders for an enjoyable morning’s ride.
If you cycled the BAD ride, we’d love to have your personal story and photos to publish on our website.
This weekend is windy. Strong easterlies may deter fishermen, but not the fourteen intrepid cyclists who pedalled this morning’s easy ride. David J, Kelly, Ric, Allan, Sandra, Colleen, Roger, Rosemary, Wendy, Laura and Neil, John M and Richard were led around the circuit by Helen.
Allan Marshall instigated this popular ride in the early years of the club, and it’s still a great circuit. (Allan tells me that the original circuit takes in Boundary Road and Eastern Park.) Today the route was slightly shorter. From the Breakwater the route passes the Race Club and Show Grounds, before joining the waterfront at Garden Street.
As it was too early for The Boathouse to be open, the riders had coffee overlooking the bay at The Wharfshed Cafe. (Coffee is some of the most expensive on offer in Geelong – $4 for small and $5.50 for a large cup.)
The return route was along the waterfront to Rippleside, across the Margaret Street overpass to the start of the Cement Works Rail Trail in Douro Street. This path is one of the oldest rail trails around, and is alongside the railway that was used from 1926 until the at least the 1970s. The extensive lines within the old cement works included a 1.3km tunnel, used to transport limestone from the Fyansford quarry to the cement works. (Photos below.) Originally the trains were powered by steam, but by the 1970s cement was transported down the line to join the tracks at North Geelong by diesel locomotive. The path is mainly now used for recreation but was once a useful commuting trail for workers and school children. At least one family of Fyansford children rode single speed bikes up Hyland Street (12% gradient) then along the Cement Works Railway path to school at Bell Park High School. (There were no family taxis in those days!)
Today’s riders rode down Hyland Street, which has recently been upgraded (though the gradient stayed the same). Allan showed his former racing skills passing all at high speed on the smooth downhill. Roger left the ride at the bottom of this ascent, determined to ride back up. “I came down at 56kph. I’ll go back up at 6,” he quipped. With the upgrade a bike lane has been added to the ascent, making this much safer than in the past.
A leisurely ride along the river soon brought the riders back to the start. It was good to see so many regular Saturday riders enjoying a slightly longer Sunday ride. Keep your eyes open for more easy-medium Sunday rides.
Thanks to all riders for braving the elements, and to Rosemary and John for being our tail end Charlies.
Back at Balyang… The riders go their separate ways.
Two photos showing the Fyansford Railway Tunnel.
David and Nancy led 9 cyclists for this morning’s ride from Rippleside Park – Tricia and Shane, Rosemary, Stella, Arthur, Peter and Helen. David warned of steep sections with low gears needed. Everyone heeded his advice.
The old Cement Works Railway Trail is Geelong’s oldest rail trail – but still one of the best.
After a sweep down Highland Street (watch for a rough surface near the top), it was onto the Barwon Trail – the left bank path.
Coffee was at Little Creatures. It’s quirky and the coffee’s great.
The ride returned to Rippleside via Swanson Street and the waterfront.
Thanks to David and Nancy for a most enjoyable morning’s ride.