Lara via Ted Wilson Trail and Hovells Creek

This most successful ride was led by Allan Marshall, with thirteen participants, of whom 11 signed on at 8am at Leisuretime Centre in Anakie Road.  The ride route was via the Ted Wilson Trail to Broderick Road, then via School Road to Shell Parade before joining up with the Hovells Creek trail at Rennie Street.  Coffee was at Xpresso Cafe in Lara. 

The return was via Hovells Creek Path and Ted Wilson Trail.

Thanks to Allan for leading and to all participants.

One rider who shall remain nameless missed the ride, due to misreading the starting point – perhaps we need more northern rides, so our members can experience the excellent riding opportunities on the northern side of Geelong.


Joint Ride to Lara: Sunday, December 9th, 2018

John Hagan led the ride to Lara, with a good turn up of 11 cyclists.  The ride route was along the coast to the Grammar School, then through Corio to Millars in Lara for coffee.  The return was via Hovells Creek.

On Ya Bike! 5 – Allan’s Mystery Ride: Wednesday, 31st October, 2018

There were 15 cyclists for the final ride of the On Ya Bike! series of rides for the Seniors’ Festival.  Kelly Rowe led the ride – to a ‘mystery’ destination, on a route devised by our mystery ride man, Allan Marshall.  Kelly led the riders to Limeburners Lagoon, then via the Hovells Creek path to Lara.  Doug Merritt performed the latest verses in his poem “On Ya Bike!” punctuated by the hearty response of “On Ya Bike!” from all.

The feature of the ride was a full circumnavigation of Avalon Airport before coffee back in Lara at Xpresso.  The service was friendly and prompt as usual before the cyclists set off back along Hovells Creek to Rippleside.

Thanks to Kelly for leading the ride, Allan and Kelly for devising it and Doug for his poetry interludes.


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! 

Easter Day ride to Lara via Hovells Creek: Sunday, 1st April, 2018

There were five riders for the Easter Day ride to Lara.  Dave Simpson led the ride, joined at Rippleside Park by Kevin and Helen, and at Limeburner’s Lagoon by Richard and Denise.  It was a perfect morning for cycling.  Coffee was scarce at Lara, with a pact among coffee shops to close for the break.  However, the eternally open McDonald’s produced a good cuppa (even though there were no bike racks for locking up bikes).

Thanks to ride leader Dave for the Easter treats – what an act to follow.  The ride back to Rippleside Park was as pleasant as the outward journey.



To Lara on Christmas Eve 2017

Dave led a relaxed Sunday group of nine cyclists to Lara on Christmas Eve.  Andrew volunteered to be tail-ender, and did a most excellent job throughout the whole ride.  The other riders were Coralie (on her new racing green Bike Friday), Margy, Geoff, Lynton, John M and Helen.

John caught up with the group at the refinery, having slept in.  The ride to Lara was easy, assisted by a strengthening northerly wind.

Lara coffee shops were closed except for the chain beside the Coles supermarket.  Serving coffee to 9 thirsty cyclists, as well as anyone else wanting coffee on Christmas Eve was a difficult task as there was only one worker.  However, refreshments and treats were soon consumed and it was back via the same route, a little slower due to the head wind.

Thanks Dave and Andrew and all riders for a most enjoyable Christmas Eve ride.


A windy ride to Lara: Sunday July 30th, 2017

It’s been windy the last couple of days with ‘surf’ on Corio Bay, and tree branches down all over!  A northerly wind was predicted, to turn westerly ‘around the middle of the day’.  A short ride to Lara seemed a safe bet.

From the first, it was clear that even at 8.30am, the wind was clearly from the west!  As the deadline approached, and no riders appeared, would I ride anyway, or throw in the towel and go to a movie in Melbourne instead?  The decision didn’t need to be taken as a solitary rider appeared on Bell Parade.

The two of us, Brigid and I (Helen) pedaled north along Corio Bay and over Hovells Creek to Lara.  An early coffee break at X-presso was most welcome.  The return deviated a little from the original plan, reducing the amount of time riding directly into the gale-force wind.  Forest Road still has no sealed shoulders on the busy section between Canterbury Road and the rail crossing, but motorists were pretty courteous this morning, as we battled the cross wind.  The Heales Road section was slow, but, once Ted Wilson Trail was reached, there was some protection from noise barriers as we wended our way back towards Church Street.


The wind had got the better of this porta-loo at Matthews Road.

The Ted Wilson Trail was very quiet.  There was only one pedestrian in the whole distance to Church Street and beyond.  This is usually a very popular path with cyclists – but there were none to be seen anywhere!

I’d forgotten it’s National ‘Plant a Tree’ day.*  A bevy of wonderful volunteers were busy along the path near Drysdale Street.  Thanks to these people we’ll watch this section of native plants as they develop over the next weeks and years, bringing with them native birds.

For the final 5 kilometres down Church Street, it was a most welcome tail wind.  Though a short ride, it was most enjoyable and a good chance to chat on safe bike paths.  Thanks Brigid for sharing the ride.

Brigid – Ted Wilson Trail

Ride Map

As I rode home I spotted one other cyclist – Rolf from GTC returning home along Balmoral Crescent.

A little later, I also spotted our president, John, riding along Douro Street in North Geelong.  So it wasn’t only women who were cycling today!

*Listen to 94.7 The Pulse FM next Saturday at 11am to hear how Heather got on on the opening of one of the paths along Kororoit Creek – another event on National Tree Day.