Goldfields Tour 2019 – Heathcote

Gold fields 2019 Travel & Ride Report

From Allan Marshall – Tour leader, chief planner and guide extraordinaire! 

Three cars set off from Allan’s place at 8 45 am, driven by George Belcher, Kevin Clingan, and with Nick driving Allan’s car and towing the newly renovated bike trailer.

The adventurers ready to leave from Geelong

We only made one stop at Woodend then travelled through the lovely granite rocky hills past Lancefield. We arrived at the Heathcote Bakery at about 11.35am for lunch before checking in at Heathcote Queen Meadow Caravan Park to get ready to ride.

Day 1 ride – Heathcote Environs

Led by Kelly, this ride went first to the Pink Cliffs Geological Reserve, then along High St to Argyle, where the ride turned and onto Forest Drive to the Powder Magazine building then onto North Costerfield Rd, in the McIver Ranges.  It was here that Kelly decided to cut the ride short so there was time to enjoy wine & beer tastings back in town. The ride took the road along the creek reserve and back to High Street (Northern Highway) at Heathcote Winery.  They didn’t answer my phone call early in the week so were understaffed for the 22 riders plus Nick and Heather.  Wine was sampled, and some bought.  Next it was beer tasting or coffee at Palling’s Brewery.  Finally, those who had stood the distance went for more wine tasting at Heathcote Wine Hub which received thumbs up for both tastings and tapas.   Allan drove Richard up Viewing Rock that overlooks the town and offered to take others wanting to go but no takers.  Dinner this night was at The Commercial Hotel, at 6pm.

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Day 2 Ride – Merindoc Wineries and Tooborac Hotel

The ride to Merindoc Wineries led by Allan.  Starting at 9am we arrived at 10 30am.  It was a slow ride with a South Eastly head wind.  We rode single file on the shoulder of the Northern Highway to Tooborac, to the Merindoc Vineyard just around the corner on the Lancefield Rd.  They gave a nice talk on their wines and the reason for the soil and what they do to the vines.  I learnt a lot. It was a good speech over tastings & finger foods.

Then we were back on the bikes to the Boutique Brewery & pie bakery at the Tooborac Hotel for lunch with a 12-2 booking.  They catered for all types of meals.  Nick took the car and trailer to cart the grog and as sag wagon for a couple of tired cyclists.  The return was via the same route for most riders.  Six hardy riders attempted the more difficult (hilly and gravel) ride route along to Old Dairy Flat Rd to Heathcote 6 riders took up the challenge. Allan lead the rest back on the Northern at speeds of up to 40k at times total distance 36 km.  I am proud of Denise who rode well and was always up on the wheel of the leaders.  Well done, after 2 years ago!  Keep it up Denise.  Then on Saturday afternoon, we watched the Grand Final at various places.  (Editor’s note – Knapps Cottage, where Helen and Stella were staying, was declared a ‘footy free’ zone with tea and birdsong on the veranda for Tina, Heather, Edena, Sally, Helen and Stella.)

BBQ tea was at the Caravan Park Camp Kitchen.  Everyone had a good time. Dirk lit the fire, which was most welcome, especially when the chill came down after sunset.  The barbecues were a male-only zone, supervised most ably by George and Richard (who kept the vegan hotplate pristine – even supplying gluten-free fried onions as needed).  Thanks to Heather and Edena for making sure all goodies were prepared, and to Allan with his foresight in pre-ordering the excellent meat.  Finally, the whole camp was led in a sing-along by Richard and Tina on ukuleles.

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Day 3 Ride – Bendigo on O’Keefe Rail Trail

The plan was to pack up and leave Caravan Park by 9am to commence ride on The O’Keefe Rail trail of 49 kilometres.  We got away a bit late “But all was ok in the end”.  Allan organised a car shuffle, with cars taken to Axedale, then Nick bringing the drivers back to Heathcote to ride.  Karen and Kelly each led for half each.

We parted with Helen and Stella at Knowsley then we somehow parted with Tina to drive her car to Bendigo.  We are booked in for lunch at The Tavern in Axedale, in the room that can cater for 25 people.

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The ride finishes at The Lake Weeroona.  Nick again took the drivers to Axedale to pick up their cars, while the rest of us loaded the bikes on the trailer.  Then we all headed for home. Some went for coffee at the coffee man (pity they forgot to ask Allan, who was loading the bikes, if he’d like one!).

Total riding distance day 3 – 54 km.  Everyone made it, with only one puncture (Dirk’s – about 5km from the Lake).

We headed for home via the Calder Highway Gisborne & Bacchus Marsh arrived at Allan’s just before 6 30 pm and unloaded some bikes, then wheeled the loaded trailer into Allan’s garage for rest of the owners to pick up their bikes the next day.

I believe everyone had a good time so we will ride again somewhere in the Golden triangle next year. We all would like to say a big thankyou to Nick for his support on these rides I believe Nick is spending time with the boys next year only Thanks mate.

The Terrific Treadly Trailer

I defy anyone to say the trailer didn’t do an excellent job.  This is the best fit out we have ever had.  Even the ladies in the group were helping with the loading and I heard Tina say she could use it for some away Moonlight rides.  Please use it. It’s there for all the members to use as long as the towing car has full comprehensive Insurance and the driver has a full licence and towing experience.  (Editor’s note: Kevin, who was driving behind the trailer, commented that the bikes did not move at all.)

Trailer trial loading – Thursday ride, August, 2019

Many Thanks for your Company Allan Marshall

 Thanks to Allan Marshall, our Goldfields Tour leader for this most comprehensive report.  Thanks to Allan and other tour participants for photos.

 

Ride to Work Day 2019 – Wednesday 16th October

Ride to Work Day is happening in Geelong in 2019! Even if you’re not riding to work, please swing by for a coffee, brekky, a tune-up and a chat on Wednesday October 16, between 7am and 10am, we’d love to get a good solid showing of Geelong cyclists.

Please see the attached flyer if you’d like to spread the word. I have some physical flyers and posters at the shop if you’d like some for your club or workplace. I’d be happy to drop some off wherever you are. Here are the essential details:

  • Where: Corner of Little Malop and Moorabool streets, on the east side of Moorabool (7-Eleven and bus exchange side)
  • When: 7am to 10am
  • Who: Anyone on a bicycle
  • What: Free bananas, brekky bag and coffee, and free tune-ups

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. 

Combined Gravel Ride with Cycling Geelong and the GTC to Anglesea on Sunday 8.9.19

Thanks to Ross Glover of the GTC for this report:

Five riders for today’s combined dirt ride to Anglesea. Our ride leader Dave, Margy, Jeff, Chris Hu and Ross set out under blue skies, through Torquay and along the Bells Beach path. It was slow going with lots of trail runners, walkers and dogs, plus plenty of stops to admire the views. Margy and Jeff decided Bells Beach was far enough and headed back, leaving three of us to continue on to the best part of the ride. Absolutely beautiful riding through the trees and along the cliff tops with just the occasional wet and muddy section to look out for. Chris was getting extra value for his money with his road tread tyres making for some interesting sideways action through the soft stuff. There was some discussion about the ethics of riding through the scout camp but the steps are in very poor condition so some trespassing was the better choice. A fast run down to Anglesea had us soon enjoying refreshments in the main street.
We experienced the first few drops of precipitation as we left Anglesea by the highway, crossing back to gravel path at the top of the hill. The ride through the forest was just as good on the way back and we were soon back on the bitumen section up to Bells Beach car park. Halfway up the hill the rain started, quickly followed a loud wooshing noise from Chris’s new tubeless front tyre. A quick inspection showed a largish hole in the tyre and a lot of sealant over Chris and his bike. We tried pumping it back up but it only lasted a few metres before going completely flat. Time for plan B. Chris found some shelter under a tree and proceeded to remove the tyre, wash out the sealant and fit a tube, all while the rain came down. Deciding it would be best to take the shortest way home, we rode the bitumen through Jan Juc and back to the Beachfront Cafe. Just made it back before the heavy rain started. Thanks to Dave for a great ride, to Chris for providing some entertainment along the way and to all participants for their good company.
Ross.

 

–Dave

 

Drysdale via Bellarine Rail Trail – September 5, 2019

George led around 16 cyclists on this mornings regular ride to Drysdale.  It was a beautiful morning for riding, and the pace was good.

Margy and Jeff arrived at Cafe Zoo to meet the group.  They had ridden the trail from Point Lonsdale as part of their training for Around The Bay in a Day and for Margy’s Great Cycle Challenge (to ride at least 500km in the month of October).  You can sponser Margy here.

The ride back to Geelong was fast – except for George who had a puncture (the second in two weeks).  Thanks to Lynton who stayed to help him repair it.

 

North western Geelong loop – Sunday, September 1st, 2019

Two cyclists set off on this morning’s ride – Helen (leader) and Kevin.  Perhaps the predicted rain and strong wind and Father’s Day clash daunted other riders.  Wherever you were, you missed a most enjoyable ride.

The ride route was to Soft Cafe in Minerva Road, via a loop from Rippleside – following the waterfront to Geelong Grammar, then across School and Plantation Roads to follow the Ted Wilson Trail to Church Street and coffee.

The coffee shop was very busy (perhaps a few Father’s Day breakfasts were responsible for this).  Kevin’s hot chocolate finally arrived. It’s great to see our coffee shops doing such good business on weekends.

With a Father’s Day lunch date, Kevin then rode home (to a three generations lunch at his daughter’s – Kevin is the proud great grandpa to a three week old baby boy).

The return to Rippleside was via the Cement Works Trail to Douro Street, then Margaret Street overpass.

There was no rain (though by 1.30 a thunderstorm brought heavy rain and hail to Rippleside).