Wednesday, January 29, 2014

AAC140 - Australia Day 2014

Two years ago I did the 130 ride from Bright to Falls Ck and return. This year's challenge was the 140 ride from Bright to Mt Beauty return and then up to Mt Buffalo and back. Plans went astray for my ride buddy Justin so Bernie was able to come along instead for a weekend in Bright - a bit of a bonus for both of us !

We arrived in Bright on Friday afternoon, checked in and wandered into town. We had a look around town and then went down to the Bonjour Bright festival run alongside the Audax rides and enjoyed some crepes while listening to the creole musical stylings of Zydeco Jump.

Next day I could have gone for a warm-up ride but decided to keep my matches dry for Sunday so instead we drove up to Tawonga Gap and then Harrietville for a picnic lunch and a walk around a place that it just a little bit nostalgic for us as we first got to know each other whilst on a school camp there some 41 years ago !! The old place has changed a lot since then but 'the big log' is still there !!

We ate dinner at Blackbird Cafe on Friday, which was really nice but on Saturday we ate in our motel room. carbo-loading is the go for long rides so we had lasagne and salad ... and a glass of wine, of course. Come Sunday it was an early start for me and a sleep in for Bernie as I rolled out at 6:45am for the 7am start to the big ride.

The ride went well, and to plan - eat before you're hungry and drink before you're thirsty - and I 'enjoyed' the massive Mt Buffalo climb which culminated in a faster ride across the plateau past Lake Catani to the checkpoint at Dingo Dell. There the Audax fairies provided apples and custard, red cordial, bananas and watermelon ... unfortunately the faster (and hungrier) riders had eaten all the fruitcake !! A fast descent saw me back in Bright just before 2 pm where Bernie met me at the finish.

After some recovery feeding and music, and a shower and a rest, we headed back into town to meet up with some fellow riders for a drink at Bright Brewery and after that we had a lovely pizza dinner at Il Centro Pizza House. All in all a fine finish to a good couple of days.

We had a few car issues so took it slowly on the way home on Monday, but we had a great time on the weekend - may do it again sometime soon.

Friday night crepes.
Tawonga Gap - Mt Bogong beyond.
Bernie and the big log at Harrietville.
Citroens at Bonjour Bright.
Picnic at Harrietville.

6:45am Sunday - ready to roll !
Apples & custard - mmmm....

At Dingo Dell.

Lake Catani, Mt Buffalo Plateau.

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