22/1/2012 Report

Today’s ride to Coffs Harbour was different in a number of ways. First of all, it wasn’t  Bellingen, which is where the DUBBUG seems to have been riding lately. Secondly, the route to Coffs was all along the Pacific Highway, making it a less relaxing, more fast-paced ride. There’s just something about a big B-Double roaring up behind you that makes you want to go a bit faster….And finally, it rained all the way back to Urunga from Coffs.

The 60km ride was well-attended, with 14 of us starting from the Urunga Hotel instead of the BP. Not long into the ride, Mike got a flat in his back tyre about 500m from our first catch-up stop and then five seconds later his front tyre blew as well. His racing tyres were to blame – he prefers them because they’re light and he can go faster, but as Allan F. observed while he was changing them: “You’re not going very fast now.” Luckily, they were the only flats in the ride.

Once in Coffs, we rolled sedately along the bike path along Coffs Creek to the coffee stop. We didn’t realize at the time that this would be in stark contrast to the ride home. Back on our bikes, the ride south from the jetty along the bike path to Hogbin Drive took us straight into the oncoming rain and it steadily worsened the farther south we rode. Some riders stopped to put on rain jackets but that was a pointless exercise as everyone was soon drenched. The route along the Pacific Highway meant we were sharing the road with holiday-makers eager to get home. As well as getting spray from trucks, cars and trailers, anybody behind a bike got a stream of gritty, dirty water in the face. But we arrived safely back at Urunga, splattered with grime and dripping from head to toe, happy that we’d negotiated the tough conditions.

There are two rides scheduled for next week’s DUBBUG – a MTB ride into Never Never State Forest, and an alternate ride for the road bikes….to Bellingen! Both rides start at 7.30 am BP Urunga on Sunday 29 January.