23rd March 2014 – Toormina Nature Tour

Ride Report – Toormina Nature Tour
23rd March 2014
Ian Scott

Toormina Nature Tour16 riders (including visitor Dave from the USA) assembled at BP Urunga for an easy ride to Toormina for a short nature tour through the forest reserves between Toormina and Boambee East. The ride leader (yours truly!) provided a short briefing of the proposed route and explained it was essential for the front riders to always have slower riders in sight before turning so we did not loose anyone.

We head north along the old highway up Perry’s hill to Mailman’s track then along the new highway to Lyons Road. Re grouping at Lyons Road, George informs us he is a pain in the neck ( Sorry! Has a pain in the neck) and was heading home. Bruce volunteered to ride back with George in case he needed pharmaceutical assistance.

The group managed to arrive at the next regroup point at the reserve opposite Toormina Gardens without anyone getting lost. I put on my nature tour guide hat and give the group a short presentation on koalas and explain the reserve we are in is prime koala habitat even though it is totally surrounded by suburbia.

Following the concrete path to Jane Circuit then a short uphill along a dirt path we make a quick stop to look for a Satin Bower bird’s bower. Unfortunately the shear mass of mosquitoes and other insects almost caused a mass defection of riders. BettyAnne and Michele had already defected before the dirt path and decided to go straight to Garden Mania. At the rate riders were dropping off I wondered if there would be many left at the finish.

Back on a concrete path and one of our newer riders, Margie, has a nasty fall having slipped of the edge of the concrete path. Luckily her injuries were minor, some lost skin and a sore knee. We regroup again on Linden Avenue. Kirk and Margie decide to go straight to Garden Mania while I attempt to loose the rest of the riders on some more obscure pathways, including a section that is just long grass. Miraculously we all arrive at Garden Mania for coffee, along with what appeared to be half of Coffs Harbour, never so busy.

After the welcome rest and refreshments it was off on the homeward journey via Lindsay’s Road and the walkway under the highway. Reaching Lyons Road I bailed out as I am close to home. The rest of the group continue back to Urunga via the new highway.

Next week’s ride is another easy one. Urunga to Bonville, North Beach and return starting time 8:00am. Contact Allan Brighton on 04 2755 6028

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