A dozen cyclists took up the challenge to toughen up their mountain bike skills on Easter Sunday. The night before it had rained heavily, however it was in selected areas and, unfortunately, only became a problem close to the end of the ride. For this training ride, the Dorrigo Urunga Bicycle Users Group (DUBBUG) joined forces with Faircloth & Reynolds team. They are endeavouring to raise charity funds for cancer as part of an upcoming “Tour de Rocks” mountain bicycle ride from Armidale to South West Rocks.
The ride commenced at Urunga and headed out along Valery Road where it turned into a dirt track. ED got a puncture on his new bike which was a welcome break. Then onto “Cows with Guns”, a dedicated mountain bike circuit in the Pine Creek area. For most, it was the first time to try their skills at zig zagging down the slope, taking jumps, navigating narrow tracks and wending their way through trees. The slog back uphill tested our gears. Massive effort by Rayner who achieved this ride on a bike without suspension.
The gravel road to Bundagen is brilliant and clearly well maintained. We had permission to ride through this private property and down onto the beach. To prevent erosion, the track down goes over a continuous thick rope snaked into steps – great challenge. Bundagen beach is beautiful, however there was no time for a surf as we rode/walked along the foreshore towards the track at the headland. This track runs through littoral rainforest, right on the edge of the beach and finishes at Tuckers Rock carpark. Since the closure of the coastal road through to Mylestom, we instead rode up the steep, gravel Tuckers Rock road and then turned off to Mylestom Track. Mylestom track is not well maintained, and the earlier rain caused clay to turn into mud. Combined with the rough steep descent of the track, Mark H hesitated, flipped his bike and ending up needing 15 stitches to a large cut on his arm. In hindsight we may have been better to manhandle our mountain bikes along the beach, around the closed section of track.
With the closure of the Mylestom General store, the club put on a fantastic morning coffee at the shelter and it was great opportunity to swap stories with the road bike cycle group (Ride leader Alan). They had only arrived a few minutes earlier.
Next Sunday’s cycle is to Bellingen via Hyde Creek, departing Urunga BP at 8.00 am. Please see www.dubbug.org.au for details.