Ian Scott 23rd August 2015
“Spring has sprung, the grass has riz”. Well almost. Although it is still officially winter, today was a great day for cycling, brilliant sunshine and a very comfortable 20 degrees.
The designated start point for today’s ride up to Woolgoolga (Woopi to the locals) was Homebase. Phil, Mark and Leigh decide they needed a bit more exercise so rode up from Urunga. The fine weather brought everyone out with a total of sixteen riders turning up.
We stated out riding up the walkway/cycleway on the eastern side of the highway then Macauleys Headland Rd, Richmond Dr and Firman Drive to Pacific Bay resort. On Reyner’s suggestion we decided to take the tunnel running the highway between Pacific Bay and the sports fields. We soon discovered it is not a good idea to ride up a steep narrow gravel path too close together, with a few close calls. Luckily no-one came to grief.
We then discovered a barrier rail at the far side of the tunnel which enatiled everyone lifting their bikes over the barrier and then crawling under. A short up hill walk and we are on the highway. Out of interest, this tunnel is scheduled to become part of a cycleway council will commence constructing next year linking the existing cycleway from Diggers Beach Rd to the highway via the tunnel.
We start heading north into a light headwind. Very soon the riders end up in two groups. Phil and Reyner out front of the faster group provide a valuable wind break for the rest and pretty soon we are setting a cracking pace up the highway.
We get to Woopi in just on an hour and settle in for coffee and refreshments at Bluebottle Brasserie. This time we had the forethought of phoning ahead so the cafe wasn’t overwhelmed when 16 thirsty cyclists turn up out of the blue.
Being suitably rested and refreshed, we head back to Coffs. The tail wind on the homeward journey was appreciated by all. We also decided to have a rest stop at Moonee Beach overpass. Tamson discovers a flat head nail in her tyre which then immediately goes flat as soon as the nail is extracted. Mike comes to the rescue and demonstrates his skill at rapidly repairing a flat tyre (Must remember this next time I get a flat! Although maybe I am the wrong sex).
We continue on and soon we are back at Homebase. At least on the southbound route, there is a nice wide shoulder on the highway going up around Macauleys Headland.
Everyone had a great time. Coffs to Woopi is becoming a very popular ride as the route along the new highway is predominately flat to undulating and very smooth tarmac. Even a moderately unfit rider can average about 25 – 28 kph.
Next Sunday’s ride is out to Glenniffer Hall via North Bank Road. Meet at BP North Urunga at 8:00am