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Monday, March 23, 2015

Wooden Bike to Walwa MkII

On the road from..
Hume Dam to Walwa
Walwa rest break, Day 1
Cups and saucers and stuff in the Walwa Tea Rooms
More Cups and stuff on an old sewing machine
Lots of Sunshine!
Granya Hotel, where we had lunch on the 2nd day.  There was a bit of a breeze and we had a chat to a 4-Generation family for a while and patted some of the owner's dogs and listened to Enya on the loudspeakers.  I will never live this down but Enya almost sounded OK. Yes, there goes my street cred.
Walwa Store, 2nd day.  There were 100's of motorbikes around, many heading to the Ulysses motorcycle club AGM in Wodonga.
Lookout on the upper Murray.
Lots of bugs on this tree in Granya

Just back from 2 days riding East from Albury with Graham Signiori.  At the start of the year I said I wanted to document a few Audax Permanent rides, and this ride was going over the territory of 2 of the rides before submitting.  We went from Albury to Corryong via Walwa and Briggs Gap Road on the Saturday and returned via Towong and Walwa on Sunday.  Graham is quite a bit faster than me and therefor gets to stop at more scenic points and chat to people.  At Corryong, he was about 25 minutes ahead after about 30 km, and near Bungil he checked out a memorial which was all about Murray Grey Cattle (apparently).

Anyway, I was just fit enough for the ride, I've been riding 15k each way to work 4 days a week for a couple of months now, and that makes up about 150k a week riding for a while.  One piece of cycling wisdom is "ride in a week what you will do on the day of a big ride" and this sort of fitted in for 163 and 150k days of riding.  

There were hundreds of touring motorcyclists on the road, some heading for the Ulysses (over 40's) motorcycling club AGM in Wodonga.  At the Corryong motel we stayed with a mob of Harley Davidson owners from Canberra, all ready to have a chat about bikes, wooden or motorised.


Steve Nurse

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Ride Without Gps

A Page from one of the.....

Gall and Inglis cycle touring books I have collected which

show contours for almost any road route you might choose in England.

These are the covers of 1898 Southeast and 1923 England Editions

My own highly illustrative and achievementful section of . (Actually, I don't bother with this bit)

One of the useful bits of  Within the next few weeks I will be riding and leading a ride over this route.
And this is how to work out how far it is to work and back, without the benefit of a speedo.

In some areas of my life I am a luddite (non believer in technology) and in others I am not.  As examples, I don't own a smartphone, do fitbits,  facebook, linkedin, snapchat, sms, gps or itunes and a host of other techno stuff.  My current bikes don't have speedos (budgie smuggler or digital computer type) .  

While these high tech things might have their virtues, I can probably live without them, and if I used them, they would probably waste my time.  It is really a question of whether a  thing (say a fitbit) is my servant, providing useful information compared to the time invested, or your master, being more of a pain in the backside than what its worth.

  On the other hand, I am perfectly prepared to forge ahead in the brave new world of 3d cad and printers and the new and interesting Human Powered Vehicles they can create. And blogs and stuff.

To each his own I guess.  Recently I started preparing an Audax permanent ride from Albury to Corryong and return, and some of the correspondence with Audax HQ went thusly "You need to map the rides preferably using  a mapping program, ride with GPS is preferred" and that was rather daunting to a luddite like me.  But I jumped in and after a few tries, ended up with quite a good result, with nice contours showing the ride elevation and slopes for the proposed ride going up and down all over the place. Hopefully the stuff I've done will be enough to produce an Audax ride guide. 

The contour information is in no way new!  The small sized, fine papered, bible-resembling Gall and Inglis Contour books provided the same information for England from about 1898 on, and I've copied a few pages here in this post.

After a few weeks of riding to my new work / study at Monash Caulfield, curiosity and the lack of a speedo got the better of me and I set to work to find how far I rode every day.  After a few mouse clicks I was there, about 15 flattish k's to work.  No speedo or fit bit necessary.

Plan to do a recce ride near Corryong next weekend and and I'm leading an ozhpv ride weekend based on the proposed Audax route the weekend after that (coming up very quickly, gosh!)  I will post photos.


Steve Nurse