Around the Bay in a Day: 2003 Melbourne, Aus

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by Evo, Oct 21, 2003.

  1. Evo

    Evo New Member

    Jul 2, 2003
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    How did everyone else find it?

    I went to Sorrento first (absolutely teemed down rain), then to Geelong and we were rewarded with blue skys an awesome tailwind all the way up the freeway to home!

    How did those peoples go that went the other direction?

    It was my first one, so I'm interested to hear what other people thought of the day........

  2. Roadylou

    Roadylou New Member

    Sep 28, 2003
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    How did you fibd about a tour such as this ????
  3. tm_ross

    tm_ross New Member

    Oct 5, 2003
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    My first ATB too, and I made it.

    (Un)Fortunately, the day’s weather resembled many of the training rides leading up to the event.

    A big thanks to the fellow rider who I tick tacked with from Leopold (about 120km into the 210k ride) who gave me a Voltaren tablet at the Caltex at Werribee( about 160k). I don’t know if it was the cold, by my bike set up (it was a very new bike) or some inflexibility or weakness, but my right knee was shot with an inflamed ITB - point to work on over the next 12 mths!!.

    Without that tablet, I wouldn’t have got my second wind and made the trip - that tail wind wouldn’t have pushed me up the Westgate Bridge, if I indeed made it there before it was closed to the cyclists. Boy did I enjoy the reward of that view.

    Otherwise, my body felt great and despite 2 very slow hours where the knee was killing me, I acheived my overall goal to make it and at a better than avg speed than I had anticipated. Given no muscle soreness since, I had plenty in the tank still.

  4. kim belfield

    kim belfield New Member

    Jun 24, 2003
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    Well done guys.

    I went via Geelong and first stop at Queenscliff. Got there absolutely soaked at 9.45am and had to wait until 10 to get on the ferry.

    At that point I was shivering non stop and had to weigh up whether it was worth getting pneumonia and finishing or getting in my wifes car (who was waiting for me)at Sorrento. Took the warm and comfortable route and vastly enjoyed heading back to Melbourne in the car.

    If I had of gone on I would have made St Kilda just as the rain stopped so I was releaved to have stopped at Sorrento.

    The organisers at Sorrento were saying that alot of people were pulling out there.

    I am looking forward to next year as even BV agree that this was the worst year. It can only get better.
  5. Cas

    Cas New Member

    Oct 3, 2001
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    Ok this is a edited(!) version of what my riding partner (he wrote it) & I experienced

    Four seasons in one bay. MEL- QC-SORR-MELB

    PART 1 - Summer
    Nervous excitement and anticipation made for a difficult nights sleep. It was a very balmy morning and there was no need to wear any of the cold weather clothes."It seems like a nice warm day is ahead." (How wrong that was).

    A puncture & fall off the bike before the ride even started. Not cool!

    The ride began and a mass of cyclists headed out through South
    Melbourne and onto the West Gate Bridge (5:30am, 10km) where the sun was about to rise and there was a beautiful view of the city. Over the bridge cyclists spread a little and we settled into a steady tempo. It was still warm ~20C and fine conditions.

    Winter (Hey this is Melbourne and we go from Summer to Winter without any transition)

    We followed Geelong Road south westerly direction with brief detours through Altona and Werribee (6:30, 30km). Between Werribee and Little River the conditions changed. The wind swung to the South West (in our faces about two hours earlier than I had hoped) and the temperature plummeted.
    Within half an hour rain started falling (~7am, 45km). It had rained for about 5 minutes when I suddenly felt a torrent of water run down my leg and into the socks. Once the socks are wet cycling ceases to be fun. Unfortunately we werent even 1/4 way there. Condition became arctic. There was a twenty knot
    head wind and pelting rain. Struggled with the cold ("My legs, my legs, I can't feel my legs). With many cyclinst pulling over we felt riding would be warmer than standing.
    Conditions were absolutely miserable and it was a big acheivement just to continue rather than hopping on a
    train in Geelong back home. Determined, we followed the route through scenic Geelong past the Shell Oil refinery, BHP and a phosphate factory.

    The route turned westwards from Geelong to Queenscliffe. This gave us some relief as we had a tail wind. However, the rain didn't stop. The forecast had been for "isolated showers" but it actually rained for almost two hours non-stop. This made it very tough. At Leopold we had our first serious climb of the day which we negotiated without too much trouble. From there it was downhill and downwind to Queenscliffe. Feeling in knees and
    ankles & fingers returned.

    In Queenscliff (10:15, 110km) we waited for our ferry ticket (it rained we shivered), recieved lunch and ate it (it rained we shivered), waited for the ferry (it rained we shivered), and rode the ferry to Sorrento (still shivering).
    On the ferry there was optimism we had seen the worst, and were riding familiar roads home and the 20knot headwind would now be a tailwind to push us home. On arrival at Sorrento, all was calm, no tailwind at all (D'oh)

    The rain stopped & we hit the road and headed home.
    We were nicely prepared for the main climb of the day up Balcome hill where the raining paid off and we overtook a number of riders up the climb.
    Climbed towards Olivers Hill in Frankston (160km, ~2:30pm) But on the descent it was only the flat familiar Beach road left.

    Just out of Frankston the sun came out. The temperature returned to something reasonable and we started to enjoy
    the riding. We had a good tempo riding at around 30km/h between Frankston and Mordialloc and the conditions were good. If only the whole ride was like that.

    From Mordialloc (180km, 3:30) we continued a rather fast pace and our endurance training showed up by overtaking many riders on this last stretch home. As is Murphy's Law the wind returned to the North West and we had a head wind again on the stretch home. We arrived at Catani Gardens about 4:30pm. Over, done
    completed. Oh yeah we have to ride home . . .D'oh

    The ride took around 8.5 hours of riding time and 11.5 hours all up. It was a great feeling of acheivement to complete the ride especially considering the atrocious conditions - thankfully experienced in training sessions!. Hopefull conditions will be better next year.
  6. Evo

    Evo New Member

    Jul 2, 2003
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    We were very lucky in lots of ways on this ride.....


    It was a very balmy yet overcast morning and we set quite a cracking pace to Frankston. It was there that we noticed the water getting a bit choppier....the change was coming.......
    Climbed the hill after Frankston (lucky for all the trips up Mt Bunniyong - Ballarat people will know what I mean!) and it was on the back hills that the rain started....from there it never really stopped...eech!
    Rolling through Dromana, we had our first flat, which proved to be our most complicated... Replaced the tube and tyre, that was ok...put the rear wheel back on. He got on the bike, pushed and I heard an almighty CRACK!! from behind me.. Turns out the chain had gone haywire and wrapped itself around the casset and derailleur, bending it at a 45 degree angle (Oh, yeah...still raining) making impossible to change gears. We eventually got the chain to run through the derailleur and my poor friend had to limp from Dromana to Sorrento in one gear....around 20km...It was strange seeing the path of the chain jut out so violently, but it worked and we eventually made it to Sorrento....(first stroke of luck)

    Upon arrival (still raining)...we lines up for the ferry, with the other 1500+ people.....Shivering uncontrollably, we eventually got our lunch which I had much trouble trying to aim my chicken pita actually into my mouth through all the shivering!
    We were about 20 people from the end of the line for the ferry when the marshall called "Six more people". Our spirits dropped... another 15 minutes in this cold would be nearly unbareable! Then a second marshall shouted "Naah, fifty more!" (second stroke of luck).....we practically sprinted onto the boat with our wet look-cleated shoes...very dangerous, but I didn't care!
    The cargo hold of the boat was an amazing sight! every single pieve of vertical wall was covered with bikes leaned up against it at least 10 deep. You could measure each square meter of bikes by thousands of dollars! Amazing!
    The lounge was an eye-opener, too. The whole floor was filled with wet, sweaty, stinky cyclists....shoulder to shoulder. I didn't care, though. I was just happy to be out of the wind and rain for a few moments. Couldn't tell you how long the ferry trip took...I had absolutely no reference...the windows had all fogged up, it took me a couple of minutes to be certain that we were actually moving! Threw the rest of my lunch down during the trip while the shivering subsided.

    Being last in actually had its advantages...last in, first out! When the main cargo doors opened, we felt that icy blast once again....we weren't looking forward to getting back into the rain.
    We also still had the problem of the dodgy derailleur.
    Saw all the busses at Queenscliff ready to take people back to was hard not to think about jumping on one of them.....A trip to the mechanic and $110 later (we all put in for it) the bike was ready to go, and we were able to proceed..

    As we were negotiating the hills around Leopold (still raining) I caught a glimpse of blue sky over to the and said jokingly "I bet by the time we get back it will be blue skies, so when they take the finish photo, no one will believe that it was such a miserable ride!"
    10km later, of course, blue sky! (third stroke of luck)
    We went through Geelong (stripping off sopping layers as we went) and got on to the Geelong-Melbourne Freeway with one of the best tailwinds I've ever had ! (fourth stroke of luck) Cruising in the emergency lane of the freeway (which in practically brand-new, and therefore an awesome surface) we sat most of the way at around 45km, not even pushing! The new road bike that I had only had for a few months was really paying off now! The average speed was looking a little more respectable!

    After pumping over the Westgate, and overtaking many tired looking was a lovely cool-down trip through Port Melbourne to the finish line. Everyone cheered as a steady stream of riders crossed the line. It was an awesome feeling.

    8 hours 22 minutes of riding, 11 hours total. 210 km. We did it! Of course, the sky was clear and blue, my prediction proved correct! I have a sneaking suspicion that this was the worst year weather-wise.

    It can only get easier from here, can't it?

    Can't it?

    I'll be back......wouldn't miss it for the world!
  7. cruizer

    cruizer New Member

    Jul 24, 2003
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    Well done to all who braved the conditions and completed the ride in those conditions. I must admit I was one of those whoe pulled out. Having done it 6 times, I wasn't gonna risk getting a nasty cold. I did wake up and had my brekky and ready to leave. Heard the winds howling from inside the house. hmmm I thought this don't sound good. Went out to have a look and clouds already rolling in. Quickly came inside n fire up the PC to check the weather from the BOM website. The radar showed heavy rain bands just outside Geelong. No way of being dry before the ferry at Queenscliff so that convinced me to stay home and went back to bed. I'd have gone if I thought I can get to across the ferry dry.

    I can vouch this is the worst condition for the ATB in its 11 years. I've ridden in ATB where there were gale force winds but the rain on this years made it the worst.

    I drove down the towards Mordialloc and drove up towards StKilda and saw the conditions .. it was yucky alrite so to all who completed you have all done very well.
  8. bfra1

    bfra1 New Member

    Nov 24, 2003
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    This was my first ATB. I went via Queenscliff and spent most of the ride there wondering if the ride could get any worse.
    We arrived at Q/Cliff and were then allocated the ferry trip in 1 hour 15 mins. When we lined up for the ferry, there was not enough room and we had to wait 1 more hour for the next one. Over 2 hours very wet and very cold.
    What was worse is that I also didn't bring wet weather gear.
    We continued on any way and when the sun came out, my chain sounded like it was made from sand paper.

    The weather was totally crap, but the achievement was fantastic. Bring on the 2004 ATB.