Ride Start Date: 2023-03-29
Author: Brett Fyfield
This ride was was one of the last ride prior to the lockdown, and it has taken me a while to put together a ride report and video for you. I hope you appreciate it. In early January I bought a gravel bike, and every Saturday for a few weekends I was catching the first train from Indooroopilly to Ipswich and riding through the darkness to get to rides starting in Fernwood and Lowood. This time however I took my trusty Trek 5500, a bottle and few gels for the road ride. I began the ride via Walkuraka to Pine Mountain to the Brisbane Valley and Fernwood for the Gregors Creek Circuit. After a few solid days of rain it was touch and go for the crossing at the upper reaches of the Brisbane River had been under water earlier in the week. The roads were still damp, and the paddocks either side of the old Pine Mountain Highway we filled with tall grass and flowers.
There was a good bunch at the meetup and the start was well-spirited with three distances, the 100km, 200km and 300km BRM on offer. The bunch largely held together until Split Yard Creek, and a few of us stopped at the top to take photos before descending into the Brisbane Valley around Wivenhoe Dam. I took my time to enjoy the gentle undulations towards Somerset Dam, and those of us on the longer rides stopped for the first control at the Dam Cafe to hydrate and refuel. Riders on the 100km BRM sailed past, with the turnaround a little further up the road overlooking the water. Once we were on our way, with Toogoolawa the next control, it was time to open the throttle a little and enjoy the sprinkles of rain and the happy cattleI running in the yards along the road.
I little out of Toogoolawa and the headwind started to take its toll. I was glad to have Gerry with me swapping turns, and it was like that for a while until the control Esk, and then the control at Coominya. Ultimately my turns would became shorter, and just out of Lowood I had a classic bonk. All the colour left my face, and despite trying a few different cadence strategies I just couldn’t generate any power. The 10km to the Fernwood Bakery were torturous. Gerry was kind enough to wait and I was glad to accept a lift to the Wacol train station. At least it would give me enough time for the blood sugar to normalise. I was determined to ride the final distance, so after a chocolate milk and almond croissant I set off again at a crawl.
Finishing a ride like that is quite a lovely way to suffer.