Clare Loop26 March 2023

20230320-e-undalyarattler2I was planning a long nonstop with lots of gravel last weekend, but a close Covid contact put a stop to all that! So, after a clear PCR test, on a supposedly rain free Monday, I took a consolation loop up through Clare, and return to Adelaide.

A fast trip north from Adelaide has only one sensible route, from my perspective anyway. Highway One is constant noise and one is always at risk from the high traffic volume. Main North Road from Gawler to Tarlee is also busy, and in my experience, often just feral. Something clicks in Tarlee, apparently, for the traffic then slips into the typical courtesy of country drivers. There is a third route which our family used to call "the middle road," or just, "Brinkworth." From the family farm between Gladstone and Crystal Brook this became the favourite trip to Town, aka Adelaide... Read on >>>>

What drivers wish cyclists knew12 March 2023

I drive, and ride more than I drive. I know what can go wrong.

Here’s a list of what drivers wish cyclists knew, plus a few comments from pedestrians

I can’t see you
I’ve been hit by a car twice. Both times, I was simply not seen in the traffic. One vehicle (more below) stopped at an intersection, and looked, and missed seeing me. We need to be as visible as possible.

I’m not too far off 70, which means my visual acuity is declining. When you wear black, especially at night or on dull days, it takes me a whole lot longer to see you. I write that as someone who is very attuned to keeping an eye out for bikes. I’m not sure what the thing is about black. Maybe people think it makes them look tough. I get that black knicks don’t show grease, but black jerseys and jackets magnify our risk of being hit. Wear something bright... Read on >>>>

Pine Hut Road (2023)11 March 2023
I frequently loop out through Sedan, and have noticed Pine Hut Road leading back into the hills from the road between Sedan and Cambrai. So last Thursday was the day for some exploration. I took my normal route up the Linear Park and the Gorge out to Mt. Pleasant, and then headed north to Eden Valley. At the Eden Valley caravan park, there is a right turn onto Rhine Park Road, which delivers us to Jutland Road. It's about 10 kilometres of good metal surface in easy riding undulating country... Read on >>>>


What cyclists wish drivers knew about bikes26 February 2023
Crashed bike

In the years I’ve been riding a bike, driver awareness has improved enormously. Most car drivers show a level of awareness and courtesy towards cyclists that was often unimaginable. That said, there are drivers, and cyclists, who are simply arseholes, and who are dangerous to all other road users. The trouble with an article called what I wish drivers knew about bikes is that it can be a long whinge about these dangerous people. That’s not what I’m about here. I’m writing to drivers who’d like to be better, and to drivers who are puzzled or even annoyed about the behaviour of cyclists. Sometimes, looking at a situation from the perspective of the rider can help those of us who drive understand things a little better. Here’s a list:

Why did that cyclist scream at/abuse me?
I hope you’ve never had this happen to you, but imagine someone going for you with a knife or pointing a gun at you.... Read on >>>>

Rides for hot days25 February 2023

There’s a great ride just waiting for me out near Sedan. Quite beautiful, but not what you want to take your good car over, according to my colleague Jill. And also not 200km to take on a high fire danger day with a forecast that's in the 40’s and windy. So, what to do if it’s ride day?

I decided on a day on the bike paths that criss-cross Adelaide. The fire danger is way lower, the traffic is nil, and there is a surprising amount of shade. We live about 3 minutes from the Linear Park, which is itself a 70km loop from beach to foothills along the River Torrens, so I began with the ten kilometres up to the Gorge. We are on what I will call the North Adelaide side of the Torrens, and I took that up to the top end... Read on >>>>

A Long Hot Ride17 February 2023
Since I no longer commute to work, keeping the kilometres up has been difficult. There's always something else to do, and the ten kilometres into my one day a week job doesn't cut it. So, I've tended to reserve Thursdays for a long ride, often a 200km loop up to Angaston and back. This can be varied with a side excursion to Sedan, for example, and I've gone south to Victor a couple of times. Yesterday was hot, forecast to be 39 here at Hillcrest, and 41 at Sedan. I was a bit dehydrated after my 400km day trip to Burra and back, so I thought it would be a good opportunity to test out a slightly different hydration scheme. Normally, I have my GPS set to remind me to drink every fifteen minutes. This is necessary, because by the time we feel thirsty we already have a water deficit, and it's not easy to correct... Read on >>>>
400km Burra Loop10 February 2023
I crafted a ride up and back from Burra to take in some of my favourite roads, to bring up 400km, and to stay away from traffic—riding the last tired 100km of 400 along the Sturt Highway and Main North Road to get back into Adelaide is not only risky, it's also really unpleasant.

I took the bike paths to Nuriootpa which meant only 11km out of 80 was spent on roads.'ll just park out the front! (West Avenue bike path at Edinburgh) 

Then I took the quiet route to Kapunda, guessing that after Kapunda there would be light traffic on the Thiele Highway to Eudunda, which was the case. From Eudunda I took the Julia Road out to Scenic Drive, which offers a spectacular viewing of the kind of country in which I grew up... Read on >>>>

The Wind06 December 2022

It was windy this morning; choppy, buffeting, and cold. Both of us have bad memories of wind. I once spent a week on the remote Barkly Tablelands riding into howling wind. On one of those days I was moving for 10 hours and covered only 70 kilometres. A couple of weeks later I wrote of another day's ride, "But today, going past the big gums in the wind raised deep non-rational discomfort in me; I was afraid. This was safe ride, well within my capabilities, with a motel at the end, and lots of farm houses on the way. But in the growing cloud over the range -- at 12:30 it was darker and it is now at 5:30-- and at other times, I had to fight off moments of panic. If a week of headwinds can do that to me, no wonder months or years in a war zone, or refugee camp, or violent marriage can cause triggers that make people meltdown. It was a sobering experience. I knew exactly what was going on... and that knowledge made no difference at all!" ... Read on >>>>

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