Thursday, September 23, 2010

Magpies, Dogs and Pushbike Road Trips.

I miss my motorbike. 

I am still riding a pushbike and it is hard work around here. The shops are 4.5km over the hills and naturally I want to do more than just visit the local shops. I have been exploring. 

I love the exercise and I am getting fitter, but I am also taking risks.
The other day I was attacked by magpies. I was riding my pushbike when I heard them swoop and make threatening sounds. Luckily they didn’t connect. I assume my helmet would have protected me but I think the shock of an unexpected bonk on the head might have sent me into the oncoming traffic. Then the dogs got all excited.

I had decided to take a ride into the Wivenhoe dam area. It is scenic and picturesque and apparently the lake is bigger than the Sydney harbour. I was lucky to make it to the bottom corner to see the edge of the dam.

From Fernvale I had to ride on the narrow highway as there was no bike path. I tried riding on the grass for a bit but it has been raining and in places the bike got bogged and my shoes started to get wet. The road got even narrower in one place as it went through a small cutting but I found a detour through a rest area. Then there was road works at the bridge and traffic was stopped. There was still 5 kms to go and I was already tired from the long ride into town but I decided I could go a bit further. After one final uphill walk, I arrived at the beginning of the dam and turned off into one of the lovely parks that Australia does so well. 

It had shaded picnic seats, gas powered barbecues and playgrounds for the kids. With the recent rains, the grass was green and there were trees in the lake and it was looking gorgeous. There are at least eight to ten separate areas all spread out around the park and down to the edge of the lake, and facilities enough for a small town to have a picnic there. Today there were three men doing some kind of fight training on a mat, and a child on one of the slides. It must get busier on weekends. It is a fantastic resource.

It didn’t take quite as long to get back but by the time I got home I was happily exhausted and pleased that I had been brave enough to get back on the bike again.

On Saturday I took a ride to the neighbouring town of Lowood as it looked to be about 12kms. There wasn’t much open in Lowood on a Saturday afternoon, but I did get two geocaches, both on top of steep hills. 
The road in was more of the steep roller coaster road I have been used to since coming here, so I decided to go home another way … and it was worse. I could have got a nose bleed up there. 

The 12kms turned into about 15kms with twists turns and steep inclines. What was worse was when I climbed up the last particularly steep hill, I realised that I couldn’t even enjoy the ride down because it was too steep. With my dodgy noisy brakes I would either hit the bottom at 100kms an hour or hit the brakes and deafen the locals.  

All the long way down I kept telling myself I was lucky to have a bike, even if I had to walk it as often as ride it. Lucky too, that the two dogs who obviously wanted to attack me were behind fences, … and lucky that the magpies didn’t connect. 


Red Nomad OZ said...

Isn't it amazing how a seemingly flat road turns into a winding, hilly, rough bush track as soon as you get on a bike?!?!

Happy travels!

Nikki said...

You are so right. It seemed like a straight flat road when we arrived in the car. lol. Thanks for coming by.