Christian had organised a group for a ride from Hobart, up to the Springs, down the Nth/Sth Track to Tolosa Park & back to Hobart which is about a 40km loop.
I knew that I would probably be slowest and it would be a hard day - trying to stay up as we headed up to the Springs.
My last ride on this course didn't end well so this time I used some cross country tyres so the ride up to the Springs wouldn't be so hard. I knew that would mean there was less grip down the MTB track but so be it.
On the way up Strickland Av we turned up a track past Cascade where there is a crazy downhill course with jumps that would mean certain death for me. There were lots of ramps with big jumps that I usually only see on youtube videos.
I had to walk most of the way up this track because my legs were already dead from the Mt Roland walk a couple of days ago.
This emerged onto Huon Rd just down from the top of Strickland Av jcn. and we continued up to the Fern Tree shop for a short break. We then continued up to the Springs with Christian & Sam disappearing quickly into the distance. Ralph stayed with me to give me some company even though he would have almost stayed with the others.
After I passed Shoebridge Bend, Christian & Sam came up behind us. They had already done the Spring section down & were heading up again. At the start of the Nth/Sth track I let the pressures down a bit. They were 70psi for the road ride & I was guessing they were down to about 30 for the MTB bit.
The others headed off first and I just rolled down the track. It was a bit damp but in good condition. We re-grouped at Junction Cabin and then at each track crossing after that. This ride was the first time I had bothered to ride across the long rocky section in the landslip area.
As we got close to the top of the Tolosa area I had a fall on a bend when I think I might have used front break while turning & lost the front wheel - sliding down the track on my front. I bent the rear derailleur a bit & just bent it back into place.
As we got to the top of the Tolosa Park there was a great course of bermed corners down to a fire trail. At that point there are lots of options & we went down the downhill course. I followed Ralph in an area of deep pine needles & lost the front wheel again on a tight bend as I pushed to stay with him. This time I caught my left thumb against the handlebars & bent it back. I hope it is just strained. (my stupidity & carelessness really annoys me - it is no wonder I am covered in grazes)
I rolled cautiously down to the car park. I pumped my tyres up again & we screamed down Tolosa St & along the bike track back to my car. It was nice to finish & sit in the sun at Cornelian Bay as I brushed the gravel out of my latest grazes.
Overall it was a good 3hrs of exercise (37.3km) with a strained thumb & a bit of gravel-rash thrown in.