Monday, May 21, 2007

Fun in the mud and rain

The principles behind the Cyclic Navigator are very simple. You jump on your bike with a map and compass and have five hours to pick up as many of the marked controls as possible. Sound simple?

I had a great time and only make two mistakes all day. The first was turning right when I should have turned left. Suddenly I found myself on a long, fast, downhill run which ended at a dam which was in exactly the opposite direction to where I wanted to be. My second mistake was not doubling back to where I went wrong and sticking to my plan. In my cleverness I tried to make up a new plan on the spot and that's where is all turned to custard. It seems it's hard to make good decisions when your wet and cold and tired. Who knew?

Hindsight is a wonderful thing and I had the benefit of hindsight's full measure as I sat in the bath with the map and a beer last night, trying to soak off the mud. Of the piddling 170 points I managed to score - 150 of them were in the first three hours and only 20 after that. Obviously I need some more practice at mountain bike orienteering. (I see there's a MTB-O event down in Tassie not long after I get there.) And well done to Andy, Glo and Ken, who put in a stunning effort with 380 points. Steve was a bit sad he couldn't ride yesterday. He was a lot less sad when I told him how much fun he would have had if he'd ridden with me!

On the bright side, the new bike is a joy to ride. There was mud - lots of mud - rain, dirt roads and singletrack and the bike was fantastic all day. Even the saddle was comfortable. Despite not going all that well, I really had a great time. Honest. Less fun is cleaning all the mud off everything.

The photo at the top left is me competing in the 2DayFM triathlon about 22 years ago. I still ride the same bike, although it's red these days. I've been going through some old photos and found a few old cycling shots.

2,793km so far this year.


Anonymous said...

Hey Dave,

I was put onto your blog by the friendly folks at Abbotsford Cycles on my recent visit to Melbourne. They seemed to think we have brother/sister bikes - I have a Surly Trucker with Rohloff & Shimano hub dynamo. Good to see other enthusiastic Surly-ites around. I'm trying to pioneer the everything bike, as a total replacement for a car. So far, so good. Going on a long hike with my bike as transport is just sensational. I live in Hobart, so if ya wanna catch up, drop me an email at

David Killick said...

Hey, Carl, good to hear from you. Sounds like we have a bit in common. I'll drop you a line by e-mail.