Change in latitude ….

Was it a Jimmy Buffett album title? “Change in latitude, change in attitude”

It’s been a tough sort of winter in Melbourne. Cold. Wet – which is great for the water storage levels, but shitty for bike riders. Broke my wrist, and was forced to ride indoors on the bloody wind trainer (thank you SufferFest for making it bearable), but it was raining a lot of the time, so maybe I didn’t miss all that much.

Now I’m in Byron Bay for a few days.

Rode on Thursday by myself – didn’t feel like getting up early, and sort of knew the pace was going to be a bit hot for me …. much easier to drift along on my own. Nice ride, if you ignore the dive bombing magpie, but then I suppose it got me over that climb faster than I would have doing it, er, unassisted.

But there was no way I going to miss the Saturday ride.

6:30 am, sharp, from the clock tower, next to the Great Northern pub. Usually a 70 to 90k ride, a few climbs, good coffee in Brunswick Heads, and a mad charge back into Byron Bay – first to the 50 kph sign gets the points.

Last weekend riding in the Dandenongs I was wearing a base layer, sleeves, merino wool beanie, long fingered gloves, the legs were slathered with embrocation, and I stuffed a newspaper down the front of my jersey for a descent to try to keep the cold out.

This morning – short sleeved top, regular knicks, cotton cap under the helmet & short fingered gloves.

I’ve blogged about them before, but I’ll say it again, they’re a great bunch up here. Friendly. Welcoming. Happy to have anyone along, and on a Saturday, it’s a no drop ride, so even if you’re running a little slow, they’ll wait on the top of a climb for you to catch up.

The climbs here are different to Melbourne. Shorter, but much steeper. Grades that pitch up to 20% in places. Hard work getting up, but it just makes the descents all the more enjoyable.

Last weekend, I had rain dripping off my helmet, this morning, there was sweat coming from under the helmet and my cyclist’s tan is one it’s way back.

Pity I’ve got to head South on Monday, but the Worlds are on in Geelong – I don’t care how cold & wet it’s going to be, I’ll be there!

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