L to R: Ross, Nick (who was riding a Yeti 575 test bike!), me, MWG, Brad.
Me on Jing’s Cannondale.
And again (PS: the Fox Sargeant shorts are the best shorts I’ve owned so far).
Group shot out in the open.
Honda crew packing for home.
Young Cliffy made to do the dirty work.
Had an early night and met up with Zi, Jing, Clifton, Andy and 1st timer David at 7.30AM. We hit the M5 to M7 and got the Yellowmundee at 9AM. MWG rocked up as soon as we arrived (the Soap guys: Matt, Ross, Nick and Brad had just finished half a lap) and Felix soon after. David forgot to bring water, freaked out and drove to get some, this kinda slowed us all down as we had to wait for him to get back, once he pulled into the driveway the Soap guys were itching to hit the trail (some of them had other committments booked for later in the day) and once we did hit the trail we soon realised that David’s off road bike skills were pretty much non-existant. We lost him 10 minutes in and at that stage no one was willing to go back for him so we forged on (all the while feeling really bad about it!).
David was back at the carpark (we thought he would be) and wanted to go home. Perhaps it was the pressure of having too many people, a lot of it was nerves too poor guy, but we kinda forced him to stay to at least have another go, and we did another lap minus the Soap guys (the hardcore crew!) who all had to go home. Zi was sure to keep him company this time around.
Yellowmundee: It’s all single trail and it’s quite pretty and the trail flows really well too. I’d watched a few videos of the trail, and read a thread on Farkin where people were discussing 2 hard parts which they walk up (I saw a lot of people walking it in the videos too). I have to admit after seeing the vids I had a giggle as it all looked too easy, but having said that I know that things ALWAYS look easier on a picture, or video than in real life, so I tried my best to bite my tounge and not say a thing until I gave it a go first hand. Fair enough I didn’t make it up the 2 technical climbs 1st go, but I got them both the 2nd go and they’re both easy for me in comparisson to some parts of Manly Dam.
I also had a good go at Jing’s Cannondale. The gearing (no granny gear and a road cassette on the back) is definitely not great for technical stuff. I failed to get up either tech climb with his bike. On the other hand I had a go at Andy’s heavy Giant Yukon (Giant’s entry level dually) and got up it no worries (perhaps a combination of plushness, easy gears and weight for traction?).
Highlight of the day was just chilling out at the tech climb after the bridge and just egging everyone on to have a good go at it. We made a lot of noise and had a lot of laughs. Good times. I feel bad for David, he would have been much better of going to Lady Carrington Drive for his 1st trail experience. I only hope he’s not freaked out by the whole thing. I also managed to snap my chain (that felt strange!) and have to praise SRAM’s powerlink as it got me going again in a matter of minutes.
PS: All pics by Jing. I left my camera at home doh.
PPS: The Yeti Nick was riding didn’t look as porn as I thought it would look, maybe because the componentry was a lot lower spec than what I’ve got on my Reign. Whilst I didn’t have a go on it we did talk about the bike at different times during the ride and I’ve come to the concusion that it’s a very similar bike to the Reign. It can make it up climbs, just not as fast as the hardtail guys. It’s slow and painful on gradual uphills but it leaves you grinning ear to ear on the downhill stuff. At this stage I can’t justify buying one when my Reign does the job as is.
PPPS: Fuck MWG is fast!