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Mt Buller ….how I love thee

15 March 2011

Mt Buller ….how I love thee

Mt Buller is becoming a home away from home.

 

January we did our 1st of the 3 women’s camps, then Feb we had another camp with early March being the Bike Buller 2 day stage race and finishing off with our final camp for Summer season 2010/11 being held on the 11th 12th & 14th of March.

It turns out that it’s been pretty good training for my skills and riding hard in alpine terrain as well, with some road riding up the climb for good measure.

This time I decided to leave from Mansfield to ride up to Mt Buller, its only about 47km but its on some very dead road that has the most deceiving climb from the moment you leave the outskirts of town.

My job was to take it easy, no pressure, HR around 120 and just tap it out.

Well it took me 2.5hrs today and I was glad I was taking it easy.

Do you know how hard it is to climb for 16kms up the mountain keeping your RPM’s above 60 but not allowing your HR to spike too much? The load on the legs was more than the heart and lungs, but nice to relax into it.

 

Friday night is always just a settle in, intro’s and waiting for people to arrive.

We had 7 top girls, Jacqui our trainee instructor, myself and Norm.

All from Wagga to Adelaide and that in-between.

 

Saturday morning is time to spend on pure technique, really consolidating the right way, building confidence on non technical terrain for about an hour.

Then splitting into groups.

 

My group headed straight for Gang Gangs where we learnt how to really rail a berm high and wide, feeling the difference, letting the front wheel just glide through the corner. Thankfully whilst there we had many other riders to critique (after they were out of earshot of course!) and the girls were in top form 10 mins in already.

 

The course essentially teaches proper technique on all various single track obstacles and terrain, building confidence and learning how to analyse the problem and not baulking or second guessing yourself. Uphill switchbacks, downhill steep rocky sections, tight corners, big berms, launching off drops, riding over logs, and so much more…by the end of our session on Saturday we had only done around 20km in 5.5hrs but our brains were exhausted.

 

Hesitant to sit down in fear of falling asleep, I suggested to those who were interested that we go for a walk up to the Summit. Seven of us traipsed up the climb and got a great look at the valleys and ski fields, a nice way to end the day.

 

Dinner Saturday night is catered for by Stuart at Mirimbah Store, and we always eat too much. What a great cook, never disappointed.

Our evening activities were watching some DVD’s on skills and my 24hr SOLO win by OzdirtCast. By now were we ready to go to bed and it was only 9:15pm.

 

Sunday was of course the big EPIC we talk about all weekend, re do the trails up and over Corn Hill, then start on Stone Fly up and down, then onto River Spur all the way down the Delatite River to Mirimbah.

The trip over is a good time for the girls to put their skills to the test with a few new ones to be learnt. Launching off a rock mid trail, launching off a log at the end, and really nailing some steep fat berms.

The climb up Stone Fly lasts a while, so we decided to split it up into blocks of 10mins so we could re group and rest a bit in between, take pics and enjoy.

The rest at Bluff Hut was most enjoyed and a good reward with beautiful views to Stirling and over to Mt Buller. This is where you get to see how far you really have climbed.

 

The descent down Stone Fly is over far too quick and is a roller coaster ride – its not a single track but an amusement ride! Can you believe that one track can have so much beauty and so much fun elements?

I sat behind Belinda with a helmet cam talking to her and making her accountable all the way down.

 

After regrouping at Howqua Gap Hut down the bottom we rode for a bit along Circuit Rd, then a left down River Spur tk. Fast open with loads of debris, sticks and bark with pretty dangerous drainage ruts you have to be careful of. The downhill here lasts forever before you finally turn off onto the Delatite River trail.

This has recently been re opened, after 2 massive periods of rain which turned the river almost into a waterfall, there have since been bridges built and some of the track has been re routed.

 

This too lasts for a good 20 mins and is serious fun – you still have to have your wits about you though.

 

Finishing off at the Mirimbah Park, we joined in the festivities of Picnic in the Park and sat under a tree with our lunches provided again by Stuart from the store.

 

What a weekend…I love doing my job!

Thanks girls for a cracker time.

 

I will put some links in later when Norm has put them onto You Tube.

One is of Stone Fly and the other of River Spur.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsawuVm8byg

 

ONE MORE COURSE THIS SUMMER...LAST MINUTE DECISION....

http://mtbskills.com.au/mt-buller-escape-beat-the-snow