How lucky we are (i.e. Australians) – 23/07/2011

I had always had a particular vision of Sydney road-cycling – it
wasn’t good.  All I pictured was traffic, smoke and idiots.  Today I was proven very wrong.  I did get a bit of smoke and traffic (right), and I definitlely experienced a lot of idiots, but I was overwhelmingly surprised at the beauty of this place.

I had never seen the northern beaches of Sydney so I was keen to get out and explore.  I discovered they contain as many millionaires as the harbour-side!  Amazing.  The houses, vistas, yachts and beaches provide a fantastic lifestyle for a lot of people. 

I headed out from Manly having studied the local ride routes as closely as I could.  I have driven and ridden in Sydney before and I know how easy it is to get disoriented.  I was right!

Luckily, and yes I am anal, I took the ipad with me, onto which I had loaded a couple of Mike Foster’s detailed maps of the regular rides (Dave’s brother for those who know him).  I was glad I had them because I had to refer to them regularly.  I also now wish I had a Garmin because I’m not even sure I’ll be able to find them the second time.  The following image is the basic route I covered, although I did a few additional loops simply because I saw good opportunities for views at the top of hills or through the roads of some of the gorgeous coves – it’s really that nice.  I did a bit more through the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park as well.  I’ll definitely get back there before returning home – I’m sure.

Inland side of Palm Beach (where do these people get all this money?!)
Palm Beach itself
Cove just around the corner from Church Point
Waterfall in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park – wouldn’t normally be like this but record rainfalls have ensured plenty of water around the bush and on the roads.

So see what I mean?!?  It was just beautiful.  It will never equal the opportunities offered in Melbourne, but the exploration of new areas and the oppotunity to see, once again, how lucky we are in this country is very much appreciated –

– as was the Musaka I threw in the microwave when I got back to the college!  How good is it to have a chef to put lunch aside for you so when you get back form 120k you can carb up immediately.

Lucky Rich… lucky country.  Love it!

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