The CycleCover Circuit – A Rainforest Ride has come and gone in the small seaside town of Apollo Bay. In the lead up to the 11th of December we had prepared for warm weather; Mother Nature had other ideas and greeted us with torrential rain and high winds.
The elements didn't bring the sun, and if rain isn’t you’re thing and you can’t hack the wind or the cold, it would have been best to stay in the car. I opted to change my planned 140km ride and cut out the 35km of optional routes to make it 105km. To make it a shorter (and warmer) ride. I bypassed the Otway Fly and the Cape Otway Lighthouse routes that were included in the premium package. My Garmin data recorded a low 10 degrees during the ride, I’m positive it was colder, especially on the top of Lavers Hill.
The ride profile is deceiving to say the least, the first 50km brings a lot of climbing and there are a lot of undulations to cover before being rewarded with some sweepings bends. Unfortunately, the day wasn’t a day for the speed junkies to push the limit, wet roads littered with debris kept us at bay.
One of the highlights of the course was riding past the Koala’s on the way to the Otway Lighthouse in the final kilometres of the challenging Cyclecover circuit.
Take away the rain, the cold, the wind and it was a beautiful ride, some of the best country in the world was on show at the Otway Ranges, the air was fresh and crisp. Volunteers were at the ready to help, food and water stops each step of the way and surprisingly great coffee at the rest stop in Lavers Hill.
The Saturdays ride attracted approximately 500 riders. I spoke to a 10 year old boy, Tiger, who had finished the 75km circuit with his parents. At the end of the day and he said he had enjoyed the ride, he also appeared much fresher than I did. A champion effort considering there was also a family friendly 23km ride on offer.
Save the date for 2011; pack up the family and friends and hope Mother Nature is willing to give us a reprieve in the years to come, some warmer weather for this ride would top off the majestic surroundings!
Keep up to date at www.rainforestride.com, it’s a ride not to be missed.
Photos: Title (1) and Rider Closeup (3) © Andrew Connolly
Photos: Rainbow (2) and Rainforest curve (4) © Rowena Scott