I hear you whining "but isn't it busy on the motorway to Newcastle"? Yes it is, but the route is along the old Pacific highway in the quiet smooth roads through some stunning National Parks with some epic climbs and decents.
Why do you do it overnight? Cause we all know that's the best time to ride without fear of being run over. Plus no risk of sunburns.
The adventure begins as 9 pm on observatory hill. Actually it begins early when everyone starts carbing and caffeine loading pre ride. Sign in and get safety checked by volunteers. Over the harbour bridge the biggest bottleneck of the ride.
Pacific Highway in Sydney isn't the best, but we were still able to take up a lane most of the way without being mulled over. But in a bunch and with one of the girls decked out in Cylotron lights we rocked the highway.
1am, 55kms in and we hit the first tea stop after epic hill. The volunteer group have laid out the fruit, biscuits, tim tams, shapes, tea, coffee (even with soy milk). The sugar high you need to get you through the
85 km mark up a hill we hear Marc screaming, "Woah oh, we're half way there" and everyone starts singing along. Yes half way there and it's 2 am.
100 kms, cramping up. the Entrance has some nice port-o-loos, orange break.
4 am, 112 kms, second tea stop. Legs are cramping hard. Again the volunteer group have set up an epic biscuit and cake station. I couldn't stop anymore sugar so stuck with my apple.
5 am, start to hear the birds waking up and singing. Hating the wind.
6.30 am, hitting Fernleigh rail trail, loving the trees and birds, still hating the wind .Now hating the ever so subtle incline.
7:30 am, Newcastle Ocean bath swim! Hot chips (regrettable) for breakfast.
Massive thanks to the organisers and volunteers, Omafiets, Yvonne, the tea stop volunteers.
See you all next year.
End: Newcastle Ocean Baths, NSW Australia
Distance: 170 kms
Difficulty: F**ING HARD but worth it
Roads: Smooth on road
Riding time average: 9 hours
Route: Garmin link, Pacific Highway, Old pacific highway, Central Coast Cycleway
- Marc singing Bon Jovi's half way there at halfway mark.
- Tea stops. Endless amounts of fruit and biscuits.
- The epic hill into Gosford oh yeah.