Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 44
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93

    Social XC rides - Victoria

    Hi all,

    There has been some discussion building amongst a couple of groups (like on rotorburn) about starting a non-club-based social ride group.

    The proposal is that anyone can suggest a ride (venue, date, time, grade/ability) and we will cross-post these rides with the aim of letting all interested riders have an opportunity to try new trails, meet up with others, and just ride bikes in company generally.

    This thread is aimed at those people here on MTBR who are looking to guide or attend group rides in Victoria.

    We hope to run rides in all the good legal areas (You Yangs, Lysterfield, Buxton, Erica, Wombat, etc) and also get some interest - of the right kind - in the more grey areas (like Smiths Gully, Plenty Gorge, Blackwood, etc).

    A webpage has also been set up with details of upcoming rides, so you don't have to search the forum for details: MTB Melbourne | A place to find planned social rides. Please post a comment if you are interested in attending (yes/no/maybe/if I can be ar$ed).

    There's also the obligatory facebook page, for those so inclined:
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/116765471797477/. Please let me know if you'd like admin access.

    This was the starting point. See the reply by pistonbroke for what we think is a really good idea.

    We are also hoping to adopt the following standard for rating rides by rider ability:

    Level 1 (White): Have ridden a mountain bike for at least ten times, are capable of controlling bike speed and direction on smooth doubletrack and rolling singletrack trails.
    Would embrace more riding time.

    Level 2 (green): Have been mountain biking for at least one year, can climb and descend under control on moderately steep singletrack with loose rocks.
    Can ride with mild exposure at times.

    Level 3 (blue): Have been mountain biking for over two years, are confident riding all types of singletrack, are able to ride small drops and jumps
    and descend technical steep sections including rocks drops and uneven roots. Can ride confidently with exposure.

    Level 4 (black): Have been mountain biking for over five years, can ride very technical trails and including jumps, drops and narrow elevated trail sections.
    Can ride confidently with exposure.

    We plan to give some separate indication of proposed tempo of the ride and duration. for each event.


    Cheers,
    Emerson
    Last edited by emerthis; 06-12-2012 at 04:45 AM.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    3
    Thanks Emerson. It will be good to get this up and going.

    FYI...the parallel rotorburn discussion has now moved to the "Melbourne Social Rides" thread in the Watering Hole Victoria subsection.

    I can't post a link as I only have lowly status in this forum due to lack of activity.

    Cheers, Ben

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93
    For those without a working knowledge of rotorburn, look at this link.

    Interest is growing already!

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93
    So here are some suggestions for weekend trail rides:

    Buxton (haven't ridden it yet - one report says 30-odd km of trails)
    You Yangs (you can spend the whole day on various bits of trail, from fast, flat singletrack to full-on DH madness)
    Lysterfield (haven't ridden there either - reportedly pretty flat and very busy)
    Erica (no idea)
    Forrest (reportedly brilliant - about as far away as Erica)
    Wombat (well-groomed trails, mostly not too steep, 18km standard loop - but there's a lot more out there which I need some guidance to navigate)
    Warramate (never been there, noted from Yarra Ranges MTB group)
    The Pines at Castlemaine
    Plenty Gorge (10 to 25km of pretty technical singletrack - not for the faint-hearted!)
    Yarra Trails epic (all the singletrack from Richmond to Eltham - about 30km)

    And this rating system has laso been suggested:

    Also a ride/rider grading system works well, with detailed description of what to expect on each level of ride. Something like:
    Level 1. Absolute beginners. Dirt rides and bike paths. Lots of help and instructions given. Lots of regroups and rest breaks.
    Level 2. You know how your gears work and may be ready for some easy trails and easy single track. Nothing too technical. Still plenty of help given and regular regroups.
    Level 3. You can ride most trails and single track. May be some big hills to climb and some flowing single track descents. Ride may be longer in duration. You are expected to be self sufficient with tools and spares.
    Level 4. Ride will be ridden at a fast pace with few breaks. You are expected to ride technical trails and climb mountains. Ride may last all day and cover lots of kays.
    Level 5. Hard core epic rides. Only for fit confident riders. Ridden at race pace over long distances. May be multi day long haul rides over tough terrain.

    This is only a guide but works well. Feel free to change/scrap it as you please. What I can tell you is, the most popular rides will be level 2 and 3.
    All rides should be free. But everyone pays their own way for food or accommodation if needed.


    I also agree with the suggestion that we will need to create a calendar page for scheduled events. I'd best start my research...

    Cheers,
    Emerson

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jossa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    182
    You know I'm in, mate!

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    3
    In terms of trails....

    Lysterfield - very prone to damage from wet weather...there is a good amount of flat singletrack that provides for a decent spin...the new "follow me" trail is more technical and provides a bit more variety
    Forrest - I've ridden these trails quite a bit...they are very good...2 seperate trailheads...a great variety of very well signed singletrack
    Erica - a great variety of singletrack with some very active trailbuilders...a decent amount of elevation too...well worth the trip
    Mt Buller - unfortunately, this is now off the cards until later in the year...but it is, without doubt, my favourite place to ride. In fact, I'm keen to do quite a few day trips and longer trips to ride the alpine areas.
    Blores Hill - I keep hearing good things about this place...I'm told it has very well groomed flowing singletrack...but, I'm yet to ride it

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93
    I won't be able to ride anywhere away from home at all this weekend, unfortunately - but I am always happy to show smaller groups my backyard trails.

    From memory, Smiths Gully should handle water pretty well, too - but it will be copping a bucketload right now, and our bikes might not be so happy about the mud.

    Buxton might be a good start - being not _too_ distant, a proper MTB facility with signposted and mapped trails, a bit north of most of the deluge - and unfamiliar to most of the group I have ridden with - though I really want to come along on that one, soon.

    Perhaps You Yangs for a kick-off? Again, reasonably close, well-mapped and easy to find, with something for everyone. A big group could split in two according to motivation and ability, to take on different parts of the park.

    How is the weather looking for the next couple of weeks? This will have a big impact on our initial event.

    I do like the other suggested rating system better, too:

    Taken from the "Big Mountain Adventures" website is this technical rating:
    Level 1: Have ridden a mountain bike for at least ten times, are capable of controlling bike speed and direction on smooth doubletrack and rolling singletrack trails.
    Would embrace more riding time.

    Level 2: Have been mountain biking for at least one year, can climb and descend under control on moderately steep singletrack with loose rocks.
    Can ride with mild exposure at times.

    Level 3: Have been mountain biking for over two years, are confident riding all types of singletrack, are able to ride small drops and jumps
    and descend technical steep sections including rocks drops and uneven roots. Can ride confidently with exposure.

    Level 4: Have been mountain biking for over five years, can ride very technical trails and including jumps, drops and narrow elevated trail sections.
    Can ride confidently with exposure.

    I think a seperate fitness rating needs to give suggested tempo of the ride and duration.


    Agreed.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jossa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    182
    Quote Originally Posted by emerthis View Post
    From memory, Smiths Gully should handle water pretty well, too - but it will be copping a bucketload right now, and our bikes might not be so happy about the mud.

    Buxton might be a good start - being not _too_ distant, a proper MTB facility with signposted and mapped trails, a bit north of most of the deluge - and unfamiliar to most of the group I have ridden with - though I really want to come along on that one, soon.
    Smiths Gully is pretty good during wet weather apart from a couple of spots. Can't ask for much better during Winter though.

    +1 for Buxton. Again, not too bad in the wet from my experiences. A bit wet on the lower trails along the creek but most stays ok.



    Quote Originally Posted by benketch View Post
    In terms of trails....

    Blores Hill - I keep hearing good things about this place...I'm told it has very well groomed flowing singletrack...but, I'm yet to ride it
    A good write up about Blores in this month's AMB.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jossa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    182
    Quote Originally Posted by benketch View Post
    I'm keen to do quite a few day trips and longer trips to ride the alpine areas.
    Me too! I'll hold you to this later in the year!!

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    3
    Possible first 2 rides:
    Saturday 16th June @ You Yangs
    Sunday 15th July @ Buxton

    Hold the first 2 rides nearish to Melbourne and then move further afield later.

    Sound okay?

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93

    Corner Man system

    Another great suggestion:

    The corner man system, it works like this.
    Ride leader stays at the front. This is usually the person organising the ride, but does not have to be.
    Tail man always stays at the back. Usually an experienced rider who can help others with any problems.
    All other riders stay in between the lead and tail riders.
    When the ride leader gets to an intersection, he waits for the next rider in the group to come along. He then tells that rider to stay there, this is usually just done by pointing at the ground and the following rider acknowledges with a nod or a wave.
    That rider is now the corner man. He should point his bike in the direction of travel that the ride leader took off in. HE STAYS ON THAT CORNER UNTIL THE TAIL MAN COMES ALONG AND WAVES HIM ON. HE NEVER LEAVES THE CORNER.
    This system works really well at keeping the whole group moving. It prevents the slowest riders from feeling like they are holding the group up. They get to feel like they are in the pack. It also allows gun riders to open the taps between corners and try and pass as many riders as they can. Slower riders also get the benefit of seeing how better riders ride. Remember, this is not for racing, so if the faster rider is held up a little, it is of no consequence.


    Please note that the terms 'he', 'man', 'him' etc are all for illustrative pusposes only - certainly not a requirement for all leadership candidates to be male.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93
    Quote Originally Posted by benketch View Post
    Possible first 2 rides:
    Saturday 16th June @ You Yangs
    Sunday 15th July @ Buxton

    Hold the first 2 rides nearish to Melbourne and then move further afield later.

    Sound okay?
    You Yangs Saturday 16/6/12. 9.30am. Kurrajong/Stockyards and difficulty grading TBA.

    Adding Smiths Gully on Sunday 1/7/12. 9am. General store. Difficulty grade 3 for morning loop, with optional extra grade 3 loop afterwards. PM me for my mobile number.

    Buxton MTB Park Sunday 15/7/12. 10.30/11am start-time to be confirmed and difficulty TBA.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    483
    Good work Emerson. Am already booked for the 16th but if that falls through will join in.

    Cornerman works well (with dirt bikes) when there is a mix of rider abilities and the trail segments between intersections are short, allowing faster riders to get a good run in. It also reduces the need for the leader to be the fastest rider. As the leader you can always position a rider that catches up to you on an imaginary corner, if you must...

    Levels, in single words:

    1. Novice
    2. Apprehensive
    3. Confident
    4. Aggressive
    5. Expert

    Regular weekend riders will typically plateau at level 3. There won't be many level 5 rides!

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93
    Quote Originally Posted by cowpat View Post
    Good work Emerson. Am already booked for the 16th but if that falls through will join in.

    Cornerman works well (with dirt bikes) when there is a mix of rider abilities and the trail segments between intersections are short, allowing faster riders to get a good run in. It also reduces the need for the leader to be the fastest rider. As the leader you can always position a rider that catches up to you on an imaginary corner, if you must...

    Levels, in single words:

    1. Novice
    2. Apprehensive
    3. Confident
    4. Aggressive
    5. Expert

    Regular weekend riders will typically plateau at level 3. There won't be many level 5 rides!
    Thanks, mate - it's gaining momentum nicely. Fingers crossed it evolves into a thing of its own volition, then I can kick back a bit and reap the benefits of many opportunities to go riding socially. Meanwhile...

    I agree with your summary of ratings. We don't want to put too much focus on that aspect, or any perception of draconian rules - but it will be nice for newer riders to be able to identify which events will suit them best, and for others with more experience and less fitness (like me) to not be constantly chasing the group beyond my own ability.

    There may not be many Level 5 events - but I am hoping that eventually this group will grow to encompass such rides, and for those riders who feel so inclined to both post and attend them.

    Meanwhile, Gorge traffic is increasing =)

    Cheers,
    Emerson

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    483
    Quote Originally Posted by emerthis View Post
    Thanks, mate - it's gaining momentum nicely. Fingers crossed it evolves into a thing of its own volition...
    It'll go pffffttt without leadership...you know that!

    Yeah levels...might be something to be said for sticking with the standard mtb grades: green/easy, blue/intermediate, black/advanced. Add white for novice and double-black for expert if you like. No need to reinvent the wheel?

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93
    Plenty Gorge ride tomorrow? Kariboo Grove, about midday?

    I think this will most likely happen on Sunday. Bit wet out there today...

    Cheers,
    Emerson
    Last edited by emerthis; 06-08-2012 at 05:24 PM.

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jossa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    182
    Quote Originally Posted by emerthis View Post
    Plenty Gorge ride tomorrow? Kariboo Grove, about midday?

    Cheers,
    Emerson
    Not me, mate. Off to see the Tigers continue their run towards September!

    Sunday at the Gorge for me!

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93
    Quote Originally Posted by jossa View Post
    Not me, mate. Off to see the Tigers continue their run towards September!

    Sunday at the Gorge for me!
    3pm at Kariboo. There may be a few of us, depending who shows up.

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93
    Facebook group has now been created:

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/116765471797477/events/

    Feel free to jump in, and hit me up for admin access if you like.

    Cheers!
    Emerson

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    93
    Well, it was a beautiful morning out at You Yangs MTB park on Saturday. 5 of us ended up meeting there for a ride which lasted about 3 hours. Only covered 22km, but it was hard work! We rode Track 5 to start with, then two DH trails (Cressy's & Trav's diamond) on completely inappropriate bikes. A couple of the lads baulked at Trav's Diamond, which I wasn't even game to ride all of myself, so when we met up at the top again we took the Link Trail over to Kurrajong side and rode the fun flowy stuff for a bit, then turned around and went back over the hill, finishing with another run down Cressy's and back along Track 5.
    Good day all up. Probably warranted a difficulty rating of 4, rather than 3, with the three black diamond trails we did ride, but we all came out intact, with no mechanical problems or flat tyres, and everyone grinning with enjoyment.
    Thanks to Ben for guiding the ride, and to all the others who came out!

  21. #21
    Scott is a tool.
    Reputation: waldog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    837
    Sounds like it was a good outing.

    I'm aiming to be at the Gorger for a night session on Wednesday, evening, obviously. Don't know what time yet, but will confirm closer to the day.

    Wal.

    P.S. I've requested to join the bookFace group too.

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jossa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    182
    Quote Originally Posted by waldog View Post
    Sounds like it was a good outing.

    I'm aiming to be at the Gorger for a night session on Wednesday, evening, obviously. Don't know what time yet, but will confirm closer to the day.

    Wal.

    P.S. I've requested to join the bookFace group too.
    New lights came during the week so if everything falls into place this week I may request to tag along!

    Rode the Gorge today. Sure enough it started raining which made it another muddy mess. Five of my last six rides have been in the rain and I am over it! At least one other rider was out judging by the fresh tyre tracks. Big blocky tread, Minions maybe? Casper?

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    483
    Quote Originally Posted by jossa View Post
    Minions maybe? Casper?
    Not me.

    The Intense has had a long rest, too many holidays and time off the bike, but the Ralphs just don't have enough grip to get up the hills...plus they've got zero grip on the rocks. I think the Intense has to come out of hibernation, I've just got some manning-up to do...

    Might join you on Wednesday.

  24. #24
    fan of maple syrup
    Reputation: nuclear_powered's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    1,586
    I'm probably the only other full-time minion rider around as well as the cowpat, and it's not me either due to total lack of motivation to get out on the bike lately (house is currently taking up all my time).

    I'm keen for a Wed nite ride. Lights are currently charging, including my recent eBay purchase: a MagicShine Cree XML T6 for a whopping $37 delivered from HK. It's just a bit brighter than my SSC P7 (which looks identical) that cost a whopping $80 a few years ago. The tech in this area is getting ridiculously cheap these days.

    Waldog if you can't make it to PG I'd be up for a lap of your lower yarra trail circuit.

  25. #25
    Scott is a tool.
    Reputation: waldog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    837
    Update.

    Hoping to be at the gorge at around 1900 tomorrow, traffic dependant.

    Bring on night time rocks.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •