Well, not having had enough from the High Country Cycle Challenge Ride on the Saturday, I embarked on another ride from Mansfield on the Sunday. While Barrie had more sense and rested from cycling to spend time with his family, I originally had intended to cycle the 126km return trip from Mansfield to Whitfield, including 2 climbs to Tolmie, provided I woke up on Sunday morning feeling reasonably recovered from Saturday’s big effort. But considering the drive home, of some 3-4 hours (it had taken me 5 on Friday due to multiple traffic jams), I decided that I should reserve enough energy to safely drive home, yet still wanted to ride. So I just did the return ride to Tolmie, which turned out to be 60km trip with a 400 m climb.
It was another spectacular day, weatherwise – light breeze and 20 deg at 9:00 am for the start. Our very own “Hollywood Hincapie” was commentating the start, so I was suitably embarrased with an impromptu interview upon my arrival at the start line.
Despite some soreness in my legs, I managed to stay with the lead peloton and just behind the lead car for the first half of the climb. Obviously, everyone was suffering from the day before, or I wouldn’t have been so far up the field! As the climbing started to hurt more, I decided to ease off and enjoy the spectacular views and reserve some energy. After about and hour and a quarter, I arrived in Tolmie at the top of the climb where I stopped for a coffee, short rest and some food (more eating!).
The return journey to Mansfield was very pleasant – nice wide, sweeping bends and almost constant downhill. As a result, I was back in Mansfield after only 45 minutes. The local Produce Festival was in full swing – I enjoyed a lovely crepe for lunch from the stand of The Mill Inn Restaurant and later sampled home made sausages from Cafe Forty One. After an ice cream and coffee in the shade and some rest, I headed back to the car for the drive home.
This was another fantastic day’s riding and conclusion to a terrific weekend. I’m already looking forward to next year!