Railway Reserves Heritage Trail
29"er Soft tail, no luggage
Perth was going through its coldest morning of the winter (2 degrees) and parts of the Hills were down to -3 degrees. But my plan was to start the riding the Trail after 9 am, and the forecast was for a fine, sunny day. Although I usually like to ride or catch a train to my start point (the Bellvue RSL), I drove today as I had to drop a daughter to work.
The ride up to John Forrest National Park was easy and uneventful. Once in the Park, I started videoing a fair bit and that slowed me down. The National Park Falls were completely dry, but I think the pools at the tea rooms were still filling up and taking all the recent rainfall. But the Hovea Falls were flowing bit better.
All the bridges in the National Park had been renovated and made a lot safer. The Trail had also been graded and compacted. All the old train line ballast had been either removed or buried and this had made the Trail so much smoother. The Tunnel was still in original condition i.e. pretty rough, but that is good. However, the resurfacing of the Trail had hidden the last visible parts of Deep Creek bridge, and all the signage referring to it has been removed. A shame, but the safer bridges and smoother Trail will attract more riders and walkers.
After leaving the National Park, the riding was all gentle and very nice in the cool conditions. I was surprised to see about 6 cyclists in all on the ride, which was good, especially as it was a week day.
I got some more video at the Mundaring Sculpture Park , then it was nearly all down hill to my start point. I was back at the car by 12.30, so my ride was pretty slow. But that would be a good guide of how long it would take you to ride if you stopped at all the scenic spots.
29"er Soft tail, no luggage
It has been a long hot summer and we have gone 100 days without rain in Perth and none is in sight either. But the forecast was for a cooler day at 28 degrees so I thought I'd catch a train to Midland, ride the Railway Heritage Trail to Mundaring, then ride the MB to Gleneagles on Albany Highway. The total ride was about 93km, nearly all on dirt on the MB, but I was hoping that as I was riding unloaded it would help make the ride easier. Perhaps I should have made the ride abit shorter so I stayed more in the "loving the ride" zone instead of creeping into "when do I get to the end!" feeling!
I caught the first train from Bayswater to Midland at 7.40am. It is always fun catching the first train of the day on Sunday as it is half full of people who are off to work or exercise, and the other half is people catching the first public transport of the day home from a big Saturday night out. The mix of work clothes, lycra and bedraggled Saturday night finery is amusing, especially as they struggle to stay awake. 2 zones on the train was $4.20 for an adult fare.
The ride up to Mundaring was the usual steady ride uphill on a very good surface except for the couple of kilometres where several hundred runners were running down hill. It was obviously a race from near Mundaring to Darlington, mainly on the road but sharing the trail for a bit. It was ok for me riding up as I kept left as did the runners as they ran downhill, but for the riders coming down hill it was pretty hard to overtake. However the runners weren't on the Trail for long and the trail was nearly empty again soon after.
Hardtail with panniers
We were up at 5.30am and we caught the 6.30am train to Midland. We rode to the Railway Heritage trail up to the Munda Biddi start in Mundaring. It was pretty easy even with the loaded bikes as the slope is always gradual. We were in Mundaring at 8.30am, 21.30km ave 12.62km/hr, 1hr 41 mins over about 2 hrs). We had breakfast at the bakery on the highway, a couple of hundred metres from the trail head.