Cycling in Melbourne Australia
Anyway, I was around 80km shy of 4,000km for the year (mostly commuting) and I had put my 35mm knobbies back on my MASI Speciale CX for some YouYangs fun, so I thought why not do the Bellarine Rail Trail. I really had no idea what to expect... so grabbed some bananas and some water and headed off.
Some of the signage is a bit lacking in spots, and there's an astounding number of chicanes at intersections, but otherwise, I was really impressed. This picture shows what the vast majority of the surface was like. So smooth, and only soft in a number of places. My bike was perfect on it, however most others were on MTB or hybrids - with only about 3 roadies spotted (although I didn't get out as early as I'd planned).
I wasn't sure how far I'd go, nor how to pace myself. The longest ride I'd done in the last 6 months was the Melburn-Roobaix. So, I just went with the low effort, keep cruising sorta deal. Even so, I was only passed once through the whole ride, and within 5 mins I'd caught, chatted with, and passed him again.
In the end, once I hit the 'freeway' headed into Geelong, I thought I'd go and grab a beer and head back. The foreshore was gorgeous as per usual, and the beer choice was a little lacking, but meh.
Ride back was a little more difficult, as they always are. Principally, this was because of a headwind, but nothing too taxing. Met up with a family with two girls (same age gap, but a yr older) doing it, which inspired me for future years. Unfortunately, the younger one had come down with gastro (one hr into the ride) so Dad was gonna take her home via the train.
So yeah - give it a go. One way. Or the other. Or both. I'd even do it on the CargoBike, although it would get a little tiresome. And if towing a kid, the chicanes aren't as bad as some around, but they would get old pretty quickly.