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Wisebytes.net     Day 9 (Marysville - Lilydale, 60 km some hills and lots of rain)
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Day 9 (Marysville - Lilydale, 60 km some hills and lots of rain)

Ride Guide Map

Elevation map for day 9

We awoke to the unwelcome sound of rain (as predicted by the lady in the bakery the previous evening - David had greeted her prediction with "Oh how wonderful :-)" and she was quite puzzled as to why a bike rider would be looking forward to rain - irony is obviously yet to reach Marysville).

Sophie was looking and feeling much better which was a big relief, and she went off to medical for a quick check-up and some more ventolin. We packed up and then attempted to load our bags onto a luggage truck. I got one bag on Luggage Truck 3, but the other bags seemed to be destined for Luggage Truck 5 which was far far away. As we walked towards the truck lugging 3 bags between the two of us, we noticed the absence of line and discovered that Luggage Truck 5 (which had been the stage for the band on the previous evening) was bogged and not loading. We went up to the other trucks which were clearly full, and at this point I ran out of motivation and energy and sat down with the bags while David set the girls on their way (a bit of a slow process with the accumulated tiredness and the wet). I realised that a luggage queue was forming for the impending unbogging of Luggage Truck 5, so I roused myself sufficiently to put one bag on my back and drag the other two bags into the line. By the time the bags were loaded on the trucks, I was quite drained both physically and mentally, but we set off on our last day's ride in the wet and up a hill with gritted teeth.

The rest of the day's ride was a very mixed bag of emotions and sensations. We struggled to get to the top of the Black Spur in time for the road closures. Krista was somewhat resistant to my efforts to hurry her, and not fully cognisant of the danger the road would pose if there were cars travelling simultaneously with bike riders. The rain was not really too nice, and I was a bit uneasy about steep curvy descents in the wet. Nevertheless, the scenery was stunning, the road remained closed, Krista made it to the top of the Black Spur, and she thoroughly enjoyed the exhilarating descent. My descent was tempered with a need to slow at each crash site to ensure that the victim was not Krista or Sophie, and a concern about how far we still had to go in unpleasant riding conditions.

We finally made it to Healesville, totally wet and bedraggled and hungry. We decided that although it would put us right at the back of the pack, we would stop for a substantial food and drink and warm-up break. We had chips, hot drinks and toasted sangers and recovered our strength for the last leg of the journey. The ride from Healesville to Lilydale was heads down, bums up, follow the white line and keep out of the way of traffic and the best part was that building excitement that we were about to complete a wonderful achievement.

... which we did

But in the rain, totally saturated and a bit cold, we greeted John and Tim and Lindell, collected our things, packed the cars and went. All a bit anti-climactic after such a wonderful week. But wasn't the hot shower good !!!