Jarrahdale: 5 adults, 4 children and a study in permutations
Tim’s had this weekend in mind for a while, and wasn’t to be put off by rational observations that temperatures above 35 degrees celsius would risk over-testing the mettle of some small, off-road touring neophytes (not to mention some less ‘green’).
Our mission – as presented to us by Tim – is to convey 4 adults, 4 children of various ages and cycling proficiency (and inclination) by as many cycling permutations and combinations possible from Jarrahdale General store along the Munda Biddi Trail to the Wungong hut about 25km away. To avoid too much stress, he’s come up with a support vehicle to meet us halfway at the old Balmoral POW camp.
During the 14km from Jarrahdale to Balmoral, it becomes obvious that the major sticking point is not going to be the understandable desire of the younger ones to experience all the available carrying options, but a succession of inexplicable tyre valve-base failures in my front wheel. Despite my best efforts, with a puncture every 3km, I quickly use up the group’s supply of spare inner tubes.
Hut arrival is helped muchly when I borrow a front wheel from Dimelza’s bike – it does stay inflated for the kit-ferry from the car (and for the whole of the next day back to Jarrahdale). I’m so happy to steer for myself and not have too many knees hitting handlebars that a total lack of front brakes is a minor price to pay.
All is wrapped up by lunch at the Jarrahdale General Store before we part company, with promises of ‘missions’ yet to be planned.