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Fat tyres and snakes

Waterfall trail in Belair National Park

When I purchased a mountain bike a couple of months back, a part of me was worried I might not ride it that much. Being addicted to road riding, could I cross over to fat tyres and  get down and dirty.

I am pleased to write that I have been having a ball. Have been exploring Mtb trails on my lonesome and with my brother. Then playing guide for my wife and most recently my son. Yes, the disease is spreading, my lad purchased a bike a week ago. Very excited to be riding with the boy.

We live in the Adelaide hills and are spoilt for choice for cross country riding.  For a quick outing the Belair National Park is always fun. The riding in there is mostly easy along fire trails but you are quickly surrounded by bushland, and often see kangaroos, koalas and emus. You can spot the koalas by observing the piles of poo under their favourite trees as it sticks to your tyres. From my place a loop in the park gives you around 15km of riding with some good climbing to get the heart rate up.

Nearby are the Craigburn trails. Km’s of purpose built trails all sign posted and offering a range of challenges. Of course the is Australia and its heading towards summer so one of those challenges is snakes. Oh, yes, last week a bloke my son and I were riding with had one rear up at him as he rode a downhill section and it went between his wheels! Normally the noise scares them off, but not always. Two days later on the same trail with my brother a saw the tail end of a very large brown snake heading into the grass. Geez.

Last week my son and I also tackled Eagle Mountain bike park. Set around an old quarry, plenty of single track to challenge our bike handling skills. We both had minor falls on tight switchback climbs but no injuries. Once you get into the bushland area after a bit of climbing you are rewarded with fantastic views back over the Adelaide plains and the Gulf plus lots of wild flowers blooming at this time of year.

So this post is a little disjointed but wanted to describe the joy I am finding in getting out and about on the local trails. Fun on the trails and great riding with my brother and my lad and very occasionally the Mrs.

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So what do you do?

On the weekend we attended a friends housewarming. In speaking to a couple we had just been introduced to we got the standard, “so what do you do?”
My wife led with Phd student whilst I bravely tried , ” nothing, I’m retired” as I was interested to get a reaction, and perhaps as I had a glass of red in my hand. This was followed by a bit of a pause and a slightly perplexed look as the guest tried to work out if I was serious.
I then moved on to outline that I was indeed retired and spent my time riding my bike and being a house husband ( although my wife prefers the term house bitch).
It’s about 9 months now that I left my job after 27 years of service. It’s only now I feel comfortable explaining my choice not to continue to work and to have a bit of fun with it when meeting new people.

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