Jimmy Carling and part 3 of his mid week diaries from New Zealand.
“Hello Cyber-Dirters and welcome to part three of Midweek Enzed, the new supplement documenting a precious and fascinating part of the world. I’m on a bit of a high at the moment, for a number of reasons, but mainly because I’ve just realised a dream that isn’t bike related (so I’ll keep it short!). Pearl Jam played in Christchurch on Sunday and after years of wishing, I finally got to see them live. What a show, nay…What an experience. An exhilarating journey through almost two decades of music. The feeling derived from their performance much akin to that of having just made it through an almost-off-the-bike-moment. The zoning in, the anxiety, followed swiftly by that feeling of just being alive. A brief state of clarity, release and joy.
Thank you PJ for an awesome night.
(Not PJ in Christchurch, just some random U tube PJ)
Veering away sharply from the music, it’s been a busy old week on the bikes. Dan, Matt and Luke buggered off to Dunedin for a spot of racing and freeriding, whilst the Sunday Pearl Jam show meant I couldn’t join. Instead I went out with the original Flying Scotsman Mat Weir with the initial goal to come back feeling as shattered as possible. The intention was to be in the saddle for about 4 hours; starting on the moonlight track, through to Moke Lake, Lake Dispute, 7 Mile and then home along the Sunshine Bay track. My Santa Cruz Blur was feeling sorry for itself in the shed, which was a shame as our route was heavily xc, so the SPuDs went on the Blender and the saddle jacked up to the max… Hardtail styles baby!
Mat Weir – pre mech mangle-ation, whilst clouds gently hug the back of Remarks. Moonlight trail. No need to be sheepish.
Moonlight consists of some nice technical singletrack, fireroads with river crossings, sheep and thus sheep shit (lots of). Following Matt early on, we dropped round this little right hander which had this nasty bit of rock sticking out. As soon as I saw it images of twisted cages and destroyed derailleurs flashed through my mind like subliminal advertising. No sooner had I rounded the turn, I found Mr Weir standing on the side of the trail with his mech looking like it had just had an epileptic fit. Poor bugger! He was so up for it too. A sharp 180 by Mat left me going solo, the numerous nesquik sized sheep pellets eventually getting one over on me. Suddenly, before you could even say “poo smells”, I had a perfect marble sized sheep nugget flick up and park itself firmly up my right nostril. Well, it was anchors on, and if you can for a minute, picture a muddy lad, with a face like a teenager who’s just walked in on his parents making love, stood on the side of a trail frantically blowing his nose and trying to direct his Camelbak hose up his schnoz… Well that was me. Fortunately the greasy wee thing popped out before I threw up. Good times people!
Wow. What a photo. A roadtrip to Dunedin and this is the best that Luke comes back with. Fail!
Continuing on the moonlight track, it is hard not to be moved by the scenery. Every turn rounded revealing more staggering, rugged beauty. The best part? No-one around. Barely a soul in sight until Moke Lake. Whilst my blender was fun, it isn’t the tool for the job. For this you ideally want an xc or all round rig, as there are a couple of long-ish climbs and lots of pedalling. I cut the ride short in the end, being over 6 foot on a small hardtail I couldn’t fully stretch my legs out, which got uncomfortable after a while. It’s a great ride though, if you’re headed this way, don’t leave it out.
As for Dunedin it seems like all involved had a blast, we’re just waiting on photos and more details, so stay tuned for that. Something about a Le Mans style start to one of the races?! Damn! This week the first of the much anticipated League of Gentlemen Series begins, with Das Uber D kicking off the whole shabang up Skyline. It’ll be elbows out-action all the way… gentleman style.
Until next week, Peace and happy riding.”