Great day for a ride, sunny but not hot, even a little cool (for summer). There was no excuse not to get out for a ride! A good crowd turned up at the Cafe in Moore St. Maybe there weren't too many other rides on, or maybe people just like the Cruise to La Perouse
we (LBUG) do. Its about 45 km return, with a couple of steep hills around Maroubra, Malabar and Long Bay (Broome, Howe and Bilga Cr) on the way out to keep people honest, and a flat faster return route through East Gardens (Beauchamp, Denison, Banks).
Regulars brought a few friends along and there were some new riders along too. Anyway it was good to see such a crowd, and the Cafe owner was also happy, I hope.
As usual, a variety of bikes, cyclists and abilities, so we led out at an easy pace and had a regular stops to regroup. Everyone kept up, and the faster types were patient, although they did escape towards the end. Bruce and Libby did a good job at the rear. Traffic was light and motorists all seemed relaxed and tolerant (Sydney can be great in January!) Nice down hill run from Malabar Rd on Torrington St to Maroubra Beach, where there was a surf carnival, then around to Long Bay and up Howe St next to the golf course. Always catch people out there as they don't see the steep hill coming. There is a big dipper on Bilga Cr, you need to get some speed up on the down hill section. We went past Long Bay Gaol to a left on Anzac Pde and followed this to La Perouse, which is on a headland overlooking the entrance to Botany Bay.
From the road in there are great views of Botany Bay, the airport and the line of huge gantry cranes at the container port. There are always groups of scuba divers kitting up on the roadside near Bare Island. Down the bottom of the loop road around the headland there are cafes and a nice beach. Its a toss up between the beach-side cafe (see picture) or Paris Seafood on the next corner. The Paris has got more shade, even if the seats are on a slope, and I like the baclava. There is a museum in the park nearby, with the history of La Perouse, the French explorer who almost beat the English to Botany Bay in 1788.
Have a look around on Google Streetview
Had a chat to Joan in the cafe, who showed us some photos of a cycle tour she did in Tanzania. She reckoned it was great, lots of wildlife and quite safe. Tour was run by a Kiwi couple, (www.escapeadventures.co.uk). Bruce and Libby and a few other LBUG members are going to Bright this week for the Alpine Classic, so good luck to them.
After a break, we headed back up Anzac Pde a few hundred metres to a left at Elaroo Av. At the end of Elaroo there is a new path that goes past Yarra Bay and comes out at a left /right onto Bumborah Pt Rd, which is the main route for the nearby container terminal but quiet on Sundays. Some rides we go left here out to Molineaux Point, which juts out into Botany Bay, with more port and Bay views.
At north end of Bumborah we turn left on Botany Rd, then make a big uphill merge across three lanes (could be tricky during the week) to get into the right turn lane on top of the hill onto Beauchamp Rd. Its a flat fairly fast run from there back to Fiveways at Kingsford, cross Gardeners Rd onto Houston St, then get on to Doncaster Rd to Alison Rd, cross Alison Rd onto the Moore Park cycleway, and then cross Anzac Pde at Cleveland St lights (a pain) and retrace outward route through Redfern and Sydney Uni back to Leichhardt.
Riders peeled off on way back, so we did the usual, left with about 20 and came back with 5.