Saturday, February 7, 2009

Canberra Fixed Gears.

I decided to take a study break between lectures on Metallurgy and Composites yesterday and jumped on the net to check out Low and behold I found a message stating that there was to be a fixed group ride in Canberra that evening. We were supposed to go to the bar for after work drinks that night but I ‘excused myself’ and burned home as soon as I could. Unfortunately yesterday was somewhere between 40 and 10 000 degrees and I nearly turned my self into jerky on the way home.

A quick bite to eat and I was off back into town to make the rendezvous. A few riders were already assembled on the steps of the Legislative Assembly and over the next half hour more trickled in before we headed off around the lake. There really is nothing like riding with a bunch of other fixies; skid stopping, slow corners, track stands and obnoxious behaviour.

We headed out toward Fyshwick and even enjoyed some dirt trails before we started heading toward parliament house. Note for nextime – don’t ride passed the Police Academy, it attracts a little too much unwanted attention, including a suggestion that I should in fact ride with my hands on my bars – “Two hands for beginners”. Not to mention the fact that most of us were sans brakes and some were sans helmets.

As we were passing Kingston I suggested that we could stop for a beer before we headed back to town for a beer. There were no arguments so we found ourselves walking into Filthy McFaddens minutes later. A few confused looks from the patrons but the beer was sooooo refreshing.

It was then time to head to the Wig and Pen via parliament house, again attracting the attention of the bike police on premises. No real chance of them catching us but we made sure we were out of there post haste. Down the ramp and express along Commonwealth avenue, over the bridge, through civic and to the pub.

No room for our bikes on the racks (gotta love Canberra, pubs full of cyclists) so we made our own. I’m pretty sure the two innermost bikes were locked to the pole, the rest were daisy chained to each other – which made it a bit of a shuffle everytime someone decided to go home, we’d all head outside, unlock each bike, shuffle the right bike out and re-lock. Team work.

I must admit after five pints of Canberra’s finest I did have trouble mounting my bike, but riding it was easy. A burrito helped fuel the ride home.

It was great to see a bunch of like minded people from all corners of life getting together through a common thread of simply loving fixies. Next ride to be some time in the next couple of weeks.