In past years I generally have set myself an annual riding goal. From complete Around the Bay, to achieve a Percy Armstrong award (50,100,150 &200 k ride) in a year, complete my first 600 then in 2009/10 it was complete my first 1000 and 1200k rides. Last year I didn't set a goal and it seemed my riding lacked a bit of purpose with the only rides that gave me a real sense of satisfaction were two long weekend series of 3 x 200k that challenged me to back up and ride well on consecutive days. So when Audax introduced a single season cumulative award I thought here's a chance to stretch myself. Previous years I accumulated around 6 or 7000k of audax riding so I thought 10,000k would be an admirable goal and so my target was set. I then mentioned it to anybody who would listen so after that there was no turning back. The other self imposed aspect was that I wanted to achieve it before riding the Great Southern Randonee as I didn't want to rely on the last ride of the season where anything might happen.
So yesterday on a cool but clear spring day I achieved my goal with a 300k permanent through some delightful country in the Otway region. Barwon and Beyond roughly traverses the Barwon River from its bottom reaches around Geelong then extends beyond its upper reaches in the picturesque Otway Ranges. The countryside was green and lush, the traffic was light and the weather ideal for a long ride. I strongly recommend the Otway region for some great bike riding.
Green and lush
Deep in the Otways along Turton's Track
High up around Beech Forest