Until I was unable to ride the roads in the bush, I didn't realise how integral to my well being they are. Today the smokey haze has cleared and I judged it ok to yet again test myself on the 1 in 20 circuit.
It was like meeting up with an old friend, I even looked down at my back tyre at the very same spot I do every time I'm on the circuit...the one closing in on Olinda where the road is SO rough and SO dead you think you've punctured. Actually its not all that long ago that I was up there, but the threat of losing the canopy of tall eucalypts to flames was so great ( the main fires weren't all that close..but it only takes 1 nutter...) that the relief that they're still there is equally intense. Beach Road has its good points, but I think I've seen enough of it to last me a month or 6.
Our State and the National track titles are closing in..must be about 40 days away til the nats. My accommodation and travel has been booked a while now and finally the website has opened up for entries. Although the comp starts on April 1 they've put a closing date of March 18..something that would fail miserably in the mainland, but with the island state of Tasmania..well you have to be fairly well organised in order to even get there....so maybe there wont be the usual late-ish, late, very late and extremely late rush to enter! My transport is on the ferry and I am the baggage person, taking other people's bikes and rollers to allow them to fly in with out incurring excess fees. No need to hire a car either..... mine is big enough to cope with many many bikes, rollers, people etc
Despite having moments of extreme fatigue brought about for a multitude of work related reasons, but made worse by the top end training that always breaks me, I'm in good fettle. The fitness is there and with a bit of rest, so will the form (fitness +freshness=form).
I checked the DSE website and read there have been 597 fires this season, with 130 yet to be declared safe. The official toll stands now at 209. One person who escaped reports she was warned that something was amiss by butterflies ..... they had swarmed en masse into her house well ahead of the fire, one can only assume they were aware of the increased radiant heat and were trying to find a cooler spot. The pictures of injured wildlife in the media make us think about how many kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, possums, goannas, platypus to name a few of the iconic Australian animals, how many failed to escape. We will never know.