BERRY-LIANT

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BERRY-LIANT ride with the crew from #bikeodyssey and the local riders. Jumped on board the 80km loop. Stunning start to the day. We stayed nearby in Nowra where the ‘Dog and Monocle’ is the most fabulous bar to chill. Classic styling and chesterfield lounges to sink into whilst taking in the decor, atmosphere and quintessential atmosphere. Rising with the morning light we ventured into the picturesque Berry valley. Now a tourist detour off the main Princess highway. As the first to arrive the peacefulness and quiet country life sounds tinkled into the village streets. More cyclists gathered to the fray with a briefing from the main man Sam. We parted from the jockeys committed to a slightly less challenging journey over Mt Berry a climb that opened the lungs. Whilst warning the legs of the climbs ahead.

Over Woodhill Col passing the Paella people setting up lunch at #bikeodyssey hq, we zoomed into Kangaroo Valley for refreshments, devouring Isi’s muesli and honey slice.

Cycling refreshed out of Kangaroo Valley onto the Tallowa Dam / Mt Scanzi Rd Max and I received a close shave to the elbow and leg by a Caddy driver en rush to deliver ‘Nostalgia’ giving no meter matters to our safety.

The climb up Mt Scanzi offered magnificent views to the opposing escarpments. Framed in lush greens and the twinkle of Kangaroo River sparkling like a jewel below. Some huff n puff then over the saddle we blew. A solid downhill zipping over compacted gravel and into a delightful creek. The murmer of the trees, alongside some reflective quiet pedal time was magnificent. Budgong flitted by as we glided into Cambewarra Village. Here a spritely 92 yr young lady admonished us whipper snappers! The country life and fresh air has kept her sharp in the arts of understated wit!!!

As the 100km crew started to come through we were able to catch the tail. Jet streaming alongside cows meandering and munching tall verdant grass in the paddocks. The whippets kept up the pacey stretch, punching into the headwinds. Sharp turn left and respite. As the caffeine and sugars started to deminish their effectiveness. The beauty of Back Forest riding alongside a winding Broughton Creek took away the growling concerns.
Authentic back lanes, including local artist welding talent. Steel sculptural formations that I thought was ‘Ned Kelly’ loomed like a terminator of the outback. This rusted steel helmeted character was brandishing a serious shotgun.

This called for a respite break despite 10k’s to the finish. Waving to the groups and soloists I happily stretched the quads and snapped a few selfies whilst convincing my mountain biking legs that this was just a few more rotations to craft brewed beer. The convincing worked, back onto the trusted rapido. My tender touché barely coping with the final climbs out of Far Meadow.

Now I was on familiar territory rolling by The Berry Sport and Recreation Centre, where I was an instructor (younger years) and at times director of the Family camp programs. Views of the archery range, flying fox, silo and stark brick outline of the accommodation / Berry children’s home brought back many good memories.

A quick hello to Fiona of the Berry Local Cellar - Ginger and Stone beers and storage underarms. Thence up to the Wood's home for a fantastic Paella lunch. At Bike Odyssey HQ with 70 keen cyclists and friends sharing their stories. Simply the best cycling day around Berry was in my mind. Awesome reports from all those that shared the ride - absolutely BERRYLIANT! Thankyou to all.

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