On Friday, 9 students from the Duke of Edinburgh Program set off for a 110km bike ride to Eugowra then Gooloogong then back to Canowindra. The students were Jo Balcombe, Amelia Holmes, Brooke Kinsela, Meg Austin, Jack Workman, Lachie Balcombe, Matt Harrison, Mitch Stanley and Brenton Clements.
With the weather not on our side, we set off along Longs Corner Road. For the first 10km the rain just kept falling. A huge headwind didn’t make it easy either. By our first stop at Nanami Lane we were all drenched. However this was only a quick stop so we kept riding into the clearing weather.
At the end of Longs Corner Road we had a food break and got the sugar into us. Whilst sitting down we realised we had rode only 1/3 of the way for the day. With the sun now shining we headed along the Escort Way with everybody loving the downhill slopes but for some reason not the uphill ones. Before we knew it we were in Eugowra for our lunch break. With many tired and weary faces we were on the final 30km for the day. With riders liking the flatter roads, two more quick stops had us arriving in Gooloogong before three o’clock.
With showers and storms looming we fixed our tents quickly and got our gear undercover. The girls were the first to get their tent up. With the fire now lit, we went for a walk around Gooloogong to try to find some hot food, but some how came back with gelatos. At dinner time some of us went to find some hot food whilst others actually cooked their own tea. Lachie was very disappointed to find that the chips he had bought had no salt on them and trust me we never heard the end of it. With it getting late and everyone tired for some reason we slowly wandered off to bed.
The next morning most people were awake early. Being Mitchell’s birthday Meg and I decided to play a birthday song in his ear to wake him up. With everyone slowly emerging from their swags into the frosty, foggy weather we realised how sore we actually were. Some people left to play Saturday sport while other students set off for the last 30km of the trip back to Canowindra, along the Rivers Road.
Congratulations to all the students who participated and a big thankyou to Mr Edwards and Mr Phelan for organizing it and riding, Carolyn Austin and Andrew Holmes for participating in the ride, Jacque Kinsela for braving the cold along with Carolyn and staying the night, Michael Harrison for being the support vehicle and driving all day and Mrs Balcombe for transporting the trailer with all our gear in and out of town.
Report by Joanna Balcombe