The last morning of the ride. I got up early as I wanted the maximum amount of time to sort things out in Toowoomba. I packed up quickly. Most of the others were up early too, though as they were from Toowoomba, they were riding home. I got in a few shots of the sunrise I had not taken many night shots as I did not have a tripod, but I used one of the luggage trucks as my tripod. I put my bags in the truck for the last time, grabbed breakfast and headed off. When I packed the tent I actually packed it properly back into it’s bag. This is the first time I have been successful at doing this. So I was very pleased with myself at working out the technique.
On day 2 I had a small equipment failure. I had packed my day pack badly and there was pressure on the plastic plate I had taken from my picnic kit. The plate had developed a crack. This caused it to leak a little and the serving staff noticed it on the first few days, thinking it was a hair or some such like. As the days went by the crack extended from less than 1/4 the width of the plate to maybe about half. So it was with delight that on the final day I threw the plate in the rubbish bin.
Heading out of Clifton was a long gentle uphill climb to around Nobby. I had felt cold on the trike for the first time while riding at the beginning of the morning, even though it was not really colder than it had been any other morning. I was still only wearing shorts and a tank top. But I quickly warmed up and the day warmed up too. Several riders had stopped at the store in Nobby. But I continued on. After Nobby the road descended into Cambooya.
Riding into Cambooya it became apparent why we had been passed by so many horse floats. There was a Horse Event (Rodeo) on in the town. We passed the competitors off loading their horses and preparing them for the day’s activities. Further on we stopped in the local park. Sgt Col O’Shea had special back up here with the artillery section of the police force, though I’m not sure the motorcycle makes a good towing vehicle. While I was having my morning tea, I chatted with two of the people who lived just north of Toowoomba that I had met the preceding day.
It was up hill again out of Cambooya. I made much better time after the slow ride from Clifton to Cambooya. I’m not sure why, though I had a substantial morning tea. I was also able to pick up a couple of drafts. At the end of the long down hill, I picked up a single racer and followed him for maybe kilometre. Then I dropped onto the back of three women from the Fraser Coast BUG for a couple of kilometres. They were much older than I. Eventually I passed them The last up hill into the show grounds was very difficult. I did not think it was so steep, but the other riders were struggling up it too. When I got to the show grounds one person commented that I had made good time.
The last section into the show ground was down hill. I had one last go at riding quickly before a small up-hill when inside the show grounds to where all the official tents were located. Entering through the gate there was a live band on the left. Then there was the finishing line. Before that were two small crowds. One riders applauded as I rode past and then at the finish, some of the volunteers were there applauding too. I can’t believe how much I enjoyed the applause. For me it was quite an achievement on the new wheels. I was not certain when I left how I would go. So I was very happy and a little proud.
In the car park there was much activity. People were putting bikes on the backs of cars, putting bikes in boxes and buying food. Firstly I grabbed my luggage for the last time off Luggage Truck 2. I then had to repack everything. This took some time as I went from three bags back down to 2 including bulky things like my helmet. I then went to the CQ tent and got a box. As she promised, Jane had surplus cardboard for me. They were handing out sheets of bubble wrap. In the end I grabbed two sheets. I then opened up the bicycle box at it’s join and created a new box to house the trike. It took several goes at folding and unfolding the trike as I decided to do thinks a little differently each time. In the end I was happy with the result. I am looking at making a custom bag for the trike at some stage. When I put the trike on the truck, the truck driver remembered me and was quite proud of transporting my trike as he took it back into the truck.
With this finished, I grabbed some food. I really had not been eating enough and was paying the price for that. I then sat under the tree and did some applauding of the people riding up to the finishing line. This too was satisfying and I spoke with a younger couple from the USA about their 6 months or so to date here in Australia.
After this I wandered over to the bus terminal. Geoff and Marian were there, but they were on the bus 1 hour earlier than mine so I said my goodbyes. I then hoped on the bus for the trip down to Brisbane Airport.
I was very tired and on the bus, I nearly fell asleep a few times. Though I kept myself away. I was not functional enough to take any photos. At the airport I check in my luggage and sat down at the gate. I purchased a cycling magazine for some reading. While I was waiting there two obnoxious women came up and sat near me. One of them started to spurt out how much she hated the Sri Lankans and added in the Greeks and Italians as a seeming after thought. I am coming to expect this hatred of Sri-Lankans from people around here. I did not like it so I got up and went and sat somewhere else. While I was waiting we were informed that our aircraft was going to be delayed by 35 minutes becuase of delays in Sydney Airport. It was only the next day that I learned that Geoff’s and Marian’s flight, which was an hour or so before mine, landed with a full compliment of fire engines as there was a strange smell… It is a pity that the airline does not tell you the cause of the delays.
On the flight, I sat next to this woman who offered me here cheese and biscuits, becuase she could tell that I was hunger. I took them, but groaned, I had eaten cheese and biscuits every day for the last 9 days. But I was starving. I was not eating enough. After landing I caught the train home. I was somewhat hyper from extreme exhaustion. But after an hour or so of rearranging things, I was able to finally get some sleep. I think it was a mistake to travel all the way back on the final day. I should have spent the night in Brisbane.
Original Post: Warwick clifton toowoomba
I am sitting at gate 20 waiting for my flight.
The dinner in Warwick was excellent , the best so far. We had steak with salad. They announced that cq10 will start from yepoon. After that, I spent the evening listening to jazz and talking with the toowoomba bug members.
The ride from Warwick to Clifton was good. As it was a short day, I started quite late. For the first time, all three greenspeed trikes were riding together. It was good. I spent some time out front riding at 33 to 35 kmh. I am mostly used to riding in the pack or at the rear so it was novel to be leading a pack on the gt3.
At lunch several people had a test ride on the trikes.
“Steff takes Brian’s recumbent for a spin” by pdh [?]
Both nights were very cold, though I felt colder in Warwick.
This morning was the first morning I felt cold on the gt3. I got out earlier than normal to have plenty of time at the finish. I was very tired, but manged to get a tow from a three women from the Fraser coast bug.
The finish was just as well organised as the whole event. I got in, to the applause of a small group of riders who were applauding everyone who came in. Later i even spent some time applauding. I boxed the trike and said some good byes. I saw john, who i had shared a hotel room with the night before, ride out the gate on his ride home to gippsland. After repacking for the flight, I caught the 1 pm bus to the airport.
All in all, it was a great event and very enjoyable.
P.S. Here is a blog by another rider: CQ 2009 wrap-up.