A beautiful weekend for a ride: the intrepid Carol Green reports on yesterday’s Westie Frock Ride, featuring frocks on bikes, and bikes on trains, and chats on wheels, and a whole lot of quaxing. Maybe it’ll inspire you to take a ride of your own out that way? 

Frocksheadgear
Headgear is a crucial part of any riding outfit. Sartorial splendour on display!

Despite being a ‘member’ of Frocks on Bikes for a good while, I’ve never actually joined them for a ride, but this weekend I had no excuses: Christine Sabin had organised a West Auckland ride.

Yes, In My Back Yard!

We met at Sunnyvale station in the rain, where a few ladies had come by train (great option for intermodal transport choices!). Then we set off in coats-on-coats-off weather on a route that would take us through the Oratia Stream shared path which spat us out onto Parrs Cross Road, not very far from Oratia Farmers Market (at Artisan Wines). A good deal of quaxing was done by all, especially those of us with good basket capacity.

I have to say, Parrs Cross Road/Pine Ave is possibly one of the most hostile roads I’ve ever encountered while not in a motor vehicle. It’s wide and fast and has pitiful provision for pedestrians, wheeled or not, and crossing the road to the market was the most challenging part of the day!

Gathering on Parrs Cross Rd/Pine Ave
Gathering on Parrs Cross Rd/Pine Ave, not the friendliest street on the way.
Nicsalutesvineyard
Nic salutes the West Auckland vineyards in her new Mushama & Me raincoat

Luckily we were soon shot of it and into the rather spectacular Opanuku Walk and Cycleway, a brilliant wide, smooth path which winds its way through bush and open space, next to the Opanuku stream.

Corban Arts Estate
Arriving at the Corban Estate

This lovely stretch wound up at the Corban Estate Arts Centre, where we descended on the Coffee Studio and hung out, comparing notes and bikes. By this time the sun had decided to stick around so the outside space was well used. By coincidence, AT were running a bike training course which finished at Corbans, so Simon V arrived like a magical bike fairy and gave out bells and emergency lights to the frocks.

coffeestudio

Frockstalkbikes

From here I headed back to Te Atatu Peninsula along Henderson Creek; half the group caught a train from Henderson; and the rest made their way back to Sunnyvale.

A good day! I look forward to the next ride!

– Carol Green

For more about Frocks on Bikes, check out their Facebook page, or email Nic at frocksonbikes.aucks@gmail.com

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Social Bike Rides
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