By David Martin
BayBUG Sunday Social Rides
Sunday mornings are an ideal time for bike riders to be out and about in Sydney. We start early, to make the best of the quiet times: 7am September to May, 7:30am June to August.
Every Sunday we ride to a different destination, visiting most just once or twice a year.
We offer a great variety of rides, graded from Easy to Hard. For most rides we seek out cycle paths, shared paths, parklands, waterfronts and quiet back streets and we avoid main roads as a rule.
Our rides have two outstanding features. We seek out interesting and enjoyable places and routes, often not known to car and public transport users. This element of discovery takes us along Sydney’s foreshores, the harbour and the rivers and to unique architectural and historical places, such as Ultimo’s Frank Gehry building and the nearby ‘high line’; Willoughby’s Incinerator (also a cafe); Concord’s Yaralla Estate; the old brick pits at Merrylands and the public statues in Ashfield and Croydon.
And we search out the best cafes on our rides: we have a longstanding dedication to pursue a weekly caffeine odyssey.
On the last Sunday of every month we have a longer ride, from 50 to 100km, with a pace (average km/hr) usually in the low 20s. This allows us to go further afield, to places such as the M7 motorway shared cycleway, to Balmoral Beach and to Como on the Georges River.
Our groups generally range from 5 to sometimes 18 riders. The riding pace is moderate and we have frequent stops to allow the group to regather. Our Ride Leaders are accredited with Bicycle NSW and deploy experienced riders as Sweeps (always the last rider), Signposts (to ensure riders don’t take wrong turns) and Buddies (for new riders).
Our Ride Leaders are now planning another year of great Sunday rides. Next Sunday (10 Jan) we visit little-known Lake Parramatta. In coming weeks we follow the foreshores of the Parramatta River, from the Silverwater to the Gladesville bridges. We will also follow the Cooks River down to Marrickville and another ride will visit the new suburb of Potts Hill, near Yagoona. We will have rides to Clovelly and Balmoral beaches in coming months, with an option to swim.
This year we are offering more rides for people who prefer a more moderate pace and also for those who are keen to go that little bit faster and further.
We’ll be running more themed rides, following the recent nighttime Christmas Lights ride to Ashbury and the HiddenInRookwood sculpture tour. We also plan a night time to visit Sydney’s Vivid festival during winter. And there will be more historical and architectural tours.