Back to Liffey Falls

We plan to ride to Hobart in a couple of weeks and it was necessary to do an overnighter to test Colin’s new ideas for carrying gear. Well, that and do a decent ride to build some stamina after a lazy few weeks.

Monday was a day of cloud and wind. There was a forecast of 50% chance of rain but that didn’t happen. We started by riding to Bishopsbourne, a ride we have often done. My Dentist told me that there used to be a College in Bishopsbourne but, seeing as there is now only a few people living there, it seemed a bit unlikely. So I Googled it and found pages of information. Back in the 1840s there were a lot more people around. Farming involved a lot of farm hands (and convicts) to do the work. Since then the onward march of automation have meant people are not needed in such quantities.

Looking across to the site of Christ College, Bishopsbourne

I then checked Google Maps and found the site of the farm that now exists on the site. The trees are European deciduous curtesy of the 1840s College.

The place was born out of the desire for an Oxbridge style college using Launceston Grammar and Hutchins School in Hobart to feed it with students. Some details and pictures can be found HERE. So, the College lasted 10 years give or take a month or two and now the only sign of it is the farm name.

The entrance to the farm now using the College site.

After we looked around and located the College site we continued on to Bracknell. There we pulled in and had lunch. The wind had been a side to 10.00 o’clock and had slowed us down. It also pulled a surprising amount of power out of my battery. I realised I would have to run on really low pedal assist in order to climb the hills up from Bracknell and get home tomorrow.

Climbing the hills. The Liffey River is to the right – down in the gully.

The climb begins gently but always there.

We climbed up past Oura Oura wildlife reserve

It was with some relief all round that we got to the top and the downhill to the campgrounds began.

Liffey Falls campgrounds – our site

We bagged a nice spot by the river, set up the tents and began drinking coffee, tea and eating! Then we sat around and discussed the fact that when we get back tomorrow we will know who the new Tasmanian Premier will be – the current guy having recently resigned.

There were fish swimming about in the river

Later we spotted a platypus. The family next door came and watched the plattie head downstream – quite quickly.

Then the mosquitoes came out so it was time to turn in. I am using my phone a bit more for entertainment while on trips. I recently junked my old Podcast software that didn’t want to download a podcast. It’s replacement works well and I had noise to cover the sound of tinnitus when trying to get to sleep. I also had a few books loaded – so all was well. Except it’s really annoying when an e-book labelled as Sci Fi turns out to be sword and spells fantasy!

My shoulder is gradually getting better with the exercise regime and the camp proved it. Last time up at the Falls it was sore all night. This time it was no worse than it is at home. A good sign.

Time to strike camp.

The next morning we had an early breakfast, packed up and headed home. The climb out was taken slowly to warm up the legs. The day was sunny and the bush all around looked sparkling. Once up the hill it was a great downhill run to within a couple of ks of Bracknell. Not a cloud in the sky, countryside easily cruising past, no big hit on the battery – terrific.

After Bracknell I began to feel really tired. The previous day I had to put in more effort than normal and it as showing. Also, although the shoulder was OK I didn’t get much good sleep. Not used to the sleeping mat / pillow as yet. Need more practice.

Colin and I amicably parted company at the Wilmore’s Lane junction. He went into Longford the less hilly way – and I would have too if I had had to pedal all the way without a motor to assist. I rode Wilmore’s Lane and was pleased there was enough juice left to hit up the PA when climbing the hills.

So, another S36O completed. HERE is the video. The noises are all from the chain and motor – plus a squeak that I haven’t traced yet. The camera is mounted very close – I will find an extension “pole” to move the camera further away – hopefully to get rid of feet too.

Til next time ……

Author: antc1946

Born in 1946 I learnt to cycle about 10 years later. On a bike with rods connecting brake levers to the brakes - anyone remember those? I emigrated to Australia (from the UK) in 1974 and moved to Tasmania in 1984. Bicycles were in my life for most of that time although sometimes they were replaced by motorised two wheels for a bit more excitement. On reaching 70 I decided to stick to pedal power but in 2019 an electric recumbent made an appearance. it's now 2023 and I have 3 bikes. 2 e-recumbents and the Brompton.

3 thoughts on “Back to Liffey Falls”

  1. Hi Tony, G’day Sue,
    We enjoyed this ride as we’ve enjoyed all of those which have gone before.
    Very curious about tyre wear, given the variety of surfaces you cover in your travels.
    Schools’ HPV racing involves similar speeds, not too much gravel but ‘bitumen under the rubber’ quality ranges from race track smooth to ‘oh, dear’.
    Any thoughts regarding expected distance from a new tyre, front wheel mount versus rear wheel mount, manufacturer versus manufacturer … etc?
    Tyre costs preclude many schools from racing their HPVs for the full race season, so any and all suggestions aimed at extending tyre life will be most welcome.
    Old Bob and The Nurse


    1. Hi Ol’ Bob

      I didn’t realise tyres were such an issue with the school HPVs, especially if the costs involved mean they can’t race a whole season. I am saddened to hear that.

      Unfortunately I have little light to shed on this matter. With my “frog” Anura (1 wheel front 2 at back) it used Greenspeed designed Scorchers. The ones on it when I bought were worn out – punctured easily. I didn’t ride the new ones long enough to know how far they travelled. They were slicks, ran at around 80psi and didn’t like gravel at all.

      On the Magnums we run Schwalbe Big Apples. Colin has Big Apple, I have Big Apple Plus. These are certainly not racing tyres being “balloon” tyres which can be run at anything between 35 and 70 PSI. Their purpose is to absorb road shock and not to puncture so Greenspeed use this as part of their suspension-less system to help counter bumps. The downside is they are heavy and slow (people will argue but that’s my opinion). As you realised, they handle gravel well and allow us to drop the inside wheel off the road into gravel (or whatever) on the edge of the road when necessary.

      I am currently running mine at 50PSI. I suspect that, when racing, the HPV mechanics fit a slick tyre pumped up to 100 PSI or more. The guys doing long rides on Bromptons run theirs at up to 110 PSI but often have split rims! I have read heaps of both opinion and research supported facts about cycle tyres on the ‘net so know what a jumble of information there is out there and how everyone is chasing the “right” tyre. European velomobile riders seek and discuss every new tyre seeking the gold standard between longevity and no road friction!

      All I can tell you is that for touring and carrying heavy weight Schwalbes are the way to go. But they are not for racing!!


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