Thursday evening ride with Craig. Drove to his place in Beckenham and cruised the roads towards Bowenvale ave from there. Up past the groms doing shuttles in the carpark and up the valley access track a little to the exit of Old Skool. Up this managing to make 99% of it apart from where I got stalled behind Craig on a rocky as section. He managed to ride about as much on his early '90's ridgid steel beast too. I had an acceptable pace up here but as soon as we hit the steeper 4wd section my legs blew out and I was crawling up the steep bits at best and riding as slow as on the short flatter sections. Luckily Craig was taking it easy too, so I was only about a minute behind him at the gate near the top. From there we rode together up to the start of the Traverse track below the road.
We randomly decided to climb up Mt Vernon which we used to do regularly. Great view at the top (managed to ride about half way up before hiking). Then I lead down, taking some pretty bad lines but managing to get safely down the rock sections then wafting along the lower half. Craig also made it down cleanly which was pretty impressive considering the rig he is running.
We continued along below the road onto the Traverse with Craig taking a sizeable lead pretty easily as my legs were shot. We caught some lone ranger who Craig passed on the midway 4wd section and I got stuck behind. In the end we pulled up just before Vic Park and he carried on oblivious. We took the Gums down to the skidder site, me via the SeeSaw and headed down one of the old worn trails (no idea which is which any more). Once below the bush section we took the switchback trail to the valley floor, Craig staying hard on my tail. Then up the Hidden trail to the Old Skool single track, and down, Craig had 1 off trail moment before we both had one similtaneously on different parts of the track. No crash just having to pull up off the side of the track. I was ahead and Craig thought I was waiting for him, so I could have gotten away with it...
Nice run from there to the bottom and I took the old well washed out exit and we cruised via the streets back to Craigs.