The Women’s Ride is on again this year on Sunday March 6 and Ella CyclingTips is joining the Victorian mass-riding event with a challenging but achievable loop up the peaceful back roads of Mt Donna Buang.
The 1245 metre high Mt Donna Buang is one of Victoria’s favourite climbs and while the main road up is pretty and challenging, there is something extra special about the less-travelled roads to the top.
The 57 kilometre loop has over a thousand metres of ascent and the added challenge of patches of dirt. The no drop ride starts at the Cog Bike Café in Warburton, rolling out on the gentle gradients of a rail trail to warm up the legs. At about 12 kilometres the uphill and dirt roads begin. It’s a good thing the views on the tree-fern-lined roads are spectacular because with 25km of climbing, we may need the occasional distraction.
Once we get through the last of the dirt we head onto the main road to finish the final stretch to the top of Mt Donna Buang. Then it’s time to give the legs a rest but the brake fingers a workout on the long descent down the sealed road to Warburton, where we can round out the ride with coffee and a chat.
You don’t need a special bike, the ride can be done on a road bike with 23mm or 25mm tyres in good condition and plenty of people who had never tackled dirt before joined us on this road last year and handled it with ease. If you want to come along on the ride or would like some more details click here.
Of course, we would really like to see you on the Ella ride but if climbing up the back of Mt Donna Buang isn’t your thing there are plenty of other great options to be found on The Women’s Ride site. There are a number of rides of varying lengths on the hills in and beyond Melbourne’s north, one with Bike it Better, another with Fondo and one up Kinglake with Breeze leader Simone Evans.
There are also plenty of options around St Kilda, including bike yogo and the St Kilda Cycling Club’s training ride for Bicycle Network’s women’s riding event The Ascent. The event spreads well beyond Melbourne, with rides including mountain bike riding in Mansfield, a rail trail ride in Axedale and Shepparton Breeze’s Longwood to Ruffy ride.
The Ella CyclingTips ride
Meeting point: Cog Café, Warburton
Distance: 57 kilometres
When: Sunday, March 6
Start time: 9:30am