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A magical 24 hours in the Adelaide Hills
Mention a dirty weekend and the ears prick up. Suggest that it is at Cudlee Creek. Add a gorgeous mid-Autumn sunset followed by a night of glimmering stars and a frosty morning. Toss in some inspiring music and some of the best coffee in Adelaide. Pizza and pasta on tap. Wood fire. Accommodation amongst the best that nature has to offer in the Adelaide Hills. Seems perfect - what's the catch ? Just bring your bike !
BikeSA's annual Dirty Weekend makes yet another appearance in the Cudlee Creek Forest near Lobethal. For 24 hours, from 2pm on Saturday 30th April, the tracks of the Forest come alive with the sounds of tyres crunching, gears changing, muscles whining, coffee grinding and music to inspire and motivate everyone as they ponder lap upon lap of some of the best mountain bike trails in South Australia.
For the fittest, completion of the 24 hour solo ride is the ultimate achievement and guarantees bragging rights for the remainder of 2016. Alternatively solo riders may look to complete either or both six hour sessions, from 2pm on Saturday and/or from 8am on Sunday.
Duos and Teams are not forgotten, with the 6, 12 and 24 hour rides having options for teams of up to 4 persons. Competition groups include various ages, all males, all females and mixed teams, with a special mention to those husband and wife teams who challenge each other to achieve more.
Camping is the accommodation choice for the weekend, with tents, swags, vans and marquees all being popular choices. BBQ's and campfires also feature strongly alongside the range where the track meanders nearby.
At the top of the range and adjacent to the former Thomas Hill farmhouse is the ever popular cycling hub. A chill out lounge, open fire, coffee vans and food stalls provide sustenance to all, while riders check lap times in the timing tent. With mechanics on hands, and spare tubes, tyres and chains available, the machinery won't be to blame if the performance isn't up to scratch.
The Dirty Weekend comprises a course through the Cudlee Creek Forest groups of around 10km with a combination of single track, fire trails and the loop through the pine forest itself. Riders complete as many laps of the course as possible before exhaustion kicks in, team baton changeover, mother nature calls or sleep beckons. For those riding between 5pm and 7am, lights are mandatory - how else are the kangaroos able to see you ?