The long road back: Part 19

Descent into the unknown

I’ve been back riding for several months now, even racing a bit. Things have been going pretty well of late, but today it was time to face one of the last remaining mental barriers in my recovery: high-speed descending. In other words, the very thing that got me into this whole mess in the first place.

Not wanting to get too far out of my comfort zone just yet, I chose the most familiar descent I know in Sydney, Bobbin Head. I also chose mid-morning on a work day as I knew the roads would be quiet. All up it’s about 4km long, not super steep, and I must have ridden down there 200+ times over the years so I know it well.


Despite all this, I can’t lie. When the time came to plunge headlong into the National Park, I was shitting myself. Couldn’t keep my hands off the brakes, and every little bump and creak saw my blood pressure spike. Whereas pre-crash I’d hurtle down this road without a care in the world, today was very different. I haven’t looked at my ride data, but I’m sure it was one of my slowest Bobbin descents ever. It also hurt my left shoulder a lot more than I’d expected; still manageable, but easily the most uncomfortable riding position I’ve experienced of late. But, hey, at least I didn’t crash this time.

Downwards and onwards.

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