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Grading system

The grade given with each ride description is made up of two parts—distance and terrain/difficulty and expressed as, eg MHXX—and is intended to assist you to choose rides commensurate with your abilities or desires.

Distance codes

The first part of the grade refers to the distance involved, and can be:

E Easy – For any person, no cycling experience needed. Up to 40 km per day
M Medium – Between 40 and 80 km per day, or brisk for shorter distance, for teenage and adult healthy cyclists with geared bicycles
MH Medium Hard – for fit teenagers and athletic adults. Up to 100 km per day
H Hard – For more experienced cyclists of above average ability. Distances may exceed 100 km per day and/or be over difficult terrain.
XH Extra Hard – for very fit cyclists with good stamina and determination

Terrain/difficulty codes

The second part of the grade refers to the terrain and other conditions, which may be:

X Easy flat terrain and bitumen surfaces, suitable for any type of bicycle
XX Hilly terrain, possibly involving dirt roads. Requires geared bike
XXX Mountainous terrain with hard climbing, possibly involving goat tracks. Requires low geared bike.

Rides disclaimer

Unless explicitly stated otherwise, all Pedal Power bike rides and events are ‘unsupported’ and riders are to be totally self sufficient and provide their own water, food, tools, pump, spares (spokes, tubes, etc), puncture repair kits, and whatever else they desire and there is no ‘sag wagon’ or equivalent. On rides with some support, the type and level of support is given in the ride details.

About the rides generally

The short flat rides are mainly within the city area, and are suitable for the one-speed cycles which may be hired from several outlets around Canberra.

Medium distance and terrain rides usually start from Canberra and visit some attraction in the surrounding country. Many of these rides could be undertaken on three or five speed bikes, but a little easier and more enjoyable on ten speeds. Taken at a leisurely pace the shorter rides in this category would be suitable for the whole family from the age of nine or ten upwards. The long rides, especially those in mountainous terrain, should be undertaken on ten to 27 speeds, preferably with wide range gearing. They are intended for regular bicycle riders who wish to explore the more remote areas of the region.

Rides descriptions

Most rides have a description covering:

Tour description: This gives a brief account of the general nature of the ride and its attractions, and any considerations which should be taken into account when planning the ride.

Distance: Unless otherwise stated is expressed in the total kilometres needed to complete the journey and return to the starting point.

Road conditions, terrain and hazards: Outline the nature and state of the roads covered, the hilliness or otherwise of the country, and the various obstacles, such as cattlegrids or wooden bridges, which can make a cyclist’s life difficult.

Points of interest: The numbered points of interest refer to the maps accompanying each group of rides. The points include such features as villages, turn-offs, bridges, rivers and lakes, hills with good views, buildings, and even radio-telescopes. Of course the occasional pub receives a mention.

Maps: Each ride or group of rides may be accompanied by a map which outlines the main features of the suggested route. Reference is also made to other more detailed maps, usually one or more of the Natmap 1:1000000 series. In most cases such a detailed map will not be necessary, and any road map of the area will suffice. Where the Natmap is necessary, this is clearly stated.

Check out the rides on our events calendar.

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Submit an event

Pedal Power ACT accepts event submissions for display on our calendar if it meets required standards.

To submit your event for consideration, please fill out Pedal Power ACT's event submission form.

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