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Phil A
Chatswood Skate Report Wed 19 Feb 2003 Ahh! Chatswood. With those words ringing in our ears it was a worry watching those clouds close over Sydney late in the day trying to rain on our parade.

With sprinkling rain on the car window on our drive in things were looking a bit shakey and when we met at the Palace Gates everyone was very indecisive as to whether we went to Chatswood and risked catching the train back or stayed in the City. Common sense prevailed and to Wynyard we went. On the train at Waverton someone looked out and said "look at the platform" and it looked very wet and our return trip was looking more & more likely. When we got to Chatswood and met up with our fellow skaters waiting there for us David popped out of the shadows and said he was going to come and to wait while he parked the car.

When David took control we started off up to the Highway only to take a loop around the block & end up skating back past the station. Under the overpass and around the Bus Terminus without stopping and we were on our way. Our first stop was at the Skate Bowl where a few practised their dropping in and turns on the walls. David gave his talk about where we were going & I had to have a say about the road sense (or lack of it) that has been shown on a few of our skates lately and then we were off back towards the City.

Up Orchard Rd and then a stop at the top of Elizabeth St where everyone was warned of the dark road ahead then we were off and some of us were escorted around the roundabout by the boys in blue and their red & blue flashing lights. After a quick regroup near Artarmon Station we were off down the nice run of Hampden Rd & Herbert St and then the push up to St Leonards. Here we stopped for our first drink stop and the girls decide to take off to keep us honest. We followed the girls up the Pacific Highway and when it appeared they might miss the Crows Nest turn off they had to get in behind.

After the short uphill of Clarke St we then had a good run down the dark & speed bump enhanced Burlington St. Those speed bumps did catch a few out on the way down too. From here we skated the uphill up Falcon St to Neutral Bay where we all waited in expectation for the fast run down Ben Boyd Rd. David gave us a talk at the top and told us to expect some good corners and reminded us of the last one that is a bit tighter than expected. It was this corner that caught out an unwary skater who ended up on his hands and knees through the corner. It was a shame he had no wrist guards or knee pads on and he took the tips off his fingers trying to stay up (shiver, shiver...). We all stopped at the bottom and regrouped before we took off with the lights down Kurraba Rd and back up Clark Rd to Kirribilli.

At the top David told anyone who was keen that they would wait while the enthusiastic had a run down to Luna Park and after the steep climb back up to the Harbour Bridge there was still the steps and Bridge to climb. The bridge is always fun and I even started to catch up on a few of the stragglers as we came up to Observatory Hill. We had a couple of quick runs down the ski hill and then David took off along Hickson Rd for the flat run to the final resting place. I took the advantage to go back up the steps here and along Kent St for an Orange Light run and had a few who tagged along. After telling everyone how we wait until the light turns Orange before we set off flat out down Kent St we waited for ages for the lights to change and then the disbelievers nearly got caught at the red light!

It was only a short downhill run from here to our salubrious watering hole where we caught up with all the skaters who were left after such a fun skate.

I hope you all had as good a time as I did. It was great to get another good run in. I hope everyone who took some bark off heal really quickly and you may consider some form of protective gear in the future.

Keep skating
Phil A

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