When I got out of the car at about 8:30 for the long walk back to rego, it was 7C. When I got back into the car at about 1:30 it was 7C. Only difference was that by that time I was wet, chilled to the bone and a bit disappointed about another slow time on another wet track.
It never really rained, but most of the day was blighted by that drizzly, misty rain that the southern highlands does so well. And the breeze was pretty cold in the exposed areas. It kept the sand on the ridge top trails firm and most of the sniggle was in excellent nick. The fire trail descents and ascents however were pretty slippery. The downhills were doubly difficult because of the mud flicking off the front wheel - I'd had to discard the glasses early on. The uphills were difficult in the latter half because of chain suck in granny ring. It's hard to settle into a rhythm on those uphill grinds when the chain is making noises like it's about to catch and every now and then it jams. Walked a few hills and ground out a few in middle ring.
Had to laugh when, after I had worked hard on the dirt road back from Outer Reaches to catch up to the guy in front and I had just tucked in behind him, he went through a wet clay patch on the road and peppered me with mud. Had to shut my eyes, back off and then rinse the mud out of my mouth. Never did quite catch him again!
As usual with Wild Horizons, it was a well organised event, with lots of colour and movement in the event centre. Not much incentive to stay around afterwards however, with a choice between getting into the car and getting the heater going, or walking 800m back to the event centre in that cold drizzle. As a result, there was no room to park at the Wingello cafe, so I headed onto Macca's at Sutton Forest for a coffee and something warm and horrible. I was still getting pins and needles in the fingers on the outskirts of Sydney, as the circulation slowly returned.
Only realised when I got home that I still had mud splatters all over my face......