E-bike ride up Mount Wellington in Hobart, Tasmania
Hobart is known to be a hilly city, which puts cycling beyond the imagination, if not beyond the reach, of many of its inhabitants. Glow Worm Bicycles has two dealers in Hobart so it was a good excuse to go riding in Tasmania. The main ride will be from While in Hobart we decided to ride up Mt Wellingtonwith Ahmet and Garth from our dealer eco-bikes, an offshoot ofEcotasmania. Mount Wellington rises to 1260m, more or less from right in town, which is of course at sea level. A 45km return trip from the harbour, it’s a popular challenge ride for local cyclists and hosts an annualfoot race to its summit. It’s a dominating presence in Hobart and is unique in Australia for its height above surroundings, especially in an urban environment. Our theory was simple: if our electric bikes can get up this monster, then anyone in Hobart can use one for getting to and from work or anywhere else they might need to go. It’s also a great testing ground for battery range on long hills, which will be important for our trip across Tasmania. Photos of this ride are on our flickr page.
We started at sea level, at Macqurie Wharf, where Ian hires out motorbikes, bicycles and now electric bicycle from his business Moto Adventure. Garth was on his eZeebike Torq that he has been using for 8 months in Hobart, I was on the eZeebike Sprint and Ahmet brought his A2B Metro with two batteries. It's a good opportunity to prove that the Sprint isn't just a comfortable city e-bike, it's a serious piece of machinery, as tough as the more celebrated world tourer, the Torq. Garth’s Torq was equipped with the 36V 14Ah battery, my Sprint had the smaller 36V 10Ah battery and the A2B was packing over 36V 20Ah in two batteries. So off we went. The slope was not too steep in most parts, just a long steady uphill. After many km of riding the views were spectacular and amazingly, the mountain was still populated with houses. A few more km later and the houses stopped, the scenery became even better and the hulk of a mountain remained ahead. Around here the A2B suddenly stopped! We opened it up to see if the controllor had blown a fuse or if there were signs of overheating. Nothing to be seen. After around a half hour the idea was for Garth and I to continue on and then suddenly the A2B came back to life! It would seem, to the credit of its designers, that it had automatically shutdown due to overheating to prevent damage. Later when it had cooled it started off again. This happened once more on the trip but otherwise all three riders and e-bikes made it all the way up the mountain. Garth had battery power to spare on his Torq, as did the A2B, while my Sprint had pretty much hit the wall at the top, the mountain having used all of its 10Ah.
Overall, the ride was a big success. All three electric bikes made it to the top of the biggest climb in Australia’s hilliest major city. People of Hobart can rest assured that no matter which hill you live up or where you want to go, you can ditch the car and go by electric bike. More importantly, it was a very enjoyable day of e-bike riding, amazing scenery and a great opportunity to meet the enthusiastic and committed local dealers of Glow Worm Bicycles. Recommended to anyone with two legs and a battery, preferably the longer range battery option!