Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Chilling out in Tuai

We had a great little holiday over the Xmas break. My plans to get an early start and ride up the island towards Tuai, near Lake Waikaremoana were thwarted by the crappy weather. Xmas and boxing day temperatures which were PB's from 1934 apparently, had us thinking summer was actually here.

Dave and Kathleen's bach in the ex Hydro town of Tuai was an oasis of chilled back friendliness, where everyone meets everyone with a friendly Kia ora. There was also no internet or cell coverage, or for us TV even. Not that anyone of us was complaining, far from it.

Sandy Bay Lake Waikareti
We had a couple of great hikes and an overnight tramp into the Sandy Bay hut at Lake Waikareiti. It was beautiful in there. I would totally recommend it.

Too my enjoyment I discovered that straight outside the back door of our bach was a 27 minute gravel climb up to Lake Waikaremoana, and I think I rode it 3 times while I was there. On the day we left I got away early onto the gravel road linking Waikaremoana to Murupara, with the promise that I wouldnt go past Ruatahuna. There is no cell coverage up there and I didn't want to have another one of my extended mix "early starts" where the "pick-up" goes wrong and I end up cycling from Christchurch to Kaikoura or Queenstown to Manapouri before I catch up with the whanau.

I was in Ruatahuna in 3 hours so decided that rather than waste valuable riding time waiting I would ride back in the direction I came until I met Kay. This was cool as I got another hours solid gravel climbing in on the Kite. That bike loves gravel.

Lake Waikaremoana

We went on to Turangi where we stayed with Carol and Chris and did a couple more tramps including the Tongariro Crossing. It was very busy on the track and we were glad we took a wide range of clothes. I would not want to be up there in bad weather.

I got another early start on the way back to Wellington and managed to get to Ohakune before the catch and still hook into Neils BBQ at Raumati on the way back !

Mokau Bay Lake Waikaremoana

Tuai to Ruatahuna - hmmmm gravel
Turangi to Ohakune

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