|2014-10-21 click for more photo's|
21/10/2014 Taumarunui to Whakahro
We decided to follow the route as described in the book and follow the gravel road not the highway to Owhango. It was certainly more beautiful but riding gravel requires a lot of concentration. Follow the rut you're in for too long and you'll end up in deep gravel on the inside of the bend with no way out, you always have to look thirty feet ahead to plan the best line. After a 300m climb we found the expected sealed road again but were disappointed to discover it only went on for 1 km before reverting to more gravel.
The rest of the ride was gently undulating and not too taxing. We were very much cycling through rural countryside with cattle and sheep farms along the way. Just as we arrived at Blue Duck Station one of the few vehicles we had seen all day pulled up along side and called to us by name. It was the owner of the lodge [ and all the land to be seen for miles around (a bit too isolated for Marjet. An hours drive on a gravel road if you forget to buy the beers) ] we were the only cyclists expected and thus not too difficult to identify on a dead end road. The lodge we were put in was designed with three bedrooms and for 24 people and we had it in its entirety to ourselves including the living room and log burner. Very cosy . A quick clothes wash is often put off as the clothes won't dry in time but with the log burner everything dried out in a jiffy.