• The former Mananui sawmill is full of rusty relics

West Coast Wilderness Trail – Fossicking in the Wilderness

March 7th, 2020|Tags: , , , , , , |

I became officially designated a fool in a town called Ross. You see a few days earlier I had travelled up the coast with a riding mate on our way to the official opening of the Paparoa Track. Given the long journey from the Deep South, we decided to break up the road trip and [...]

  • Heading off into the wilderness, leaving civilisation behind

Cycle + walk trails – St James Cycle Trail

March 7th, 2020|Tags: , , , , |

I had been looking forward to this trip for some time – a true ‘out of the way’ ride with stunning backcountry scenery – although I admit I had some apprehension. While the trail is near to Hanmer Springs, I would be cycling alone at altitude, away from roads, with no mobile coverage, rivers to [...]

  • The celestial star compass sits right on the foreshore

Navigating Out East

March 7th, 2020|Tags: , , , , |

Māori travelled in waka and navigated by the stars to reach the east coast. Later, Europeans steered tall ships and navigated with sextants, crossing the globe and making discoveries along this coast. Today, I begin to chart the Hawke’s Bay Trails by bicycle and my navigation tools of choice are three GPS units. While transport [...]

Stunning Mountain Vistas on the Ride to Welcome Rock.

November 8th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , , , |

I was welcomed to Welcome Rock long before the trail of the same name appeared on the high-country hills behind Garston. It just so happened several years ago that our neighbour was the sister of the station owner, and she invited me to their farm after I returned from overseas cycling adventures. I soon learnt [...]

  • Cruising the headland corners. photo: Destination Great Lake Taupō

The Great Lake’s Great Ride

September 10th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , |

Using a superlative to name this trail is a no-brainer. While the ‘great lake’ is not on the scale of the Great Lakes of the USA, it is our country’s biggest lake and nearly twice the size of the next largest. I was expecting a lot from this trail when I visited the area, as [...]

  • Entering the Roxburgh Gorge is near-perfection

Gorging on Greatness

June 30th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , , |

Which to choose: staring all day at a computer in order to keep the Great Rides App in shape, or steering my bike through a river gorge to keep myself in shape? Today I choose the latter, so leaving early morning from my home on the shores of moody Lake Wakatipu I head to the [...]

Where Cycling’s Happening – A Great Ride

March 7th, 2019|Tags: , , , , , , |

Growing up in Hamilton I cycled to school on busy roads in a time before cycleways, lanes or trails … dedicated bicycle routes were only a twinkle in the eye of the future. Spending time in the Waikato recently, I found the future is now! Cycling is booming in the heart of the Waikato. No other [...]

  • The coast section is a real stunner (credit: TBS Photography)

Remutaka Cycle Trail – A Great Ride

December 12th, 2018|Tags: , , , , |

I begin my cycle mission on the foreshore at Petone – the official start of the Remutaka Cycle Trail. With my GPS units set to record every second of my experience so I can continue building the Great Rides App, I’m away. The sky is blue and there is a little chop on the harbour [...]

  • Above: The quaint Ohakune Railway Station which is still in use Left: On the old viaduct and appreciating the new one beyond

A Great Ride – A Ride in the Park

November 11th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , |

So it was that on a cool autumn day my wife and I headed to the centre of the North Island. We were conscious of an ex-tropical weather system that was bearing down on the region, threatening to thwart our plan. Our plan was to have an easy ride together on day one, riding the [...]

  • It’s no wonder Tour Aotearoa riders found the Von a real highlight

A Great Ride – Coming Around the Mountains

September 10th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , |

Can there be a better start to a trail than farewelling the ‘Adventure Capital of the World’ and plying across a pristine lake on a 100-year-old steamship, with a backdrop of the most remarkable mountains? Well if there is, I want to find it! Leaving Queenstown (or should that be ‘Queenopolis’ given the recent population [...]