Week 2 in North Island
It could be summed up by hills and lots of fun in water.
We have had two days off the bike, Stuart has done some white water rafting, we’ve been treated to a day on a yacht, we hired some kayaks and paddled to some amazing Maori cave drawings and if that was not enough we’ve spent most evenings chilling in hot pools some of which were awesome
The days we’ve spent on the bike have been very hilly, it is like cycling in telly tubby land with lots of rolling hills. Other than the fact that we have passed lots of avocado and kiwi fruit farms we could so easily be cycling in rural England
We have met more cycle tourers on route and stayed in some very well equipped camp sites, so much so we feel like we are glamping.
We’re heading to Wellington this week and then on to South Island
Hope all is well with everyone
Love and Kisses
Gary, Ginette and Stuart
Gary can find stairs anywhere even in New Zealand
Stu standing on a rock to make Gary look even shorter, at Mount maunganui.
we’ve passed lots of avocado and Kiwi farms
sea surf race, Mount Maunganui
Our new friend Sarah with kevin behind the lens, at Mount Maunganui
Sunset on top of Mount Maunganui
Not a sign we see in the UK
The happy couple next to Huka falls
come on keep up (says speedy nickers Netty)
Stu white water rafting, he has just completed a 7ft drop but still smiling
Stu on top of Mount maunganui
a rose between two thorns
I don’t need to be asked twice
Kevin and Sarah yacht on Lake Rotoiti.
fly fisherman trying to extract Garys wisdom teeth
yuk Gary eating an over ripe avocado
Thumbs down from Net but thumbs up for Stu, If he keeps finding these gravel roads Net is threatening to send him home.
we saw lots of Te Puke signs my favourites included Te Puke Bakery, Old Te Puke Cemetery and Te Puke stay in the left hand lane
sun setting on Mount Ruapehu
Second busted chain. it took 7000 miles for the first and 1300 miles for this one, I think a stone from the gravel track did this one.
view from the top of one of our camp sites
The last part of our trip and two have become three.
A week of rain, steep hills, bike and IT problems
We had a couple of days in Auckland, one of which was spent on a volcanic island in the bay.
Stuart arrived on Valentines Day, he was pretty zombified after his long journey but still managed a 27 mile ride on arrival on a bike with insufficient gears
We have spent the week cycling part of the Cormandel Peninsula we are making our way south having experienced a few days of rain which we blame Stuart for bringing from the UK, he also has cursed us with punctures and off road hillclimbs (so bad that we had to help push a car up), it may be is magnetic personality but since he’s been here Ginette’s iPod has died, her bike computer has reset itself and Gary’s Garmin has frozen. In fact if this carries on we are going to send Stuart home.
Only 6 weeks left, where has the time gone…
Look forward to seeing you all soon
Gary, Ginette and Stuart
Innovotive bike rack in Aukland
Tin Tin look
it worked it made us laugh
top of the Rangitoto volcano
This route was recommended by a man we met on route – need I say more
cycled passed this sign, nearly turned right for work, then I remembered I’m a lady of leisure : )
No need for this type of language
Tram next to the zoo in Auckland
Geese NZ style
first of 3 punctures this week (1 for Stuart and 2 for Gary)
New Zealand sign
searching for gold in Auckland – Ginette doing a Tommy Cooper impersonation ‘not like that, like this’
wet camp site South of Auckland
what shape is this tree?
Wet off road track – definitely a Stuart road
Cathedral Cove very majestic
Gary swimming in the wild sea at Cathedral Cove
The boys walking back up the hill Cathedral Cove
Tired looking Gary sampling the beer at a brewery on our camp site
Lah, Lah land – lots of rolling green hills
lunch by the sea (it’s just over that hill)
lunch by the roadside
Wild West Tasmania
We’ve now cycled up the west side of Tasmania which was very mountainous and wild
We’ve wild camped most nights staying by some very lovely lakes or as we refer to them as our ‘bath’
There’s very little infrastructure so shops, cafes and wifi are scarce but the people are lovely and welcoming, it is such a small island that we’ve bumped into several people 2 or more times in different areas including Richard’s (Gary’s stepdad) Doppleganger
We haven’t seen as much wildlife but we did spend one night with a wallaby in our tent and the birds have woken us with some interesting calls especially the ‘OK bird’
Cradle Mountain was amazing but very expensive, fortunately a family we’d met on route took pity on us and took us into the national park saving us a further £16.
Hope everyone is fit and well. We are leaving for New Zealand in the morning, Tasmania was interesting and we would recommend it for anyone who loves windy rides, beautiful views and mountain climbs.
not as high as some of the cols in the Alps but still quite a climb with 45kg of weight
Gary filtering water for our water bottles
Gay Gary chilling by the harbour in Hobart
Cradle Mountain – who chose Tasmania for cycling???
A lovely family who took us up to Cradle Mountain National Park
Waterfalls at Cradle Mountain
argh!! a spider on our pannier we later found one on Gary’s top box whilst riding along
Echidna crossing the road
Wattle Bird – or as we call it the ‘OK Bird’ because of the call it makes
helicopter with the red fire water bucket on its way to or from fighting a bush fire
Cradle Mountain area
Me flashing my gum with Judy Desire our new friend from NY
silly grin at lunch break but what a stunning backdrop
cycling buddies going the opposite way to us
Tasmania has a few hills
Ginette picking blackberries to go on our porridge
On the way to Cradle Mountain
Gary at the top of Tarraleah Water Power Station
Gary being attacked by an invisible dolphin
picking apples for our mid morning break
ah! isn’t that sweet
who does this man remind you of?
fancy emigrating to Tasmania? this is about 30k english money and most properties in rural towns look like this
these cyclists were in their 70’s but managed to keep up with us on our way to Queenstown
views from one of our wild camp sites – Meadow Bank Lake
A car for Shaw Beattie
Ginette having a bath
Bush Fires and Flooding!!
Strange smells, noises and cute, funny looking animals.
Tasmania is a beautiful island with an interesting history
The island has some amazing coast line and lots of bush unfortunately for us we arrived when the west of the island was suffering from wild bush fires closing a number of roads and the east was experiencing the worse flooding they’d seen in years. We had chosen to cycle down the east coast so as you can imagine we got very wet and had to stop in Bicheno for a day as the roads were closed all around us.
In between the rain we have seen some beautiful coastal views and met some lovely fellow cycle tourers.
The cycling has been hard as the island is very hilly, full of road kill and there are very few shops, cafes and accommodation on route, if this wasn’t bad enough it is a very expensive island especially compared to Asia and the internet access is very poor.
The highlight of our week was visiting Marie Island where we saw lots of wildlife including Wombats and the elusive Tasmanian Devil
There’s lots more information in our diaries section of the website.
Hope you are all well and we look forward to seeing you soon only 2 more months to go.
Typical post box,
Mary poppins eat your heart out, Bicheno.
Is she calling me It?, Sydney harbour
Painted Cliffs on Maria Island
very windy on Maria Island
view from the coastal road East Tasmania
Close up of our new cuddly wombat friend
windy and wet Maria Island with some stunning views – Painted Cliffs
A family on Australia day
Feeding Alapaca’s on the East Coast
Ginette having lunch and keeping the flies off.
The road on the NE corner, turned into dirt track for 10 miles.
Lilydale, a high street of about 5 houses
Our entertainment at breakfast in campsite at Bicheno.
Wombat, there were lots of them on Maria Island – so cute
Blow hole at Bicheno
crossing into Dorset, Tasmania
hide me mummy
natural lake and pool area in the Cataract at Launceston
Fairy penguin at Bicheno.
Ginette getting excited as she recognises stock names – so much choice
Our friends Bharti and Pete in Sydney
Gary at bath time, pioneer lake.
What a beauty
a naff but free camping spot at the back of a pub in Triabunna
Lilydale, painted posts.
who do you think you’re looking at?
stools made from bike parts, Sydney harbour
It is so funny cycling though English/Welsh town names
Pademelons all around our tent
Tea break, no flies on Gary.
laughing kookaburra’s sitting in the old gum tree