dst. (km) Today 83.24 Trip total ??.? Odometer 2463.0
We woke to grey skies and a howling wind — not very inviting weather for cycling. Breakfasted in Phil’s room then the four of us packed the bus and drove the 30 or 40km up from the lake and down over the ridge to the end of the gravel road. We stopped at the spillway to look at the view, but the wind was really funnelling in across the lake so nobody wanted to stay and look around for long.
Started riding at Manapapa bridge around 10:30, a much earlier start than yesterday, and we made good time along the valley to Frasertown. The tailwind for the last 5km along the valley was great.
Morning tea in Frasertown consisted of chocolate bars from the only shop, then back on the road, up and down the valleys past sheep, cows and goats, with a few deer and pigs for variety. The lunch stop at Te Reinga falls was a nice spot, worth the detour down and climb back up. The falls had a permanent rainbow over them, just visible from the lookout and track. More a steep cascade than an actual waterfall, the vegetation around the lookout blocked most of the view.
After lunch there was about a 10km climb out to Tiniroto(-38.7666667,177.5666667) and beyond, then a great swooping descent, made a little more exciting by the gravel on the corners at 60km/hr! Both Jo and I have recovered from the plane trip, are feeling a little fitter, and are starting to have a good time.
The weather ended up quite hot, we were expecting more cold winds after yesterday, but I had to change out of my fleecy top at lunch time — one of the benefits of having all your clothes in a van, if it had been inside my panniers I might not have bothered unpacking!
Glen Innis station B&B is in a beautiful spot, just up above the river across with fantastic views of the hills lining the valley. They have a huge vegetable garden and flower gardens. The house is surrounded by lavender and the lady running it is falling over herself to be friendly. She seems to believe that anyone from “the city” has never seen a farm before and doesn’t know which part of the cow the eggs come from. The invitations to come and see the chickens and watch the house-cow being milked were so overwhelming that we thought we had better keep her happy!
Dinner with the four who ran the place was roast home-grown lamb, and the conversation ranged through the farming and tourism part of their business, and covered a theme that we were to hear frequently, of more and more people leaving the land, with large companies buying up farms to bulldoze and plant conifer plantations. Presumably better than logging native forests, they all still believe that it leads to rapid erosion and wastage of the land, but massive profits to the overseas timber companies.
Waikaremoana(-38.8000,177.1167) Frasertown(-38.9686,177.4006) Te Reinga falls Tiniroto (38°S, 177°E) Glen Innis station