Sunday, January 09, 2011

The Forgotten Highway

Sarge had been planning a return to the Forgotten Highway for a wee while and today was the day. Eleven bikes and twelve bikers met up at the Ashhurst service station at just before 8 and managed to get under way by 8:15 and before the spits turned into rain.

We firstly rode across through Bunnythorpe and Feilding before taking in Halcombe and Marton. From Marton we took Wanganui road through to Turakina and then our first stop just the other side of Wanganui.

So far the weather had been really nice (not too hot) but before we got under way again extra clothes had to be removed and sunglasses pressed into action. We carried on up through the 'naki at a sensible pace and stopped again at Stratford where we had a breather and fuelled the bikes for the run through the Forgotten Highway.

The run through to Whanga was it's usual magnificent self although there was a small section of gravel road works and the nearer we got to Whanga the hotter and slipperier the tar got - not nice not being able to trust the surface under you.

In Whanga we parked up outside the pub (along with a few other bikers) and enjoyed cold drinks and Whanga burgers for lunch.

Following lunch it was off on the last stretch of the Forgotten Highway to Taumarunui. This stretch includes a tunnel and a small section of gravel to spice things up - the fantastic scenery also never lets up for the entire 150km of the road.

Naturally temperatures were rising even more and in places the road was sparkling and the surface was more like oil than tar - a lot of care had to be taken and lines had to be picked carefully to prevent too much slipping and sliding. But, we all stuck to the plan and made it through in one piece for another cold drink and more fuel in Taumarunui.

From Taumarunui we carried on through to National Park and Raetihi before hitting the magnificent Para Paras - and what a fantastic ride it is through here now. We had another stop at the Raukawa Falls before finishing off the Paras. I then led the team through the sneaky little Wanaganui bypass and then onto Fordell, Marton, Halcombe and Feilding. In Feilding some needed gas again and it was here that we all parted company, going our separate ways after a brilliant day out on some sensational roads. Summer is alright by me!

Ride distance 625km; 7 hours, 13 minutes in the saddle and plenty of stops to enjoy the scenery.



More pics here. And more video to come...

4 comments:

  1. what a great ride, I have yet to do the forgotten highway, but plan to in the next few months.

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  2. Awesome ride. I have been on the forgotten world highway with a car and enjoyed it nonetheless but it would have been so much better on a bike. Thanks for sharing.

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  3. @Raftnn, no excuses - you have to do it! Just watch that damn tar!

    @SonjaM, at least you've done it ;-) Would love to say I've done any riding/driving in your part of the world - one day...

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  4. 2wheeled gasman9:28 AM

    awesome ride, great pix and vid.
    Had a blast

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