Monday, January 21, 2013

BRR Ashhurst to Apiti

Yesterday was the first BRR ride of the year and after initially starting off drizzly the weather cleared up for a very fine, clear day.  The ride planned was a pretty laid back cruise around Pohangina, Rangiwahia and Apiti and we started off with a leisurely coffee in Ashhurst.

With the promise of some recently graded gravel (dagnabbit) a few of the guys lowered their tyre pressures prior to leaving Ashhurst.  This caused our first wee stop when one of the riders discovered he'd let just a little too much air out - my little compressor soon had that sorted and while this was going on we were joined by Barry who must have had a broken watch...

Barry a little later in the day
Now that we'd increased our numbers to 6 it was time for our first bit of gravel on Pohangia Valley West Road.  This bit was in great nick and we made good time through to Makoura where we stopped to regroup.

Next we turned right for the quick trip to Pohangina Valley East Road to sample some tar before turning off onto the gravel of Umutoi North Road and Tunipo Roads.  I'd never been through here before and I have to say it was a neat ride with some good views  followed by a descent back onto Pohangina Valley East Road.  (BTW: not too much video today as I wasn't happy with the results from the mounting position I used).

Back on the tar again and instead of turning left into Apiti we turned right to take us on familiar ground to Rangiwahia via Main South Road.  Recent road works through here are slowly starting to decrease the amount of gravel you have to ride but it's still a good ride especially when dropping down into the valleys and crossing the river.  In Rangiwahia it was time for another stop for a drink of water - the temperature was definitely getting on the warm side.

A good thing we didn't need fuel...
Next up was a fairly decent stretch of tar towards Kimbolton but once again we turned off .  This time it was onto Peep O'Day Road - a road I hadn't ridden before.  Peep O'Day Road turned out to be a real gem - everywhere you looked there was a fabulous view and we even stopped a few times for pics!  I will definitely be going back here again with the GoPro mounted in a better position and make a few more picture stops too.

By now it was well after twelve and we still had a way to go to reach our lunch stop in Apiti.  We carried on taking in as much gravel as possible.  Waituna Tapuae Road, Levett Line, Mc Beth Road and Juntion Road all offered good gravel and a lot of fun!

Levett Line
Eventually we hit Apiti at around 2pm and crashed in through the doors of the pub in search of grub.  The pub did not disappoint with huge meals (and pretty cheap too), I put away my delicious venison burger but could not handle all of the chips and I didn't need dinner later either!

The last leg of the ride was to take Ridge Road, Finnis Road and Zig Zag Road back towards Colyton and home.  Leaving Apiti I had a bit of excitement when a bee hit my helmet and splattered it's innards over my cheek, there was even goop in my eye - yuck!  At a later stop I even discovered that the poor old bee was still alive when I heard a buzzing noise and took my helmet off to find his front half wedged under the edge of my visor - his last ride had been fairly exciting...

Finnis Road
The riding through these sections was a bit slower as there was a fair bit of gravel on the road and a bit of caution on the DL was needed.

Out on the tar at Valley road we parked up and said our goodbyes before splitting up to each make our way home.  The first BRR ride of the year was a goodee!

More pics here.


  1. What an awesome day with great weather.

    I could only watch part of the first video. The bumping on gravel was actually making me motion sick. First time that has happened on one of your videos, must have been the camera angle.

  2. Yeah, I don't like the video from that mount - it was a bit wobbly as well as getting too much of me & the bike and not enough scenery.

    It was a pretty good day all right - a bit hot if anything. It's been very hot here of late - high 20's and occasionally over 30...

  3. Hi there - I am finally back on my blog and starting to catch up again. Its been a year since I was on here. Well so much for catching up with you - I was in NZ November/December 2012. My mum passed away so didnt get a chance to do any riding while I was there. I am planning to head to NZ again in 2014. So my thought is to keep in contact and when I get out that way again I will rent or buy a bike and hopefully join you on a couple of rides.

    1. Very sorry to here about your mum.

      Perhaps the NZ Bike Bloggers should have a get together like their North American counter parts...