Saturday was nice but I was busy doing "stuff".
Sunday - howling gale and horizontal rain.
Monday (public holiday) - not bad at times but plenty of rain for a Tenere rider to crash into.
Yeah, so I went for it today. I left home under some reasonably calm skies and made my way across towards Halcombe, very keen to access the Turakina Valley. But crossing over from Mount Stewart I rain into a really thick cloud which just wouldn't leave me alone. It was also a very wet cloud and looking off over towards Marton I could see that it was a very big cloud or some sort of wet cloud meeting - things were not looking very inviting so I decided to change my plans.
Seeing as I'd ridden across on reasonably dry roads I decided to loop around through Halcombe and head across to Beaconsfield and then the Pohangina Valley. The cloud gathering seemed to like the idea and decided to accompany me for most of my trip.
My first bit gravel was on Levett Line. Last time I'd been through here there had been a load of gravel on the road but this time around there were definite wheel tracks in the gravel and plenty of mud in them too. My old E-07's handled things reasonably well, just the odd little slither occasionally when coming off the gas going down hills. At Kiwitea I stopped for a short breather to work out where I was going next.
I decided that while I was fairly wet, I was not actually soaking so rather than wimping out I decided to carry on over Coulter's Line towards the valley. The gravel there was fairly chunky in places but I enjoyed the squirt up the hill to Ridge Road. The video below shows a few snippets of these roads and Finnis road. You'll notice how Ridge and Finnis Roads were a bit muddier and I had ease off a bit on them - I even chased a rabbit at one stage but embarrassingly he got away on me...
After dropping into Pohangina I again resisted my cowardly urges and turned northish on Pohangina Road. When this turns to gravel it becomes a wonderful playground for big Adv bikes...
After the excitement I stopped to check out the raging torrent that was the Pohangina River.
The return trip home took me back to Ashhurst via Pohangina Valley East Road and with the going easy once again, the cloud finally gave up watering me. Home by cuppa time and actually not too wet after a reasonably enjoyable if damp pootle.