I haven't been over the other side of the hill for a while (the gorge has been shut for over a month which makes the track and the saddle a lot busier and a lot less fun) so leaving the driveway I pointed the bike East.
The track was dry and there wasn't as much traffic as I'd feared, so I was across the hill in no time and making my way towards Mangamire. But, of course, I turned off and headed down one of my favourite gravel roads (there seems to be a lot of them), Kopikipiko Road.
Straight away the gravel felt really good under the bike and I had a nice wee warm up.
The trouble was I was having too much fun and didn't get around to stopping for any pictures. After a small bit of tarseal I stopped at the next bit of gravel for the photo op.
|Gravel in mint condition|
|The Windows 95 hills?|
|Yep, more gravel thataway!|
I hadn't been on this bit of road for a while and I was in for a fantastic surprise. The road was in absolutely awesome condition and it was like riding on a sealed road. Exhibit A:
Oh yeah, that was good!
Next up was Bartons Line. This started off a wee bit muddy in places but I didn't really have any trouble - the E-07's have at least 7,000km on them now and while the rear looks a little sad in the middle, it still was more than up to the challenge.
There was a little excitement of the hoofed variety at one stage though...
At the end of Bartons Line I hung a right and rode on through to Alfredton before turning off and making my way across to Pahiatua.
|One of these things pulverises gravel roads, the other is a steam roller...|
|On your marks, get set...|
|Ahhh, the Mangaone...|
|Not the kind of sign I like seeing...|
I arrived home not long after 1:30 so I had plenty of time to edit the videos before popping out again to catch the new movie about Bruce McLaren - well worth a watch!