Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Eastern gravel

With Monday being a public holiday (the Queen is good for something) and it not being a bad day, it seemed rude not to head out for another pootle - this time giving the Tenere a little love.

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?

Not lost!

Yep, more gravel thataway!
More delicious gravel eventually got me into Eketahuna where I contemplated the cafes before deciding I didn't like the look of them and carried on South for a few km before turning off onto Mangaoranga Road.

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...

That's better...

Ahhh, the Mangaone...

Not the kind of sign I like seeing...
Calling it a day in Pahiatua, I turned for home, but not before that one last bit of gravel on Tararua Road and a decent squirt up over the track.

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!


  1. You always manage to find the best gravel roads. Nice cow wrangling too. New career?

    Thanks for the tip on the McLaren movie, hadn't heard anything about it on this side of the pond.

    1. Well shucks ma'am, I've been punching heifers by bike since forever...

      Great gravel alright - just right for a little Versys!

      Great film too, another one of NZ's finest lost far too soon.

  2. Disappointed you didn't carve off a huge juice steak and then ride the rest home. Hahahahaha

    Looks like you got plenty dirty, nice if you have the right equipment for it!

    1. I wasn't hungry....

      The S10 eats up those sort of roads!

  3. I could go some gravel time myself (on a suitable bike) as I am loosing the touch but even the most remote track here is tarred.

    1. Bummer about the tar. Gravel roads tend to take you to some interesting places.