Some time ago Oldbeer from Advrider suggested that some of the Kiwi Advriders needed to meetup at some stage to put some faces to names. Apparently he likes coffee and decided that a coffee would be the perfect excuse for us to meetup and then perhaps even go for a pootle.
Well, Saturday was the day and after twisting Colin's arm I managed to rope him in as well - it is tough sometimes...
We left my place just after 8 and proceeded over the hill and then onto some of our favourite gravel down to Eketahuna. I believe that this just may be the only way one can get oneself down to the bustling metropolis that is Eketahuna - the Tenere definitely doesn't seem to know another way.
The ride down wasn't quite as nice (or quick) as usual as some terrorist had been out pouring new metal on the road and spreading it around reasonably thick. This was a bit of a bummer but as we were pretty early we did get to chase the bunnies all over the road - I even saw a completely black one at one stage.
In Eketahuna we caught up with a bunch of blokes we did know and a few we weren't too sure about. Actually we weren't too sure about any of them but at least recognised a few. We even had coffee with a few of them...
Eventually, as we couldn't sit around drinking coffee all day when there were stones that needed flipping over, we decided that we should deal to some of those stones and go for a ride. We split up into two groups, one initially planning on a sealed route (though I believe they couldn't resist a little gravel in the end) and another wild bunch with a passion for gravel. I got lumbered with the job of towing the gravel munchers around.
We started off with the particularly delicious Mangaoranga Road which, as usual, was a perfect warm-up. Plenty of oh-so-smooth, fast gravel with just enough fine stuff on it to permit some slithering.
Have I ever mentioned how much I like pulling top gear on gravel?
Next up was a slightly slower section of gravel on Bartons Line and then back onto the seal at Alfredton for the run up 52 to our next turn-off on Waihoki Valley Road. This got us onto more great gravel and our usual route through to Coast Road and Pongaroa or Akitio. I must have been enjoying it because I missed the usual photo op for the out-of-towners - oops!
I made up for it with a quick stop at the Coast Road turn-off:
|All manner of machinery scattered about the place|
From there it was just a quick blast into Pongaroa to meet the others for lunch at the pub - we were only just over an hour early 🤦
|Horses being tended to before the owners were fed|
|Glen refuelling his WR - fancy forgetting to bring his Tenere!|
|Viffer looking out of place - the rider wasn't with us|
|Beemers snuggling together|
|Yep, being elitist...|
After a leisurely lunch it was time to roll again and as we left the pub there was the odd spit of rain to make us wonder if we were in for a soaking or going to stay lucky.
Out of town we got stuck behind a ute who was all over the road before we turned off and got back onto the gravel of Waione-Horoeka Road. Cruising through this reasonably twisty section we started getting some light rain and this made the climb up Towai Road a bit trickier - the rain was a pain with the visor up and I couldn't see a heck of a lot with it down...
Time for a wee break at the top:
|Water hovering above the hills, waiting to pounce|
When we got a bit lower down on Coonoor Road the cloud moisture decreased and it was much more fun as Colin and I got in our last gravel fix before taking the seal home.
We did stop at the Pori Road turn-off to say see-ya-later to the others who were going to have a final play on Pori Road before returning to Eketahuna to check out the nightlife there.
I was home in time for afternoon smoko after a nice little outing. Good to catch-up with some more like-minded lunatics - and get a gravel fix in. Cheers Oldbeer!