Thursday, February 2, 2012

Me & Malcolm, Nth Island summer ride 2010

Took off on the Sunday morning following the HFoS launch. It was all a hell of a rush, and I forgot a bunch of shit inclduing my camera. Losing my grandfathers gold watch the night before was a bad omen I thought, and I did continue to lose shit during this trip. At some points I got quite worried that I was jinxed and was gonna crash or some shit!? Anyway Malcolm had his camera and I ended up buying one (actually two cause the first one fell out of my pocket on the road and smashed into a million pieces) of those shitty disposable cameras.

This Sunday I rode up to the ferry in Picton and then met malcolm in Wellington, and then we rode straight over the Rimutakas to Martinborough and down to Lake Ferry where we stayed the night. Photos start here, at lake Ferry. It had been an insane day of riding for me, with 120km gusts of wind coming up the Kaikoura coast.  

 That's me telling Malcolm how shit is. next day we hit the road early and went back to Martinborough, where I bought the first camera (the one that fell out of my pocket somewhere after Eketahuna. We had pies at Woodville and then fucked off to Malcolm's family farm. That was pretty cool, I'd never been there before. I hadn't ridden a 4-wheel motorcycle like this either, that was pretty choice. As were the dogs, cows, etc... shit if I was Malcolm I'd be living on the farm! But I guess I didn't grow up there eh. Anyway we then went to Dannevirke, and then east via the Wimbledon pub to stay at Porangahu beach. A bunch of shit happened, and I kept a journal but this no proper 'write up'. I might do that later for HFoS issue two... maybe? We met some Maori shearers at Porangahau, that was pretty interesting. As was getting there to find no shop open and the pub not serving food. We thought we would starve and so tried to fill up on beer and crisps, but when we got back to our tent Malcolm did his smooth dog thing and got this nice lady who was camping with her family to give us some 2-minute noodles. Shit they were some good eating at that point!

Next day we took off and had breakfast (big one) in Waipukurau. We then did a fairly big ride to Napier and on to Gisborne for the night, where we stayed at one of them big cheesy family camp grounds. I'd wanted to see what they were like, and we found out why we don't go to those kind of camping grounds. I think we had lunch in Wairoa on the way? This was the first place we saw Maori kids riding horses bareback... a common feature of the trip as we got closer to the East Cape...

I was quite pleased to get out of Gisborne the next day, it felt too much like Palmy or something? I don't like those kinda towns. And anyway we were on the edge of the real riding now, which was to get into the East Cape. Great coastal ride, heaps of speeding logging trucks (including one that had crashed), and then lunch and a bit of relaxing on the beach at Tolaga Bay. After that we just cruised pretty slow up to Tokomaru Bay, and when we got there we liked it so much we decided to stay there for the rest fo the day and night. We got some beers and wandered around this real small town, shit it was pretty dead but very nice, great beach, old run down houses and buildings etc. Some of the locals were playing that game on horseback where you grab the poles, what's it called? Had fish and chips for dinner and went for a walk...

Next day we wanted to take some photos of Tokomaru bay before leaving and the night before we'd come across this MC clubrooms. We pulled up outside this building and got off the bikes. Malcolm went straight round to the window to take a photo, in the meantime a dude from the house behind the building had heard our bikes and came out to check us out. He came and started talking to me, and turns out he's a Triumph nut. He invited us into the clubrooms and had a bit of a yarn, showed us his bikes and whatnot. We were pretty stoked about that, and took off feeling like Tokomaru Bay was just about the coolest place on earth. We did quite a lot of riding this day... up through Ruatoria and onto Te Araroa for lunch, where there were signs advising local kids that their horses weren't welcome in the playground. From here we rode down the west side of the cape, which was pretty stunning. Beautiful beaches. We didn't stop, just took our time, but almost did run out of petrol. Then got stuck at some roadworks for about half an hour in the hot hot sun... and I kept all my gear on cause I kept thinking we were about to go. Got pretty sticky in there. Went to Whakatane for the night. Felt weird being back in a proper town again, kinda awful. But we stayed in a motel and having a real bed was kinda cool...

Next day was a bit depressing as it was the last day we'd be riding together... that and the fact we were really mostly back on main roads. We did take a bit of a detour through Galatea and Murupara, but yeah heading for Taupo it really felt like things were winding down in terms of adventure quality.
Stayed in this cabin in Taupo, cause the place we wanted to stay at with the hot pool was full up (actually I reckon we've been banned since partying there a couple of years back). We tried our best to have some fun, but it was a bit lame really. Next day Malcolm headed back to Auckland and I fucked off down to Wellington. I thought it'd be a shit ride but actually it wasn't too bad, I went fast to stop it being boring and seemed to have real good luck with cops. Went to a leather store and bought a belt in Otaki, and then onto Wellington where I stayed with Anna Dean. I stayed in Wellington the whole next day to avoid the rain, and then on the Tuesday morning had the roughest ferry crossing I've ever encountered. Soem bikes even fell over (dicks didn't tie them down right). And then a windy ride home again... what is it with wind up that east coast between Blenheim and Kaikoura?

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