Couple of local lads won second prize in a Bikepacking. com route competition. I decided to give it a whirl … it’s the iconic kiwi way No. 8 Wired
Starting in Greytown you quickly start climbing into the Aorangi Forest park and tackle the infamous Aorangi Crossing. I made a complete hash of the first afternoon having escaped work early was aiming to spend the night just inside the forest entrance at Sutherlands Hut. Darkness came a little early and after traipsing up a river, falling into it and feeling generally annoyed with myself I abandoned that idea and collapsed into the bush cold and wet.
The crossing was up first thing in the morning and whilst I loved the isolation and general untouched feeling of the area this route is not for the faint hearted and really tough slogging up with a loaded bike. The track is in pretty poor condition after the wet winter and it takes many hours to travel very few kms! The views when they come are fabulous stretching out along Palliser Bay, over to the Alps and around to Lake Ferry. Eventually you plummet down to sea level and enjoy an easy spin along the coast to Ngawi where a mandatory stop at the food truck ensured my mood was restored. Being a long weekend the locals were ramping up at the pub and it was hard to drag myself away. Further out along the coast you to get to enjoy lighthouses, seals, ship wrecks and shingle fans!
Turning inland again at White Rock the route is full of quiet gravelly river valleys and a few huge hills to keep you honest… really great trip… don’t do it alone like I did but check it out and see if it’s for you more info at the link below