The route for Day 2: Ahipara to Opononi via a ferry at Rawene.
I woke with rested but tight legs - the day on sand is not something I've trained for. Traversing the stairs in the hostel loosened them up though.
Fueling the body is what will make or break this trip; so a big bowl of muesli with banana & yogurt, all washed down with coffee starts my day.
I had made my lunch toastie sandwiches the night before so all there was left to do was pack the last items onto my bike and warm up with a 2km cycle to the first of the many hills of the day.
I needed to ride 67km to the first ferry of the trip. They sail on the hour, every hour. Suffice to say I made it just on 11am with minutes to spare after sprinting the last 12km. I didn’t want to sit around waiting another hour.
Those dot watchers among you, may have noticed as Mike my nephew did, that I didn't fully start my spot tracker until about 20km in. A pointed text reminded me. I also see that it has stopped well short of where we're staying tonight.
Glenys caught up to me 1km into an 8km climb, I was on a roll so didn't stop for long, just long enough to devour a juicy peach she handed out the car window. We met again at Tane Mahuta, a massive kauri tree, where an iced coffee relieved my flagging spirit. After the photo session I headed on to, what would you know, another hill. Only 6km & 250m gained this time.
I've enjoyed having Glenys for these days, and will miss her as she returns home tomorrow. Both my accommodation and food will become more basic and I will need to really make an effort to look after myself.
Tomorrow the hills look smaller but more frequent, as I head around the alternative route to Auckland. The boat is not running so an extra 100km needs to be cycled.
Day 2 is over, I need to toughen up a bit, as the usual twinges & niggles remind me, I'm not young anymore but the good conversations, food & scenery remind me I have a lot to be thankful for.