Sunday, February 1, 2009
The Broken Seat Post Memorial Ride
Myself, the Boss, Hedley, Teleri, Destry and Lea headed off from Hanaia at 7.30am and made our way to the Blue Mountains. We had our usual slug up to Valley Station Rd and enjoyed, once more, The Dip. Lea bailed out on her first attempt but started again and nailed it.
We had a relentless, crushing, steep haul up what was once a nice forest trail, but is now a bulldozed forestry road, in very hot conditions for what seemed like hours. The problem was that the carving of roads and skid sites had obliterated lots of the tracks and we spent 45 minutes and a few dead ends until we found the rest of Mangakakaho Rd which eventually became Pakihi Rd.
Once we were on the track we had some shade and more aesthetic surroundings with some awesome downhill and, unfortunately, some more punishing uphill.
We paused for a moment of respect at the place where the seat post broke and then continued on our plummet down to the Mangakirikiri on what must be one of the longest and quite treacherous in places downhill in the area. It was great to follow Destry down on his fully-suspended limousine and get a bit of an idea of the best lines. Unfortunately, Teleri wasn't close enough to hear our warnings about a concealed deep rut. She found it though and hit the ground pretty hard.
The last 30m to the Mangakirikiri is most probably more difficult than the three sisters from last week but I gave it my best shot in a slidy/ridy sort of way.
A swim at the Pakihi Bridge was awesome as it has been a very hot day. The final 30k home along the Pakihi, Otara and SH35 was a bit of a slog with most of us just hanging on and struggling up Tirohanga and Hanaia Roads.
We launched into watermelon and beers still cold from Friday night's festivities. This ride was a hard slog and I haven't been so shattered in a while, but it was another great adventure in this piece of paradise we call Opotiki.
Best trails, best people, best post-ride and best school! Check the photos!