Sunday, April 12, 2015

Mount Cook to the Ocean, A2O

I started my Alps to ocean ride today. I got a shuttle to the Mt Cook Village and after a huge breakfast and a couple coffees with an awesome view out the window, I went over to the museum/MtCook Center and looked around. Not much new there for me so I just took off on my bike. The weather was bright sun with almost no clouds as I left the village. That did not last long. Before the village was out of sight clouds blew in over the mountains and it started to rain. The wind picked up to a gusty 30-45mph blow right in my face. I hate headwinds. The rain stopped and then it started to snow. The snow lasted about 15 minutes then the sun came out again. A few minutes later it started to hail. The high wind was blowing the hail into my face and it hurt like hell so I had to stop and go hide behind a sign until the hail stopped. I rode on taking pics here and there then it started to rain again. The wind got so strong I could barely make forward progress. I was riding in granny gear on a flat road. I kept pushing on because there was no other choice available. After about five hours of really hard riding I made it to Twizel a small mountain community and I checked into a packpacker place called High Country. Nice people running it. We talked for quite a while.

I also went to the laundry mat to dry out all my clothes. I was soaked when I got here from sweat and rain and snow. It was near freezing at 34 degree fahrenheit weather or 2 degrees celsius. The only reason I was not cold with all the wet clothes on was that I was working so hard to overcome the wind that I was sweating all day long.

Still a good day despite the hard work and weird weather. Tomorrow I do it again. I hope the weather is better.

A few pics

Oamaru NZ for A2O

Today I am in Oamaru NZ getting ready for a bike ride from up on Mout Cook all the way down to the ocean. My plan is to take a shuttle up to Mt Cook from here and ride back to here which is the end of the trail. I will leave unnecessary junk behind and only carry what I need for this ride. I hope the weather allows me to do this. The forecast for today and tomorrow is rain at lower elevations and snow at higher ones. I will not do the ride if there is more than an inch or so of snow on the ground or if the trail seems too slippery from frost and ice. The temperature forecast is from a low of 31 to a high of 34 so it will be very cold at the start of the ride. I hope I can ride far enough down into warmer temps before I need to camp for the first night.

Here are a few pics from the last couple days. Check out the little bluey pizza ingredients for the pizza I had last night over at the Scotts brew pub, it was very tasty. My night in the pub was a strange one. I walked in the door and there was a girl on her knees looking up at me like we just finished. Then I looked around the pub and it was all men. I had one pint and all the men left and were replaced by all women for the rest of the night. I had a good time the entire night and the beer was good. Now off to pack for my ride.