I wake up
I eat and I go
To climb these hills
To circle these shores
It’s my life now
And every night
I drift off
And hope it never ends
-Scenes from any given day
It's been nearly four weeks since break, only two more weeks of classes left! I snapped right back into life plus some. Refreshed from time off the bike, I was eager to get back in the saddle and have since hardly rested. Here's a rewind of the highlights from the past few weeks.
Mt. Gray Mission with the club (May 12)
Mt. Gray, a small peak (1500m) sits less than an hour and a half outside of chch. Four tracks make their way to the top, a gnarly abandoned hiking track see sign below, unfortunately we didn't until we hit the summit, a washed up 4wd track, a spectacular track we made our 2 hour descent on, and a track yet to be explored by the Canterbury mtb club, that is, until this Saturday!
Nick still had some fun with the climb
Narv and Louise make their way up the final pitches after we finally reconnected with the 4wd
Snowcapped Southern Alps
towards the inland kaikouras
Two paths diverged on a windswept ridge in New Zealand
what goes up...
notice how we started in a tussock grass environment
fought our way through head high shrub land
and into some amazing beech forest
somehow this is street legal, and by that, I'm referring to both the van and the contraption on the back
Damn good day, My Gray in the far off distance. I was so stoked by the ride I asked if we could do a return trip and check out the other track off the top, maybe even take the 4wd route up and save ourselves a little trouble. I'll be leading that mission this weekend.
Rapaki and such May 11
Toly rented a bike for the day. I brought the camera along. Unfortunately it started to rain, as I hoped to get a few more pics from a typical mtn. ride.
The Rapaki track, a part of one of the three mtn loops I ride in the porthills. This is by far the easiest way up. The other two loops I'll ride during the week challenge riders with lung busting climbs at knee snapping grades or ruts so deep they could swallow a rider and bike whole.
Hamner Springs Ski Area, May 5
Cal, who lives down the way from me here in Ilam, and I attacked a blustery Hamner Springs ski area. We started out from the little mountain town of Hamner Springs about 2 and a half hours north of chch, riding narrow dirt roads out of town up to the base of the access road. The area went unused last season (the owner was on a long holiday in Europe and didn't feel like coming back) so the last few miles to the base were pretty awash in some places.
Every switchback brought us more and more magnificent views.
After a solid three hours of climbing we reached the lodge. shelter, meals, beds, its all right there in two shacks. The hill featured two 'nutcracker' as the call them, lifts. Scree and gooey mud forced us to leave out bikes behind and push to the summit on foot.
The wind tore over the ridge at well over 100kph. We crested over a low summit and faced a hail of gravel and sand mixed with the occasional drop of rain. Back in the lee side we prepared to make a mad dash for the top. Watch Cal narrate our summit sprint.
Here We Go: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=621ue2G62Ok
We Made it!: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7oCxlPos1ZI
Sunny on one side of the range, raging storm on the other, classic New Zealand
One of the best shots I've ever managed
So, after a well earned descent, Cal and I rode back into town and took a dip in the sulphur springs. That's the way to end a great ride-