Thursday, October 23, 2008

Journey to the Northern Isle – Part the Three

The Big Day Out

The third day of our Rotorua adventure brought the largest exploration of the trails in the stunning forest. We began our day by discovering the hidden entrance to the forest near our abode, known to the locals by the mysterious name “Roosters”. Soon we were freewheeling down Red Tank Rd looking forward to the greatly anticipated Be Rude Not 2. The anticipation was well justified. Be Rude Not 2 is a fantastic flowing speedy swoopy trail. I loved it. A huge grin was plastered on my face by the end and the confidence that was rocked by the previous day’s tumble was returning. From Be Rude Not 2 we were straight into Mad If You Don’t and before we knew it we were out of the forest and heading down the road into the city to pick up a rental car.
Once we had our remuera tractor, yay free upgrades, we loaded up the bikes, parked up and headed to the Rotorua icon that is Zippy’s Cafe for a spot of second breakfast. Feeling sustained by the fine food and after chatting to the manager and sussing out an afternoon route through the forest we headed home to move the sheep (yep, you read that right, a bit of everything on our holiday).
I decided a nana nap was the order of the day upon returning home and awoke feeling greatly revitalised. This time we headed up the road and ended up riding back up Hill Rd and up Frontal Lobotomy (no incidents this time). After a brief sit down(by me) we continued up the road to the start of Billy T. I was feeling a bit apprehensive about this as I hadn’t ridden a grade 4 downhill track yet. Seats down slightly we headed off. In no time at all I was grinning like a Cheshire cat, swooping down corners and riding down drop offs. This was definitely harder than anything I’d ridden before but I rode the whole track clean and I felt fantastic at the end. From there we headed up Moerangi Rd to the start of Split Enz. Best Track Eva! I flew down here. It flows so sweetly and has the best bermed corners. From there it was onto Pondy DH and Pondy New. Both were fantastic. Then onto Rollercoaster. By now both hubby and I were feeling pretty knackered and while Rollercoaster was a nice track we were both not really into it. Especially when we came across a couple of big trees down that necessitated some bike passing over. A big thanks to the fast guy on the sweet Transition that helped me get my bike over. At the end of Rollercoaster we were both ready to head home and the climb out hurt.
It was by far my best day riding ever, over 40kms, over 400ms climbing and loads of technical single track. Fantastic. I was happily broken at the end.

A Lunar Experience
Day four and it was time to head down to Taupo to Craters of the Moon. Two words. Cruise control. It rocks. A quick drive down the road to Wairakei. On the first climb out from up from the Tunnel Track both of us realised we hadn’t recovered from the previous day’s exertions. The Crater’s of the Moon tracks were lovely and I enjoyed sailing around the lower ones, but I really wasn’t up to the big climbs to the outer tracks. After a couple of laps and some fun playing on the structures (I rode my first see-saw, yay!) we decided to play tourist and then get some lunch in Taupo. On the way home we called in at Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland and it was brilliant. The day ended with us watching the new born lambs discovering the structures, maybe they’ll be hucking off them soon.

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