I was keen on a ride this weekend – Saturday looked most likely given some uncertainty about the weather on Sunday. I posted on Facebook, Kiwibiker, & ADVrider but had limited uptake in the few days before. Every bugger had an excuse. It might be because I indicated my tyres were… well, tired, & so I might need assistance getting the job done.
Saturday morning dawned fine, & I decided I was going regardless. Potentially that would give more time to take photos & take in the views. I did have concerns regarding getting into a situation that would require assistance. However before I got too far into ride prep, I noted a new post from Wayne indicating he was keen. Score.
The ride up to Rimutex got colder the closer to Upper Hutt I got, but at least there wasn’t much wind. A bit of cloud rolled in though.
Met Wayne at Rimutex just after 10.30am (Gentlemens hours), & after a chinwag, took a quick ride across the Rimutakas. I left Wayne behind, not due to superior speed, but because I got him stuck behind some slower cars on double yellow lines, while I streaked ahead.
Coffee at Everest Café in Featherston. Missed the couch this time.
The ride out to Ocean Beach was uneventful. Aired down the front at the Beach & then got to it. It was obvious that the coast had had a beating with the last weather system – the track was looser than 2 weeks ago, & there hadn’t been much traffic through.
A few of the streams were quite cut up, but only a couple still were flowing fast, & none of them were particularly deep.
The hill descent prior to the sand gate was about as loose as I have ever seen it.
The final stream crossing was quite cut up, & the exit from the stream was loose. I managed to beach Gus there, & had to be assisted out. We rolled Gus back & I zigzagged my way out of that one.
Lunch at the end of the track. I’ve just looked on Google Maps, & its only 9kms from the entrance to Ocean Beach. Feels more though.
Had a look up at the walking track entrance, and then did a bit of bush bashing back to the track. Gus is still wearing a few sprig of whatever that scrub was in the hardhead guards.
The rest of the ride back to Ocean Beach was quicker than the ride in (as always).
We’d scoped access to the beach leading to Onoke Spit from the Ocean Beach before we rode in, i.e., the plan was to cross the creek & ride the beach rather than enter via the 4wd track off the road. However given the day was wearing on, we decided to get to the Spit via the 4WD track & then consider things from the end of the Spit.
The entrance was through a small stream. It turned put to be much deeper than I anticipated. I was thinking drowned bike for a bit there.
The 4WD track was a major challenge on Gus & given the state of his tyres. The issue was that the front wheel wanted to follow any prior tracks, sled, and then wash out. By the time we reached the shipwreck (which Wayne noted the signage over sold – it looked like bits of reinforcing steel pocking through the sand) I was rooted. The challenge to reach the end of the spit was looking a bridge too far.
We’d seen a 4WD driving on the beach side, which looked easier. Once Wayne had helped Gus get started, I snicked up into 3rd gear, & surfed the sand. 1st was too low & it just spun. I was starting in 2nd . It would have been interesting to have a rear wheel speedo still to see what notional speed we ended up doing. Eventually made it back to Ocean Beach along the beach – crossing the creek on the surf line.
Given Wayne’s promise to be home by dark, we legged it back to Featherston, aired up the tyres, & then crossed the Rimutakas again. This time it was Wayne’s turn to leave me behind the slower traffic.
Thanks for your company on this trip Wayne – I enjoyed myself.
I thing it is worthwhile mentioning here that there was no road side maintenance or tweaking on this trip. Gus was running sweetly, with just a little popping from the new exhaust needing some attention. The new pistons & exhaust seem to have combined to give improved top end urge. Happy.