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Old 01-21-2010, 02:02 PM   #61
slartidbartfast OP
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Thursday's route



Now the sun is shining, the forecast is great and I'm heading back to the West Coast, to the Fox and Franz Joseph Glaciers
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MSF Ridercoach IBA: 35353 95 R1100GSA, 93 GTS1000, 85 R80RT, 93 DR350/435, 99 RX125, 78 DT100
January 2010 New Zealand South Island ride
Summer 2009 UK to Alps ride
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Old 01-21-2010, 03:31 PM   #62
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This is great.. Thanks again for taking the time to post this while on the trip!
I have to get there.. (I like to do a little fly fishing also, I hear they have some pretty good fishing over there.. NZ trout.. ahhhh)
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Old 01-21-2010, 04:37 PM   #63
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Hooked. Keep it coming Slarti.
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Old 01-21-2010, 05:40 PM   #64
DewNmoon
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Heck you are making me soooo sorry I didn't go.....but 11 months and maybe I should retire....from this drudgery I'm in

Keep it coming

At least we are having a reprieve weather wise at home..
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Old 01-21-2010, 07:30 PM   #65
tommyg
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beautiful, I will tour N.Z. before Iam 45.
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Old 01-22-2010, 01:09 AM   #66
tbird649
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Laugh

This is bringing back some good memories, I did the South Island in 2003 in a camper van, I said at the time a bikes the way to go, I will return, and do it properly.
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Old 01-22-2010, 01:24 AM   #67
slartidbartfast OP
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If you don't like the scenery, ride a bit further and it will change

I'm getting obsessed with the weather here, so it was my first concern when I got up this morning. Hmmm... not too bad!




As it happens, drizzle began almost the instant I left Queenstown. I was steeling myself for another damp ride but it never materialized. In fact, the weather got better and better as the day (and ride) progressed.




Not far from Queenstown, I turned off onto a minor road over the Crown Range Pass toward Wanaka. Not a high road by Alpine standards, it nevertheless provided some fast-ascending switchbacks, great views, and generally kept me leaning this way and that for most of the time.


Stopping for a coffee in Cardrona, I was immediately engaged in conversation by a nice fella, telling me about a book about touring Australia and the USA by Vstrom. The Historic hotel looks like it has a few interesting features for gearheads.




I somehow skirted Wanaka and found myself on another awesome stretch of road, following the coast of Lake Hawea. Once again proving that New Zealand has more different types of scenery packed into a smaller space than anywhere else I have ever been. Leaving the lake, the road zips over a ridge and now I was looking at Lake Wanaka.




At the head of the lake, the route began to climb through the Mountains of the Mount Aspiring National Park. This road over Haast Pass was a cornucopia of twisting asphalt with endless variations of grade, dipping and swooping one minute, then tightly winding as it climbed a valley wall or skirted a cliff. I was taking it easy so as to be able to look around a bit while still picking cornering lines and watching for traffic but as I was having too much fun riding to stop anywhere, I didn't get many decent photos. Watching out for traffic was easy - There wasn't any. I saw maybe a couple of dozen vehicles going the other way and encountered not a single vehicle travelling in my direction for over 100km. The last 40 or so Km on the West side of the pass are following the flat valley floor, where a wide, shallow river of purest blue was making its way toward the Tasman Sea.


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MSF Ridercoach IBA: 35353 95 R1100GSA, 93 GTS1000, 85 R80RT, 93 DR350/435, 99 RX125, 78 DT100
January 2010 New Zealand South Island ride
Summer 2009 UK to Alps ride
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Old 01-22-2010, 02:13 AM   #68
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Tasman twisties

Meeting the Tasman myself at Haast, I fueled up, noting what good fuel economy the Weestrom gets.


Initially paralleling the coast before dodging inland, then back again at Bruce Bay, riding up the West Coast might just have been the best part of the day. It was like riding in a tropical rain forest without the heat. Verdant growth everywhere and the road, often in the trees, coiling back and forth over and around the coastal hills.






A reminder why it's best to have a full-face helmet and keep the visor closed. I have seen more beehives here in New Zealand than anywhere else and have had a lot of bug strikes to the faceshield over the last few days.




Proof that stupidity is everywhere and you need to be on the lookout. This was on a straight section of road, miles from the nearest side street or anything else that could have given a good reason for this to occur. Fortunately, no serious injuries I was told






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MSF Ridercoach IBA: 35353 95 R1100GSA, 93 GTS1000, 85 R80RT, 93 DR350/435, 99 RX125, 78 DT100
January 2010 New Zealand South Island ride
Summer 2009 UK to Alps ride
Summer 2008 UK End-to-End ride
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Old 01-22-2010, 02:20 AM   #69
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Feeling the cooler air before I saw the first sign, the road brought me past a turn to the Fox glacier. I could not resist of course. Just a few miles inland, this huge glacier descends so fast that the toe is in the rain forest. I spent just a few minutes at Fox Glacier as it was too late to start the trek (which is a lot further than it looks I was told)




The few kilometers between Fox and Franz Josef presented yet another treat of rainforest scenery and tightly twisting, climbing, falling road. For the first time, I have arrived at my destination in brilliant sunshine.




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MSF Ridercoach IBA: 35353 95 R1100GSA, 93 GTS1000, 85 R80RT, 93 DR350/435, 99 RX125, 78 DT100
January 2010 New Zealand South Island ride
Summer 2009 UK to Alps ride
Summer 2008 UK End-to-End ride
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Old 01-22-2010, 02:27 AM   #70
slartidbartfast OP
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Friday 22 Jan 2010 Route

New Zealand continues to enthrall, excite and enchant me. The multitudes of different scenery, the fabulous roads, even the weather. The riding is tiring out of proportion to to distance covered (by US standards) - but OH it's a good kind of tired!
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MSF Ridercoach IBA: 35353 95 R1100GSA, 93 GTS1000, 85 R80RT, 93 DR350/435, 99 RX125, 78 DT100
January 2010 New Zealand South Island ride
Summer 2009 UK to Alps ride
Summer 2008 UK End-to-End ride
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Old 01-22-2010, 05:38 AM   #71
littleDONKEY
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New Zealand

Such a BEAUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUTIFUL country!!!

Amazing pics...thanks a lot for this "virtual" riding!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Keep Riding...
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Old 01-22-2010, 06:03 AM   #72
DewNmoon
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[QUOTE=slartidbartfast]I'm getting obsessed with the weather here, so it was my first concern when I got up this morning. Hmmm... not too bad!


Weather "smeather" Think back to the ride to the "Land of Oz!"

Enjoy
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Old 01-22-2010, 08:02 AM   #73
Goss
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While I have not filed an official trip report here yet 4 of us did almost this exact route on the south island in November 2009.

Tell me you stopped in Christchurch to pay your respects to this icon. My hands were trembling as I approached her.
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Goss screwed with this post 01-24-2010 at 09:03 AM
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Old 01-23-2010, 12:33 AM   #74
slartidbartfast OP
Love those blue pipes
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DewNmoon
Weather "smeather" Think back to the ride to the "Land of Oz!"
Let me see... Mild weather, beautiful sun and cool breezes... or riding through a severe storm-front with tornadoes... Hmmmm

How about JOG to Land's end in the rain all day?
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MSF Ridercoach IBA: 35353 95 R1100GSA, 93 GTS1000, 85 R80RT, 93 DR350/435, 99 RX125, 78 DT100
January 2010 New Zealand South Island ride
Summer 2009 UK to Alps ride
Summer 2008 UK End-to-End ride
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Old 01-23-2010, 12:34 AM   #75
slartidbartfast OP
Love those blue pipes
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goss
While I have not filed an official trip report here yet 4 of us did almost this exact route on the south island in November 2009.

Tell me you stopped in Christchurch to pay your respects to this icon. My hands were trembling as I approached her.
I was in Christchurch on a Sunday so didn't get there. Maybe next Friday before I drop the bike off.
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MSF Ridercoach IBA: 35353 95 R1100GSA, 93 GTS1000, 85 R80RT, 93 DR350/435, 99 RX125, 78 DT100
January 2010 New Zealand South Island ride
Summer 2009 UK to Alps ride
Summer 2008 UK End-to-End ride
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