I completed the 3010km course of the Tour Aotearoa in 14 days 22hrs and 50 minutes. The total distance covered was 3126km – 2944km cycled and 182km by ferry, jet boat and packet steamer. I averaged 197km per day on the bike, and climbed a total of around 44,500m. The furthest I cycled in one single day was 305km.
The Satmap Active 12 worked flawlessly. It stayed put on the rock-solid stem mount over some of the roughest terrain I have cycled on, and came out of a few crashes better than I did thanks to the ProShield waterproof case. On the occasions I was riding in a group, I would inevitably be directing the navigation thanks to the large colour display, and full mapping that made following the route way easier than some of the other units on show. I only needed one battery, as I was able to charge while riding using a hub dynamo and a home-built cable routing system. I would highly recommend the Active 12 again for any long distance, endurance cycling for the reasons above.
I’ll remember the sunrises and sunsets, the awe-inspiring scenery that New Zealand has to offer, the pain on some climbs and after falls, the tiredness, the kindness of strangers, the constant eating, how good a cold ginger beer tastes on a hot day, and of course, crossing the finish line with my five year old daughter, who had only learned how to ride a bike this year.
I finished well inside my target time of 17 days, and was pleasantly surprised at how well my body held up over the course. I was also lucky with the weather – it could have been a lot worse!
Looking forward to my next mission now – it’s the ‘Tour de Northern Hemisphere’ which starts in 10 days. It’s an 18,000km epic where I will attempt to get myself, my wife, two kids, six bags and a bike back to the UK intact… Happy adventures everyone.