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Tour Aotearoa 2016

Finally, after months of planning and training, the Tour Aotearoa 2016 starts this weekend. Physically, I feel in good shape, and I have confidence in my gear. I am nervous about the logistics. Where to camp. Where is my fresh water coming from. What time is the solitary service station on that 250km stretch open until. How fast do I need to go to make the last ferry. Which way is the wind forecast. Will I be riding with a group. For how long? Will they be hard as nails outback bush bikers that can ride all day on a jammie dodger. Will 5 hours sleep be enough to ride 445km in the first two days…





I’ll find out soon enough. We drive north on Thursday, and will be at the iconic lighthouse at Cape Reinga on Sunday morning for a noon start. I’m enjoying some rest this week, after a practice tour of the central North Island. I managed 807km and 17,792m climbing in six days, and was generally happy with how it went. My gear stood up to several days in the bush, and I was able to deal with the occasional problem. I even got to use the ‘reverse route’ function on the Active 12 after discovering I had lost my waterproofs on the previous nights descent. Incredibly, despite being bagged to resemble a legless dachsund, they had not rolled off the track, and were waiting for me in the middle of a rocky section. Trail magic – I’ll be hoping for a lot more of that in the coming days and weeks. And northerlies…






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