We spent a few days with Mark, Helen, Alan and Barbara in Materangi, going on hikes when the weather cleared, relaxing in their beautiful house, and catching up. Jim also finally replaced his very cracked rear rim. It was a fantastic little break and we were spoilt rotten!

Sad to say goodbye, we set off in the sunshine and showers to cycle round the Coromandel peninsula. It was beautiful. We followed gorgeous white sand beaches on gravel paths before heading up and over some big hills. At Whitianga we got a ferry across the estuary. There are great picnic spots everywhere and the campsites are amazing.

The hills are big and long, but not too steep, and the views inland and over the coast have been incredible. We got free hotdogs for lunch one day, and found a super cheap campsite at New Zealand’s only working vintage train station.

But the great weather soon turned, and we had two days of torrential rain. Luckily it hasn’t been cold, but we have been soaked. And the scenery isn’t so scenic when it’s cloaked by grey clouds. However we have managed to find tent reproofer, and a campsite where we could sleep in a cosy hut and reproof our tent. We also got a nice long soak in some hot pools.

We have stayed with a couple of warm showers hosts too, and both have been so kind and hospitable. And after a long day on the bikes in the rain, it’s nice to be able to sleep inside in the warm and dry. Our hosts have also given us invaluable advice for our route ahead and helped us plan some great trails for the next few days.

Let’s hope for better weather!


Jim’s words – Beach, Mast, Cold, Sausage, Possum, Rain and Shelter.