northisland

Finally I did travel whole New Zealand, covered more than 75000 kms most of them I traveled on South Island. There is still one area which I didn’t explore and that is northland, upper part of New Zealand. For last 8 month I had my bike in storage as long I have been on Chatham Island for my summer job. Bike soon for the whole time, had no wolf and insurance, first thing to do get the bike legal back on the road, I was not sure if my bike fire up right away, after 8 month standing in storage expected to charge battery first, but any way I give try before taking battery out to recharge, what a surprise bike fired up without trouble. Wof (warrant of fitness) took 5 minutes and I got my sticker that bike is save to ride.

On my first day t traveled to sheep island a nature reserve which is controlled by Auckland council. Don’t get surprised by the first impression it look more than high security track than a reserve. It is worth to stay there for a few days, because one of the endangered birds living there the Takahe they are a bit bigger than Pukeko. Later that day the ranger showed up and informed all camper that whole northland expect a severe weather warning with more than 200mml rain over night, some camper moved on other stayed, I stayed. Rain was hammering over night on my tent, with ear plugs I couldn’t hear much and have had a good sleep. Next morning the whole camp looked like a paddle of water barley any “try” pitch, except where I put up my tent. I stayed for two nights until weather cleared up. My next stop is Otamure bay a DOC camp ground by my check in the lady want sell me a bin bag for $5 which is apparently compulsory the bag was that big that could store my whole belongings on the bike, however I asked her if she is serious about the dice of the rubbishy bag, and for 1 apple would be the rubbishy bag a bit to big, if she could provide a bag which is more suitable for an apple, I was not sure if she felt offended or not but she took the rubbishy bag back and didn’t charge me $5 for it.

On the way up north is an historic Kauri Gum field, Gumdiggers Park on Heath Rd. The park is well presented with many old relic displayed how kauri gum has been digged out.

My next stop was Rarawa Beach, it has easy access to the beach good sand to ride on. Just beside the beach is one DOC camp which is nice to spend the night. Following day I rode to Spirits Bay, this was the most beautiful camp spot so far on the north island, surrounded by native bush land and the roaring Pacific Ocean, I stayed for 2 night. This was the first time that it got close to 0C in the morning, and mist covered the whole valley which looked mysterious by the rising sun. As soon sun came through temperature climbed very quickly, by 10 the tent was dried up and ready to pack away. From this camp it was just a short drive to Cape Reinga, usually there are millions of tourists around, that day the northest point was very quiet, what is unusual. I study the tide for 90 mile beach and I was unlucky low tide was by 3.00 pm it was 10.30 am as so many times I hade to adjust my plan not taking the first road to 90 mile beach due the high tide, but visited the biggest sand dunes in New Zealand, from there I took an other back road to Utea Park, even a good place to spend the night just beside 90 mile beach. From there is one more access road to the beach. Now the time was right, the tide was low and I had the chance to ride down the well known 90 mile beach. To be absolute frank the beach is better to ride the some roads in Nz not a single pothole. I felt a bit bored at the end.

 

 

Borland Road

Borland Road is the only road access to the South arm of Lake Manapouri.

Construction of Borland road begun in 1962, to enable to service the Power line from the Power Station on Lake Manapouri. Today the road is important to outdoor enthusiasts. Many tramps start beside the road or on top of the Borland

Saddle, even a camp spot is set up with toilet facility’s.

The access point is in between Clifden and Manapouri just north of the Blackmount school, a bus shelter is beside the access road.

The road condition can vary from the weather condition, in winter month it is possible that the road is closed by snow fall. A round trip from Te Anau to the South arm is around 180 km 90 kms are unsealed road but very easy to drive no river or ford crossings for the whole distance.

An ideal pick nick spot is the south arm very idyllic and romantic to watch the sun set at lake Manapouri, a camp spot and some toilets can be found at the end of the road.

Please remember take all your rubbish back out and leave the place as you found it untouched and leave only your foot prints in the sand as remaining you have been visiting this place.

There is one accommodation at the Borland Road, the Borland Lodge. In the summer month the huts can be fully booked by school classes and groups.