Back to top

Late November/early December in New Zealand

8 posts / 0 new
Last post
WS Member WS Member's picture
Late November/early December in New Zealand

Hello All,

My wife and I have 3 weeks to spend touring the north island of New Zealand. We spent 3 months on the south island during our year-long tour in 2014/2015. Unfortunately we're a bit more limited on time this year.

We're just starting to put ideas together about where to ride and what to do. NZ is an outdoor lovers paradise that we hope to move to someday. If you've ridden on the north island and have any suggestions, please contact us at jjpeterberger@gmail.com. We're looking for any tracks that are scenic, challenging, on or off-road (not quite single track though), or any locations that really shouldn't be missed during our first ride in the north.

We'll be flying in and out of Auckland and bringing our Long Haul Truckers. We are both experienced touring cyclists as well as general road and off-road riders. We love the sights but it's the people that really make NZ our favorite destination.

Thanks again for any suggestions,

Jay

FP Promote: 
Not on Front Page
WS Member WS Member's picture
Some nice country and quiet

Some nice country and quiet roads just south of Auckland. Head west out of south Auckland to Clarkes Beach, then south to Port Waikato, take the gravel coast road south down to Raglan. Take the coastal road (turns to gravel but very scenic) down to Kawhia. Continue along the coast (backtrack a few kms first) to Marakopa. Take the road south (little bit of gravel) to Awakino. Either take the Awakino Gorge road to Mahoenui or divert along Taumatamaire Rd (gravel) for a nice ride in farmland and bush. Turn onto Totoro Rd and head to Ongarue. You can ride all or some of the Pureora Timber Trail if you wish, mix of single track and old gravel roads (need dry conditions for a touring bike). If you don't want to ride it all, head north to Bennydale. You can ride half the trail from a turnoff road or carry on to Bennydale. Head to Mangkino and take the River Trail to Whakamaru. Either carry on the trail or take to the road to Atiamuri where you can take gravel backroads to Rotorua. Head along the west side of the lake to turn to Mamaku and take the forestry gravel road (Cecil Rd and Leslie Rd) to Putararu. Head to the river and take the river trail north and head to Te Aroha to pick up the Hauraki Rail Trail which can take you to Thames and then to Miranda. From here, you can work your way along the coast back to Auckland.

This gives you mostly quiet roads and lots of scenery along the way. I have done almost all the route during many tours of the region. You would have to work out distances to see if you can fit it all into 3 weeks or cut it short if need be.

WS Member WS Member's picture
south island route

Jay, my husband and I are thinking about a long bike trip on the south island and would love to learn about the route you took and any advice you might have.  We'll also be riding Surlys.  We're basically road cyclists, very happy on fire roads and gravel but not skilled enough for anything too rocky or technical.  

Terri

WS Member WS Member's picture
Terri,

Terri,

Here's a link to a map of our route. https://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/page/?o=1mr&page_id=394260&v=7a

We started and finished in Christchurch and were able to ride most of the routes we had hoped. None of our route required any technical mountain bike skills. We did spend an afternoon on the first section of the Queen Charlotte Track and some sections were a bit much on fully loaded LHTs. If you read through some of the CGOAB write up and have any specific questions, just let me know.Time of year, scenery of interest, days of riding vs other things...lots of variables. Visas limited our stay to 3 months but we could have stayed much longer...although spending the following weeks on Tasmania was wonderful too!

Jay

WS Member WS Member's picture
wow!

Jay - thank you!  I really haven't used warmshowers or crazyguyonabkike much in trip planning in the past but the writeups that you and Steve pointed me to are fantastic!  Oh my gosh, you've been all over the place on a bike.  I just started to read about your New Zealand trip and am looking forward to reading more.   And reading about the rest of your travels.

Terri

 

WS Member WS Member's picture
Hi Terri,

Hi Terri,

I have done many trips in the South lsland and you can read the journals at:

https://www.crazyguyonabike.com/my/?o=1mr

A summary of all the possibilities of routes is shown on the following link, including a suggestion of a recommended route at the bottom.

https://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/page/?o=1mr&page_id=126092&v=3M

Contact me if you need any further info...

WS Member WS Member's picture
thanks!

Thank you Steve.  I was hoping you had a trip write up. 

WS Member WS Member's picture
North of Kawakawa

Hi Jay,

No doubt you will travel through Rotorua. If so then you will want to stop off at "Kerosene Creek" for a dip. It is close to the "thermal highway" - try googling "Old Waitapo Road". The water is heated. Ignore the old warning sign in the stream. It is there to put off any tourists that stumble across the place. It is not commercialised in anywhere. There are no shops or anything there.

 

How far north do you plan on going? I used to work on all the state highways north of Kawakawa right up to Cape Reinga as a highways maintenance engineer. That was 20 years ago though. I always used to pull into the Mangonui fish shop for fish and chips. You will enjoy that place too.

Steve