The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men
We were being buffeted by winds. Sometimes, it was all I could do to just stay upright. As has been said, the best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry.
Our plans went awry today. We wound up taking an entirely new route. We headed out on a forest track following a ridge line down a gravel road. Two problems: Ray is still pulling a 60lb. trailer, and my bike had road tires. However, we were in huge timber and these massive trees and ferns protect us from the winds. They were also pretty amazing to look at.
It was a brutal day of elevation gains and losses. We were either grinding in first gear, or on the brakes trying to maintain control in the soft gravel for 26 km.
But what a day!
Australia has massive trees, whereas New Zealand has over 100 native ferns. Some are huge, as tall as a palm tree, they look so primitive and are so big, you feel like you are riding through a prehistoric jungle. It really feels like Velociraptors are about to jump out on you! Mix in the wild parrots and bird calls and you’ll find yourself looking for Tarzan.
We rode the ridge line from Paihia to KeriKeri. This country is formed from volcanos and the road took us very near one. We stopped biking to hike up to the top.
Looking out, we could see where the west coast of the New Zealand was starting to meet the east – the Tasman Sea to the west, South Pacific to the East.
We arrived in Kerikeri, (a town so nice they named it twice) at 1:30, devouring lunch at the Cinema Café, (great gluten-free toaties by the way). We found it such a pleasant town we decide to spend the night to catch up on laundry and refill supplies.
Ray enjoyed a well- deserved glass of wine before slipping into the hotel’s hot tub. We have fallen into the pattern of camping every other night, (as I can only stand myself and my helmet hair for 48 hours max.) This works well because we get very nice hotels when we do stay in them). We watched bright green and red wild parrots in the bush just a few feet from the room’s veranda before heading out for wonderful Dutch food. Just another day in paradise.