Rail Trail Day 4

27 Apr

Feeling: pleased with myself & proud of my family
Distance travelled: 52 km
Average speed: 15.7 km/h

I intended to write this last night but I was too busy out celebrating our achievement with a meal out with the family, followed by (most of) a bottle of Hinton ‘I survived the rail trail’ Pinot Gris.

It was bloody cold starting out yesterday from Waipiata and with 52 km to bike (our biggest day overall) it seemed a bit daunting. The day was mostly downhill though and the weather fined up from an overcast morning to show off more stunning Central Otago scenery. This was a day of dramatic vistas looking down towards the Taieri river, and across the Strath Taieri plains.

Some of us did a little detour (on foot) just before the Hyde rail tunnel down to the Hyde diversion tunnel. This was bored out to divert the Taieri river to assist with gold mining back in the day. It was well worth the steep walk to see the stunning views and observe the water gushing through the tunnel at a ridiculously high speed.

We stopped for lunch in Hyde, where I had a Speights steak & ale pie, with a Speights Summit on the side. Just what I needed to get me through to the finish line. Our group all met up in Ngapuna (as we were normally riding in smaller groups or pairs along the way) to ride the last 7 km together. They let me lead the pack the whole way to the end at Middlemarch. It was slightly anti-climactic though – we weren’t sure if it was the end or not (there was no stamp box for our Rail Trail passports!) so we were all just standing around going ‘is that it?!’. I think we all thought we deserved a welcoming party, or confetti or something. Nonetheless, it was an awesome feeling to finally finish and stamping that last page of my passport book (once we realised the stamp box was down the road) was extremely satisfying.

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