Monday, October 19, 2015

Wellington 4: sMakara

Day four of the annual trip.  Alistair had brake trouble, so him and Pete got his bike to a bikeshop and we loaded up the vehicles and headed out to Makara Peak without him. Headed up gentle easy climbing Koru, and then Mark decided the 'Koru Short Cut' looked like a good idea.  It wasn't.  Him and Nelson nearly came to fisticuffs over who had the lead, which played out in front of me, causing me to stop and everyone else (who followed us anyway - some sensible ones plodded on up the normal route), and get off and walk.  Stopped at the 'skills' area and mucked about a little bit.  Nelson dropped the larger drop, I did the middle which I found surprisingly big.  Various others, Pete, Andy, Mark did various versions of the same.  Then we headed off up Sally Alley, cruising around and up this, then into Missing Link and into the Aratihi climb up peeling off for Upper Leaping Lizard.  This was a w00t! fest down, yumpy yumpy and squirrelly squirrelly through the lower sections to the creek bridge.  Up a bit and there's a 'bail out' route or then the possum line route?  Pete got the call from Alistair that his bike was ready, so we got going up the PossumLine - Yuck!  Nasty switchbacky climb, Pete came up with us thinking it would be a quick way out, decided it wasn't, so he headed back down and 'bailed out' to go get Alistair.  The rest of us raged down Nikau Valley which had some hairy corners, then clambered back up to Missing Link, climbing again all the way up Aratihi.  Peaked out at the top and decided that the new flow track Peak Flow would be fun.  It kinda was and kinda wasn't.  Not techy enough, just a big swooping jumpy rolling trail, with sketchy-as grip with it's ballbearing-surface.  Lots of grins tho.  Then was straight back up Snake Charmer to the top again, and this time rode around A to Z and across into North Face.  Now this was fun.  Way more fun than Peak Flow.  We blasted down this and then into JFK and Smokin', then SWIGG and eventually finished off down Starfish.  Finally a good bit of climbing, over 800 for the day, all in only a couple of hours riding.  Pete and Alistair came up and did Ridgeline and we all met up and rolled on out back to camp.

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