Rotorua redux

The Trip

Rotorua is Mecca to New Zealand mountain bikers.  It encompasses everything that is good about Biking. So, when a good friend of mine Lance asked me to join him and his gang for a weekend of MTB debauchery, I naturally accepted.

I’d met Lance a year or so ago in a head-on collision on piece of single track in Aro Valley, Wellington, after we both came screeching round a corner. The resulting argument saw us disperse in different directions, angry faced.

After that we kept on bumping into each other, so we decided to bury the hatchet and have been mates ever since!


So, with Lance and four of his merry men staying in grand lodgings in the centre of Rotorua, my two accomplices and I sought out a three night stay in a youth hostel full of undomesticated twenty somethings.

Call me old fashioned but why is it that people travel round the world only to hang out in the kitchen all day looking at their phones?

Anyway, the standard of our new accommodation was immediately made clear to us by the inclusion of a condom machine in the communal toilets.

At least I am happy to report that our four bed room was clean, even if the forth bed was made up of a different tenant every night. One of which decided to leave at 3am in the morning (perhaps a  consequence of my persistent snoring).

The riding

Whakarewarewa (redwoods) forest is a maze of logging roads intwined with long flowing mountain bike trails, You could literally ride all weekend and not cover the same track twice. My favourites for the weekend has to be Eagle Vs Shark or K2 .

Grant led us off on E v S until he downed himself on rudimentary corner, checking to see if he was OK (usually a quick nudge with the shoe) I quickly put myself into the lead. I passed at least four guys and was smashing the track (it is fast and flowing and 2.5km long) until I popped over a lip into a old tree trunk. Grant swiftly passed me doh…

K2  is a more technical ride with logs to jib over and rough and step technical parts.

Anyhow, with seven guys riding around the redwood forest, things pretty quickly descended into to looking for things to ride off: peer pressure forcing us to hit the biggest things possible. All credit has to go to Adrian though, who not to be out done, decided in the wet, to hit a drop so big it would make the Athertons nervous.

All in all a good weekends riding, and the best part? I came back without a) a broken bike or b) a broken body! The former being the more important of course.

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