Monday, November 2, 2009

Hitting Stride (NZ part 7)

(NZ part 1 here)

I sit on the banks of the Motueka River, maybe 30 km up stream from the town of the same name. We arrived here the night before, after a relatively easy ride up the lowest portion of the watershed. The food bins are at full capacity from a grocery stop, so we estimate that we could be self-sufficient for about 5 days as long as we can find water. This morning breakfast was biscuits cooked on the camp stove, with boisenberry jam and tea. We have stepped it up at least one notch.

The weather is hot, so I have been in the river several times. It's cold, but feels good as it's probably in the mid-20s, and we have had a good deal of only moderately warm weather to date. There are fish in the river which I have had no luck catching.

(Hiking in Able Tasman)

Two days ago we went for a good hike along the Coast Trail in Abel Tasman National Park. We made it as far as Watering Cove, which was strikingly beautiful. By the end I was quite sore as I realize I have probably walked less than a few miles since we arrived in New Zealand. Abel Tasman itself was very nice, but also quite touristy, and I hope that we will be able to find spots just as nice where they won't want to charge us to fill up a water bottle.

(Watering Cove - Abel Tasman National Park)

It is starting to feel really good to get on the bike and ride now. I look forward to the quite time to sometimes think and other times just pedal. The pain has dropped significantly, but I have also realized it is just another one of life's oscillations - you decide how far up the the crest you can ride before slipping back down into another comfortable trough. So far every hill I have chosen to climb has led to a glorious downhill, whether on this bike, on skis, or in a boat slipping out onto a wave. I realize my limitations are almost fully self imposed.

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