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Wednesday Cycling Group

This social cycling group is aimed at cyclist who are not competitive but who enjoy more challenging rides than just easy rides without hills. While the Thursday group is for the latter, the Wednesday group prefer harder rides and lots of hills.

Both groups are open to anybody who wants to join in but for Wednesday you would need to be capable of riding 40 to 50k's at a reasonable pace - although we do stop quite often along the way, especially at the top of hills for a catch up.

Recent and coming rides:

November 28th: Brightwater becomes Wakefield

Last Wednesday's ride went awry. One of the cyclists broke his chain and the rest of the group carried on initially unaware they were missing a rider. When they discovered their loss they back tracked and eventually found him in Richmond where he was getting a replacement chain fitted.

After this delay the group continued on but as time was now running out they just made Wakefield for a coffee and then, working against a strong head wind, went back to the start at the car park beside the fibre board mill just off Queen Street, Richmond.

The plan had been to ride via Bridge Valley Road, Gibbs Valley, Church Valley and the back along the pretty Wairoa Valley to Brightwater and then back along the cycle trail to the start. Wakefield was not in the original plan but as we all know the best laid plans sometimes fall apart. The Wednesday riders will have another crack at that route in a few weeks.

If you are interested in joining for a social ride of 40 to 50 kilometres just email your interest to

November 21st: Ngatimoti to Baton Valley

This group doesn't do things by halves. I found last week's ride was enough for a bloke of modest fitness but this week's was no easier despite the lack of real hills.

The group parked outside the Ngatimoti Hall and rode over the Peninsula Bridge and then up the West Bank Road to the end of the Baton Valley road. By the time we got back to the cars we had the best part of 60 km under our belts and I was ready to go home to my house painting for a little light relief.

It is great ride, one I have enjoyed previously and one that tempts the keen cyclist to ford the Baton River and carry on to Tapawera. If I was young and had boundless energy it would make a wonderful day ride but these days I think I would start back in Motueka and make Tapawera an overnight stop.

Come to think of it I have done almost that trip when I rode along the road to Tapawera for the night and in another previous trip we forgot to stop and ended up spending the night at St Arnaud. After 90 k's my buddy and I were ready for a beer.

The next ride will split the group in two, with one mob going to Pohara for the night and then on to Totaranui and back to Kaiteriteri by boat. I can recommend that as wonderful trip. I did the same thing last summer and enjoyed every kilometre. Cycling up Takaka Hill is not as dastardly as it seems and the ride to the Ngarua Caves for coffee is well worth making at least an annual event.

The other half of us is going for a more sedate ride next week starting in Richmond and going out to Wakefield and back.

If you want to join one Wednesday for a ride of around 40km you can email Ian at for information as to the next ride.

Still they keep coming along the Baton Valley

Smoko time beside the Baton River

On the road home from the end of the Baton Valley

November 14th: Around Riwaka

This week 10 riders turned out for the Wednesday ride that started in Neudorf Road and puffed its way up George Harvey Road. Then it was via Carlyon Road to Old Coach Road and downhill along Apple Valley Road which was looking very pretty and offers some good views. Mapua was next by way of the Coastal Highway and Mapua Drive.

There was rather a long coffee break at 'Hamishes' and then it was up Pomona Road and then into Williams Road and uphill along the cycle track beside a rural house, across to the Coastal Highway and into Tasman View Road.

Then it was a pleasant downhill along Flaxmore and back to Neudorf and more coffee at the start/finish point. Phil has rapidly established his house as the place to finish a ride as his muffins and scones are of superior quality.

It was a great morning with perfect weather and plenty of hills to get the heart pumping. The only problem was that our leader got so far ahead that we lost him completely and one of the group was a little off colour and we also lost him somewhere too. Thus the attrition rate was rather higher than our usual nil but we regrouped at the finish and all was well.

Next week the group will ride from Ngatimoti to the Baton Valley road end and return which is an enjoyable area to cycle in. This is a route that can be extended if you want to make it an all-day trip by crossing the river and going on to the bottom of Stanley Brook Hill. From there it is not too difficult to ride back to the start but for Wednesday the trip will be the much shorter there-and-back route.

If you want to join one Wednesday for a ride of around 40km you can email Ian at for information as to the next ride.

A cyclists' conference on Old Coach Road where the route is under discussion. Many trips are planned on the hoof although a rough plan is agreed
before the start.