Two Waikanae men are about to cycle 3000km from Cape Reinga to Bluff- the long way in under a month with no support crew.
The long-way means Stu Ayers and Vic Hewson will not follow Highway 1 but will bike through Kauri forests, the King Country timber trail, the Wanganui river road, over the Pahiatua saddle and the Remutaka rail trail.
Epic routes down South
In the South Island their route takes them west from Picton through Murchison down the Shenandoah Valley, then down the West Coast and Haast Pass, the Crown Range to Queenstown then on back roads through to Bluff.
And doing it unsupported means they carry all their gear on the bikes – no backup station wagons or campervans.
But the two semi-retired. 65 plus, long-time cyclists are allowed to stay in motels- where they can find them.
And they will not be completely on their own… 200 other riders will be on the Tour Aotearoa which runs every two year.
Local young people will benefit
But local youth will benefit from the two Kapiti Rotary Cub members: the money they raise will go towards the club’s charitable trust, which funds young people to Outward Bound or the Spirit of Adventure. They’ll be doing this through a Give a Little page.
Stu Ayres a 30-year cycling veteran, says he and Vic Hewson have been covering up to 60 to 100 kilometres a day in training. One ride was up the Paekakariki Hill through to Moonshine, Upper Hutt and back over Akatawara.
Vic Hewson says he’s also been on the escarpments at the back of Kapiti.
February 19 start
The big ride starts on February 19, and their deadline at Bluff is March 17- 28 days later.
Vic Hewson reckons mental rather than physical fitness will be the determining factor.