January 15, 2006

1/15/06 Hokitika NZ

41.4 km / 529 km total

Woke up to rain. Guess the weatherman are just as wrong down under as at home. The guys and I sat around eating some breakfast discussing our options, either to continue on despite the weather or take a day off here in Greymouth. One of the guys in the office said it was supposed to blow through and should be sunny this afternoon.

We decided to pack up and see what the weather was like at checkout time at 10AM. Sure enough, the rain stopped, the sun came out, and we had blue skies. We probably made it out of town by 10:30.

Not only single lane,
bridges do double duty for trains too

The only problem with the clear day was that the headwinds picked up a lot. I mean the worst of the trip so far. It was relentless, reducing our speed to about 10 kph. Just a 'drop your head and push' kind of day.

We stopped for a quick lunch at Kumara Junction. Jon showed up to join us. I think we were hoping that the wind would die down a bit, but it wasn't meant to be. So, back onto the road.

The only bad thing was it was an angled headwind. And with barely a shoulder to ride on, you always seemed to be weaving to stay out of the ditch but also out of traffic.

George trying not to blow away in the headwind

Before you know it, we made it to Kokitika about 3PM. The wind was worse than ever, so we decided to take a short day in lieu of a day off tomorrow. Hopefully the winds will be better tomorrow.

Jon was going to go on, but when we came back from eating dinner, he had set up camp with Hamish and Dan, a couple of guys we've seen since Murchinson.

Not really a good restful day off, but it will have to do.