Sunday, September 9, 2007

New Helmet and Old Adventure

So I have bought one of these HJC adventure helmets. A hybrid between a street helmet and off road helmet.

I ride a hybrid bike so might as well have a hybrid helmet!

Actually motivation is thinking of the hot sun in OZ and thought the wee peak may provide some shade. Took it out today for a test ride. Must remember not to look up into the sky as cruising along.

But seems good so far. Great riding into the sun, peak provide excellent shade from direct sun strike.

I went for the less flamboyant style and choose the plain silver option. Goes nice with my jacket!

Now old adventure. I only put these on here as I have been nagged by some friends to do so. These are a taste of my ride in the South Island last summer.

Gus, the little red Beema, and the Clutha river near Clyde. Here I was hoping to ride over the Nevis pass, but as it turned out was put off by some fears I had of dropping dear old Gus in the fords and getting into trouble. That's the reality of adventure riding alone. If something does go wrong one must be able to solve the problem. Well maybe next time.

Here with friend who along with other friends I caught up with in Queenstown rode down Skippers Canyon. Not for the faint hearted that is for sure. But what an adventure....and what amazing scenery!

Gus parked with Aoraki, Mt Cook as backdrop. New Zealands highest mountain and one of my favourite places on earth, to be near this mountain.

And this is where meeting people on the way can make the most fun memories. Needing some maintenance work done to Gus on the way, I stopped at a very small, very un tourist little town in the Mackenzie area. Got chatting to the grey messy haired old character doing the work on my bike. Next thing I learn about his collection of old cars and motorcycles and have arranged a ride for the next morning!

So who is sitting pretty on the old Tiger Triumph! Had a great old ride up around Lake Benmore and to the lookout at the damn which I was told has some fantastic statistics that I am unable to recall. Something about the huge size of it. I was more captured by this great old machine I was privileged to be riding. It rumbled along feeling close to the ground and very long. Really loved its character and personality, and has sparked in me a desire to one day own an old beast like the Tiger. Amazing how quickly I became familiar with it, even with the opposite gear change. Back on Gus seems strange for the first wee while.

The ride over Arthurs pass always an amazing experience as the scenery changes very quickly. And unbelievably after this photo as I headed East and down onto the Canterbury plains, I was suddenly and most unhappily submerged in cold dense fog. Visibility down to a few metres. Should have turned tail and back to the sun!

Confronting a fear of Hakataramea Pass and what I had heard about it. Some reports favourable, others not. I headed out over the gravel road and farmland to see for myself. Actually a most fabulous ride over some beautiful high country. Such an awesomely huge place.

Happened to meet some other riders at the top of the pass travelling the same direction as myself. So they kindly photographed me going through one of the many fords on the Mackenzie side of the pass. Note the foot out.... sure sign of still not too confident in the water! By the end of the day however I felt much satisfaction at achieving something I really wanted to do and much passion for the beauty of this area of the world. Such a wonderful place.