Friday, January 8, 2010

Motueka to St. Armaud

Today was a great day of cycling, especially if you like wind. We left Nelson by van to avoid the heavy traffic and drove to Motueka. From there we had 60 miles of cycling through beautiful country on lightly traveled roads to St. Arnaud. It was essentially an all uphill day, most of it gradual, although we had two nice steep climbs which then rewarded us with good descents.

I estimate that we did about 3500 feet of climbing. The battery on my GPS quit about 80% of the way through the ride, at which point we had already done 3100 feet.

The first part of the ride was through orchard country with apples, peaches, and of course, kiwi. Shorty after this we came across some large fields of hops, a crop I haven't seen since leaving eastern Washington. We rode along some streams and rivers which were magnificently clean and clear. Naturally we saw lots of sheep, dairy cattle, and also one deer farm.

We can still see snow at some of the higher elevations. We are staying tonight at the Alpine Lodge in St. Arnaud, a very small town.

Its about time for dinner -- I think that I have earned it -- so I will sign off. Today's picture is of a carved tree stump that I saw in a field that we cycled past.

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