Wednesday, 10 April 2013
Hot Water Beach
Over the Coramandel Range
The following day I rode back to Coramandel Township and then took the mountain road over the Coramandel Ranges to the east coast. It was a long slow climb, particularly as the road was unsurfaced. The descent was tricky as the mud was slightly wet as I rode down through the forest. The views, both east and west, were spectacular from the summit. I had lunch at Matarangi on the beach all by myself and then continued along the coastal road to Kuaotunu. I was the only one camping here too.
The next days ride took me to Hot Water beach via Whitianga. A short ferry ride here saved me 25 miles (to go around the inlet) and I bumped into Stefan (riding north) who I'd ridden with in Otago! After walking up to the Cook Memorial on Shakespeare Cliff I rode into Hahei Beach, where the sand is supposed to be pink and sat down and wrote some letters.
On the road to Hot Water Beach I passed a winery and popped in for a tasting. It was mostly fruit wine made by a Yorkshireman. I set up camp and went for a walk along the famous beach, and met a Dutch guy, Mathias, who was busy digging a spa-pool in the sand. When I returned from my walk he was still hard at it, but I think the tide was to far out for him to get the proper hot-water effect.
In the evening Matthias drove us into Whitianga for dinner and on our return we walked across the beach again looking at the stars.