My prayers were answered and I awoke to blue skies and sunshine on Wednesday. The lifts weren’t opening until 1pm, so I lazed around as long as I could at the hostel and then went back to the library to jump on a computer and read.
At about noon I headed back to the hostel, changed into my riding gear, built up the bike and then it was off to the skyline for an afternoon of riding. Being that it was mid-week there wasn’t too many people out riding so no waiting to get on the skyline! Last time I was down I managed 12 runs in a half day so that is what I was shooting for.
My mate wasn’t arriving until the evening so I rode solo just getting used to the speed of riding downhill again. Around Auckland it is mostly single track so it does take a few runs to get used to flying down a hill with trees, roots, rocks and drops all over the place. I warmed up on Hammy’s track, which is the easiest, but one of the most fun trails. It is pretty wide trail, but it littered with HUGE berms, lips, tabletops and jumps to pop off of. Also hit up Vertigo, Armageddon, Original, Shit Sandwich and Thingymajig. I managed to get in 11 runs in about 4.5 hours. Not bad, just one short of my goal of the day.
At 6pm the skyline stops taking mountain bikers up as it gets pretty dark in the forest, so my day was done. Complete success, no crashes just heaps if fun. My mate arrived just at 6pm and met me at the bottom of the hill as I was coming off the trail. He was all geared out and ready to get up the hill, but he missed the last run of the day.
Hungry from riding we hit up Fergburger for a feed and then we head out to our accommodation to set-up our tents. We are staying on a mate’s front lawn about 20 mins outside of Queenstown. The location is stunning – over looking the lake surrounded by the mountains! One of my favourite things about this place is the outdoor shower. Nothing beats a steaming hot shower while gazing up at the stars.
Since my mate didn’t get any laps in he was itching to ride so we quickly tossed up our tents and headed out to 7 mile to get some runs in. We were told of a short cut to the trail head, but in typical fashion we ended up in the middle bush just making our own track through the bush. We ended up going to high in elevation and had to ride our way down which was an adventure in itself. We soon found our desired track; Kochong, which is one of the best tracks at 7 mile as it is super flowy with jumps. We were able to get in 3 laps as the sun fell. Once back at home we drank some well deserved beer. I was beat and was wondering how my body was going to feel the next day. I had a full day of downhill a head of me… fawk yah!
What an epic day – 11 laps at the bike park, 3 laps at 7-mile. Sweet!