Day 10: Omakau to Bannockburn - From Ship Cove to Milford Sound: the length of the South Island the hard way - CycleBlaze

March 15, 2023

Day 10: Omakau to Bannockburn

I must warn readers that a massive technical hitch presented itself as Ghost-writer settled down to craft today's entry. Inexplicably, while riding through some of the most scenic landscapes to be found in this country, in perfect weather conditions, Bruce forgot to take more than a single photo. He just ...forgot. Words nearly fail me. However, he and I rode around Lake Dunstan last winter so I will scatter a few pix of that ride onto the page. Over to Bruce:

"I was anticipating a later start but the team wanted 6.30am again, so that’s when we left Bannockburn, Greg, Chris and myself. Jude didn’t catch us up until the coffee boats on the Dunstan Trail.

"More easy riding, mostly downhill, and 30 quick kilometres later we were in Alexandra. I asked a local for their best café so we found ourselves at the Old Court House. After two long blacks, a doughnut and croissant and story-swapping with fellow riders, we were on our way again. 

Old Court House café - Photo: Wikimedia Commons
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"I took the easier option, the dead-straight rail trail to Clyde because it went past a bike shop and chain lube was a must-buy. The river trail option was the prescribed route, and much more scenic, but along with the bike store it was necessary to get supplies for my next four meals at a Clyde Four Square. 

"Then it was onto the Dunstan Trail, which has proved immensely popular since opening two years ago - another 35 km of well-designed, well-built, well-used bike trail. There were lots of ebike riders on the trail, one of whom told me off for going too fast. I thought he had a cheek. I had slowed down and moved over to the edge of the track to give them the room they needed, given how nervous they looked.

"There were few muscle bikes and most of those were S2S riders. At the compulsory stop at the coffee boats were our foursome plus Tony, together  for the only time that day. Then a relaxing ride out to the camping ground in Bannockburn and the pressing task of laundry. There was even enough sunlight left in the day to dry the clothes. 

"I cooked my meal surrounded by young things speaking French, preparing fantastic food to celebrate someone’s birthday. Then shower and bed, a little anxious about the massive climb that awaited me in the morning."

The coffee boats are a popular attraction along the scenic Dunstan trail. Not just coffee but gourmet burgers are on the menu - what a treat! (Pic NOT taken by Bruce.)
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Lake Dunstan trail. (How could you forget to record this view??)
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as above
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And today's pic...another glorious day on Lake Dunstan
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Today's ride: 75 km (47 miles)
Total: 1,136 km (705 miles)

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