The winds continued being northerly, so we started with 20 kilometres of tailwinds, followed by another 20 being sidewinds. When we headed up against Thames it started going real slow!
We shopped for lunch, dinner and breakfast, and I tried to send my speaker to Minirigs as it was faulty. The post office wanted a huge amount of money for it, though, and required a telephone number for the recipient, which I couldn’t provide. Better luck next time.
After a rainy lunch we continued north along the bay. The twisting road gave us protection from the wind half the way, but every time we came to an outer bend on the road the wind poured at us.
We arrived at Tapu, which would be the last chance to camp at before getting over the next coming hill. The road to Coroglen consisted of 660 height metres climbing, before having a looong downhill slope.
I enjoyed the climb, and felt it was fairly easy, not being too steep. On the other side, we saw what I think was a big kauri tree! Really cool to see one up close, and I had to back off pretty far even with my wide angle lens!
About forty minutes later, we didn’t have that fun, as Astrid had a puncture on her rear wheel. First puncture this trip!
Also took the moment to take a picture of my bicycle with an “adventurous”background!
Some luck still existed, despite being tired, and also not having too much daylight left. It was only three kilometres to a pretty cheap camping, including a hot shower without time limits! It was an easy decision, which I am happy we did, because the camping was cosy, awesome, had a good kitchen, good showers and you could do small adventures really close to it!
We enjoyed using a toaster for our bread in the morning, and really chilled out, sleeping in and relaxing. A man probably working in the camping told us about a small waterfall nearby which would be a neat experience, and so we went there to take a look!
The first part was reasonably easy, but continuing was a harder. I managed to get by, but Astrid didn’t want to risk breaking a leg or anything.
Another couple of hundred metres up, I found the big pool the guy also told us about! Of course I had to take a dip, and it was icy! I’m glad it was pretty warm outside, and it was a marvellous experience to bath up there!
I started walking down again, this time in shorts and without shoes as it was easier to walk through the water than jumping stone-to-stone, and also my right shoe was pretty wet from an unexpected dip earlier.
I overestimated my foot grip on a stone, which made me slip, and gave me a small scratch.
After another hour of relaxing at a small cliff, we headed back to the camping. It was so easy to relax there, and a fabulous view!
Pretty late, around 17.30, we started biking the 20 kilometres to get to the next camping close to Hot Water Beach. The winds were good, and it was a quite easy ride. Being hungry, we bought an extra loaf of bread, and also a bottle of wine, when checking in. As it was already rather late we set camp and started making dinner. After tons of couscous, raisins and peanuts, and a couple of slices of bread, it was already getting late. Hot Water Beach was best within two hours before or after low tide, and low tide would be half past eleven.
Instead of paying money for shovel hire we brought a pan and a pot from our kitchen to dig with. The Hot Water Beach is a beach with really hot underground springs, which at low tide can be felt through the sand at the beach. If you dig at a hot place, warm, or rather scorching, water would surface through the ground, making your own pool. At some spots the water reaches temperatures higher than 60 degrees celsius! The waves also brought in glow worms, which made the water full of green glowing dots!
Our pool got a little bit too hot, but by digging to the side, we managed to get a pretty nice hot tub, where we soaked for more than an hour, watching the outstanding night sky overhead.