Day eighteen. Napier to Mangakuri beach. 

On the road 

Three days of resting, eating and spending time with friends and whanau and I’m up and gone by eight am. 


One of those classic calm Napier mornings for the final lift south along the East coast, making good time to Havelock North before taking Middle road to Elsthorpe. Good ground for cycling. 

American honey

The ride folding into the landscape with gentle rolling hills before descending into the wide expanse of the central Hawkes Bay Tuki Tuki valley.

A light growing breeze coiling up from the golden pasture, smelling of sweet American honey, reflected back by a pale blue arch of clear sky. 


Stopping at the Patangata pub for coffee before swinging back eastward to the coast. I’ve been this way on two wheels before, back when I was 16 on a little overnight trip. I remember the pain, this time I’m older, somewhat wiser and better prepared, but fair weather memories none the same. 

I got to my destination by two. Earlier than expected, but just in time for lunch, a swim and generous company from the Williams whanau. A night to remember and not think about the remaining challenge ahead. 

Today’s top track. Greg Johnson – Don’t wait another day. 


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