I pass through Greymouth as it’s a tad nondescript. A mining ⛏️ town on the decline, but with an extensive history to the settlers from the past.
I was keen to move off the scenic highway and meander inland. Why you may ask … well, I’ve surveyed enough coast 🏖️ for now!
I set camp not far out of Greymouth, behind what sounds like the local gun club. No snap or crack over my head. So they’re certainly shooting in the opposite direction. I hope!
Something one doesn’t see every day is bras hanging from a fence. This is ‘Mammary Land’! Also a collection of cuddly toys 🧸
Reefton serves as an afternoon break from the riding. It’s a pleasant town. The local hotel serves up, what it describes as a world famous roast. It’s working mans, been the biggest. I’m assured, you’ll never consume it all and will need a doggy bag. It all goes down without a sigh!
I was on the look out for a bike 🚴🏽♂️ shop as my rear mech doesn’t seem to be altogether in sync. I do find a helpful shop that checks my chain for wear. It’s worn. No chains to be had, though in Reefton! But she’ll be fine until I get to Nelson.
An evening camping on the banks of Little Grey River. In the morning, I got my butt chewed by sandflies 🦟 while using my bush toilet (hole in the ground)!
I stop at Ikamatua stores soon after breaking camp. More for the case of giving away my Jungle sleeping bag. Just never going to utilize it. Along with it takes up quite a bit of space. The local lady in the shop was extremely entertained with her new acquisition.
On the road one never knows what surprises are in store. I stop in a little town enroute to Nelson, called Wakefield. I’ve stocked up on supplies and about to set off looking for an evening camp spot. I notice an old British built BSA motorbike 🏍️ As the rider and friend (on another BSA) pull into a cafe, I mention that these are the best bikes I’ve seen in New Zealand. And I’ve seen a lot. Well, after a brief chat with Hamish, he invites me over to his house in Richmond (suburb of Nelson).
Hamish and Jane have completed no less that 20,000 odd km’s on bicycles, mainly in the USA 🇺🇸 I’m treated to food, wine and a bed. But most of all the opportunity to talk to fellow bicycle warriors, especially ones with such pedigree. I struggle with the bed and the confines of a heated room!
Hamish kindly spends the next morning escorting me down to the local bike shop, Village Cycles.
Ruan (mechanic) sets about noting how she fairs. Definitely the chain ⛓️ is worn. But as I also know, replacing it, will also mean replacing the rear cog and chain rings, as these will generally slip on a new chain. The smallest and middle chain rings were also worn. No surprise there!
New cog (36 tooth), chain & chain rings
Hamish and Jane boast an impressive collection of touring bikes. Four Surly Long Haul Truckers, a Univega and to my pleasant surprise, Hamish is also building up a mountain bike with a Thorn Ripio frame. True class ol’chap.
I’m equally considering a Thorn Raven frame for my next bike build.
Hamish has also wetted my appetite for cycling in the US. A very infectious enthusiasm to cycle touring. Thank you 😎
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