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Neil and Steve rode 2394 km’s from Cape Reinga to Bluff

Neil and Steve rode 2394 km’s across New Zealand from Cape Reinga to Bluff in 16 Days, a total of 85 hours and 30 minutes. Here are a few questions we just had to ask Neil, Queenstown Store manager at Outside Sports about his epic adventure:

Road bike Cape Reinga to Bluff NZ Outside Sports


1)      What inspired you to do this amazing journey?

As per most adventures - by one too many beers in Atlas one night! – it has been on Steve and my bucket lists for many years now – we both kind of expected the other one to back down but neither did - next thing you knew we were at Cape Reinga with a hell of a long way to go.

Road bike Cape Reinga to Bluff NZ Outside Sports

Road bike Cape Reinga to Bluff NZ Outside Sports

Day 1: Cape Reinga, North Island, NZ.

2)      How long did it take you?

We were riding for 16 days. We didn’t schedule a rest day but unfortunately on day 3, riding into Auckland we hit a diesel covered roundabout and we both came off our bikes. It didn’t feel as if we had done any major damage to either ourselves or our bikes but when we started riding the next day, Steve realised that he had torn a muscle in his knee and was struggling to put any pressure on his right leg. We made it thorough to Hamilton but had to stop for a day so that he could get some physio – he got it taped and some acupuncture done and we set off a day later – not sure how his knee would cope, but it seemed to be a bit better and after a couple of days of easier riding it came good again - which was a pretty huge relief to the both of us.

3)      What was your longest day (kms?)

It was from Whangarei to Auckland. 184km’s and also our biggest days climbing with 2198m climbing. We were doing between 150 and 170km’s on most days. Interestingly the north island was hillier and longer than the south island. We climbed 10,000m in the North Island and only 8,000m in the south island. I always thought that the south island was going to be way hillier than the north.

4)      What did you pack for your trip?

Very little – just one set of riding gear and a change of clothes off the bike plus a few bike spares and a toothbrush. All of the gear that we carried on the bikes and the bike bags themselves weighed less than 5kg.

Road bike Cape Reinga to Bluff NZ Outside Sports

5)      Where did you stay during your trip?

A mixture of friends houses, classic old kiwi hotels and backpackers

6)      What was the most useful bit of kit that you took with you?

Either the actual packs that we used – meant that we were able to do the ride super lightweight or ‘Butt Butter’ chamois cream!

7)      If you could have taken something else with you what would it be?

Would possibly have changed out he bike seat for a slightly more comfortable one – it took about 1000km’s before the seat became anything like comfortable!

Road bike Cape Reinga to Bluff NZ Outside Sports

8)      What was the highlight of the trip?

Riding wise it was the west coast of the south island – amazing terrain, hardly and traffic and absolutely perfect weather. But for me it was also seeing the far north of the north island – amazing part of the country and incredible just how friendly everyone was to us along the way – it makes you realise why people love NZ so much!

Road bike Cape Reinga to Bluff NZ Outside Sports

9)      What were the biggest challenges along the way?

There were a few – mainly getting back on the bike each morning! Also surviving the logging trucks on SH1 heading into Auckland – was definitely glad to get that behind me. Probably the biggest physical challenge was riding up Bluff hill right at the end of the trip – 24% gradient in the last few km of the whole trip – we were both nearly puking at the end of that one

10)   What bike did you do this epic journey on?

I did it on a Specialized Tarmac Pro and Steve did it on a Trek Madone

Road bike Cape Reinga to Bluff NZ Outside Sports

Specialized Tarmac Pro

 Our total distance that we rode was 2394 km’s and we climbed 18,377 vertical metres and were riding our bikes for a total of 85hours and 30 minutes.

Road bike Cape Reinga to Bluff NZ Outside Sports

Road bike Cape Reinga to Bluff NZ Outside Sports

Day 16: Bluff, South Island NZ.

Check out Bikes and apparel at Outside Sports.


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