Saturday, 6 August 2016

Churton Park to Gear Homestead

It’s a month since I last posted anything on this blog. It’s not that we haven’t been biking, but it’s mostly been little short rides that have not been blog-worthy. I have also been busy with other things.

On Thursday 7 July, while I was otherwise occupied, John took a ride on his own, partly to bike along Middleton Road, which is a place where I am reluctant to cycle, and partly because he wanted to hit the 4,000 km milestone on his e-bike.

With his camera fixed on his handlebar, and set on a three-minute automatic time-lapse, he took the route we usually take to get to the local café (Café Thyme), but then continued on Middleton Road towards Tawa.

Commuter cyclists who want to bike from Porirua or Tawa into Wellington have to go along Middleton Road, to Johnsonville, as they cannot ride on the motorway. Heading south, the road does not seem too bad – it has a reasonable shoulder and one is riding on the outside of the bends in the road, which seems to me to be safer. But going north, the shoulder varies from acceptable (sort of) to non-existent. And as it is a winding road with a 70 km speed limit, and no shoulder on the many blind bends, I am loath to risk riding along there.

Going north on Middleton Road, the shoulder varies from almost acceptable …

… to non-existent

He biked down Te Ara Tawa, and along to the Gear Homestead Café, where he stopped for a coffee. He parked his bike, but left the camera running on its time-lapse, and so he ended up with a photo of himself on the verandah.

John on the verandah of the Gear Homestead Café

The track from Aotea to the motorway

This lush-looking grass bank was a muddy mess just a couple of months ago

Milestone! Four thousand kilometres done on this bike since November 2014

When John came off Te Ara Tawa at Takapu Road, he was stopped by a police woman asking him if he had seen someone in a white top. On checking online, I found this report, which seems a bit confused about what happened when. However it appears police were on the look-out for a burglar who had broken into a house, taken a shower, helped himself to food from the fridge, and taken the family’s car.

The photo of the police woman was taken automatically by the camera. We were amazed at the amount of paraphernalia that police have to carry around with them.

Look at all the gear the police have to carry!

The shoulder on southbound Middleton Road is more consistent than on the opposite side …

… but disappears as you are coming into Johnsonville


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