In order to compensate the day I lost in Wanaka, I decide to push it hard today to see if I can reach Fox Glacier or not. That’s why I wake up at 6:30, struggle until 7, get up and see a lot of dead sandflies sticking on my tent because of the dew, kind of gross. Other campers have already packed up and ready to go. Eat a quick muesli breakfast and start at 8.
Having great motivation today, I pedal quite fast and finish 50km in 3 hours reaching Haast. Thanks God to give up pleasant weather, people always complain about the unexpected bad weather in the West Coast, yes there are always dark thick clouds above and seems it is going to rain, luckily it doesn’t! Haast is like a dead town, even the hotels and shops close. In most part of West Coast, you don’t even have telephone signal including Haast, so be ready for this. My food stock is running low at that moment, but I couldn’t find anybody there to buy some more food! I learn to check in advance on Google map the location of supermarket or convenience store so that you won’t get stuck with no food.
118km to go!!
Carrying on riding hard with the new chain and disc, they are quite smooth honestly and save me a lot of energy. Along the coast there is a Knight Point lookout which you can see those small islands laying in the Tasman Sea (similar to 12 Apostle Rocks in Australia), but be aware of sandflies, they won’t give up any chances to bite you!
A glimpse of a beach along the West Coast.
When I reach 120km, I break my personal record of most km ride per day. It is already 5pm, but I am in the middle of nowhere with NO food. Food equals to fuel for cyclist, if you have no fuels you can’t carry on! I start to be panic and try hitchhike to Fox Glacier, but it doesn’t go well. In an hour there is only one car stops and they couldn’t take my bike, luckily they give some fruits and a chocolate bar! Thanks for that simple generosity, it keeps me alive!
There are still 52km to go and I have 3-4 hours until it gets dark. Let me suck it up and pedal! As I have checked on Google Earth about the elevation profile on each legs of my trip, it is quite a flat route ahead. Then I play my Christian hymns music, it does help me a lot! Singing it loud to praise God gives me strength and power to push harder! And finally I reach Fox Glacier township at 9pm, after 172km ride, a bit crazy for a new cyclist like me.
Thanks to a nice German guy showing me a football field to put my tent, I go straight to sleep with an empty stomach because the store is closed. Anyway, I am so tired, get a rest is more important! Riding 172km on the day of Chinese New Year is quite remarkable, especially in the Year of Horse! I wish everyone 馬到功成(run as fast as a horse to be successful)!
Pleasant Flat in Mount Aspiring National Park to Fox Glacier 172km