Monday, February 16, 2015

Riding the West Coast - Part One

Apologies in advance for the picture heavy post but ScooterBob and I have had a great day starting our trip down the West Coast.  If there is not enough pictures in the post then keep an eye on this picasa folder.

After packing the bike and saying our goodbyes, ScooterBob and I were underway, cruising out of Richmond and through Brightwater and Wakefield before hitting the lovely Hope Saddle.  The weather was simply fantastic with brilliantly clear, blue skies but with a nice cool temperature to make riding truly glorious.

When we hit the summit at Golden Downs I nearly stopped to show ScooterBob the great views but he was enjoying the delicious corners too much and insisted that we pushed on.  Oh well, bye-bye chicken strips…
Rather than stop at Murchison for fuel, I (worked out we’d make it to Westport) we carried on and entered the Upper Buller Gorge.  This is just the start of some superb riding which eventually gets you to the end of the Buller River in Westport.  The pictures below are at the “Iron Bridge” which is basically the Western end of the Upper Buller with just a few more km to get you to Inangahua where the decision has to be made on whether to turn off and make for Reefton and Greymouth or carry on through the Lower Buller to Westport.  No prizes for guessing which way we went…

The lower Buller is simply magic and all roads should be this good.  It has everything: fabulous corners and superb scenery.  I managed to persuade ScooterBob into stopping for a few pictures and then hooked up my little camera to see if we could also snap some decent ones on the fly too.


Our next stop was in Westport to water the horse and then we were on our way South following the Coast to our lunch stop in Punakaiki.  Found a few things to look at there too…


Leaving Punakaiki, we carried on Southwards and eventually discovered Greymouth on our way to our stop the night in Hokitika.

In Hokitika we located our motel, unloaded some gear and then promptly disappeared in search for more photo opportunities in the Hokitika Gorge.  This was well worth the trip out (up a big valley, heading for the mountains) and the 1-2km of gravel to the car park.  ScooterBob made friends with a weka as soon as he got off the bike but then waited while I made the trek to the swing-bridge and beautiful river.

On the way out to the gorge I’d spotted a sign pointing to Lake Kaniere so thought that we should also check it out to.  It turned out to be well worth it too and we pretty much had the place to ourselves except for someone out learning to water-ski.

By now it was after 4 so we returned to base and are now getting psyched for another awesome day on the West Coast tomorrow…bring it on!


  1. That is a beautiful part of the world Andrew. Makes me wish I was back there now. Loving the photos.

  2. Apologizing for too many pictures? No need at all! ;)

    There's some great pics in the mix, great geographical diversity....

  3. Wekas are omnivores, do you really believe it wanted to be friends with SB? Methinks this chicken wanted to check out if it's edible...

    Stunning pictures, Andrew. Filling my heart with wanderlust.

  4. Wonderful pictures of a beautiful area.

  5. I had fun figuring out the route you took on the map. Gorgeous country. By the way, adding all those photos and my iPhone still weighs pretty much the same. Bring'em on!!

    1. Hi David, when I get home I'll post up some maps...

  6. Wow. What a beautiful part of the world. I feel immensely jealous. And worried! How will I top this when Scooter Bob comes to Wales?!