with Melanie Short
Communication & Operations Manager
While I'm not one to notice the weather – more of a ‘just get on with it' type – this winter and spring have really made their mark with plenty of rain.
As a family, we love to take as many opportunities as we can to get out and ride our bikes – not just because we love it and it's a great family activity, but we also have the big goal of riding the Timber Trail at the end of November.
With 85km of luscious forest trails, it's going to be a big highlight for my family of four (with the added perk of staying at the Timber Trail Lodge along the way).
So with the cranky weather we've endured thus far, we've invested in decent jackets so we can ride whenever we can in preparation, and as there are so many options, we're just getting fitter and stronger – and looking for more and more challenging routes.
Obviously living on the doorstep of the renowned Whakarewarewa Forest, we spend most of our weekends and holidays in this natural wonder and recreational park. But these school holidays we ventured away for a few days and enjoyed what Lake Taupo had on offer.
One day we rode from our front doorstep into town, then over to Huka Falls, passing by Spa Park. This is 28km in total, and the multiple stopping points and a picnic lunch along the way made it achievable for the younger ones.
If you are looking for ways to get out on two wheels, October is Women's Ride Month and also host of the NZTA Mini Aotearoa Bike Challenge from October 16-29. The Aotearoa Bike Challenge was a huge hit in the Bay of Plenty region earlier this year in February and this month you can give it another go.
Nothing too serious – it's just great way to get out riding with your colleagues, families and mates… and you can win prizes too! If you were part of the earlier ABC then it's a quick login to get back involved, otherwise a simple sign up.
Sport Bay of Plenty's Play in the Bay initiative is supporting those who wish to get on their bikes with a series of outdoor events and activities in our Outdoors & Active programme. From cycle Scavenger Hunts to social rides and fundraisers, there are plenty of options for you to get on your bike and log those kms.
Plus, Cyclezone in Rotorua has a series of very cool events on offer over the month – I'm excited to get in among the shuttles night on the 18th as it's been a few years since I've been. And the other events have cake…. what better reason to go for a ride!
Yes, there is more rain forecast, but it's getting warmer and the days are longer. It's actually quite exhilarating coming back from a ride in the rain, all wet and muddy, and with a big smile that truly shows the joy of riding.