First: Sascha is doing much better! He can close his eye again and sometimes he can manage to whistle already ;-) We LOVE it!!!
Last Saturday we left with Josie, Chris and Marty and had a great ride to the north cup (via Roturua) We had great breaks in lovely places and in the of the day we met up with some other friends of them in Opotiki at the east coast to spend the night together in a pub. Next morning we left direction East Cape – we had an amazing sunny warm day, riding the gravel roads and walking up the light house. We continued direction Gisborne when we got stucked late afternoon in Tologa Bay because all the gas stations run out of gas… we took it as it was, spend a nice evening in the back packers and playing pool with the locals.
On Monday we had to say good bye each to other in Whakatane – we loved to go together with these guys, we spend an unforgettable time together and we are quite sure we will meet again… THANK YOU ALL!!!
Now it was time for us to go ahead our own way. Our new goal was Lake Taupo. We spend there only one night because we were keen to ride the road to Turangi direction Napier through the mountains and to meet up with our old friend Steve. We enjoyed the ride up to an altitude of 985m – brrrrrr. It really went cold but it was GOOOOOOOOD ;-) And happy in the evening to stay in Steve`s warm flat in Napier…
After we passed the ninety mile beach and spending a night in the Kauri Forest, we had a short „tea-stop” in Auckland with Gabe and Bob going direction south the east coast to KatiKati where we had a contact. We arrived at Josie´s house and got a warm welcome and the possibility to stay. She introduced us her friends, Chris and Marty, with whom we had nice motorbike trips and spend lovely evenings at their kiwi farm. They are all members of the Vincent Motorcycle Club, and invited us to join a trip on the following weekend to the East Cape. Anyway, Marty is having a museum in his garage: A full assortment of different Vincent HRC Vintage Road Bikes, starting 1932. He gave me one for a short ride, the starting lessen took 15 minutes. Not so easy to start these things, but when the sound starts it give you goose skin… WHOOWWW what a sound!
In between we went of direction Coromandel, up to the far north, Port Jackson, having a look at the Waterworld, the Cathedral Cove, passing the Hot Water Beach and enjoying lonely beaches. Up there are great unsealed roads and curvy roads which we were enjoying a lot!!!
Yesterday when back from our Coromandel trip we had the possibility to get fixed the bearings with help of Marty (actually he did the job and while doing it he teaches Sascha how to do it next time by himself) – THANK YOU Marty!!!
After the workshop Marty gave us a walkthrough through their Kiwi farm and explained us how to run a farm and how it’s working with the plantation, bees, cutting back the trees, planting and all sorts of stuff. Now we know why they are so special. It’s a lot of work and heart in this fruit!
And again we had a lovely evening and dinner at their farm – THANK YOU CHRIS!
Currently we are resting a bit in Josie´s house and getting ready our things for the next period direction south… THANK YOU SO MUCH JOSIE!!!
Sascha is still having Bells Palsy, but slowly we can recognize improvements… Everything will be good in the end!
How to summarize… To get the motorbike wasn´t so difficult, but to get it out of tappers proprietary! This was a challenge but with help from Dazz and his truck we managed it in the end of the day: the inspection itself took 5 minutes but to bring the crate out of the property of the cargo facility took 4 hours. We have been not allowed to unpack the crate there and had to get the whole crate out on the street with our own truck. And there came Darren and his truck, he took the crate on his truck and brought it out on the street (100m in 5 hours!), unpacked it, screwed the bike together on off we wend direction north along the east coast…
Nice little camp sites next to the sea were making it easy to enjoy the first two days of our trip. Unfortunately the morning of the third day Sascha recognized something is wrong with his face – he could not eat and could not feel his right side of the face. First we were not worrying that much but than we recognized it´s not going away. We were in Whangaruru, at a tiny little camp site. When we were calling the health hotline explaining the symptoms we were told to see immediately a doctor and of course it was Saturday… We went to the couple, Colleen and Andrew, who were taking care of the camp to ask them where we could find the next doctor: 1 hour 15 minutes by car was the answer. Shit! Andrew offered immediately to bring Sascha to the hospital to Whangarei. Meanwhile Colleen served me with coffee and hot chocolate to get my mind off – I did not know yet if Sascha will be back for the night or if he has to stay at the hospital overnight… 4 hours later Andrew and Sascha arrived: “Bells Palsy” is what Sascha is having now. He got a lot of medication and we stayed 2 nights more to get a rest. No shops around; we were lucky to get some food from Colleen and Andrew and as well from our nice camp neighbors, Sue and her family, who took us out the last morning with the boat when we recognized dolphins in the bay; this was an amazing experience: we were going around with about 15 dolphins for one hour and they were jumping and gambling around with us – hopefully a good sign! THANK YOU ALL AGAIN!!!
Nothing we can do so far except waiting and hoping that the “infection” will go over soon. It can last 10 days up to 3 month – cross fingers it will disappear fast! We continued travelling, smaller distances than planned before direction north. Two days later at Maitai Bay we arrived early afternoon and planned to have a relaxed day with fishing and hanging around. When we went out to the cliffs we recognized a fire over the mountains… watching it we started to worry while it seemed to become bigger and bigger. We went back to the camp site up to a hill and realized: this is a not controlled fire at all it is is eating the hill with the trees and coming closer way too fast. It was really frightened in the end, we could see incredible high flames finally fire trucks arrived, the wind was pushing the fire from one hill to another towards us. Helicopters arrived and the upper part of the camp was evacuated. Lucky we are they could stop the fire exactly before the camp ground and the wind was pushing it more to the other direction. WOW, what else will come up???
Next day we hit to Cape Reinga, we enjoyed the spirit of this place and stayed at a lovely camp site at the bay 3 km below the Cape. Currently we are recovering on the way south at the 90 Mile Beach on a bigger camp where we have a hot shower and electricity. Yesterday evening we spend too much time talking to Bill, who is exploring NZ on a 50cc bike so we did not manage to update, but never mind… ;-)
This is how our first week on the bike looked like – to be honest, we hope it will not continue THAT turbulent. So far we are fine even though a bit handy caped.
Take care and cross fingers!
WE GOT IT!
The inspection itself tok 5 minutes, the guy said that he never seen a cleaner bike and that this is funtastic.
Them the nighmare started. “Where is your truck” they asked. What truck? … OK after severall houres and with the Help of our friend Darren we could get it out on the street and finally WE ARE LEAVING NOW!
Thanks to Darren and his family we had the best time in New Zealand! Ok, we have to leave now…
More than one week delay of our motorbike arrival couldn’t bar us from exploring the wider surroundings of Auckland. Our lovely new friend, Febe, lent her great van to us in which we were travelling around; we found amazing places to stay for the nights, incredible beaches and we met several nice people on the way already: Fishermen who passed us a snapper for dinner when we were enjoying our spot – perhaps we were looking poor in our rain coats watching them coming back from their successful fishing trip ;-) THANK YOU unknown fisherman – we had a delicious dinner!!! In between we came home to our lovely Kiwi-parents, Gabe and Bob, who took us around Auckland and pampered us all around and we enjoyed Febe´s house warming barbecue. But enough words for the first here… if you like enjoy the pictures and imagine how it was…
We will leave now with Bob and hopefully we will get our bike in good condition back – finally! If everything goes well, we will leave today direction Northland to hit the road first time with our big lady… knock on wood!