Monday, 23 May 2011

Start date and what a scenic start!

Midday (12 Noon) on the 21st of January, 2012 at the Church of the Good Shepherd on the shores of beautiful Lake Tekapo marks the start of your 2012 Great Southern Brevet adventure.

Church of the Good Shepherd, Lake Tekapo

Have been working to coordinate the start date with a few other events and also to avoid the crowded roads and accommodation of the holiday season. The 21st to the 29th (Saturday Midday to the following Sunday Midday) of January seems to be the best compromise. Pressure should be easing from the peak holiday period, and although few secondary roads are used during the ride, accommodation could be a challenge otherwise. Weather wise it should be settling with fairly warm weather down low but still cool at altitude.

The first day of the ride begins with long flat stretches leading into a gentle climb to the high point (Monty's Saddle) and then downhill to Otematata. With extended daylight hours riders should manage the journey through Black Forest and Benmore well before dark.

So pencil it in your calendar and hope to see you on the shores of Lake Tekapo in 2012.


  1. Was hoping for an earlier start...

  2. Earlier in the day would give you more of a chance to get further down the track and beat the heat...

  3. Ummm. 1200km? But legs add up to just over a 1,000. Reason I ask is that 133kms a day mtb, even on gravel roads to a fair degree, may seem too daunting to potential riders who might go for 113km/day.

    But then is it 133/113 kms a day? 9 days but 11 stages. Help us make sense of this please Sam.

    But that aside, it look such a great event. At 1200km, would it qualify us for an off road Paris-Roubaix?

    Regards, Kenny

  4. The track on Google Maps adds up to ~1058kms, look closer and you will notice it is rather arbitrary and straight line. Following the curves comes out at ~1151kms. Taking into account elevation, etc. you should be closer to 1200kms. Of course you could ignore the maths and say you only have ~1000kms to ride ;-) Don't get hung up on the mathematics anyway. This is not a race, those long days in the saddle can be taken at touring pace, time to watch the scenery pass by not flash by. You will also find it can be broken by long breaks as you enjoy a morning latte at a cafe or a snack at dairy reached late afternoon. You will have a couple of long days (150+kms) but thinking too hard about it before you set out is like Sir ED saying Everest is too high therefore I just won't start climbing it.