January 31, 2020 at 4:35 pm #32355
Rank: 1000cc Rider
- Bike: DL650, DRZ250, DRZ400S,
This is a route from the top to bottom of New Zealand that is more or less direct. It includes lots of gravel back roads and avoids busy highways as much as possible. We include highways occasionally when they are great to ride on. The route is divided roughly into 14 relatively easy days of riding with average distances of 222km in the North Island and 344km in the south island. This is because the central mountain range in the South Island means roads tend to be more point to point and don’t allow the meandering course possible in the North Island. The day distances are based on average riding speed of about 40kmh on gravel and about 70kmh on seal. That might sound a bit slow but NZ roads are typically very twisty and hilly and especially so on the gravel roads. It’s what makes them fun to ride. All of the routes are on public roads and no special permission is required on any of them.
Anyone can ride these routes. There’s nothing particularly challenging, just fun and generally quiet roads. If you are not used to gravel riding then this is the place to practice!! These roads are generally very quiet and so the major risk factor is yourself. Look out for wandering stock. There are lots of more challenging rides off the main route, especially in the South Island
We have included some for those with time to explore and some of these will have some more challenging options, as described in the individual section threads. Because it’s not practical to just join up every good road, some of the loop rides include real gems that we were not able to incorporate sensibly in the main route.
It’s inevitable that riders will at some point run out of time and need to take some shortcuts. They are generally obvious from the routes but they are mentioned anyway
The intention is to update this site with stuff as it is developed. They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions. We will see!
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