Sunday, 6 December 2009

Unicycling Makara Peak - summit

I've been on a few more weekend unicycling trips to Makara Peak since the ankle incident, now kitted out with ankle braces, and this week with some elbow pads as well following some scrapes and bruises last week. Ankle is mostly recovered now despite continued weekend abuse.

Last Sunday and yesterday I managed to reach the summit, via the very rocky Missing Link, and the long uphill Aratihi track.

The uphill rocky parts of Missing Link are still a bit much for me, though I can manage most of the downhill.

Though mostly not very steep, Aratihi is quite a long climb, and it's still well beyond my current endurance to ride the whole of it without stopping. Yesterday though I managed to ride intermittently for maybe 2/3 of it, and tried to keep walking up during the recovery periods in between, rather than stopping completely.

After a quick rest at the cloudy and windy summit, I came back down Aratihi and found it to be just right for my current skill level - an interesting and fast downhill route, but not too tricky even when I'm really tired from the uphill. (Last week I tried to go down Ridgeline instead, and had to walk it - much too hard at the moment.) Then back along Missing Link; the downhill first half is fun, but the climb back out of the valley is the disadvantage to this route: had to walk it. Then down the 4WD track and Lazy Fern - still a favourite. By the time I reached Lazy Fern my back was aching and I was glad to reach the bottom!

I took the camera along this time - there are only a few pictures because mostly I just kept riding / falling!

Here is the gallery with the rest, and captions.

The park will have been very busy today with the Makara Peak Rally, so I'm guessing it will be pretty torn up next weekend (as if I needed any more obstacles). Next year I hope to be good enough to enter the rally on a unicycle - would be an interesting challenge. At the moment though I would just be a semi-stationary obstacle in the way of the mountain bikers!

In a week or so there is a shuttle day (4WD lifts to the summit, so you can repeatedly ride the downhills) - I'm taking the day off work to go along if the weather is decent.

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