Day 19: May 7 – Wellington to Paraparaumu
Daily Distance = 56.57km, Trip Total = 584.38km, Today’s Climb = 362m
I was on the road just before 9am today. I didn’t have a huge amount of ground to cover, but I find that any day I am cycling in or out of a new city I get slowed down quite a bit. This is because I’m constantly stopping to: 1) assess where bike signs on the road are trying to direct me (I find these are usually more intuitive when you are familiar with the area!) and 2) consult the map on my phone to see if I’m optimizing the amount of ground covered on bike paths in my direction and 3) make sure I don’t inadvertently end up on a major highway before I absolutely have to.
Fortunately I only made a couple minor wrong turns as I navigated my way out of Wellington and I was quick to correct them so I didn’t do much backtracking, which is always a plus in my books!
I was pleasantly surprised today to find that I was able to cover the majority of my ride on paths that ran close to SH1. In total I think I was only on State Highway 1 for under 10km. And the stretch that I was on the highway had a very wide paved shoulder, so it felt safe to cycle on.
With less than 10km to my destination, I was cycling on the paved shoulder of the highway and fully expected to spend the rest of the ride on the highway when I saw a sign flash by: ‘cyclists take next exit, there is an alternative route available’. So, I decided to follow the sign and low and behold, I had a nice wide bike path, mostly to myself, which deposited me at my destination for the day.
I reached my destination around 1:30pm and after checking in I spent about an hour outside chatting with a fellow guest at the hostel. He was super nice and informative. Let me know where everything was in the hostel, places to eat in town and offered a ride to the grocery store in case I needed to re-stock any supplies. After getting cleaned up I walked along the beach for a while which was just across the street from where I was staying.