3
Moderate
Activities
  • Cycle the Molesworth Muster Trail Walk or cycle Hanmer Forest trails Waipara wine region cycle
Accommodation
  • 4 nights motel
  • 2 nights farm stay
Meals
  • 3 Dinners
  • 4 Lunches
  • 5 Breakfasts

6 Days$NZD

Trip Code: SOG7509

Trip highlights


  • Cycle the length of the remote Molesworth Road and visit the historic Molesworth Cob Cottage and Acheron Accommodation House
  • Enjoy kiwi hospitality and fine local produce at our Middlehurst Station farm stay
  • Soak in the thermal hot pools surrounded by mountains at Hanmer Springs
  • Savour lunch and wine tasting at an award winning vineyard in the Waipara Valley
  • Visit the Iron Ridge Quarry Sculpture Park and native garden.

From scenic wine regions to surreal mountain landscapes this trip in the Northern Canterbury and Marlborough districts is a delight. We journey through the vast Molesworth Station along isolated roads flanked by rugged mountains and overnight on a remote back country merino sheep farm nestled under Mt. Tapuae-o-Uenuku, the highest mountain outside of the Southern Alps. A relaxing day in Hanmer Springs can be spent exploring the local Forest trails by foot or bike and enjoying a soak in the therapeutic thermal pools. On our way to Christchurch, ride in the emerging wine growing district of Waipara Valley and enjoy a visit to one of the vineyards as well as a walk around the Iron Ridge Quarry Sculpture Park, a fitting finale to this memorable adventure.


You will be picked up at the end of your Clarence River rafting trip, around 3.30pm, and then have an hour's drive to Blenheim. Time to just recover from the rafting and then celebrate the end of that trip and meeting your new guides over dinner at one of Blenheim's favoured restaurants.

Meals:  D

Today we leave Blenheim and head a short way back South to the start of today's ride in the Awatere valley (approx 30 mins) The next 3 days we travel through stunning back country wilderness of the Molesworth Station, which at 180,787 hectares, is New Zealand's biggest farm and supports the country's largest herd of beef cattle, as well as almost 30 endemic plant species. Our 173km journey to Hanmer Springs follows the Awatere River, then crosses Wards Pass to follow the Acheron to its confluence with the Clarence River. We set off riding on a paved road up the wide Awatere Valley, surrounded by vineyards. We climb up the valley, through rolling farmscapes where the road turns to gravel and we become dwarfed by the impressive Mt Tapuae-o-Uenuku (2885m) and the massive Inland Kaikoura Ranges. After a steep climb we reach the top of Upcot Saddle, we get a short downhill respite before another climb over a higher saddle brings us to Middlehurst Station, and our comfortable accommodation in the upper valley. Our support vehicle will always be near-by for anyone who wants a breather or wants to cycle a shorter distance. Tonight's farm stay has shared facilities and a hearty evening meal will be prepared by the onsite chef. Cycling Distance: Blairich Reserve to Middlehurst Station - up to 68km

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we enjoy a day at Middlehurst Station which offers a range of activities on their vast farm property, including bike trails, farm tours, heli-hiking, fishing, hunting and four wheel driving – there will be an extra cost for some of these activities, prices to be confirmed. For those keen to continue cycling there is an opportunity to ride further along the Molesworth Road and the Awatere Valley towards Isolated Saddle. The road passes by the original cob homestead built by John Murphy in 1866 and the gateway to Molesworth Station at 23km. Turning around we ride back to beautiful Middlehurst Station for a second night. We have plenty of time to relax in this amazing mountainous environment before another delicious home cooked meal is served. Optional Cycling Distance: Middlehurst Station to Isolated Saddle - 46km return

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast we say farewell to our hosts to ride the final section of the Molesworth Road, savouring the remoteness of the spectacular landscape around us. We pass the historic Molesworth homestead and the road then climbs to Wards Pass (1145m) and across the 250-hectare expanse of Isolated Flat, an outwash plain, bounded by the Awatere Fault. From January until April, masses of tall, white gentian flowers and blue borage can be seen growing colourfully amongst clumps of short tussock and pasture grass. Flanked by mountain ranges the road follows the Acheron River to the historic Acheron House, which was built in 1863 as an overnight stopover in the early stock droving days. Here we reach the mighty Clarence River and ride alongside the river before one final push up and over Jacks Pass and a fast descent brings us into Hanmer Springs. The total distance from Middlehurst Station is 106km, we can ride a number of sections depending on how much, if any, we cycled yesterday. Some riders might like to attempt to complete the full journey to Hanmer Springs. After settling into our accommodation, there are plenty of eating options for you to choose from. Cycling Distance: Middlehurst Station to Hanmer Springs - up to 106km

Meals:  B,L

Hanmer Springs is a hub for mountain biking and hiking, and a great place to rest, relax and enjoy the mountain air. Today we have a choice to ride, walk or just relax and visit the thermal hot pools for a well deserved soak in the therapeutic waters. Cycle Options: An easy 15km section of the St James cycle trail leaves from St James Station in the Clarence Valley and climbs slowly up a gravel cycle path for 7km to Peters Pass before returning via a 4WD through the Rainbow valley. The ride gives panoramic views in all directions. Alternatively you can head from town into the Hanmer Forest and enjoy riding on the forest trail network. Hiking Option: A short relaxed walk takes us through the forest to a lookout at Conical Hill or a more challenging walk to the top of Mt Isobel (1319m) takes 3-4 hours from Jacks Pass. The route follows a steep, rocky and exposed ridge to the summit, giving wonderful views over Hanmer Basin and beyond.

Meals:  B

After breakfast we set away on our journey to Christchurch with some fun activities along the way! Our first stop is the Iron Ridge Quarry Sculpture Park (approx 1 hour drive). Over twenty years of hard toil by Sculptor Raymond Herber has transformed this old abandoned Limestone quarry into a huge stunning exhibition space like no other. On display are many different sculptures from amusing kinetic works through to impressive giant steel and stainless steel pieces. The property has been planted in native plants and trees creating a perfect setting to enjoy the artworks. From the Park we will then head to one of the boutique vineyards, part of the Waipara wine growing region, fast becoming internationally renowned. We'll have time to enjoy a tasting and vineyard platter lunch overlooking the vines. An hour's drive brings us to Christchurch Airport for those wanting to fly straight home; others wanting to spend time in the Garden City can be dropped at a central city location.

Meals:  B,L


Inclusions

  • 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches (including winery lunch), 3 evening meals
  • 3 nights comfortable motel accommodation, double or twin share with ensuite bathroom facilities
  • 2 nights farm stay accommodation at Middlehurst Station with shared bathrooms
  • 2 professional guides/drivers on trips with 8 or more people
  • Wine tasting and lunch at Waipara vineyard
  • Single entrance to hot pools at Hanmer Springs
  • Entrance to Iron Ridge Quarry Sculpture Park
  • Healthy snacks, fruit and soft drinks while cycling
  • Private vehicle transport
  • Pick up from Clarence River Rafting depot

  • International or domestic flights and taxes
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • All beverages, other than breakfast
  • Bike hire (including helmet)
  • Water bottle (help us save the environment and bring your own bike drink bottle)
  • Optional activities (eg. activities on Middlehurst Station)
  • Personal expenses (eg. phone calls, internet, laundry, shopping etc)
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa (if required)

About Your Leader

Our guides are one of our biggest assets and we pride ourselves on their level of quality and high standards. Once the trip reaches 8 people, we provide you with two of our expert guides to maximise your enjoyment and overall experience. You’ll know you’re in safe hands as all of our guides are certified in first aid and CPR and many of them are trained bike mechanics. They come from all walks of life but our guides have a common desire to give you the best possible experience, fun and lots of fond memories to take home with you. Learn more about our guides on our team page at www.adventuresouth.co.nz.


Bike information


Grading

Moderate  
3

This cycle tour is graded moderate. You will need a reasonable level of fitness and we suggest 90 minutes of cycling three to five times a week for the three months leading up to your trip. Much of the riding is on hard packed gravel, some is loose gravel which can be rough and uneven in places and there are plenty of hills. You will need to be able to cycle upto 100km on the longest day, however the support vehicle is always available if you have tired legs. We recommend practice cycling up hills and on gravel before your tour, it will make the experience more enjoyable.


Departure dates


Notes

BP
Base Price

Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Priceper person from

$NZD

Options & Supplements*
  • E-Bike HireNZD$600
  • Hybrid MTB HireNZD$180
*Prices listed are per person

Essential information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Robyn Woolsey & Friends High Country SI Adventure trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.


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