Motu and Pakihi Track
The Motu and Pakihi trail is an isolated, scenic bush track with 26 bridges and a 25meter (80ft) swing bridge. The trail continues to struggle latching onto the steep surrounding hillside. Pakihi track curves and meanders along it's constant decline, littered with numerous landslides and rockfalls over the year due to heavy rainfall and the steep landscape. Certain death would come if you lost your focus in these areas.
MOTU TRAILS - East coast of New Zealand
The usual rider takes the paid shuttle bus ride through the Waioeka Gorge along multiple unsealed abandon logging roads. Once you reach the top, you're awarded a pleasurable 20km (12mile) downhill trail.
Most people enjoy the convenience of catching a shuttle that will take them to the starting point of a ride without much effort. It is often a recommended two day if not shuttled and taken as a 92km loop (Opotiki - lower Motu Rd - Pakihi Trail) then camp at the Pakihi hut.
Figured those methods have been done before and wanted to do something new. So, I peddled from my camper-van in Opotiki, up the Gorge and to the backside of the Raukumara Range. More of a usual route for vehicle shuttles but wasn't able to pass up this excursion. It would be a brutal ride but felt more than ready to take on the challenge solo.
Woke up from the glowing sunrise, beachside in my camper. Whipped up a quick protein packed breakfast and loaded up my MHM Slay (22 liter pack) with 3 liters of water, 4 PowerBars, 3 Powrbar gels, a couple sandwiches, and fruit. Left town just after 7am.
Made the trek into the Waiokea Gorge and was blown away by how dense the native jungle was surrounding me. The Waiokea river was weaving down as I constantly leaned over spotting trout. Along my 65 km road ride through the canyon it became apparent how steep it really was after encountering serval enormous landslips across the road.
Making my way into the Pakihi track, I have gorgeous views of the mountain range and as far as the eye could see on a clear day. Charging down such a long and flowing track was something else. It allowed me to get into my flow and have a constant roll enjoying the engineering of smooth comfortable ride of my bike.
Roughly halfway came across the Hut and made a short stop to yarn with some local bikers doing an overnight mission and some fishing. I continued full speed ahead to make my way out safely with daylight still on my side. After the final 21km from the trail end to town was a calm and powerful sunset which left me more than content after sure a grueling and lengthly ride.