Rain occurs in all sorts of forms. There's intermittent rain, which comes in stops and starts. There's heavy rain that tends to have big fat drops. There's drizzle which is a sort of light rain that is reasonably consistent. There's a new type of rain I experienced today. I call it "You have to be frakking kidding me" rain. It's what you get when you add heavy rain to gale force winds. Big heavy drops that leave you feeling like you've been repeatedly punched in the face. A lot. For a long time.
Right now, my face is sore. I'm really hoping this doesn't bruise because that's going to look weird. For the most part the helmet provided protection for the eyes so any potential bruising will be mid-cheeks down. The helmet, rain hood and oddly enough, the beard provided protection for eyes, ears and neck.
But yeah... the day. First things first I guess. not necessarily in that order.
Woke to the sound rain. Heavy consistent rain. I'd decided not to spend another night here after the treatment from the lady on duty yesterday. Got myself packed up and was out of there before the camp had started to stir.
Despite the rain it wasn't actually that cold. I decided to push on.
I think it was somewhere between 5-10km when the wind started to make itself known. For the most part it was constant. speed picked up in places and dropped away to nothing all to infrequently. There were a number of times I didn't feel safe on the bike and ended up pushing it. It's also a mildly frustrating thing having to peddle down a decent slope because the wind is strong enough to stop you. The wind is also particularly powerful along ridge lines. These areas, mixed with the heavy rain were particularly painful. Literally.
Despite all that I actually enjoyed most of the day.
There were areas of the "you have to be frakking kidding me" bits where the road would go through a heavily forested bit and I'd find myself in an area of complete calm with the wind and rain blowing overhead.
i think I struck it lucky with the temperature. Today would have been very different if the wind was just a little cooler.
The rain started to ease up around Kaeo which is right on the 30km mark. It had taken just over 4 hours to get here and I was really thinking about calling it here. The constant head wind really takes it's toll on your moral. However, the rain looked to be clearing up so I pushed on. I has no allusions to making it to Awanui anymore but didn't think Mangonui would be much of a push.
The rain did cease and hte clouds did part and there was lots of blue sky by the end.
Things I discovered:
- The trees in the area all lean the same way. The persistent wind is persistent.
- My phone is still not waterproof.
- The drysak I had my phone in isn't very good at it's job
- The lower outside pocket on the pannier bags aren't very waterproof either.
- The waterproof covers for the panniers are waterproof and will collect all the water that drains into them. Strong winds were strong.
So, i'm writing this up as the phone hasn't dried out so i can't post straight to the website and can't post or txt that I've reached somewhere safe.
Hopefully the phone will dry out and still work before I turn in for the night.