Our Adventure to Kerikeri

Well where do I start.. I guess with the bike crash 5 min after we left. So, here's the deal, we decided we wanted a tent. We had gone back and forth on whether or not we wanted to bring a tent and ultimately decided we'd get one here if we really wanted one. Now that we are in Paihia there is nowhere nearby to buy a tent, the closest one we could find is in Kerikeri which is about 24.14km (15mi) one way. The reason we went with bikes was it's cheap, and it would allow us to see things along the way.
Our journey started with the purchase of the bikes for an "all-day" use for NZ$70. Each. Not too far out of town I went to get up on the curb and I went down. The entire impact was on my knee, tore right through my only pair of pants. David was right there cleaning me up. We also had a couple of Kiwi's stop over and make sure I was ok. David got me bandaged up and we decided to see the trip through.
We made our way up winding hills that turned into dirt roads and quickly we realized this was going to be tough. As we made it further along it began to rain on and off, but not too bad. Riding on the roads was a bit challenging, most of the time we had little to no space next to whizzing cars and trucks. But again, we managed.
We made it to Kerikeri extremely tired and worried about time. We grabbed some food at a Countdown (like a Grocery) and figured out our game plan. We went to the local fishing and hunting store and purchased really the only 2 person tent option they had for NZ$339.99. Much more than we had expected, but after that journey we WERE NOT leaving empty handed.
At this point we were thinking of every possible option to get back: We could head back the way we came, biking/walking; we could go as far as possible and tent, then head back in the morning; or we could try out hitchhiking. The trouble with hitching was, we had two bikes. David borrowed a Sharpie from the hunting and fishing store and some cardboard from the dump and wrote us a sign, "2 BOYS 2 BIKE PAIHIA". We gave that a go a few times in between biking and it did nothing. We decided it was best to just bike and walk as fast as we could before the sun went down.
After a long journey we made it back with an hour to spare before sun down. At lease we got our tent.
It was a crazy journey, and we learned so much.


Ethan M.

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