May 4, 2012...Paihia, Bay of Islands

Double semi trucks barreling down the roads at tremendous speeds and gusty winds slapped us across the lane as we made our way towards Paihia…pronounced Pie-Here.  The locals call it Pay-Here!!..ha ha    We encountered a lot of road work today from packed dirt patches to loose pebbly stretches that kept us on our toes and totally focused all morning.  The road work is really not a problem when you consider that we are riding through beautiful rolling farm lands dotted with sheep, cows and horses…and the sheer fact that we're riding, right?  The skies were this magnificent dark blue color threatening rain, and were a beautiful contrast against the lush rolling countryside.  It looked colder than it actually was and ended up being a warm, comfortable and relaxing ride…don't you just love toasty rides? We turned off Highway 1 onto 11, only 13 k's to go to our destination and…wow it's only lunchtime…bonus!  The approach, and entrance, into the Bay of Islands could have not been more spectacular!  I know, I know I say that about every place…ha ha ha…but it is true! The road gently curved in and out, up and over hills covered in tropical rain forest foliage sporting huge tree ferns, and as I said the sky was fierce…it was amazing.  To top that off the first peek of the Bay of Islands took my breath away, it was another memorable pic to brain bank!  

It is totally fab when we actually arrive at our destination before 2pm!  It gives us a ton more day left to check out what is going on around town.  We found a great place on the water and watched a dredging barge dredge out the harbor slips, it kept us entertained for the next couple of hours, (that dude was talented).  We enjoyed oysters and a couple of cocktails as we chatted about the days ride.