Central Plateau, North Island

Central Plateau, North Island
View from a friend's farm

Monday, 25 March 2013

Long Bridges and Intrepid Cyclists


The Maramataha  Suspension bridge, recently opened, is the longest in the North Island. 141m in length and 60 metres above the ground. This is a great engineering feat, and enables the cyclists on the Timber Trail to go further, from Pureora, down the Angel’s Rest track, to Piropiro, and on to Ongarue. Photo courtesy of Hugh, he took some photos looking down, but with the slight breeze the bridge swayed a  little. I understand that when on your cycle, look straight ahead, keep pedalling, do not wobble, and reach the other side thankfully.Some prefer to walk across, with their bike at their side, others, like me, preferred to stay  home.!!!

Maramataha Bridge 141m long

The group of cyclists from Cambridge and other areas did a full day  trip, across the bridge, to Ongarue and return, a distance of some 90km. Travel weary, a quick dip in the freezing water down those steep steps was refreshing, next morning a hearty breakfast and off for another  shorter ride before returning home .

Cambridge and other cyclists collage

This little bird ventured out after the showers, and after some research, I am thinking it might be a “ Fern Bird”, it didn’t fly far, stayed in the same area for 3 days, very industrious  searching for insects on the now damp grassy stalks.If anyone can identify it correctly, I will be so pleased.

Small bird at  Piropiro 

Quotation of the day, from David Russell,

“ The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross

and which to burn”

Greetings from Jean


Anonymous said...

Wow! Quite the bridge and love mosaic photos ~
Enjoy ^_^

Carol Mattingly said...

That could a yellowhammer there in NZ. Love seeing your campsite. Don't think I could walk that bridge or fer of heights.

Nancy J said...

Yes, Carol, the bridge, the last time Hugh wanted me to walk on a suspension bridge,, smaller than this one, I took TWO steps and froze!! So didn't even walk or quad to this one. Carol M, yes, maybe a yellowhammer, I looked at that one too, and the Rifleman?? but the head was not quite all yellow, it was so hard to get a photo where he/she was on a darker area,with a better idea of the colour. I too have a dread of heights, either high up or looking down,ground level is the best. Cheers from Jean

Julie Fukuda said...

Our Scout troop once camped in a place where you had to cross a long cable bridge to get to it. Actually, it was only two planks side-by-side staggered all the way across. Plenty to swing too. The funniest thing was watching Nikko. No was she was putting her foot on that bridge ... but no alternatives either. Finally I dragged her across and her toes were spread as wide as a dog's feet could manage. By the ens of the weekend, she was trotting across as if it were nothing. Great pictures.

Nancy J said...

Wow, I cannot imagine crossing it myself, far less with a dog. Well done. And just planks..too scary. Nikko deserves a gold medal, and you too. Greetings from Jean

Kat said...

That bridge is beautiful --- from a safe distance. I am glad you did not post any photos of the view over the side :-). Glad to have you back online, my friend!

Jim said...

Love that quote! And Jean,I don't know about you but it has taken me a long time to fully appreciate and actively 'cross or burn' which bridges!
What an incredible looking suspension bridge! I can see that it could be tricky cycling across but I would have no problem walking across. The landscape there is so beautiful, no wonder it is a haven for cyclists and tourists alike! What a great cycling trip that would be. We would have loved to have cycled there back 'in the day' when we cycled everywhere....even the Canadian Rockies!

Wish I could help you to identify the little bird. Looks like it could be related to our sparrows from the stripes.

Another interesting post Jean. You are so fortunate to be living in such a diverse and beautiful country....I am sure you know that.

sophie...^5 said...

I'd love to try that bridge....just focus and pedal...woohoo...here goes!!
I was watching The Amazing Race recently and they were in New Zealand on one leg of the trip....so beautiful...on a river in the south island I believe. There were yellow flowers everywhere. I was trying to figure what season it was.


Nancy J said...

Sophie, read about Nikko, and his adventure across a bridge with Julie.. you could do it.Kat, I was very happy not to even attempt the tramp to the bridge, 1 hour for very fit young people,I was soooo happy to stay at the tent, and let Hugh do the photos,( he went by quad bike)he looked over the side, will try and post another one to show, a long way down!!!Jim, cycle trails are being developed all through NZ, from tip to tail, this is called the " Timber Trail" as it goes through an area that was logged out many years ago.My cycling was really to go to school or on the road to the bus stop for High School. Strictly utilitarian!!!Greetings from Jean

Lindsjö taxar said...

The bridge is very nice but I would never go over....no I´m to scary

Brit said...

Hei Jean ! I would never have crossed this brigde.....I hate it when this type of brigdes start to "move" and I get sea-sick.
My grey bird is staying here all year.She is eating on a birdfeeder made of a cocosnut : it looks nice and the birds love them. Spring is late this year so the imigrant birds have not arrived here at Elgå. Still -20 in the mornings and lots of snow.

Nicky said...

I'm with you Jean, that bridge is for looking at from one side only, I have attempted shorter ones and really not enjoyed them. And on a bike would be even worse!