With its gorgeous river flats and hills holding trails that showcase a view of much of the Wairarapa Plains, the Masterton Kids Camp is a great place to be. Many campers came with caravans to brave what was meant to be a big storm but were simply blessed with more of the comforts of home when sunshine warmed our backs all weekend long.
Coaching was packed which made the longish loop I had set up all the more important, with all sorts of challenging corners and a farm track to negotiate their way up and over- the hard way. Demonstrations came on board a CRF230F courtesy of Langlands Honda, a trusty steed that also enabled me to discover the views on display after the coaching was finished.
The following weekend we were finally heading up to the hills surrounding the Nelson lakes for the first Honda Kids Camp at St Arnaud, the word “finally” being after the false start last year at using this venue. A little investigation revealed this was the family farm of some good friends of mine and the same place I had been wanting to ride for years, ever since I had met the late Leith McConochie and his cousin Ben. With the Rainbow Mountain Ski Fields and the beautiful Lake Rotoiti just around the corner the natural setting for this camp were hard to beat.After a morning stroll in the native Beech forest that backed the camp I returned in time to set up my coaching area and show off the antlers I had wrestled off the head of the resident master stag. A real fight to the death– or at least that is the story the crowd of campers were left to imagine.
The ride to our coaching area was an adventure on its own with two river crossings and a gravel road to traverse before dodging small boulders hidden in the grass around our course marked by road cones. One rider took a couple of heavy crashes before he learned caution with these hidden dangers, fortunately living to tell the tale.
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From the twins of Southland to the Smith family from Auckland, this was a great excuse for a road trip and you can be sure that next years trails will really take advantage of the great facility at St Arnaud. Greg and his crew far too good to me as always, and the Morleys Honda farm quad made for excellent transport.
With the Honda Kids Club Campouts wrapped up for another year we can only hope to enjoy the company of many of you riders at our regular coaching sessions… can’t wait!