Type: Mountain Biking – Gravel & Mixed
Distance: 41km one-way
Time: 2.5 hours approx.
Grade: 3 – active & experienced riders
The Windfarm Ride affords you the rare opportunity to see both the wonders of nature, and the marvels of modern engineering. To glimpse the mighty wind turbines is an experience in itself, but to glimpse it on the back of a bicycle is one that you’ll never forget. The gargantuan blades of the windmills will seem in tandem with the wheels of your bike as you race down the magnificent dirt tracks. With its twists and climbs, this ride is not for the faint hearted, but will leave you with a sense of awe and accomplishment as the countryside lays itself out before you. Whether you take it fast and aim for a personal best, or you take it slow and soak in the beauty, this ride is a must. Don’t just see the Manawatu, experience it.
Option 1 (from Palmerston North City) – Start your ride in Palmerston North City anywhere between The Square and the Fitzherbert Bridge. Continue over the bridge before veering onto Summerhill Drive, which turns into Aokatere Drive. Take a right onto the Pahiatua Track, continuing for approx. 8km before turning left onto North Range Rd. Eventually turning into Hall Black Rd, this track will finish outside the Bridge Cafe on Gorge Rd.
Option 2 (from Gorge Rd) – You will need transport to drop you off at the start of this ride. Drive to the Bridge Cafe on Gorge Rd via Te Apiti – Manawatu Gorge or the Paihiatua Track. Jump out and ride up Hall Block Rd (100m north of the cafe) to start the route. Eventually turning into North Range Rd, continue along until the end of the road, turning right onto the Pahiatua Track. At the end of the road turn left onto Aokatere Drive which turns into Summerhill drive, and then into Fitzherbert Avenue which leads you into The Square in Palmerston North City.
Caution needs to be taken in rough weather conditions. Keep an eye on the weather report before starting this ride, as the weather can be extreme at times. Layered clothing is recommended, to be prepared for all types of weather. It is not recommended that you do this ride if the wind is up. It is also not recommended that you bike through the Manawatu Gorge (SH 3), so please arrange transport to drive you out to this ride and drop you off. This is not a return ride. You start on Gorge Road and end in Palmerston North City.