Another good early start! Was pretty special riding through such grand country as Arthurs pass early in the morning with sun busting out onto the peaks around me. I had my sights set on second breakfast at Arthurs pass café. Another healthy feed of bacon, beans and eggs washed down with chocolate milk and a flat white. I was soon making my way towards Arthurs Pass. I found this side of the pass a lot easier than when I came up the other side a couple of years ago. I think maybe because it had been split it into to chunks. The West coast side has a 16% gradient!!!! It was real pleasure to ride down here and take the amazing engineering that went into constructing many parts of this road. As I hit the bottom of the pass, I picked up a tail wind that blew me all the way to Jacksons and then further onto Stillwater. The course took us through a series of back roads to still water which included the very scenic Lonely Lake reserve. Such beautiful country to be riding through. I was fortunate enough to have maintained the tail wind at my back. At around 4.30 I was eating an ice cream at the Ikamatua General store having covered 172km. My body was feeling great. I was joined by Karen, Joel and Clair(team Aussie) as we found a patch of shade under a tiny tree across the road. Four of us cramped under a tiny tree shelting from the beating sun. I soon loaded up with water and supplies. Due to the mining in the Waiuta – Big river area, there is arsenic in the water up there making it undrinkable. The ride up to the Waiuta road end is a beautiful gradient. I arrived up there around 7.30. So in classic Outward Bound styles, I decided to make use of daylight hours and ride as far into the Waiuta as possible. This was so I could camp somewhere on the track. I managed to get 3km in. I also wasn’t completely convinced that this track was as good as had been stated. I was still having nightmares of walking my through here last time round. I found a nice flat spot to camp on. As I was cooking dinner I was sung to by two kaka. I thought to myself, I love this outdoor adventure carry on. Sometimes it’s hard and full on but it is also full of so much magic “Through violent storms and peaceful dawns we find ourselves in Balance”.