The plan was an easy ride to Cromwell, 35km from camp, as part of two short days prepping the legs for the Crown Saddle climb. So I woke up late, read and cleaned my drivetrain before setting out at noon.
When I arrive I find a coffee shop with free wifi and start catching up. I've got an email from James (one of the cyclists I ran into during the Catlins) saying he should be in Cromwell today as well. We had discussed riding some of the west coast together if our paths crossed again. Minutes later, I look up and see him roll by. I grab my iPad and run out to flag him down.
After we catch up he mentions he's tenting in the yard of a cyclist he met previously. I end up joining and have a night discussing our journeys, drinking beer and watching some rugby. His friend being Nigel who blogs at http://www.nigelsbicyclejourneys.com/. The picture below is him in front of the monstrous tent James and I slept in.
There was a lot of talk of the other cyclists we've ran into here and a lot of that directed around those who approach cycle touring as a life style, not just a three month holiday. Kind of inspiring.
Anyway, James and I plan to ride the west cost together. I'm taking a two day route to Wanaka via Arrowtown and the Crown Range mountains so we meet again on the 10th.