Day 24, Thursday 14 September 2017

I rode to Whatipu beach, the southernmost of Auckland’s West Coast beaches, and the most remote of those accessible by public road (Anawhata has a road, but it’s closed off to the non-paying public by a gate, leaving the main access via a steep walking track). The road begins with a ford, which had enough water in it that my boots got wet, then there are a few km of narrow winding sealed road, and the final five km are unsealed with frequent ruts and potholes, and some areas of slippery mud. There are some spectacular views from the road, but few places where it’s safe to pull over. The road ends in a carpark, with extensive sand dunes still to be crossed before the beach can be reached.

The caves are worth seeing, and the entrance to Manukau Harbour. The beach itself is usually almost deserted, and to my eye somewhat desolate.

Distance travelled: 80 km. Total distance so far: 3434 km

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