Day 176, Tuesday 13 February 2018.
It’s wet all day today. I rode to the usual meeting point for the Tuesday Ulysses rides at the BP Motorway Service Centre in Papakura, but I was the only person to turn up on a bike so the ride didn’t happen.
We chose the Papakura Motorway Service Centre, sometimes called Papakura Autobahn, as a meeting point because it’s further south than the most congested parts of the motorway, but not so far south as to require us to double back to head for the Hunua Ranges or Waiuku and Awhitu. It has a good cafe and plenty of parking, and it has shelter from the sun and the rain. The petrol prices are a bit higher than average, but most of us fill up before we get there.
There’s a similar Motorway Service Centre a little further south at Bombay. It has an even greater range of shops, and while it’s further south than Hunua and Waiuku, that’s not a big deal. However, getting out of the centre onto the motorway north or south, or the main road east, requires turning right across a busy road, and any group motorcycle ride gets split up at that point, which is undesirable. Auckland Ulysses used to meet for Sunday rides there, but now they meet either at Papakura or at Caltex Bombay, which is easy to get out of, but which has no shelter, and no shops other than the petrol station shop.
Distance travelled: 72 km. Total distance so far: 23,171 km