Todays track took us from Wanaka, a small town located on the southern end of Lake Wanaka, through some of the most spectacular parts of the South Island, over the Crown Range, one of the highest paved roads in the country, and down into the picturesque town of Arrowtown, a historic gold mining town, for lunch and then, via a couple of nasty pinches, onto the finish in Queenstown, the adventure capital of New Zealand. Undoubtably one of the highlights of the ride was the grind up the Cardrona Valley with it's a challenging ascent opening up to views from the top that are simply breathtaking being able to see for miles in every direction, with snow-capped peaks, rolling hills, and pristine lakes all around and then the famous descent down the Crown Range.
The Chain Reaction Challenge attracts people of all ages and abilities, from experienced cyclists to those who are new to cycling. The event is superbly organised, with a incredibly committed support team that keep us safe, help us stay hydrated, fueled up and attend to our needs, so we can focus on the cycling and fundraising and achieve a sense of accomplishment and the knowledge that we’ve helped make a difference in the lives of others.
At dinner we had a powerful presentation from Emily Whitehouse and Cass Treadwell at So They Can, talking to us about the amazing work So They Can do in Kenya and Tanzania working with local and governments to provide quality education to children living in poverty in Africa.
A wiseman once said ‘it is often the small steps, not the giant leaps, that bring about the most lasting change’. This can be said for both the work So They Can do, and the work we do on our bicycles to prepare ourselves for, and to complete this Challenge….
Today's ride from Wanaka to Queenstown was an incredible experience combining stunning landscapes, physical challenge, and social impact and is sure to leave all the riders with unforgettable memories and a sense of accomplishment.
Last night's jersey awards were:
- Orange, Leader jersey, sponsored by Pure Storage went to Andrew Harvey
- White, Young/New Rider jersey, sponsored by Dynamic Projects went to Joseph Hansel
- Black, Spirit of Chain Reaction jersey, sponsored by LSH Auto went to Warrick Gard
- Polka Dot, King/ Queen of the Mountain jersey sponsored by CBRE went to Freya Riddel