BEST OF THE BEST  

Milford Mountain Classic & The Around The Mountain Trail

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Queenstown, Te Anau & Milford Sound

16-22 February 2023 (6 Days / 5 Nights)

The best of the best. 6 fantastic days in arguably New Zealand's most beautiful region. A true combination of paved and gravel roads.

The absolute cycling highlight for 2023 will be the sportive from Milford Sound to Te Anau. The Milford Mountain Classic. You'll join hundreds of lycra clad friends for a once in a lifetime opportunity to ride this very special (but hilly) road as it journeys through the UNESCO Fiordland National Park.

You also ride the absolutely stunning 'Around the Mountain' bike trail which takes us 90km on gravel roads through the beautiful Mavora Lake region (mountain bikes are included in the cost) all the way to Walter Peak Station where a BBQ is waiting for us. We then catch the evening Earnslaw to Queenstown.

Ride Holidays will take the hassle out of this short holiday. We've included pretty much everything. Transfers, guides, mechanics, meals and of course the standard RH friendliness.






Tour Details


Tour Inclusions & Highlights

  • 2 nights Queenstown, 3 nights Te Anau,
  • Entry into the Milford Mountain Classic
  • Hire bikes for the Around Mountain Day. (either electric or mountain)
  • All meals as stated, coffee carts and cycling snacks
  • Full support from airport to airport
  • Mechanical support
  • RIDE Holidays cycle jersey
  • 90-day professional training program


The Tour Price Excludes

  • Airfares and extra accommodation
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Travel insurance
  • Sports bars, gels etc. We will supply bananas, electrolyte powder etc
  • We do include hire bikes for the Around the Mountain Day. If you want a hire bike for the whole trip, then please talk to Karl as this can easily be arranged.


      The Tour Cost

      • 6 days / 5 nights NZD3200.00 per person twin share
      • NZD650.00 extra for your own room, cabin. (4 nights)

      OPTIONAL EXTRAS

      Full day Doubtful Sound $240.00

      Kepler 5 hour walk and jetboat $240.00

      If you would like an extra night in Queenstown at the end of the trip and would like to would like to join us on the guided, supported Glenorchy ride (on 22 Feb so your tour would effectively end on 23 Feb) then the extra cost including meals, (B, L & D) support, accommodation is $390.00 per person twin share. Or $490.00 for single.


      DEPOSIT

      Terms and Conditions

      Deposit & Balance terms and conditions. The initial deposit is $300.00 per person. Full payment will be due 30 days prior to departure. Our Covid guarantee - The most you will lose (including inside 30 days) is $300.00 which covers our fixed costs like the clothing etc. (which you would still receive)







        The Best of The Best - Tour Itinerary

        Day 1 - Thursday 16 February

        Arrive Queenstown

        We suggest you arrive mid to late morning if you can. We'll meet you at the airport and transfer you to our central Queenstown hotel.

        Early this afternoon we put the bikes together and head out for a short (about 3pm) spin. We'll have the support vehicles close by to catch up with those first day mechanicals. Today's ride is only 30km. We'll build things up slowly as the tour goes on. We ride to the Northern end of Lake Wakatipu and then inland on some country roads. If there's time, we'll pop into a local craft brewery for a beer on the way back into town. Rude not to.

        Tonight, we'll eat at one of Queenstown’s very best restaurants. The views are incredible. There will be bubbles. We’ll introduce the team and run through the plan for the next few days.

        / Accommodation – Downtown Queenstown
        / Meals - Welcome Dinner

        Ps, we are happy to arrange accommodation and transfers for those wanting to arrive in Queenstown early.

        Day 2 - Friday 17 February

        Queenstown to Te Anau

        It’s an early breakfast followed by an early bike ride.

        We ride lake edge towards Glenorchy and turn around is at the 30km mark. (which ironically is where the RH coffee cart will be parked) 60km is the perfect lead-up ride for tomorrows big day. There are a few hills so will be good practice.

        We generally find that we have a few mechanicals today which gives us this afternoon to have everything sorted. We want you and your bike to be in tip top shape for the Milford Mountain Classic.     

        It’s about a 2-hour drive to Te Anau. 3 if you include our lunch stop. We’ve ordered baguettes from Fergs for lunch. Oh, and ginger slice.   

        Our Te Anau hotel is centrally located. This picturesque town is the main visitor base for the glacier-carved wilderness that is the UNESCO Fiordland National Park. Tonight, we're joined by another RH group for dinner. We introduce the team and run through the plan for tomorrow. We’ll have your race registrations with us.

        Tomorrow will be epic - Fiordland National Park awaits.

        / Accommodation - Te Anau
        / Meals - Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner




        Day 3 - Saturday 18 February

        Milford Sound and the Milford Mountain Classic

        Early breakfast. All you need to do is eat and then hop in the bus. It's about a 2-hour drive to Milford Sound. You simply can’t come to this part of the world without seeing the Sound via the water. Waiting for us in Milford Sound is our very own boat. Let’s call it a morning tea, early lunch cruise.

        While you are marvelling at the 8th wonder of the world – our team will bring your bikes from Te Anau. They’ll be waiting for you when you get back on to land. Ready to go. Up, up and away!!

        Today is that day. The Milford Mountain Classic. Very exciting. It is without doubt one of the most scenic sportive's in the world. Can't wait.

        There are 3 options.

        1pm - Meridian Milford Mountain Classic which involves 122km and 1760 VM.

        1.30pm – Ride Holidays Homer Hundred - 100km starting on the Southern side of the Homer tunnel.

        2pm - Fiordland Lobster Eglinton Challenge which offers 65km od relatively flat roads.

        Here's a pretty good description of what you can expect. The 122km ride starts at sea level and for the first 5km it is not much more than a false flat (climbing about 100m) before the road rises sharply. Over the next 14km you climb constantly to about 900m above sea level followed by a 12km decent to the foot of the Divide. The Divide is about a 200VM climb over 2kms. The remaining 85-90km is mainly flat or a gentle decent. Ride Holidays will be at the halfway point with a full selection of fuel, epo and anything else you require.

        It is one of the best days on a bike you will have. Period.

        This evening we've booked a local restaurant. Which is right on the finish line. Let’s support our riders as they cross the finish line. Some of you may be late so we’ll save the official celebrations until tomorrow. 

        / Accommodation - Te Anau
        / Meals included - Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner


        Day 4 - Sunday 19 February

        UNESCO Rest Day

        Today is designed around rest and relaxation. Yes - it's a holiday. (Kind of)

        We start with the event’s official prize giving breakfast.

        Here is what we suggest for the remainder of the day.

        1. A gentle coffee ride after breakfast down Lake Manapouri. Maximum mileage is 60km. You then have the rest of the day to rest up. We could even try and arrange massage for those who are keen.
        2. We expect the majority of you to book the day trip to Doubtful Sound. Cruise across beautiful Lake Manapouri and over Wilmot Pass to Deep Cove where you will board our catamaran for a three-hour cruise taking in the dramatic scenery of Doubtful Sound.
        3. There are a huge number of walks which we can recommend - including the challenging Kepler track. At 1pm we'll be guiding a 5-hour jet boat, 6km walk on the Kepler. It's the perfect opportunity to answer emails, do washing in the morning and then tick off something constructive in the afternoon.

         

        Tonight, we party. Yes, it’s a Ride Holidays dinner like no other as we celebrate yesterday’s achievements. Yesterday, we employed a professional to put together a short video on today's festival of cycling. We'll play it on the big screen while the RH gang of 100 has a few beers or a glass of wine together.

        / Accommodation - Te Anau
        / Meals included - Breakfast and Dinner (Lunch included for those on the Doubtful Sounds trip)

        Day 5 - Monday 20 February

        "AROUND THE MOUNTAINS" CYCLE BBQ TRAIL

        After breakfast we'll say goodbye to Te Anau. Please make sure your bags are clearly named with your RH luggage labels - that way they'll find their way to your Queenstown room by the time we arrive later ion this evening. As will your road bikes.

        Just looking at my timesheet and I see no reason to depart really early. Feel free to head off to Sandfly (where the locals go) for a coffee. Let's jump in the vehicles at 9.30am. Today we are accompanied by Wild Rides Fiordland. They're providing Mountain (or electric) bikes, support for today's adventure. Which is rated as highly as Saturday’s ride. 

        Set in the remote wilderness of southern New Zealand, the Around the Mountains Cycle Trail offers a truly unique experience for those seeking to venture off the beaten track. Total trail distance is 186km however we plan to ride 80 of the best. Starting near the pristine waters of the Mavora Lakes - one of the awe-inspiring locations featured in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Lunch and a coffee cart will be waiting for us at Mavora.

        We then cycle alongside the Oreti and Mataura rivers and through the native tussock lands of Walter Peak and Mt Nicholas stations - both authentic high-country farms. Our 1% experience for today - when you arrive at Walter Peak there's a late afternoon high station BBQ waiting. I suspect the guest of honour for this afternoon's proceedings will be locally sourced. Can't wait.

        Our uber back to Queenstown is none other than the reasonably well known Earnslaw. (8pm expected back at the hotel)

        / Accommodation – Downtown Queenstown
        / Meals included - Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

        Day 6 - Tuesday 21 February

        Home James

        After breakfast we'll take you back to Queenstown Airport or you can choose to stay a few additional nights. Please remember not to book your flight too early as we still need to put all the bikes in bags etc. We’ll have staff to help you.  

        Don’t forget that there is the option to extend by a day, night. The ride to Glenorchy is without doubt stunning.

        Otherwise - thank you for joining us. We really appreciate your loyalty.

        Safe travels home,

        Karl & the RH team








         

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