Tuesday, 10 January 2017

We have some good news, and some less good news!

And no bad news, just more opportunities to ride your bike!

The good news is the course is done and the GPX is available (see link below).

As much as the Great Southern Brevet is a challenge to ride, it also has it's challenges to organise. Ignoring busy life for a moment, the every changing landscape of access creates the need to check and gain permissions along the route.

The Great Southern Brevet is an off-road bike-packing event. By definition it travels lesser used paths which are often on public land (conservation areas, reserves, parks, etc.) and occasionally on private land. Access to this land, both public and private, changes over time.

Central Otago has developed into a dichotomy of land access. More and more cycle trails are being developed for use by everyone, while at the same time more and more landowners are restricting access to a few (and sometimes none).

Cycle trails are a good thing, besides the economic and health benefits it is just plain more fun to ride without looking over your shoulder for vehicles (and hence the Great Southern Brevet). But the push for these new cycle trails has heightened resentment, sometimes deep, from land owners and land custodians.

This years GSB has changes as land issues boil over and unfortunately fall short of getting resolved. You will see some quirks of the land access issue as you travel (more about those at the briefing).
However you will also get to ride your bike through some spectacular countryside thanks to the generosity of landowners.

So as you curse having to throw your bike over a locked gate you can also celebrate you get to ride in such a diverse and challenging landscape.

The road less travelled... The Nevis

GSB 2017 Route GPX

The Cue Sheet for the GSB 2017 will be posted soon. The updates will hopefully be complete tonight. Check back if you plan on carrying it for back up or as your primary navigation aid.

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