I learned to ride a motor bike on my uncles farm when I was 13 – that’s how we rounded up the cows for milking back then.
When I was 16, I got my bike license, and shortly after a brand new Yamaha 125 (not exactly an eye-turner, but it got me where I wanted to go). One of my favourite memories of my teens is driving the 125 through the winding corners on Pipiwai Road, then opening it up on the Ruatongata straights. That 100kph felt like I was flying!
So the idea of taking a tourist ride on the back of a bike didn’t seem like much of a novelty to me – but for my wife… that’s a whole other story. She had never ridden a bike on the open road, never felt that rush of wind in her face, never lent into the corners, never felt the revs as the engine throttled.
On one of our trips to Paihia we met up with Mark from Thunder Trikes, who showed us his truly magnificent ride. What a beast of beauty! This is a lovingly custom-built V8 Chev Trike with all the trimmings.
Mark does a couple of half hour tours. The “Scenic run” takes you around Haruru Falls and Waitangi with sweeping views over the bay.
We chose the “Thriller” Tour. This route took us on a 30 minute ride to Opua’s picturesque marina, then on the way home the adrenaline got pumping on the winding coastal road – with more than a couple of shrill cries from my wife!
For a great orientation tour of the Bay of Islands, or as a bit of a blast for anyone that isn’t used to bikes, Mike makes this trip into a lot of fun. Highly recommended!