Lake Pukaki has long been the dream viewpoint in New Zealand’s South Island, peering across glacial waters to Mt Cook, the highest peak in the country. Most people drive here, but it’s now also part of the route for the Alps 2 Ocean cycleway, one of 18 new cycle routes being carved throughout New Zealand.
This photo was taken when I cycled sections of the 300km-long Alps 2 Ocean ahead of its opening a year ago. The morning was as still as the lake surface suggests, and from here it was like a waterslide into the Waitaki Valley as we pedalled along canal roads to meet the valley and the long approach to the coast at Oamaru. The Southern Alps eventually fall behind, but if you get a morning like this one, the memory of Lake Pukaki takes far longer to fade.
*Adventure before Avarice cycled with Adventure South, which runs five-day cycling trips on Alps 2 Ocean.