This year's Rail Trail adventure for Year 9 had it all; headwinds, blistering temperatures, yummy baking, chilly mornings and some interesting biking manoevres.
For the past 11 years, we have set the new Year 9 cohort the challenge of biking the Rail Trail in three days. Not only is it designed to be a 'significant physical and mental challenge" (Mr Garry) it is also designed to help them get to know each other better.
Half the group went from Middlemarch to Clyde on the Monday to Wednesday and the other half reversed the process on the Wednesday to Friday. I think it is safe to say the first group had the toughest first day; uphill into a headwind in hot conditions. Many learnt the value of drinking water and putting on sunscreen. Myself, the other teachers and the parents on that trip were incredibly proud of their 'grit' and perseverance - a key aspect of our culture here at the college.
Wonderful baking from the parents and swimming in the Omakau School and Ranfurly pools helped ease any aches and pains. The boys perhaps did not realise it but as each day progressed they got better and better at biking and pushing on through the tough bits. Let's just say the dismounts at road crossings got a lot more elegant on the third day of each trip!
A huge thank you to the parents and helpers who came on the trip. We could not do it without you. A special thank you to Greg Wisnesky for the drone photographs. They really capture what a great experience it was.