Green Furry Hills and the Forgotten Highway: NZ Honeymoon

  

After two rainy days at a campsite with a lovely cycling couple from the UK (who are also on their honeymoon!) we spent two days along the “forgotten highway,” a quiet road which ceased to be a main road years ago and is now one of the most popular cycling routes in the country. The route went up and down these small furry hills and passed through a small republic which has “claimed” independence, before ending on the coast.
   

  

  

  

  

  

   

   

 We spent a night in a cabin which had a wonderful view!
         
   
We arrived in New Plymouth just ahead of a storm and were lucky enough to stay with a warmshowers couple in town who cooked us a delicious dinner and let us escape the rain and wind by sleeping in a beautiful room. We then set off around the mountain, and then down the coast until we made it to Wellington!

   
   

New Jobs, New Adventures, and A New Last Name

 

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Bend, Oregon – just minutes away from our house (Dec 2016).

 

It has been a while, and now that we are just three weeks away from our next cycle tour (a three-month honeymoon through New Zealand!) I’ve decided to catch those of you who are interested up as we have received quite a few emails asking why its been so quiet on our end.

This past year – in particular, these past six months – have turned into some of the best times for us as we have both been able to pursue our dream jobs. Kevin got on with a Forest Service repel crew (in Eastern Oregon) so he spent the summer repelling out of helicopters all over the US in order to fight wildland forest fires.

I got a job working in wilderness therapy which means that for eight days and nights at a time (with six days off in between) I get to live outside with teenagers who are sent to the program to learn healthy communication and coping skills after substantial self-harm, drug/alcohol abuse, or other unhealthy coping mechanisms that they have used to deal with underlying mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and ADHD.  I absolutely love the job; I love the people I work with, the environment we create out there, the six-day off shifts that leave enough time for my own personal adventures, and the fact that I get to cook over a real fire, poop in the woods, and sleep under a tarp more days than I have to sleep in a bed.

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Favorite Cycling Routes: Far Western Nepal

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The Far Western corner of Nepal was by far my favorite region; in fact I liked it so much that after cycling through it (and across the rest of the country), I bused back with my backpack in order to explore the remote foothills. This region is very different from the rest of the very tourism-reliant country, as no westerners ever venture this way and there are no hotels, restaurants, or shops like you see throughout the rest of Nepal. I particularly enjoyed my stay in the west as the people were hospitable and friendly.

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