The end of June, and a week past the shortest day of the year.
Time for a review of the past six months. Starting with my favourite photo, so far: Alan Ofsoski's "Panda on a Bicycle in Autumn".
Every so often a single image captures the zeitgeist of an event, in this case the 2019 New Zealand Singlespeed Championships at Te Mata Peak, Havelock North in the Hawke's Bay in late April. Costumes and the joy of an event where, for most riders, competition is secondary to good times. The event wasn't in Rotorua.
However, Rotorua Singlespeed Society committee member, Haedyn Borck, was at the tiller and the event was sold out and another success.
Titles and tattoos went to Tristan Haycock and Sarah Pilkington and everyone else did very well in second equal.
This was the 12th Singlespeed nationals and the spirit is still strong.
Te Miro, near Cambridge, will host in 2020. Lucky 13. See the Singlespeed Society Facebook page for more photos. They'll be news about 2020 later in the year.
In March, Crankworx celebrated a fifth year in Rotorua with another big week of spectacular action, bookended by the Altherm Mountain Bike National Championships, the weekend before, and the first round of the Enduro World Series on the final weekend.
National Elite downhill champions, Brook MacDonald and Kate Weatherly are having excellent results on the World Cup circuit.
MacDonald is consistently the leading Kiwi and Weatherly recorded her first World Cup podium with third in Leogang in Austria a couple of weeks ago.
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The Giant 2W Enduro concluded another excellent summer series in February. It's an event that goes from strength to strength in its seventh year. 2W is managed by the Rotorua Mountain Bike Club with proceeds going to a variety of good causes including the Emergency Response Unit, making life safer for riders in the Whakarewarewa Mountain Bike Park.
That park is about to undergo another expansion with five new trails being approved for construction by the Rotorua Trails Trust. These will be a variety of grades from the Tarawera Forest Hub, based at the Black House carpark on Tarawera Rd. They are the first trails approved in 18 months and will support the new carpark, facilities and development at the Hub.
Planning and timelines are under way. However, there are no confirmed dates for when they will be open.
One way to get a first head's up on all the trail news is to join and donate to the Trust: www.rotoruatrailstrust.co.nz
And you can also like and follow the Rotorua Trails Trust pages on Facebook and Instagram.
The Facebook page is also where you'll find details on the Trust's regular working bees.
In April there was more success with the Radix XTERRA Rotorua Festival based at the Blue Lake/Tikitapu with our trails featuring in the MTB leg of the off-road triathlon and local star, Sam Osborne defending his title.
It doesn't end there. Nduro Events has replaced the Winter MTB Series with a Forest Festival on 3-4 August. This will feature walking and running events, the MTB Winter Classic and a new gravel road race, the Royale. For more information and online entry: www.forestfest.co.nz