Words: Liz French | Photography: Brydie Thompson
There’s nothing quite like tooling along a trail on a sunny day admiring the scenery and looking forward to the hills on a day out with DayTrippers.
When Miles Johnson was planning to set up DayTrippers there was no question the bikes he would offer his clients would be electric ones. “Electric bikes eliminate the need for more than average fitness and give people confidence they can enjoy it without much exertion,” says Miles.
I’ve been a bit stoic about using my own energy to power me on a bike. However, it took about a minute on one of DayTrippers’ Giant Fathom 3 electric bikes to convert me to the euphoric freedom that pressing a button and surging forward can create. Of course, you have to peddle but these bikes eliminate the pain and leave only pleasure.
It’s easy to ride an e-bike and talk at the same time, so as Miles and I cruised along the new Omokoroa Cycle Trail, I asked about the motivation to start DayTrippers.
The evolution of DayTrippers began when Miles, perfectly happily employed as an engineer, started to consider whether he could make his cycling obsession a profession. Miles was involved in engineering the Omokoroa Cycle Trail during which time he was challenged to question his path in life and risk something new. You only regret what you don’t do was the sub text. If Miles needed a kickstart that was it. “My aim was also for something the family can be involved in, that the boys can help with and maybe eventually take over,” says Miles of his partner Robyn Saies and their sons, Jack, Finn and Oscar, who all embrace the adventure of the venture wherever it takes them.
Miles’ engineer’s brain had already designed a bike trailer that would be easy to load and lock. The custom-built trailer is towed behind a bright orange 12- seater van bearing the company’s logo.
DayTrippers targets visitors to the region, cruise ship passengers and locals, who by riding with them, will gain a new appreciation of the beauty right on their doorstep. “The improvement in the number of cycle trails on offer makes a business like this viable,” he points out. “I also see it as the ideal way for a company to give staff a day out, a fun team building exercise, or simply something a group of family or friends can enjoy together.” DayTrippers welcomes anyone from about age 10, as long as you can ride a bike!
On that note, DayTrippers supply not only bikes, helmets, water and a guide but also a gourmet lunch enjoyed in a pretty spot along the ride.
Day Tripping the Gold Diggers Trail
It’s a tough job researching a story for Nourish. The next time I enthusiastically joined DayTrippers we were biking the Gold Diggers Trail, from Waihi into the Karangahake Gorge.
During the shuttle ride out from Tauranga, Lynne from Te Puke remarked that the booking process was made easy by excellent communication from DayTrippers. This continued prior to setting off, with a few instructions on how to ride the e-bikes, including turning on the lights for the tunnel, and a preview of where we would ride.
This trail, along the pretty Ohinemuri River, is one I had cycled several times before. It became a whole new experience on an e-bike. Hills…zoom up; head wind…bring it on; adrenaline rush…press power and feel the thrill. It’s hungry work having fun so it was good to see the deck chairs out by the DayTrippers van when we crossed the river from the tunnel. After a friendly chat over yummy lunch boxes and cold drinks we were shuttled into Waihi to ride the rim of the mind-boggling Martha Mine before, pleasantly full of fresh air, we headed back to base.
Judging by her effusive thanks Lynne had a great day out. Gordon, her husband, despite not being a mad keen cyclist, echoed her praise. My friend Cliff, who is a mad keen cyclist, was very impressed with his first e-bike ride and the quality, service and lunch. I would have happily ridden for hours longer.
The satisfaction level of our group speaks volumes for the DayTrippers experience. Choose from one of their three adventure rides or have Miles custom a tour just for you and your group.