Tay­lor River Trail lauded

Marlborough Express - The Saturday Express, Marlborough - - FRONT PAGE - OLIVER LEWIS

The Tay­lor River Trail, in Blen­heim, has been in­cluded in a book cel­e­brat­ing the best cy­cle­ways in the coun­try.

When done in a loop, the trail, which goes be­tween the Blen­heim town cen­tre and Tay­lor Dam Re­serve, is about 22 kilo­me­tres long.

It has been in­cluded, along with 51 other trails, in a new book by the Kennett broth­ers, who are widely con­sid­ered to be New Zealand cy­cling ex­perts.

The broth­ers, Paul, Si­mon and Jonathan have writ­ten nine cy­cling his­tory books and 15 cy­cling guide­books since 1991, as well as or­gan­is­ing the first moun­tain bike race in New Zealand.

Their new book, Short Easy Bike Rides and which goes on sale on Sun­day, aims to in­tro­duce cy­clists to the best traf­fic-free rides in the coun­try, that can be done by any­one on any bike.

Jonathan says the Tay­lor River Trail is a fan­tas­tic ride.

One of the ben­e­fits of the trail, is that cy­clists can choose to do shorter or longer loops, de­pend­ing on which bridge they crossed to re­turn, he says.

The book also high­lights places peo­ple can hire bikes in Blen­heim as well as the Raupo River­side Cafe and Restau­rant, which Kennett says is an ex­cel­lent start­ing point.

The aim of the book is to make cy­cling a to­tal ex­pe­ri­ence, to en­gage all the senses by pro­vid­ing rec­om­men­da­tions for the best cafes, at­trac­tions and play­grounds near each cycleway.

‘‘It’s about hav­ing an out­ing, rather than a full-blown ad­ven­ture,’’ Jonathan says.

The book was for peo­ple with bikes sit­ting in the garage for 40 years, for fam­i­lies with chil­dren and for peo­ple who wanted to en­joy cy­cling with­out the risk.

‘‘Cy­cling is one of those small plea­sures in life. Peo­ple shed years as soon as they jump on a bike.’’

Marl­bor­ough Dis­trict Coun­cil re­serves and ameni­ties of­fi­cer Robin Dunn says it is great the Tay­lor River Trail has been in­cluded.

Since the coun­cil added the up­per end of the track, up to the Tay­lor Dam Re­serve about five years ago, it had been get­ting more and more use and, with the town ex­pand­ing in that di­rec­tion Dunn expects its pop­u­lar­ity to con­tinue to grow.

PHOTO: SCOTT HAM­MOND/FAIR­FAX NZ

Aaron Bleak­ley, left, and Brent Ack­royd take a ride along the Tay­lor River Trail.

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