Electric Bikes – Tour of Whitby

I/we have been wanting to do this since we started building the e-bikes. Basically the idea is to ride every street in Whitby in one go, and the purpose was to test the e-bikes range without getting too far from home.

For those who don’t know Whitby, it is bounded by the Pauatahanui Inlet to the north, along the edge of which SH58 runs. To the south there is a line of low hills (max 200m). To the east Pauatahanui stream and SH58 and to the west one single road (Omapere Street) goes south, up and over into Porirua East. The only roads into Whitby are the one mentioned above, and 4 roads that come up from the inlet. As well as the hills to the south, which Whitby encroach on to about 140 metres in places, there are two large hills and some flatter hills, but basically Whitby is a bit of an amphitheatre. About 8 sq km, Whitby has about 37km of roads, but obviously most of them are dead ends, so it is never going to be a 37km ride.

So the rules we made up are:-

1. every road is to be ridden in both directions over its entire length, not necessarily in a continuous ride!

2. No section of road is to be ridden twice in the same direction.

3. Private roads and rights of way are out of bounds. This includes roads which have a gutter/low kerb across the end (i.e. the road surface must be continuous for it to be a road).

4. SH58 and Warspite Ave are out of bounds, and U turns should be made at or about the last house before reaching the boundary.

The method we used to achieve this is:

1. turn left wherever possible, and U-turn at the end of every dead end.

2.do not enter a road you have already ridden on if you have not ridden both sides of the road you are on – do a U turn and proceed back along the road you are on.

3. Do not enter any road you have already ridden in both directions, even if this means turning right!

These rules and this method means that every rideable road in Whitby is ridden once only in both directions, and you can start from almost anywhere.

For the whole of Whitby this gives a ride of 74km, with a total climb of 1050 metres approximately! This is a little long for a first go on our e-bikes, but fortunately, Exploration Way (where we live) splits Whitby into two equal sections. Heading East from the bottom of Exploration Way gives a ride of 36km, and west about 37km.

This weekend we did the Eastern half, the weather started off overcast but pleasant, but over the 1h 50 duration deteriorated into a miserable windy day – but we still had fun! The batteries still had plenty of charge when we finished, and despite a 458metre climb in total, we rarely went above the lowest power setting, instead dropping down gears. This made the Cat 5 climb up Endeavour drive a bit of a grunt! Cat 5 climbs are something MapMyRun made up to make unfit people like me feel good!

First off all, here is the route we took (in mapMyRun), corrected and sticking to the roads. We probably shouldn’t have gone into Newhaven and Gannet, they are probaby OOB according to the rules above – but we got caught up in the moment! We also stopped for a coffee to warm up near the end, hence the detour in the Whitby mall! This is the actual recording of the ride, the one anomaly on it (where we appear to ride straight across the lower Whitby lake) is where we stopped for coffee and GPS reception was cut off for a few minutes!

I also have the route mapped for the second half (Whitby West), which we are planning to do very soon.


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