It all started with a fleet of bikes in a garage and a dream to bring the allure of the Rail Trail to the world.
When the Otago Central Rail Trail opened in 2000, it paved the way (pun intended) for a surge in cyclists and visitors to the region.
At the time, Dave Thomson had a renowned bike shop in Dunedin called Cycle Surgery. He knew his bikes and he was an expert on the unique traits and requirements of cycling through the area.
Dave's wife Pip is a true local having grown up on her family's farm near Middlemarch before eventually managing it. Her knowledge of the area is unmatched and she was keen to share this with riders.
Together, Dave and Pip wanted adventurers on the new trail to truly appreciate the history, scenery and charm of Central Otago, but they would need the right bikes.
When Dave couldn’t find suitable hire bikes to purchase, he did what any practical southerner does; he built his own.
Important features included raised handle bars for a comfortable up-right riding position, a cushioned saddle for extra comfort and to prevent chafing, ultra-light wheels for an easier ride, a durable centre-ridge for sturdiness and disc brakes for control and safety.
Pip used her know-how of the best areas to see and trails to ride to design one-of-a-kind itineraries that delivered truly great cycling experiences.
And that was the start of Cycle Surgery bike hire - a fleet of bikes in a garage in Middlemarch, at one end of the Rail Trail.
Over 20 years on, we’re now known as Central Cycle Trail Co. and we’ve got a lot more bikes as well as a reputation for delivering the best Rail Trail experience.
But some things haven’t changed; we’ve still got the same can-do attitude mixed with a bit of Kiwi ingenuity and the best local knowledge. We’re passionate to share our know-how with those who make the journey out here.
Our experience is what will give you the best experience. We hope to see you down here soon!
No wonder this organisation is 5 star! I would give it a 6. From the very first phone call right through to our arrival in Middle March and our transportation back to Wedderburn the service we got was impeccable. The accommodation booked for us was great and the dinner venues also great. A big thank you to a great bunch of people.
From pick up at the airport, to getting bikes sorted, to have accommodation all sorted and also lovely restaurants booked ... It all was very well done! Friendly and helpful staff, doing their very best to sort out any issues immediately. Bikes were very comfortable and enjoyable!
I cant fault our experience with Central Cycle Trail Co. Bikes were great, accommodation excellent we didn't have to think about anything and the cost was very reasonable. I would highly recommend. This is a great blue print for the other great rides in NZ.
From Pip & Lauren organising our accommodation and logistics, to Audry & Dave carrying out our transfers and face-to-face, we (group of seven friends) had a fantastic time in May, cycling from Middlemarch to Clyde. The bikes, the accommodation, the restaurants, the attention to detail - everything was perfect. Even the weather played its part. Thank you so much. Would not hesitate to recommend Cycle Surgery to anyone thinking about doing this trip.