Riders on the storm

Riders on the Otago Central Rail Trail were caught out by this week's unseasonal weather.

Ranfurly Red Lion Hotel duty manager Tracye Mossman said the hotel's restaurant had 99 customers at lunchtime yesterday, mostly people on the rail trail, "and they all seemed happy".

"There's a few staying tonight who are using our driers and we did have to turn on the heat pump at one stage, but I haven't heard any grumbles.

"People realise that it's unusual to have two days of rain in Central Otago at this time of year."

Lauder Hotel publican Gerald Patterson said some of the people on the trail had been caught in the rain.

"We've had some pretty soggy people come into the bar. They were all right, though.

"Mostly, trail bikers are a pretty tough bunch."

By 5pm yesterday, the rain had cleared and Lauder was warming up, he said.

There were 40 rail trail riders staying in Lauder last night and, despite the weather, Mr Patterson was expecting a big night.

"It's going to be busy in the dining room."



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