Why I Ride - Logan Olausen

Logan Hero

Graphic Designer Logan Olausen from Golden Bay tells us how a TV show planted the seed, but it was a trip to Vietnam that started his love affair with adventure riding.

WORDS: Tara Papworth  PHOTOS: Supplied

When did you get into riding?
“I grew up in Auckland and rode 125cc dirt bikes with my mates so I had a grasp on the basics, but I didn’t ride again until about seven years ago when I was in Vietnam on a backpacking trip. I had absolutely no intention of travelling the length of the country on a motorbike, but a group of us decided to buy some absolute heaps of crap - 110cc Honda Wins. From the 80s, not an original part between them, and falling to bits the whole way down. It was a good laugh, quite stressful at times, but a really cool trip and a great way to see the country.


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I think the adventure riding seed was planted when I was about 13 or 14 and I watched the Long Way Round with Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman. I loved the look of those old GS bikes, thinking the whole thing looked bloody cool. Being able to see remote areas of countries and places, and the sense of freedom being on two wheels.”

What happened next?
“I rented more bikes and scooters on the rest of my South East Asia trip, then I headed to the UK on a five year visa. While I was there I got my full UK bike licence and spent some time on a 650GS. I’d make films of my trips and pitched an idea to BMW Motorrad who agreed to lend me a brand new 850GS for a four week trip around the UK in exchange for media content.” When did you come back from the UK? “I moved to Wellington in 2022 and bought a Suzuki DR650. At the end of that year I did a six week South Island trip tapping into the off road areas. I’m not that experienced in off-road riding so it was nice to hit some gravel roads, do some river crossings, and challenge myself.”


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What do you love about riding in NZ?
“You get access to wild and remote places. If you don’t have a 4WD then a bike is a pretty good alternative, especially if you like wild camping. I find you have more options and you can park the bike up right near your tent. The changing landscape is really cool here. I like how you can go through Central Otago and it’s barren, rocky, and exposed, then you go down the West Coast where it’s beachy and tropical with the mountains and the glaciers on the other side.”


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What’s a fun place you’ve ridden?
“I did the Maungatapu Track when the main Picton to Nelson highway was closed. It was steep, hard work and I was sweating my arse off! It was really fun though, and I only dropped the bike once which I was kind of surprised about.”


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What’s next?
“My Mum lives in Invercargill so I’m going down there on the bike for Christmas and I’ll do a bit of rock climbing and camping. I’ll probably do another tiki tour around the parts I didn’t see last time. I’m also preparing to go to South America at the end of next year so I’ll be getting the bike out this summer to continue building up the bike skills and carry on the adventures.”


Article kindly provided by kiwirider.co.nz



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