Tuesday 8 March 2016

The Big NZ Road Trip Photos - Pt 6 - Queenstown and jumping off perfectly good bridges.

Alas, it was time to move south and leave the mountains and head towards Queenstown.  Queenstown in the summer - and especially during Chinese Year - can be manic.  I do not like manic so we found a great DOC campsite called Moke Lake.

Heading south

Catching up on school reports.

Getting closer to Queenstown

Escaping the crazyness of Queenstown.  The dirt road to Lake Moke camp

The view from the tent.
Victoria doing her Grade 7 Writing Assessment

The kid preparing breakfast again.

Victoria's tent.

Calm for now.

Wherever we go ... so go our diapers ...

Alas, it did remain calm forever ... after our tent got knocked down in the gusts we put it up in a more sheltered location (after splinting some of the poles and one of the brackets).

The NZ Championships for gunboot tossing.  The NZ egg toss/catch record was also set: 60m

Running of the wools, of course.  Even the sheep here wear the ever fashionable and practical merino wool.

The kids enjoying the Rural Games

Under 20 seconds to shear a sheep.  Amazing.

Building a toolbox at the Rural Games.
Our own running of the wools.
We did end up doing some of the Queenstown activities though.  For my birthday I got to try bungy jumping (video to follow eventually) and the family got to do the zip line.

Perfectly good bridge

Jumping off perfectly good bridge


Zip line
Zip line.

Benjamin rather upset at the age limits. No bungy jumping for him for a few years (Actually, he was happy until he saw Liz zoom past on the zipline).

Sunday 6 March 2016

The Big NZ Road Trip Photos - Pt 5 - Glaciers and Beaches

After visiting the mountains of South Island 15 years ago I was looking forward to returning to the region.  I was whitewater kayaking last time I was here so there was rather less adrenaline this time.

The campsite at Okarito came well recommended to us.  It is away from the hustle and bustle of Franz Josef and Fox Glacier and was beside a beautiful beach.

Hmm ... not on this trip.  My last trip to South Island 15 years ago kayaking with a bunch of crazy Royal Marines and RN sailors.

Seems a good place for a campfire

I like beaches

Me too.

Chopping wood for supper

Supper in progress

Okarito at sunset

Okarito at sunset
Start of the hike to above Franz Josef Glacier

Start of the hike to above Franz Josef Glacier

Heading up the tourist trail

The NZ Department of Conservation is quite keen to keep its tourists safe.  This was a great sign.
Note the ranger from the picture above.  Also cuts down on HR costs.

An amazing series of suspension bridges on the way to Franz Josef

An amazing series of suspension bridges on the way to Franz Josef
An amazing series of suspension bridges on the way to Franz Josef

The view was well worth the hike to look down to Franz Josef Glacier

Always a chance to work on your pull ups.

More danger !
The view from below Franz Josef

Post hike showers are a bit brisk

Post hike showers are a bit brisk

Hiking is tiring ...

The Big NZ Road Trip Photos - Pt 4 - The West Coast - Beaches, Surfing, Driftwood Art and Pancake Rocks.

We could have stayed weeks in Abel Tasman was wanderlust drew us further south.  To position ourselves for the much anticipated knife making we stayed at a nice campground in Punakaiki. In addition to the knife making in Barrytown which Johnathan ably detailed earlier in the blog, I took the opportunity to rent a board and do some surfing and we checked out the cool pancake rocks.

Not a bad spot to camp!
Not a bad spot to camp !
Pancake Rocks

Pancake Rocks
Pancake Rocks

Almost up

Dad, are you done surfing yet ??

No, there is no room for a pony onboard, even a small one.

After Punakaiki we drove south towards the glaciers.  Enroute we stopped for lunch at Hokitika where the annual driftwood competition had just finished.