Drove toward the mountains to Oxford,and after a good quality coffee in the small town, headed to Wooded Gully campsite. From there we hike to the top of Mt Thomas via the Summit track. Going up the grade averaged close to 20% and was partly through pine plantation and part native forest. The view from the top was stunning with views to the
East over Christchurch to the ocean and to West over the Western Alps. The smoke from the recent fires in Port Hills were clearly visible. We hiked down via the Wooded gully track through native beech forest and fresh flowing streams. Link to Strava file of hike ->On the way back we took the alternative route over the Waimakiri river. The smoke from the fires could be seen constantly on the way back to Christchurch.
We had good news of James house settling so went to help him move stuff in. The fires were only a matter of a kilometre or so from James house. Fortunately they were in a direction away from there. They burnt through the Adventure park and pretty much over the route we had taken on our mountain bikes three days earlier. A change in the weather is on the way and should help in controlling the fires.