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Wanaka with Suzy Kouw.

Left to our own devices we wandered around Wanaka streets and around the lake. Hot windy day down here. Met a local who said this is very unusual wind for here as the lake had white caps! Houses are on mountain slopes and have lovely gardens and we were surprised by the colourful gardens. We walked for three hours then went back to our apartment and made brunch! After some food we were energetic again drove to Albert town and Hawea but it was still very windy so we didn’t get out for another walk. We plan on getting out again after our stir fry dinner!




Greymouth to Franz Joseph Glacier to Wanaka

Christchurch to Greymouth was one of the most scenic drives I’ve ever been on. We stayed at the Gables self contained apartment. We cooked Chilli Con Carne. Greymouth is a lot bigger than I remembered from our trip 20 years ago. In the morning we drove 40km north to Pancake rocks and were surprised by the number of tourists there. There are heaps of rocks shaped like a stack of thin pancakes. Then we headed south to Hokitika to have look at the gorge. The water in the gorge was a bright aqua color and the lush greenery was spectacular. We stayed in Franz Joseph Glacier town in a self contained unit the next night .The weather turned nasty getting cold with slanted rain but fortunately cleared by the morning. We next headed to the Franz Joseph Glacier in the morning and there was a 1 hour return trip to where we could see the glacier from . A glacier is a frozen river that moves slowly and melts slowly . We next headed to the Fox glacier which was also spectacular. We drove 260 km from Franz Josef glacier to Wanaka and it took a while cause the road is winding and there are a lot of single lane bridges over wide rivers. It was also a spectacular drive with the Alps visible in front of us and to either side a lot of the time and huge mountains covered in rainforest. There were farms of deer; beef ;cattle; sheep and dairy farms in the flat areas. We didn’t see much sea ; mainly rainforest. We were so fascinated by the incredibly beautiful scenery. Wanaka is stunning too. We are staying 3 nights here in a 2 bedroom apartment. We can see snow covered mountains from our lounge. We are going to have a big explore in the next couple days. Rick is taking the 7 hour bus back to Christchurch tomorrow!

South Island Road Trip

Arrived in Christchurch late Sunday with Lily and Suzie in tow. Headed out for a quick MTB ride with James ,while the girls sourced dinner,  and as usual James’s  green tracks are black for me ! 

Next day we decided to hit the road towards the West coast. First stop Darfield for coffee and breakfast.  Then a little C2C reconnoisence with a stop at the Waimak gorge bridge. 

Next stop Castle Hill for a walk round interesting rocks. 

We continued on toward Arthur’s Pass after a brief stop at Klondyke Corner. 

At Arthur’s pass coffee was again in order followed by a walk up the Avalanche Creek Track.  This a bad choice if you’re looking for leisurely stroll as it is clearly a serious mountain track, and denim jeans are not the correct attire. After ascending around 250 m we headed back down.  

Leaving Arthur’s Pass the weather soon turned nasty but as we approached the West Coast it seemed the front had passed through and the sun was out again.  We turned north at Kumara Junction and found accommodation in Greymouth. 

After a run next to the ‘beach’and out onto the breakwater at river mouth the name of the town seems appropriate. Was swooped by seagulls on the breakwater!! 

 Avalanche Peak Track

  Greymouth Run

Christchurch Parkrun,  Anaconda Trail 

Our last day in Christchurch with again a drizzly day which has to be good for the fires which are still burning and could flare up with weather expected to warm up Monday. Being a Saturday Parkrun was the order of the day. Lil and I ran the 2km from our accommodation to the start in Hagley park where we met James. It is a pretty flat figure of 8 course. There were around 200 people.  James blitzed with a fast sub 20 time. Well organised event but no photos!

I had to return our rental vehicle and ran the 6.5 km back from there in the cool conditions.  James picked us up and we had lunch at his new place.  Later the rain held off, though not the most, so we headed out to Taylor’s Mistake for a ride at Godley head. The first part of the ride was on a walking trail that at times was rather steep and we had to carry our bikes on the first part. This trail went past some military installations and gun emplacements originally there to defend the entrance to Littleton harbour. We the traversed on the Godley Head Connector to the start of the Anaconda trail. We descended on the Anaconda trail which as its name suggests is a twisty descent which I managed most of the way before breaking my shoes(again ).

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