March I was off to the South Island
I left Thames on the 2nd March and went to Hamilton and the Hawkes Bay. I crossed on the Interislander at 2pm on the 6th of March, it was a good crossing and met two other N.Z.M.C.A members, I got off the ferry safely and went Yippee!
The first night I stayed in Blenheim and left there at 7am heading for Hokitika, Stopping at Reefton after a long drive I arrived at Hokitika at 3pm.
Caught up with other Free Wheelers and we stayed on the beach front, then 70 University Students moved in around us. Wow what an experience for an old lady. There was lots of laughter, broken bottles, language, rubbish and 100's of bonfires on the beach at night. The Free Wheelers had a bonfire cooking sausages mixed with a little sand (yummy) not to mention the toasted marshmallows mmmmm
The Wild Food Festival was fun. I had wild pig, venison, bacon smoked in rimu, but best of all was the ice cream and baileys.
Moved on to Lake Kaniere then down the West Coast
, Had a ride on a paddle steamer on Lake Ianthe I even got to steer, stopped at Haast and did a pub crawl 2 pubs and 1 beer at each. Stayed at Jackson Bay where the sand flies are big and bigger. The next night I had tea at the Haast Heritage Hotel and parked on their yard for the night. Headed out of there at 9am and climbed and walked to see several waterfalls, ice cold water in the rivers.
Over night stops were at Lake Matheson, where I saw the sun rise over the snow capped mountains. I also stopped one night at Bruce Bay.
Gave a German lady hitch hiker a ride for some of the way then she left us as she was wanting to get to Queenstown. Hope you made it Sonia and enjoy the rest of your stay.
Frosty and Phil had lunch in my van at Comeron Flats to get away from the sand flies.
Caught up with other Free Wheelers at Wanaka Puzzle World, stayed in the Glendue Motor camp at Wanaka and swam in the lake for an hour, snow on the mountains but water was warm. I left the group here to head for Timaru, Drove across the Benmore dam water up to the road on one side and a huge drop on the other, but I made it I stayed one night at Kurow and called into an old school converted into a café at Ikawai, met a lovely lady Jan Maxwell. Have been back twice to stay there. Got to Waimate and felt so at peace I decided this is the place to put down roots. Looking at buying here. Tried Wallaby pie, it was very nice a lot like beef. Went possum, wallaby and wild pig spotting in Kelsey Bush
Stayed at Geraldine camp ground 26th and 27th while here went swimming with a senior group and did water aerobics, a funny feeling body movements in water. They invited me to join there pot luck lunch which was yummy. We went to the movies in the evening after being invited by a birthday group of seniors. It was very nice and lots of laughs we sat in the back row and watched Annie Mary.
Left Geraldine and headed for Temuka just a stoip here long enough to drop off a film for developing.
Arrived at Timaru airport 12.30 for a rally, was great watching planes do their last practice for tomorrows display.
Saturday 28th was wet for the Richard Peason 100 year celebration, some activities went ahead. There were lots of old tractors, cars, traction engines and wheat threshers. Sunday was fine, planes did flips twists and swooped right down low over the runway, a great sight with smoke trails following behind.
Left the Airport on Monday and headed back to Temuka picking up the photos before heaading back to Waimate Camp Ground.
Just a few pictures of the scenery I am forced to look at on my travels