Saturday, October 31, 2009

South Island - Our Intrepid Journey Day 11 -13 29 - 31 Oct 2009

Marton - Feilding - Foxton - Shanon - Mangahao

After spending the night, 29 Oct, at a POP in Marton.

 The following day, 30 Oct, we first headed to Feilding.

 Where we were in time to catch the local market restocking with a few items.

 Passing through Palmerston North we headed to Himatangi Beach for night. 
Due to a lot of sand blowing around I didn’t take any chances with the camera. Again we stayed at a POP.

 31 Oct we headed for Foxton Beach and then toFoxton. 

The town is dominated by a working flour grinding windmill.

 And the locals quite friendly.

 From Foxton we headed to Shanon.

 Where the train no longer stops.

 However just out of Shanon is the Mangahao Power Station.

 Where the white water of the tailrace and stream is enjoyed by those in kayaks.

 We could have free camped the night but in the end decided to head to a POP at Otaki.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

South Island - Our Intrepid Journey Day 9 -11

South Island - Our Intrepid Journey Day 9 -11
27 - 29 October 2009

Stratford to Wanganui

After spending the night in the Top 10 Camp catching up on domestic matters we visited the local New World (and the local bottle shop) to restock with some basic supplies

And a short visit to the McCollough Rhododendron Dell. 

We headed to Wanganui.  It was so windy you could almost surf on the waves on the cattle troughs.

Arriving late in the afternoon of 27 Oct we headed to a POP of Karen and Jens Bukholt (Viking – Danish hosts) for the night. 

A great POP, $10 for the night, includes power and water, a 9 hole golf course using 3 greens.

Deer in their adjoining paddock.

Interesting gardens to roam.  Thanks Karen for the silverbeet, parsley and lemons.

If you are ever in Wanganui visit a top cafe, Reflections Café, next to the Winter Gardens.

Where we met a couple of the locals.

Waiinu Beach

28 Oct we headed back some 40km back up the coast to spend the night at Waiinu Beach sometimes mistakely named as Wainui Beach.

Camping at the beach is by donation with a limit of 2 months, yes, 2 months.  The wind blew like crazy that night swinging to the south.

Back To Wanganui

First thing we headed back to Wanganui to view some of the sights.

We cruised the river road.

And watched some street racing.


Then off to Marton for fish and chips and a POP for the night, 29Oct09

Monday, October 26, 2009

South Island - Our Intrepid Journey Days 8

South Island - Our Intrepid Journey Day 8
26 October 2009

Day 8.  We left New Plymouth heading to Stratford where we planned to stay the night at a motorcamp that we had stayed at Christmas 2007/08.  Two stops were planned, Hollard Gardens and Dawson Falls.  The day started out fine however rain was forecast.

From the Dawson Falls carpark.

We headed off through the Goblin Forest.
Crossed a river strewn with boulders, more than once.

Viewed Wilkes Pools carved out in solid rock by the water.

Finally after a couple of hours we ended up at Dawson Falls. The path did go to the bottom of the falls, so did I, 98 steps to be exact.  Whilst the water flow was quite low the falls were quite impressive close up from the bottom.

Hollard Gardens
 These gardens are well worth visiting not far from Kaponga.  The few pics I have included simply do not do justice.

The entrance from the carpark, where one could park over for the night, gave nothing away.

 I really don't have the blog space to go into a lot of detail.  I am trying to keep the limit to about four pics for each specific location.  Unfortunately these gardens deserve better than what I have given them.

The gardens were extensive through wetlands, exposed and usual protected areas.

Flowers everywhere.  Rhododendrons, Azaleas,Camelias and zillions of others.  Check out my hayfever for confirmation.  The colours where across the spectrum with scents that some times overwhelmed.

 As with all the parks we have had the pleasure of visiting in Taranaki the attention to detail and layout is fantastic Auckland is so far behind in every way when it comes to engaging free public areas for all generations.

Got to go dishes to be done.................!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

South Island - Our Intrepid Journey Days 4 - 7

South Island - Our Intrepid Journey Days 4 - 7
22 - 25 October 2009
The journey to New Plymouth took us through the coastal town of Mokau.

You shouldn’t pass through Mokau without stopping for a feed of locally caught whitebait when in season.

Our traveling companions are not yet ready to contribute to our meals – soon maybe.

Arriving in New Plymouth the waterfront was to be our free park over for the next four nights.
Pukeiti Gardens 23Oct09

Our first day in New Plymouth, 23Oct09, we took in a visit to the Pukeiti Gardens.

The gardens feature extensive walks through beautifully laid out gardens.

That show off many of the rhododendrons that New Plymouth is well known for.

Including native flora like this 900 year old rata.

And other fascinating items like this old water wheel that generated power and pumped water for the gardens.
Tupare Gardens 24Oct09

The house and grounds of Tu parecover an extensive area all available for free public viewing.

Arrival at the Tuapere Gardens bought a surprise – we had arrived on one of the three market days of the year.

Complete with string quartet playing old English country music, only one musician shown.

The gardens have as one border the Waiwhakaiho River.

The walks are well formed and cover as much distance as you might want.
The next few pics were taken inside the residence built in the 1930's of hand adzed timers from the old Opunake wharf and walls of solid concrete .

Entry is into the lounge area.

A smaller living area off the lounge.

Upstairs to the master bedroom.

And childrens bedroom.
Araheke Walk 25Oct09

The walk crosses the Waiwhakaiho River.

With bush walks through areas of native shrubs and mature trees.

At times the path goes along the side of the river.

The area is also known as The Meeting of the Rivers.