Geoff Sharpe


Geoff Sharpe

Life needs adventure

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Christchurch July 14th 2018

Another cold and clear morning. The amount of frost around suggests we might of had a zero overnight. A local suggests that frost means a sunny clear day ahead. We only notice the extent of the frost when we hit the playground after breakfast. A delightful brecky at Caffeine Laboratory - occupying the corner on a row of heritage listed shops still beingh supported by scaffolding - reminds Jules of the old Continental Cafe on Brunswick St. The kids struggle to finish the one of the sweetest breakfasts I've ever seen and we head to the nearby playground to burn off some of the excessive sugar they've just ingested. It's the kid's second visit to the Margaret Mahy Family playground and the biggest playground in the southern hemisphere tops the list of Christchurch attractions on TripAdvisor ... read more
Deaks under Lutea.
Milla Mural.
Street Deaks

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Lake Pukaki July 13th 2018

It's going to be a day on the road today. Four hours from Twizel to Christchurch. An early highlight for a family from Queensland was the frozen windscreen and windows on the car when we got up this morning. It was still about 1 degree at 10 am checkout and I fortunately saw our neighbour tipping the kettle over his frozen windscreen and followed suit. The conditions last night couldn't be more perfect for stargazing. I braved the cold at about 10pm and while the sky was full of stars and the milky way was visible - it was probably on a par with a Maleny camp sky. But colder than Maleny and hard to stay out there too long on my own. Being so impressed with Lake Pukaki on the way down to Queenstown, I ... read more
Pukaki Perfection.
Milla Pond.
Milla Ice.

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Queenstown July 12th 2018

The sun came up (eventually), England got knocked out of the World Cup and it's crystal clear blue skies with no wind - is this the perfect day? Close! And I was initially disappointed that we weren't going to experience such cracking weather on the slopes, until we booked our lake cruise. We awoke with no plans - except to check-out by 10 am. Some of us were up for kick-off at 6 but the majority didn't surface until just before 9. But being seasoned travellers we were packed and ready to check-out by about 9.30! What a team! With zero wind chill, today still felt the coldest of all our days here. We packed up, rugged up and knicked off. We parked just out of town (Brisbane St coincidentally) to avoid parking fees/fines and walked ... read more
Remarkables Lake View.
Farm Fun.
Hair Envy.

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Queenstown July 11th 2018

No more monster queues for us. Up "early" to watch the World Cup semi and the rest of the gang are up at halftime, i.e. 7 am. Feels earlier than 7 am with sunrise at 8am. We're getting the hang of getting ready and we're out the door before we know it and at the bustop at 8. There's already a decent line of people but we manage to get seats on the first bus to The Remarkables. Deaks gets a window seat. They may say "third times a charm", but not when it comes to vacation vomits. Maximum temp of 1 at Remarks today, -2 minimum. But it feels colder with the wind. We all hit the magic carpet to get Milla boarding on her own. Before we know it, Deaks and Taj have somehow ... read more
Magic Carpet Mumma.
Snow Girlz.
Snowball Hill.

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Queenstown July 10th 2018

Remarkable! It doesn't really do them justice. It undersells them. More magnificent and brilliant than notable. We rolled the dice with the weather and it came up doubles sixes. It was an awesome day on the slopes. Maximum temps of 4 degrees but blue skies and white fluffy clouds. 25 cm of powder over 48 hours and the roads were covered with grit and ice. This delayed the bus departures and caused a monster queue for the shuttle bus. Where we had walked on to the first 8 am bus to Coronet Peaks on Monday we joined the heaving masses waiting patiently in the sunshine for a shuttle bus up the mountains. The Remarkables queue snaked for over 100 metres up Man St and down Camp St to the corner of Stopover St and it wasn't ... read more
Bus panorama.
Deaks Puke.
Snow Family Vivid.

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Queenstown July 9th 2018

The Remarkables today. Or The Remarks for those in the know. Or so we'd planned. We awoke to a dreary, rainy Queenstown. Probably not bad enough to deter the hardcore snowboarders but when the NZSki website lists The Remarks as "on hold" and with the road closed due to weather conditions, it's enough to deter us. We have two days left on our lift passes and 3 full days left in QT - we roll the dice based on the improving forecast and opt for a rest day. And while the kids have a few bumps and bruises - Milla named the egg on her bicep Betty Bruise - the oldies have some aches and pains that make opening car doors and putting on backpacks an ordeal. Here's hoping the rest day is better and not ... read more
Arrowtown Miners House.
A pretty penny.
HC by open fire.

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Queenstown July 8th 2018

Lucky for snow, it's awesome! The amount of prep and clothing required to enjoy the slopes is exhausting. You've got your thermals, your ski pants, your ski jacket, your ski socks, your ski boots, your neck warmer, your snowboard, your helmet, your ski goggles, your fleece and your turtleneck. Everything takes so long! It's slow time when it's snow time. And you need to wind down your expectations on what can be done and by when. We got up early to ensure we caught the first shuttle up to Coronet Peak. The alarm went off on queue and we had a snappy breakfast but then you have to put on all your gear, catch the shuttle to the snow field and then put on more gear and store the other gear you're no longer wearing in ... read more
Milla Coronet Peak.
Ski School Dropout.
Save the turtle.

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Lake Pukaki July 7th 2018

So we're in Queenstown now and before our memories of Tekapo get swamped by the majesty of Queenstown, I want to reflect further on our time in and around Lake Tekapo. I was tired last night and fear that I didn't convey the depth of my love for Tekapo. I might even have been pronouncing it wrong. I was pronouncing it Tee-Car-Po but the post office lady, the waiters and the pharmacy attendant in Cromwell pronounce it Teh-Kah-Po. But, with all our walking and with feeling natures call half way through our first hike - we prefer to pronounce it Tay-Ka-Poo. Get it? Take a Poo? And hike might be too strong of a word. There's no special hiking boots or walking poles. We don't prepare and we don't take a compass. I prefer to call ... read more
road trip
roadtrip rainbow
Airbnb view

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Lake Tekapo July 6th 2018

Electric blankets and a heated cabin - Jules is in heaven. Step outside and it's bloody cold! Woke to the sound of the wind swirling off the lake and rattling our cabin door. Sun doesn't rise until 8 am but is worth the wait. The brilliant turquoise of the lake doesn't show until the sun is above the mountains. But the colour of the sky as the rising sun hits the clouds is ridiculous! The kids comment that the scenery looks fake - like someone has "put up wallpaper on the sky". I am quickly running out of superlatives for these mountains that surround us. Can't imagine walking out the front door and seeing this view every day. Majestic. Sun up at 8 am and sets before 5pm. The days are short and we only have ... read more
Lake Tekapo School.
Rambling Selfie.
Family Rambling.

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Lake Tekapo July 5th 2018

Up and Uber. It's as if the Uber was waiting outside our door - confirmed pick-up and Amriptal was 1 MIN away. Out we rush and we're on our way! 10 minutes from Gordon Park to BNE International - loving the Airport Link! Adrenalin is pumping and we're all excited about our trip together. Check-in was a breeze and bag drop was quick as a flash. Waiting for take-off and Millsy isn't looking good. She's crashed and is lethargic and grumpy. I scored the seat by myself and am enjoying my film (The Death of Stalin - funnier than the title suggests) when I notice Deaks and Jules trying to get my attention from across the aisle. Milla has half filled the sick-bag and I'm on call to dump the paper bag of chuck in the ... read more
Tekapo Selfie.
sunset on Tekapo.

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