Walks and Water.

Published: February 16th 2011
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Some days I just forget where I am and have to recount or look at a map for where I have been!! So I am in a campsite in my little camper ( loaned to me by Dave's friend Ian - thanks Ian) and I have driven up the East coast from Christchurch in horrible weather- grey clouds turning to windy and lashing down rain... not much stopping there ( its the place where you can go to sight whales- but not that day)- however seals dont seem to mind the weather and there they were sitting in groups on the rocks as I passed by. But turning the corner at the top of the Island and patches of blue sky became a gorgeous sunny afternoon and.evening. As usual interesting views - farmland , vineyards... hills in ridges here - so up and down you go, then some valleys. Heading for Nelson and Tahuna Beach I got settled for my first night camping. Campsites are great with all the facilities you need and nice and clean and modern. ( 460km ). Woke to a fantastic sunrise and a drive then on to Takaka in Golden Bay, at the Abel Tasman Park. Beautiful coast line backed by - you guessed - mountains to drive over again. I think this is good training for rally driving here. There is only one way in and one way out here - over Takaka mnt....so up and up and round and round bends I went. Somewhere I stopped at Bob's Lookout ( he is so famous out here)- and then at the top at Hawes Lookout I took a walk to see some limestone outcrops. Then down and fabulous voews of Golden Bay. So I checked in at the Tourist info in Takaka and decided to make my way to the very top of South Island - Farewell Spit- this is 25km curving sand spit at the end of Golden Bay- most of it is a Nature Reserve- but the public are allowed on the first 2 km. So I got my boots on again and off I went across the famers fields , through the woods and bush down to the beach- which was endless and shimmering in the heat- only a few other people to be seen inthe distance.. off came the boots and I had to paddle.
Back at the ranch - I am on the beach at sunset - the campsite is rght next to the beach- fotos taken as the sun went down. Slept soundly after all of that.
So up to today and I was going to drive to a place for a boat ride but as the road turned into a gravel road for the next 10km - narrow and up over a mountain ( why didnt the girl in the tourist info tell me it was agravel rd- no indicator of it on the map!!!!!!!!) - I decided I had had enough and truned round and headed for a waterfall walk which I had just passed and was in my guided book as a must do!!! And I was glad I did it - only about 45 mins to wlak to it and pretty easy - apart from the steel rope bridge to cross the river!!!Bit scarey that if you had no head for heights. But all was worth it - thundering down between a fault line with granite on one side and limestone on the other....well I think that was the story. Aling th eriver bedwere huge boulders and sometimes a little pebble beach Michael is always in my mind but here I was reminded of how he always loved to get into the water - rocky pools in Scotland , lakes and river beds in Sweden - always freezing apart from the rivers in France but he loved it- he would have been scrambling over the rocks and getting his kit off- no worries!!!
So thats the sea and waterfalls and next visit was to the largest natural springs in Australasia and the clearest in the world (so they say). Ahhh - I forgot - in between was a stop at one of the bays and into the sea - looked so inviting and I was HOT - but the sea was bloody freezing - I have to remember this is the Cook Strait waters. So in the sea - got wet half a dozen strokes and out I came. Time for a doze in the beach and then a picnic lunch.
Back to the Springs- Waikoropupu seems to be the full name but Pu Pu seems to do for the road signs. A short drive out of Takaka and there you are. Boots on again and a short walk through some forest in several stages of recovery from bush burning by the golddiggers of yore - you walk alongside a babbling stream and come to the springs pool. Well its the clearest water i have seen and some amazing plantlife growing there ( big signs telling you not to touch the water - they are trying to keep it free of any nasties) - several springs bubble up huge quantities of water every minute...what a sight. Incredible and beautiful to behold.
So no flowers today - and I have had some trouble choosing the best fotos- hope I can get them all downloaded before my time runs out on the internet.
And don't worry I am not doing without my boat trip - tomorrow I will be up and over that Takaka mountian back to the other side and a proper road to go to the boat trips.
Bye for now .
Lynne xxx

Ps - Now I know where I am - I am at Pohara Top Ten Campsite in Golden Bay.

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16th February 2011

A lifetime's worth of photos
Lynne - the springs look wonderful! We have been to NZ three times but there is obviouly more to see. The next trip for us will probably be back to NZ for a week at the start of next year so it's been great to get some tips rather than referring to a guide book all the to time. I know it sounds ridiculous for us to still be on holidays but talking about our next but you've got to have something to aim for! Photo, photo, photos! They are the bane of my life as we mut have over 10 000 from our holiday and I have had to name every one. Most are Anthony's so he should be naming them but if I left it to him, we would never remember all the place we visited. I'll be doing a big cull hen we get home. I figure a few hundred a day and I will be done by the twelfth of never!
16th February 2011

Lynne, astonishing potos. It must have been difficult to keep your hands out of the water. I was thinking the Brits would have thrown coins into it as they seem to do in every bit of water they pass. Fantastic tour Lynne. Much love Janice
16th February 2011

Hi Lynne You are such a fantastic tourist!! YOu just do not miss a trick. I must take a page out of your book. Has any body told you that you are a very good photographer? Your photo's are great. Peter left for Borneo today, so very quiet here today - watch out I may evven hop on a plane and join you in NZ!! cheeers colleen
16th February 2011

Good on ya, Bob
Sorry that you started out in rain, Lynne. It will be good for the next week now. Kaikoura (where the whales are) is usually a great picture where you can have the snow on the mountain tops and the sea all in one photo!Loved Bob's Lookout. You did well there, Bob. Are you here on your bikes somewhere? Not sure about the cannabis in Christchurch, Pauline, but there is plenty where Lynne is now!! She could come across whole plantations of the stuff on some of those walks she is doing!!Hope you can stop a night at Little Kaiteriteri, Lynne. I think you will be getting in your kayak around there somewhere. It will be amazing. Love Jocelyn
17th February 2011

You are having a wonderful time
Hi Lynne, You are having a wonderful time and I am enjoying it with you. We are all well and off down the beach tonight for a B.B.Q. with all the gang, every one says HELLO. Have fun (which is exactly what you are doing). Kind Regards, Wilma.
17th February 2011

Absolutely beautiful photos
Dear Lynne, Your photos are exquisite !! I thinkk that they would grace any coffee table travel book. I also think your writing is wonderful Makes me want to "do" N.Z. again.Hope all is well with you,we areion the throes of the term and working very hard. Kate leaves for Melbourne on Sunday and Amelia and I are going with her for the day. I bought a new car this week. We all love it. Love from Suzanne xoxo
18th February 2011

PuPu Springs looks fantastic - what wonderful colours - should be inspiration for patchwork /quilting there!! xx
18th February 2011

Just got internet today. Stunning photos they are so beautiful you should write a book! Don't wish our fabulous time here in Sydney away but so so so looking forward to seeing all these lovely places NZ has to offer. Good to talk to you last night and Tel's says stock up on the couscous! lotsa love xxx M & T

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