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Published: April 3rd 2011
Day 16 – Tuesday the 29th of March
Today was a real driving and relaxing day. A hark back to civilisation. We woke as late as possible and slowly tidied the camper up. Surprising just how much mess we were able to make in only 17 or so hours! We spent the morning eating brekkie and folding our washing done the night before.
Eventually we decided on Nelson as our next port of call with a stop in at the few vineyards in the area. After winding our way back over the hills (the area being laden with apples, pears, kiwifruit and nashi) we eventually reached the relatively large town (comparative to most we have visited) of Richmond - located just outside of Nelson, and probably just considered a part of Nelson. We stopped in at the local mall for an Auckland-type meal. Renee had some Maccas and Matt settled on Subway. Missing the big city maybe? Nah, nooo way!!
After revisiting our tourist information we discovered that we had actually driven past the vineyards on our way in to Richmond. Nelson, doing an Australia, has obviously claimed the fame. After visiting a few of the vineyards, a
few wines bought but not overly impressed, we rethought our accommodation plans for the night. We weren’t yet ready for reintroduction in to big/medium city living and so settled on another DOC site for the night.
Kerr Bay, in the Nelson Lakes Scenic Reserve, is a fully-serviced DOC site and required a booking. This is because the lake on which it sits, Lake Rotoiti, is regularly used for rowing regattas and, more often, powerboat racing. Hence, larger crowds are often attracted to the site.
We have concluded that we do not like TV. Or at least, someone doesn’t want us watching it. We seem to always be placed in the power sites where a tree is directly hanging over our camper and therefore our satellite is unable to get a signal from outer space! Oh well, suppose there are other things us honeymooners can do to keep occupied!!!
Once settled, we went for a quick stroll down to the lake’s edge. There were a few people milling about, including one elderly fellow busy gutting and descaling a local trout (a fish, not some old biddy!). Walking along the short pier, Matt happened to notice a fin sticking
out of the crystal clear water and disappearing under the jetty. The fin turned out to belong to one of the largest eels we have ever seen! It would have to be in the region of 1.5–2 metres long and was accompanied by at least 7 other of its brethren who could easily challenge that record. The old man scaling his fish seemed to be quite knowledge and probably a local, he said the eels were at least 40-50 years old and they were likely the biggest of its type. There were signs posted stating the eels were not to be caught, obviously a protected feature of the lake. Who know how many more were slinky their way around the bottom of the lake. Swimming anyone???
Settling in for an early night, we whipped up a quick campervan feed (made of actual food not campervans!) and the hit the sack.
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