NZ 2013: Third week

25 02 2013

W3 23/1-29/1 A quick statistical summary
151 finds, 138 trad, 1 multi, 1 letterbox, 6 myst, 1 event, 1 CITO, 3 earth

My third week started off with a short round trip to the south of Christchurch through Prebbleton and Lincoln, then across to Little River (on the way to Akaroa) and finishing off on the saddle of the hills leading to Port Levi where I picked up a letterbox hybrid cache that formed part of the CANZ series of caches. Most fun were the “x/12” caches placed by MacPacFamily. They were all camouflaged in various different ways and had me laughing on more than one occasion.

An x/12 cache - Blackbird

An x/12 cache – Blackbird

An x/12 cache - worker

An x/12 cache – worker

An x/12 cache - Tick Tock

An x/12 cache – Tick Tock

View of Port Levy beyond the Port Hills

View of Port Levy beyond the Port Hills

The day after was spent in Christchurch where I found a few LittleG Magic caches. So, you may say, what is special about that? Usually, finding just one is quite a challenge so I felt really pleased with myself for finding four in the same day. I can’t show any photos as that would be a real giveaway.

I then spent a couple of days driving up to Kaikoura and back but not up Highway 1 as I have done many times before. This time I turned off to Hanmer where I ate lunch and found the earthcache Geothermal Hanmer. The road north then became the imaginatively named “Inland Road” that took me through some wonderful scenery.

Brige over the River Waiau

Brige over the River Waiau

Kaikoura whale watching

Kaikoura whale watching

Kaikoura town

Kaikoura town

Kaikoura from above

Kaikoura from above

Whalebones in a Kaikoura park

Whalebones in a Kaikoura park

The last couple of days in the week were really busy. I drove back to Christchurch from Kaikoura for the event Fish n Chips in the Park collecting a few caches and the earthcache at Cathedral Gully on the way. Even on the journey back to Christchrch I tried to avoid the main road and drive on the small, mostly gravel roads closer to the coast.

Cathedral Gully earthcache

Cathedral Gully earthcache

I don’t know how many years the event has run but I think it’s my third time to visit. What I also liked was the idea of running a CITO event after the main event. We were able to clean up quite a fair amount of rubbish in what on first impressions was a well kept park. A good initiative! I was so busy talking to people that I forgot to take photographs, which was a shame.

The other highlight was doing, what may be, the South Island’s only power trail. It is called Thompsons track and consisted of eighty caches over a 40 km long road that was pretty much straight. What made it a little different from the power trails I had done before was that the caches were mostly small and had room for swapables or travel bugs. Some of them were well hidden as well. The combination of distance and needing to look for some of the caches made this a four hour adventure. One thing that was memorable was getting to cache #79 then discovering that there was no #80 on my GPS but that there was a #80 out there somewhere. I chanced that it would be at the signpost at the junction just a few hunded meters away from #79 and luckily it was. What I remember in conjunction with finding that cache was that the temperature which had been in the high twenties durin g most of the trip had gone up over 30C and my feet were sticking on the tar seal as I crossed the road.

After spending four hours on the power trail, which I have to admit I did with mixed feelings, the next few caches were a boost for my flagging energy. After a well deserved/needed cup of coffee in Methven I continued on to Rakaia Gorge to do the earthcache situated in a couple of kilometers up the gorge. The views up and down the valley are magnificent.

Rakaia Gorge - can you see my car?

Rakaia River Gorge

Rakaia River running through the gorge

Rakaia gorge – can you see my car?

This is where I parked

This is where I parked

The Rakaia River downstream

The Rakaia River downstream

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