Sylvia – 17-19 June 2016
We have often talked about how we should also blog about our travels in New Zealand and having just returned from a quick weekend visit to Takaka I was again struck by the incredible beauty of this country and decided to actually do it!
I left Roger in Auckland for the weekend as he had a big dinner to attend on Friday night (and well into the wee hours of Saturday morning by the sounds of it…).
It was a stunning day with not a cloud in the sky so the flight into Nelson offered up fantastic views of Golden Bay, Farewell Spit and the Marlborough Sounds. By the time I had snaked my way over the 25km long Takaka Hill and arrived in the little piece of paradise that is the Golden Bay area I had already fully unwound from the week.
My daughter, Beka, and her partner, Tom are currently living in their bus, Bronson, with their two dogs, Ruby and Daisy. Beka is studying art and spends four hours or so a day painting and drawing. The rest of the time they are rock-climbing and exploring the beauty of New Zealand. This was my opportunity to do a bit of the same, albeit staying in a warm motel rather than the bus.
Saturday dawned another brilliant day. I drove out to Pohara where Beka and Tom had camped for the night and after catching up and admiring Beka’s art we headed to Cathedral Rock where I was encouraged to do my first climb of the day. This was so much better than climbing in the Blue Mountains. The rock is limestone, so much smoother, the crag was in the sun, so mice and warm, and there were phenomenal views back over Golden Bay. I get so much encouragement from Beka and Tom, even when I scrabble and yell “help!”. Eventually I made it to the top of Tales from the Sea!
There is no climbing for the kids near Pohara so we headed to Payne’s Ford nearer to Takaka where they were able to work some of their projects. Beka was climbing Dancing on a Skewer and Tom was working on a first ascent. Unfortunately shady and colder but still a lovely spot. I always get a kick out of watching them climb. Beka set up another short climb (Green Day) for me in that area and even allowed me to belay her which was a privilege. We packed up just on dark and headed into town for a delicious meal at one of the local cafes.
On Sunday morning we drove out to Minthorpe. The brooding sky added to the atmosphere as we wandered first along the beach and then back through the forest to the car. All too soon it was time to head back over that hill to Nelson for my flight home. In many ways I am glad that hill exists – it probably keeps to a minimum the number of people who visit this little piece of paradise. It is certainly well worth it for any who do.