Down here in little ole’ NZ we’ve just had a four day weekend for Easter. We are five weeks into autumn, so it sort of signals the end of outdoor adventures for some people, and the beginning for others!!
Poor PB spent a good part of his weekend at his work, due to being in the middle of a 13 day run of on call days. And a lot of complicated things needed dealing to, so he really didn’t have a great time. On top of that he developed a really bad tooth ache, which resulted in having a tooth extracted this week. 😦
In the meantime, I was jaunting around the countryside with my brother & his friend! Our mission was to figure out a route for the 4WD trip that he is planning to lead over here in a few months.
At this stage it looks like it will be through some back roads and forestry land around the area of Lake Hochstetter.
This lake is named after the Austrian geologist Ferdinand von Hochstetter, who briefly surveyed some areas of New Zealand in 1859. A range of New Zealand plants and animals are named after Hochtetter including one of our frogs – Hochstetter’s Frog.
This is a natural lake, but for 10 years or so from 1876 it was enlarged by putting a dam across one of the creeks that enter it. The water was used for mining. The ruins of this dam and its control gate can be seen today in the vicinity of the geocache: GCX20B Control Gate. There is also another cache by the lakeside: GCX58H Hochstetter near where the photo below was taken.
Near that cache location we had a close encounter with a weka, which is a very common and pesky New Zealand bird – fortunately a little more brainy than another common bird, the pukeko!!! These birds have in the past been known as ‘ bush chickens’ – but it is now illegal to eat them, unless you live on The Chathams.
Along the road we saw a fantastic specimen of a native climber the Rata. This plant can either be a vine or a tree – or both! – in the course of its life span.
Rata vine growing on a tree
Another part of our weekend was chicken minding. I think the chicken would be glad that we wee only looking after them for one day, as we couldn’t find their food in the morning. They went a little hungry until lunch time after PB had found out WHERE the food was!!!
On Sunday my brother & I went on a bit of a photo taking trip around town so that I could get a photo for PJ’s weekly challenge at Flickr. See the Hoohaa 52 group for more photos !! And here is my eventual entry.
Of course we managed to fit a couple of family meals and some Easter Egg eating in there too!