Perfection on the TranzAlpine

November 11th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , , , |

The conversation behind me made my Kiwi heart swell with pride, especially when I detected the broad Aussie accents of the middle-aged couple. “I never expected the trip to be quite so spectacular,” the woman said. “Bloody bonzer,” was the reply from her husband. We were disembarking from the TranzAlpine train in Greymouth after a [...]

Ancient Camp-o-Matic ‘Born Again’

February 28th, 2018|Tags: , , , , , |

When we flipped the lid on the Camp-o-matic to initiate a pre-summer test run of our famous five-second tent-pitching routine, there was a sickening, tearing sound. The ancient, faded blue canvas finally decided it had been stretched and abused enough, and it parted company from the fibreglass base on the trailer. We sat on the [...]

  • Cyclists riding alongside Lake Pukaki on a perfect day. Photo by Miles Holden

E-bike and Hiking – The Lake Tekapo-Pukaki-Ohau-Hooker Valley Trails

September 5th, 2017|Tags: , , , , , |

I’ve never understood the obsession with fly fishing – fruitless hours flailing the water with a feathery thing on the end of a piece of flimsy nylon – but seeing the look of sheer exultation on my husband’s face when he landed a rainbow trout helped me grasp what a thrill it is to hook [...]

Big Sky Country

June 25th, 2017|Tags: , , , , |

In our early 60s, in that heady zone between children and grandchildren, we’ve lately developed irresponsible nomadic tendencies that worry our adult daughters. It’s a classic case of role reversal – we get texts from Sophie and Bridget urging us to be careful and report in at the end of the day. They are working [...]

Ultimate Compatibility Test

March 6th, 2017|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

On our way down the West Coast, we stopped off at Franz Josef Glacier Guides’ base in Franz Josef in the hope the weather would allow us to fly up onto the glacier by chopper. The impressive complex was alive with hearty-looking guides in red shirts and shorts with climbing ropes, pitons and two-way radios [...]

First Rental Roadie

December 18th, 2016|Tags: , , , , , , , |

... ...When I was a child, I would hide on the last day of the holidays, trying to prolong the summer magic and avoid the long car trip back to Dunedin. My long-suffering parents would be standing on the lawn in Arrowtown with the little crib all locked up [...]