About Us

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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

South islands weather, very changeable.

A very pleasant and quiet night spent in a car park much to our surprise! And with the dawn came the sunrise and a lovely red sky. Did that mean bad weather??

The bin men came early but I suppose that was understandable if one is parked in a public place. So an early breakfast and today we made for Takaka. It's up toward the Golden Bay and Farewell Spit. We didn't get as far as the Spit because no vehicles are allowed along the dune. It is a wetland bird nature reserve and only the local licensed guides can take you to see them and only by bus.  Instead, we found a place called Te Waikoropupu Springs. The "Pupu" springs are home to the clearest spring water in the world (the only place with clearer water is the salt water Weddell Sea in Antarctica). Underwater clarity tests have shown the water from the springs to have underwater visibility of 63 metres! All contact with the water is forbidden as the springs are 'sacred treasure' to the local Maori.

Doesn't the weather look perfect?  Well, it changed in an instant.

And then it changed again for the better.

Driving back to Motueka we stopped at Ngarua Caves which contain a variety of limestone cave formations. At $20 pp it was very reasonable for the 45 minute underground experience. Inside was  Moa bones carbon dated 24,890 years old. We walked about 300 meters in the underground caverns and at one point the lights were switched off for us to experience total darkness. We all finally emerged after a steep ladder climb to find ourselves some way away from the cave entrance but that view that greeted us....amazing.

Back at the carpark.
Travelled on to Motueka where we found a campsite with proper toilets, showers and a washing machine. Not bad at $25 a night and first thing was get the sheets in for a wash. By the time the wash had finished the wind had picked up and was gusting to 35km/h. Yes, it really did happen that quick! So lots of pegs on the washing to hold them in place but the up side was that within an hour everything was dry. Now relaxing with a glass of wine, both showered and squeaky clean and looking forward to what tomorrow may bring.

And the wildlife,

Fan Tail

Does Karate kid come to mind?


Marilyn McDonald said...

My goodness, you two are adventurous - caving? Are you mad?
Have you seen a weta yet? Please ask everyone you come across to hunt one down for you - as a bug freak you will love them!
M&D xox

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Wow Marilyn, looked weta up on the web and what a size! Will look more closely in the trees from now on.Xxx

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